Behm and Sale with the Department of Physical Education, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada put together a case study called, Velocity Specificity of Resistance Training. This study showed that velocity is increased within muscle contractions when the intent is the focus of the training. This means that heavy loads create more intent within the muscles to fire at a high rate of speed, which in return will create a neural and muscular adaption.
The muscular adaption is of the protagonists and the antagonists muscles of the joints. The development of the antagonists muscles post heavy load velocity training would prove that heavy weight training reduces pitching injury by building joint integrity. The integrity is enhanced in the joints post training because the muscle accelerators and decelerators are both growing stronger.
Pitching injury is due to joint and muscle weakness. Muscle weakness from pitching is the result of overuse and abuse, but stronger joints can handle more overuse and abuse. The catch 22 here is that high velocity training can lead to overuse. So you can have too much of a good thing! Everything in moderation like your Mother says….
The Challenges of Heavy Load Training the Pitcher
The problem with this revolutionary information is that most pitching coaches dismiss heavy weight training because they have no education on how to use it properly to build joint integrity, and enhance pitching velocity. This is because the mechanics of this type of training is as intricate as high velocity pitching mechanics, which most pitching coaches have very little knowledge of as well. This is why the Major Leagues blow millions of dollars every year searching for hard throwers, instead of training and developing hard throwing pitchers! I have always said, why pay someone like Stephen Strasburg 50 million when you could get someone like me for nothing, then train and develop me to throw as hard as him? The MLB would say I do not have his genetics, and I would say I also do not have a torn UCL, but the point here is that this information would be more conventional wisdom if the MLB would fund these studies to help them train pitchers to develop more pitching velocity. Instead of only searching for the hard thrower pitchers and paying them insane amounts of money.
If you read my last article Heavy Weight Training Increases Pitching Velocity, then you may have added some extra weight on the bar during your last lift. If this was you then good for you, but remember if you are going to enhance your performance through resistance training, you must be aware of the catch 22. It is like going from your everyday car, to a race car. If you are not aware of the learning curve, then you could get hurt strictly out of ignorance. This would hurt your pride as much as your body. So, make sure you educate yourself as much as you train yourself with this revolutionary approach. This means you must have an educated program that has been proven to work, which you will find is the 3X Pitching Velocity Program. If not, you will then have to reinvent the wheel and start your lesson using basic trial and error. This is not recommended because you will loss a tremendous amount of valuable time in your very short pitching career!