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Movement pitches

Oct 2, 2018
63
18
Georgia
Keep in mind, one of the hardest things for pitchers to do is learn the rise. I believe this is PARTLY because girls are taught a curveball first. While a curve and a rise are extremely similar in grip and finger movements, one you spin sideways, the other backward. MOST OF THE TIME when you learn the curve first, it makes the rise harder to do.
Bill, would you teach the rise ball spin and/or progressions after learning the drop and change up? I don't mean throwing the riseball game ready but working on the spin, release out the back of the hand, proper cupping and nose slightly up. I see PIs close to me teaching the curve before spotting the fastball and change up. Do you think the reason HE instructors teach the curve that soon is to get the arm action closer to IR release?
 
Aug 21, 2008
965
43
Keep in mind, one of the hardest things for pitchers to do is learn the rise. I believe this is PARTLY because girls are taught a curveball first. While a curve and a rise are extremely similar in grip and finger movements, one you spin sideways, the other backward. MOST OF THE TIME when you learn the curve first, it makes the rise harder to do.
First of all, I can't even pretend to know why there are still HE instructors around. Even if you're not a data junkie who reads everything on pitching (IR threads, etc) how can you not see with your own eyes what pitchers are actually doing and not what you THINK they are doing? The HE poster child, Jennie Finch is a great example. I think she's a fantastic person, this is not about Jennie personally. But a group of chimps could look at the things she "teaches" and what she actually does and see it's not the same thing. I had been saying this LOOOOONG before IR threads or this website was ever invented, and I'm sure i'm not the only one.

The reality is this: the rise is the toughest pitch. And there's no scale to say after 3 months, she should be "this" far along. After 5 months "this" far along. Everyone is different. Some can get it very close in a matter of days, for others it takes months or years. Personally, it took me a very long time to get backspin. I kept spinning mine like a curve when I was a teenager. Your margin for error on the rise is ZERO. Meaning you can cheat mechanically and still make the ball spin forward for a drop. You can cheat mechanically and make the ball go slower for a change. You cannot cheat and get the ball going backwards. Your motion has to be error free and doing the right things or else the rotation isn't going to happen. That is not MY rule, that's simply the way our bodies are designed. So, the earlier you can even begin the process of learning it, the better. But, I don't really like doing this with kids using the 11" ball. For some, for many, going from the 11" to the 12" is almost like having to re-learn how to pitch. That extra inch in the ball feels like a basketball in their hands in many cases.

As for your coaches teaching a curve before having command of other pitches.... not sure what to say. SOMETIMES, in very rare cases, I'll introduce a new pitch earlier than I probably should in order to motivate the kid to both work harder and understand what's happening with their body when they pitch. For example, introducing the rise can sometimes help them understand why every little detail is important and they can't just gloss over it or cheat, because it will bite them in the butt on this pitch. If they cheat, they won't even get the ball to spin the way it's supposed to. But this is the exception not the rule. Maybe coaches are teaching the curve because they are hoping to get SOMETHING that will resemble consistency? "That pitch didn't work with consistency, neither did the next one.... lets try something else". Instead of fixing the problem, they are trying to mask it by adding something else. But I truly have no idea.

Bill
 
May 15, 2008
616
28
Cape Cod Mass.
When I teach spin pitches I usually start by showing them how to throw an overhand curveball. When I throw one to them they are always impressed by seeing the ball slide sideways. It is also a great way to introduce the concept of ball spin. It's amazing how many pitchers don't understand spin, they have no idea how a curve, rise or drop should spin and what that spin should look like. Throwing an overhand curve also lets them feel the ball coming off the topside of the index finger, between it and the thumb. When I work on spin I always use a ball with nickle size black spots on it.
How a pitcher spins her fastball determines whether a drop is worth teaching,. If she naturally throws top spin what's the point, if she throws bulletspin then the drop is fine. I usually play around with a palm up curve and a rollover curve, whichever seems more natural is the one I focus on.
 
