Baseball Pitching Velocity Training

In this episode of the @TopVelocity #PitchingTips Show V2 I answer the questions below:

  1. How would high degrees of hip retroversion or anteversion affect the back leg during the load? Would you recommend a different style based on different anatomy?
  2. Hey just wondering what exactly is Olympic lifting and why should I do it.

The Influence of Hip Retroversion or Antiversion on the Back Leg during the Load

When it comes to pitching and throwing, the position of the hips plays a vital role in generating power and efficiency. Specifically, hip retroversion or antiversion can significantly impact the back leg during the load phase of the pitching motion. Understanding how these anatomical variations affect movement can help athletes optimize their performance. In this article, we will explore the implications of high degrees of hip retroversion or antiversion and discuss recommendations for adjusting pitching style based on individual anatomy.

The Significance of Biomechanical Efficiency in Pitching

Before we delve into the influence of hip retroversion or antiversion, it's important to address the importance of biomechanical efficiency in pitching. Biomechanics is the study of how the human body moves and interacts with external forces. In pitching, biomechanics helps identify the most effective movements and processes that optimize the kinetic chain, leading to efficient and powerful throws.

Prioritizing Effective Movement over Style

While style may have its place in certain aspects of pitching, it should not overshadow the focus on effective movement patterns. In this context, style refers to unique or unconventional techniques that may not necessarily improve performance but are favored due to personal preferences or aesthetics. However, when it comes to maximizing pitching effectiveness, it is essential to prioritize the mechanics and processes that have been proven to yield positive results based on physics and scientific research.

Understanding the Impact of Hip Retroversion or Antiversion on Back Leg Positioning

Hip retroversion and antiversion refer to the rotational position of the femur bone in relation to the pelvis. Individuals with high degrees of hip retroversion have their femur rotated further back, leading to external rotation. Conversely, high degrees of antiversion result in the femur being tipped forward, causing internal rotation.

These anatomical variations can significantly affect the positioning of the back leg during the load phase of pitching. Athletes with retroverted hips may find it more challenging to achieve the desired internally rotated position of the back leg femur, which is required for optimal power transfer. Conversely, those with antiversion may experience limitations in driving the pelvis due to difficulty reaching the desired externally rotated position.

Overcoming Challenges in the Kinetic Chain

In any athlete's kinetic chain, there are bound to be challenges and limitations. The key is to identify these limitations and work towards overcoming them. Individuals with high degrees of hip retroversion or antiversion may face additional hurdles in achieving the desired positions during pitching. However, this does not mean they cannot excel or improve their performance.

While not everyone can attain elite ranges of joint mobility, athletes should strive to continually enhance their abilities. Working on mobility, strength, and flexibility can help mitigate the effects of anatomical limitations. Moreover, exploring different pitching styles to find potential benefits or compensations is worth considering. However, caution must be exercised to ensure that any changes to pitching style do not increase the risk of injury.

The Role of Olympic Lifting for Pitchers

Now let's address the relevance of Olympic lifting for pitchers. Olympic lifting involves two main movements performed in competition: the clean and jerk, and the snatch. These dynamic lifts primarily focus on power and explosiveness, making them valuable additions to a pitcher's training regimen.

The clean and jerk involves lifting the barbell to the upper rib cage and then extending it overhead, while the snatch is a straight lift overhead. Although the snatch may be more advanced and require considerable upper body strength, the clean and jerk variations are typically more suitable for pitchers. These variations include clean pulls, power cleans, hand cleans, blow the knee cleans, two-position cleans, and top-to-bottom cleans, among others.

The Benefits of Olympic Lifting for Pitchers

Why should pitchers incorporate Olympic lifting into their training routines? The answer lies in the unique benefits these lifts provide. Olympic lifting not only develops raw power but also enhances the coordination and movement patterns of the central nervous system. These improvements in coordination and movement translate into better leverage points, enabling pitchers to maximize their power output. Unlike traditional power lifts such as deadlifts, Olympic lifts demand both power and speed. This combination aligns closely with the requirements of pitching, which necessitates rapid force production within a short time frame. Olympic lifts allow pitchers to train their bodies to generate peak forces quickly, resulting in more explosive movements during pitching, throwing, jumping, and running.

The Limitations of Alternative Training Methods

While there are alternative training methods available to enhance power and coordination, few can rival the effectiveness of Olympic lifting for pitchers. Power lifts, although valuable in their own right, do not emphasize the same level of speed as Olympic lifts. As a result, reaching peak forces within the required time frame may be challenging.

To optimize performance and ensure that pitchers can achieve their maximum force potential, Olympic lifting is unmatched. By adhering to the principles of explosive power development and neural adaptation, pitchers can unlock the full potential of their kinetic chains and significantly improve their athletic performance.


In conclusion, the degrees of hip retroversion or antiversion can impact the positioning of the back leg during the load phase of pitching. Athletes with these anatomical variations may face challenges in achieving optimal power transfer and pelvis drive. However, by focusing on individual strengths, working on mobility, and considering different pitching styles, athletes can overcome these limitations and improve their performance. Moreover, Olympic lifting offers unparalleled benefits for pitchers, enhancing power, coordination, and movement efficiency. By incorporating clean and jerk variations into their training routines, pitchers can maximize their force production and translate it into explosive movements essential for pitching success. Remember, always consult with experts and conduct thorough testing before adopting significant changes to your pitching style or training regimen. Each athlete's body is unique, and finding the most effective approach requires careful consideration and professional guidance.

Pathway to Elite Mobility

To enhance mobility to an elite level, athletes can benefit from the scientifically supported and evidence-based programs provided by Top Velocity. These programs provide athletes with a holistic training approach that focuses on specific areas of improvement, considering the insights discussed earlier regarding the impact of hip retroversion or antiversion on pitching mechanics. By prioritizing biomechanical efficiencies and tailoring adjustments based on individual anatomical variations, coupled with the integration of Olympic lifting to boost power and coordination, athletes can unlock their maximum potential. The Top Velocity Programs offer a reliable and systematic method to optimize mobility, strength, and flexibility, enabling athletes to reach peak performance and excel in their pitching pursuits.

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