load Pitching Articles
Here are some pitching articles on this important pitching velocity topic. This topic is currently open for discussion. You can either comment on the articles below or start a thread in the pitching forums.
by Brent Pourciau · June 14, 2009
The online world of pitching experts have been throwing around the buzz word “Momentum pitching” recently. This isn’t anything new unless you are up to date on the breakthroughs of pitching science. Pitchers have been trying to find better ways to generate more momentum in their deliveries for years but what is changing is the science behind this matter.
During the prime of the likes of Nolan Ryan, the popular way of generating more momentum back then was the “Stand Tall and Fall” style developed by Nolan Ryan and his pitching coach Tom House, who may have coined the term. This proceeded the popular style of “Drop and Drive” used by the great Tom Seaver. These two styles of pitching are still used today. What is changing is pitching mechanics are evolving from an art form into the world of science. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · June 6, 2009
This videos covers the importance of “Separation” which builds core torque, increases velocity and takes stress off of the arm. Brent Pourciau also talks about how “Triple Extension” and the “Load” position is the key to generating optimal “Separation. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · March 8, 2009
I get this question a lot, “the windup vs the stretch, what is better?” The problem is the windup is almost sacred to the game of baseball but it really has no purpose besides a kind of confidence builder on the mental state of the pitcher. The windup represents the old style of pitching from back in the day when the pitchers would use the windup to get their arms moving faster like in the video clip here of Dizzy Dean. Now that we have learned that doing this is destructive to pitching velocity, the windup has become just an extra step to throwing in the stretch. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · February 12, 2009
The biggest problem I find in young pitchers is that they have poor separation in their hips to shoulders. There are many articles on this site covering the pitching component “Separation.” It is so important because having separation from your back hip to back shoulder before the shoulders rotate to the plate, is critical for velocity and the health of your arm. What “Separation” does is it builds core torque. It puts more torque in the big muscle groups of the core, instead of mainly in the small muscle groups of the shoulder. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · February 10, 2009
Above average coordination is a sign of fast twitch muscle strength. Fast twitch motor neurons recruit more muscle fibers. This means more control of the body and also more explosive power. The biggest problem for a pitching coach, when working with a pitcher who does not have good hip rotation or who does not load and build a full body stride, is that this is the result of poor core and leg strength and no mechanical drill will fix this problem.
Drills only help pitchers who are having a hard time changing flawed muscle memory. It doesn’t help pitchers who have good muscle memory but poor muscle strength. This is why we have weight rooms. This is why any coach who tells you that weight lifting will NOT help you as a pitcher is clueless and is wasting your time and maybe even your money. A good strength and conditioning program that incorporates Olympic lifts, plyometric training and an intense speed training program is essential to developing good pitching mechanics. Good athletes make good pitchers. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · January 30, 2009
Pitching is a very complex sequence of movements that involve building torque and force to generate velocity. So many things happening during a blink of the eye within the pitching delivery. What is even harder than pitching, is explaining this stuff. This is why every coach has his own interpretation. This is also why science wins over conventional wisdom. If you can prove it scientifically then conventional wisdom is forced to listen. If you eliminated ever coach in baseball who could not explain pitching scientifically, you would have about 2% of them left to coach the position. This is why so many misconceptions plague baseball today, especially pitching. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · January 13, 2009
Long toss is praised by many and shot down by few. I have heard the likes of Alan Jaeger preaching long toss as the secret to velocity and the likes of Dick Mill’s trying to prove scientifically why you should never do it again. I have reflected on this topic for some time now. In my career, I did a lot of long toss but rarely did I notice any difference in velocity. I refuse to tell you that long toss is a waste of time but what I will do is share with you the Pros and Cons of this kind of practice. It is then up to you to make your own decision on using long toss in your training regime. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · December 31, 2008
“Scap Loading” is the pinching of the shoulder blades or scapula during hip to shoulder separation. It is an important factor to velocity. Notice the picture here of Greg Maddux “Scap Loading”. The question is, is ”Scap Loading” a reaction to the stride or is it a voluntary action to generate more hip to shoulder separation?
Scap Loading Issues
The problem with coaching ”Scap Loading” is that it can promote the infamous inverted W. The inverted W is the mechanical flaw linked to many rotator cuff and UCL injuries in professional baseball. This is when the elbows fly above the shoulders during the stride and before the shoulders fire towards the target. ”Scap Loading” can lead to this issue because ”Scap Loading” is the throwing of the elbows behind the back during the stride. Throwing the elbows behind the back or above the shoulders is both considered putting the shoulders and elbows in what the Physical Therapy world calls the “Red Zone.” This is a vulnerable position for the arms to be in during an explosive movement like pitching. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · December 16, 2008
The most important component of the pitching delivery is what is called, “Separation.” This is the separation of the hips and shoulders at front foot strike. This is what builds torque mainly in the core instead of the arm. This component will not only increase velocity but save a pitchers shoulder. Most high school and college pitchers have poor “Separation.” I have written about this component in just about every article on pitching velocity. I will once again define this into more detail.