Sep 19, 2018
187
28
I should not be answering this because my DD is 10 not 13 but.,.
I agree with the posters that said a good CU is really all you need at the younger ages. however, for ease of learning my dd found the drop much easier. Her small hands had a hard time controlling the change with the first grip she learned. Then we changed grip and she had better control but was not decreasing the speed at all.

It got to the point that she wanted to shelve working on the CU and try the drop as it was not uncommon for her to get drop movement anyway. It took about 15 minutes and she getting consistent drop without any less control.
 

RADcatcher

Possibilities & Opportunities!
Dec 13, 2019
163
28
There are top pitching instructors,
In softball decades of years,
And more recent years...
Who develope and produce
multiple talent levels including
Top tier, elite and olympic pitchers
Who all teach differently.

This should be a discussion.
Not statements of absolutes.

Bodies are different
Athletic strengths are different
Developmental growth is different

What is important in phylosophys
of training are different.
Including-
Verbage
What to throw when
AND YES Even mechanics

Instructing/coaching/teaching
Takes communication skills!
This alone can be a HUGE factor!

All that being said
What works for one,
Doesnt always work for another.

*How about this
If every pitcher threw exactly the same way, same strategy, same pitches, same delivery & release
same...same...same....
Hitting would be MUCH EASIER

KEEP GROWING SOFTBALL
Enjoy!
 
Last edited:
Oct 2, 2018
63
18
Georgia
There are top pitching instructors,
In softball decades of years,
And more recent years...
Who develope and produce
multiple talent levels including
Top tier, elite and olympic pitchers
Who all teach differently.

This should be a discussion.
Not statements of absolutes.

Bodies are different
Athletic strengths are different
Developmental growth is different

What is important in phylosophys
of training are different.
Including-
Verbage
What to throw when
AND YES Even mechanics

Instructing/coaching/teaching
Takes communication skills!
This alone can be a HUGE factor!

All that being said
What works for one,
Doesnt always work for another.

*How about this
If every pitcher threw exactly the same way, same strategy, same pitches, same delivery & release
same...same...same....
Hitting would be MUCH EASIER

KEEP GROWING SOFTBALL
Enjoy!
Top Level Athletes at all levels will excel inspite of instruction good, bad or none at all. No matter the style pitching taught their body will figure it out with enough reps. Most elite players can't teach or explain how they do certain motions or actions, they just do them. I am not saying proper instruction wouldn't make them even better. Then give a lady 80% fast twitch muscle fibers with a 6 foot frame and the instructor will look like a genius regardless of instruction. What i am saying is instruction that's conceivable to be poor by most is at least getting the lady reps. And even the worst instructors will recognize talent and leave them alone. What i believe is everyone has some knowledge to offer even if you dont agree with them technically 100%. A hellow elbow teacher could teach drive mechanics better than anyone. Or a teacher may teach someone the mental aspect of pitching or deception or life lessons. I dont disregard anyones style so be like Bruce Lee "Research your own experience. Absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, add what is essentially your own.”
 

RADcatcher

Possibilities & Opportunities!
Dec 13, 2019
163
28
Top Level Athletes at all levels will excel inspite of instruction good, bad or none at all. No matter the style pitching taught their body will figure it out with enough reps. Most elite players can't teach or explain how they do certain motions or actions, they just do them. I am not saying proper instruction wouldn't make them even better. Then give a lady 80% fast twitch muscle fibers with a 6 foot frame and the instructor will look like a genius regardless of instruction. What i am saying is instruction that's conceivable to be poor by most is at least getting the lady reps. And even the worst instructors will recognize talent and leave them alone. What i believe is everyone has some knowledge to offer even if you dont agree with them technically 100%. A hellow elbow teacher could teach drive mechanics better than anyone. Or a teacher may teach someone the mental aspect of pitching or deception or life lessons. I dont disregard anyones style so be like Bruce Lee "Research your own experience. Absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, add what is essentially your own.”
Like the open minded
more well rounded thinking
to learning!
My post was commenting to
discussions in general.

Simply may be....
The individual athlete
has the most influence
to their success!
 
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