Increasing throwing speed

Discussion in 'Softball Training' started by lukeamdman, Sep 29, 2017.

  1. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    Now that softball is over for the year I have a list of things to work on over the winter. One of them is increasing my throwing speed.

    I just got a Pocket Radar Ball Coach and we had some fun with it after the games last night. I was able to throw a top speed of 65mph with the best thrower on the team hitting 72mph.

    I feel I was able to throw the mid 70s in my early 20s but each year it seems to get a little slower. I do have some weighted softballs and those have definitely helped get my arm in shape in the past, but I'm curious what other training tips are out there. Any good video recommendations?
     
  2. Kodiak1

    Kodiak1 Addicted to Softballfans

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    J-Bands...everything they do
     
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  3. lambhc

    lambhc New Member

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    Hey man, this is just my own experience, but I would recommend focusing on your throwing mechanics and being quicker, and not necessarily throwing the ball harder. I am 24 years old, and was gunned throwing from outfield at 76 mph this past season. However, I've since torn my rotator cuff, and can't throw a ball 40 feet right now. It was 100% because of me trying to throw it harder, using weighted balls, etc. I'm also a high school pitching coach, and I promote my boys using weighted training after their arms have developed (usually past 15-16 years old.) However, there are multiple studies out suggesting moderation on these types of things is key. We work no heavier than 6 or 7oz balls, and that is tweaked depending on the player. At a certain weight, you are putting extra tension on your shoulder and pushing your external rotation past the point that your body is designed to perform, and it will eventually snap, tear, etc.
    Again, this is just my experience, but going from clocking in mid 70's to not playing right now has sucked. If I had focused on being quicker with the ball instead of pushing my body too far, I would have been playing this fall. Remember, the body isn't designed to throw a ball in the motion we throw a softball/baseball, and adding TOO MUCH tension can cause problems. If you do weighted training, be careful and use moderation. I apologize for the novel, but I'd hate for someone to go through what I have been dealing with.
     
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  4. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    I hear you on the throwing mechanics. Last year I really started to notice my velocity dropping, and it felt like I was trying way too hard to throw with disappointing speed. Additionally, I was starting to have some discomfort in my shoulder but not enough where it kept me from playing or trying to throw hard.

    That's when I started at the beginning and examined my mechanics, and what I noticed right away is that my throw was all arm. I wasn't using my legs and hips, and my upper body would hardly rotate at all.

    This year I feel I've fixed the mechanics by a good bit. My legs are hips do a lot more work, and I'm really twisting hard and throwing my upper body into the throw. The snap with my wrist is also much improved. I have zero pain in my shoulder and I don't require nearly as much of a warm up to get ready for games.

    I primarily used the weighted balls for simple warm ups, but I've also seen success using them after long throw workouts for repetitious movements once I'm already tired and not going all out. I think this helps strengthen tendons.

    I need to draw up a plan that uses normal softballs for hard throws (works on fast-twitch muscles), and also uses weights/bands/weighted softballs to get the muscles and tendons stronger.
     
  5. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    This looks like it's worth a shot. I do zip with my core anyway.

     
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  6. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    Just ordered these.
     
  7. Kodiak1

    Kodiak1 Addicted to Softballfans

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    Awesome, hopefully from the SBF store! They're amazing and the workout is on their site... Hits all the small, and big , shoulder muscles. Best $30 ever spent on Softball
     
  8. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    Looks like a good one for rotator cuff health:

     
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  9. LngBallLvr

    LngBallLvr Addicted to Softballfans

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    Best things you can do is long toss and work on flexility. Ease into it and work your way up gradually. The thing people lose or never have is flexibility in the rotator. instead of weighted balls I would even consider lighter balls to get your form and range of motion down and decrease risk of injury. If you want to throw hard you have to be able to do this:

    [​IMG]
     
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  10. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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  11. Kodiak1

    Kodiak1 Addicted to Softballfans

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    This is basically what the J Bands folks preach, long toss and flexibility...
     
  12. LngBallLvr

    LngBallLvr Addicted to Softballfans

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    Something else worth trying over the winter might be the towel drill. You could do this to develop whip over the winter. The great thing about this is that you could do it indoors.

     
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  13. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    The J-Bands are pretty sweet. This week I've been rotating between that light dumbbell routine and the J-Bands each day.
     
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  14. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    Did the med ball workout yesterday. Holy smokes is my core out of shape.

    I think the light dumbell and j-band workouts are already starting to have a positive affect. Some movements that used to be a little "clunky" in my shoulders are feeling more smooth.
     
  15. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    My 12 year old son, who's never played baseball, seems to have a pretty decent arm on him. He can throw a consistent 52-53mph with a 12" softball.

    I should start him on the J-Bands.
     
  16. Drumbum37

    Drumbum37 Addicted to Softballfans

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    Hips/glutes and core should be #1 on the list.
     
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  17. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    Oh yeah. Since the fall season ended I've been hitting the squats, cleans, and deadlifts hard. Also doing a lot of core stuff with a medicine ball.
     
  18. Drumbum37

    Drumbum37 Addicted to Softballfans

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    Don't forget the lateral stuff too!
     
  19. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    I'm 3 weeks into working out 4-5 days a week. I've been doing J-Bands or the light dumbbell shoulder stuff as warm ups or to end workouts. Shoulders are feeling great.

    Even though I threw 65mph at the field on our last evening of softball, the most I've been able to throw in my basement has been 62mph.

    Today I was able to threw 63mph. Progress!
     
  20. lukeamdman

    lukeamdman Member

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    Today my throwing speed was crap (best of 61mph) so I decided to experiment with different weights of balls.

    It appears I need to work on my "fast twitch" muscles. Here's my MPH with each weight I tested:

    6.5oz (Classic M): 61mph
    10oz weighted: 60mph
    11oz weighted: 59mph
    12oz weighted: 59mph
    1.5oz SKLZ (limited flight ball): 67mph

    Isn't 67mph some something that light ultra pathetic?
     
  21. Kodiak1

    Kodiak1 Addicted to Softballfans

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    You can’t test yourself so often as you’re only going to see minimal change, if not loss in the beginning. Your muscles need time to grow and adapt.
     
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  22. wcoastsoftball

    wcoastsoftball Moderator

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  23. wcoastsoftball

    wcoastsoftball Moderator

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    Use lighter weighted balls for throwing and heavier balls for technique work without releasing them or throwing them
     
  24. Normy

    Normy Member

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    Good stuff here. Think it's time to invest in some J bands to strengthen the shoulders during off season.
     
  25. Kodiak1

    Kodiak1 Addicted to Softballfans

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    You should, doing curls with that fish ain't gonna get it done...lol
     
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