A Major Sign of Lost Velocity
The end of a training cycle brings with it the temptation to become bored or disengaged in the same movements and training that our pitchers have done for 7 weeks straight. It's easy to start asking, "why are we still doing this?" So I want to give you an insight into a very tedious and common training practice we have here at Power Pitching. There is one functional movement that we can use to determine if a new pitcher has a relatively high or low throwing velocity. That would be the broad jump. Of all the unique throwing motions and levels of athleticism that are out there, it is amazing to us how consistently the broad jump correlates to throwing velocity. We know that high level athletes, in all sports, share a common trait of violent and strong hip extension. Think of a sprinter driving off of the starting blocks, a swimmer kicking her feet in the water, a soccer player opening his hips to square the ball up and drive it towards the target, a gymnast exploding off the floor, or a basketball player jumping for a rebound. The list goes on and on.
Study after study shows us that pitchers are no different. Needing to recruit the hips into extension with every throw. Because of this, it is agreed amongst pitching performance experts across the board that training jumping movements (lateral, vertical, and forward) is one way to train for throwing velocity. And so we do. Very often. Not only do we engage the hips in training, but we focus on the hips during our mobility sessions as well. Tight hips do not open well or extend violently, much less bring any force. With some intentional work at PTS Power Pitching, we can help fix this issue and make you a more powerful pitcher. Again, these findings are not unique to us. I encourage you to read more from Brent Pourciau at Top Velocity in this article that summarizes this idea.