The picture here of Felix Hernandez pretty much says it all. You can see the “Separation” from his hips to shoulders. It is like he is a towel being rung out to dry. Tim Lincecum calls this tightening his “Rubber Band.” The “Rubber Band” being his core. To understand why this is so effective in increasing velocity and preventing injury, we must first look at the bio-mechanics of pitching. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · December 8, 2008
The main purpose of a Drill, is to practice a component of the delivery that will help to correct a mechanical flaw. I also believe it is important to add resistance to a drill to help imprint the new muscle memory.
The drill below should be performed 2 – 3 days a week, for at least 3 – 4 months. The drill should also be performed after completing the “Flexibility Training” portion of the Fusion System which can be found in the Ace Pitcher Handbook included in the 3X Pitching Velocity Program. You will also find a ton more drills in the 3X programs. Try to push each drill to muscle fatigue, if possible. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · December 1, 2008
There are hundreds of Pitching Tips for Baseball on the web titled something similar to this article, but most of them are worthless, because they focus mainly on upper body mechanics as the means to developing velocity. Any hard thrower will tell you, there is a lot more to pitching velocity than just your arm. If you want to see significant gains in pitching velocity then read all of these key Baseball Tips on Pitching and the articles linked to it. The only way you are going to see improvements, is if you develop a good understanding of how pitching velocity is generated in hard throwing pitchers.
Remember you are bound by nothing. You have the ability to throw 90+ mph. Doctors told me I would not be able to and I proved them wrong. These tips will help you do the same. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · November 22, 2008
All the photos here are of professionals performing the “Load” position, as listed in the Ace Pitcher Handbook.
by Brent Pourciau · November 22, 2008
Ok, the leg lift isn’t only for “Show.” There is a lot of momentum that can be generated by the leg lift which transfers into velocity. The question is, “How come pitchers who have big leg lift’s in the wind up, when pitching in the stretch, have a lower leg lift but still throw the same velocity?” The answer is called the “Load.”
“Loading” is when the pitcher holds his weight back over his back leg, while his front side continues building momentum towards the target. This is why strong legs and core, produce powerful pitching. Look at Eric Gagne in this picture. He is squatting on his back leg, waiting for the perfect time to fire his hips and then his shoulders. Read more
by Brent Pourciau · November 10, 2008
by Chad Englehart
Many athletes today have the desire to reach a higher level of athletics. Whether it is an athlete going from Jr. High to High School, or an athlete making the transition from high school to college athletics and the big one college to professional athletics. All throughout America, young athletes have dreams to make it to the top of their sport; many try only a few succeed.
To make it to the professional level it takes all the intangibles of practice, hard work, heart, desire, skill, strength, speed, etc; but, one of the most important traits is a simple word and it is genetics. Some athletes can top out their genetic potential only running a 4.97second 40 yard dash or topping out their fast ball at 78mph and that is ok, but ask yourself as a parent or an ex athlete, did I max out my potential? When did I start really training and being educated by my coach on how to and why? Did my coach teach me the right way to train and perform the different tasks, drills, or tests? Read more
by Brent Pourciau · September 8, 2008
Definition of throwing: the act of throwing; propelling something with a rapid movement of the arm and wrist; “the catcher made a good throw to second base”
Definition of pulling: the act of pulling; applying force to move something toward or with you; “the pull up the hill had him breathing harder”
What definition best describes what a Major League Pitcher does on the mound?
by Brent Pourciau · August 24, 2008
by Chad Englehart
Specificity of Training principle is one of the most utilized training principles used by exercise professionals today. (Kramer et al., 2002) discussed the principle of training specificity and explained that the training responses elicited by a given exercise mode are directly related to the physiological elements involved with coping with the specific exercise stress. What this means is that if an athlete wants to perform better at a particular event or skill they must train specifically for that particular skill. For example, if an athlete wants to become stronger one must lift heavy weights and if an athlete wants to jump higher one must jump. As a strength and conditioning Read more
by Brent Pourciau · August 24, 2008
by Chad Englehart
Implied in any linear speed discussion with a Strength and Conditioning Specialist, is the concept of resisted speed training strategies. Some professionals consider resisted speed training as the most efficient sprint training technique on the planet, while other consider it not as effective because of a biomechanical stand point. Different resisted speed strategies include, towing, uphill sprints, sand sprints, and weighted sprints. Tahachnik (1992) explained that towing of weighted devices such as sleds and tires is the most common method of providing towing resistance for the enhancement of sprint performance, although the use of parachutes has also Read more
by Brent Pourciau · July 3, 2008
I couldn’t have said it better myself. Well, it looks like the baseball world is seeing the light. Thanks to little giants like Tim Lincecum and his father.
His father Chris works for Boeing, which is why he produced a son with such a perfect understanding of physics driven mechanics. Tom Verducci has written the article of all articles when it comes to the revolution of the pitching delivery. Verducci writes for Sports Illustrated. In this article he expresses a better understanding of physics driven pitching mechanics than some of the best Coaches in the game. It goes to show how baseball’s ego has prevented its own evolution. MLB has been drafting young, tall and lanky pitchers for years because these pitchers can get away with more and therefore Read more