8 Youth Pitching Drills To Increase Pitching Velocity
by Brent Pourciau · April 22, 2013
If you are working with a youth pitcher and you want to help him increase pitching velocity then try these 8 youth pitching drills. Pitching mechanics are critical to support development and help reduce the chance of injury. It is as important during the youth level as it is in any other level. There is a high amount of young pitchers who are having arm surgery because of the poor pitching mechanics training at the youth level.
The American Sports Medicine Institute has listed in their Youth Position Statement that there are three causes of youth pitching injury. The three issues are overuse, poor physical fitness and poor mechanics. Therefore these 8 youth pitching drills to increase pitching velocity will address these three issues to help develop the youth pitcher.
8 Youth Pitching Drills to Improve Pitching Speed
This list is for educational purposes only. It is highly recommend that a young pitcher use a training program that includes not only the throwing and training drills but a weekly calendar listing the sets and reps and when to perform the drills to support development. For a comprehensive approach to increase pitching velocity for the youth or beginner program it is highly recommend that you use the 3X Pitching Beginner Program.
All of the on knee throws are not your traditional on knee throws. You will be starting on the knee but finishing the throw standing up. To get into the on knee position place your feet in a full stride facing the target and then drop down on your back knee. Do not pull your front leg in. Keep it in a full stride. When performing the drill fight to drive up with the back leg. DO NOT SHIFT WEIGHT TO FRONT LEG AND THEN STAND UP.
You will need a long piece of resistance tubing with either a ball on the end or a handle.
- On Knee Tubing Simulated Throws – From the on knee position, hold the tubing with the throwing arm and in the cocked position behind the head. The glove side should be facing the target with the elbow in line and the glove down. To perform the drill first start driving the back leg into triple extension until your hips are open. Stabilize the front leg as best as possible to support this hip rotation. Do not start the throw until the hips ate open. Once the hips open then move the arm throw a simulated throwing path.
- On Knee Football Throws – Perform this drill the same way except with a football instead of the tubing. Make sure you finish the throw up and over your front leg with your arm in optimal pronation.
- On Knee Baseball Throws – Perform this drill the same way as the other but with the baseball in replace of the football. Work hard to generate as much hip to shoulder separation as possible before the throw.
- On Knee Visualization Throws – This drill is performed the same as the others but with your eyes closed and without actually going through the movement. This will allow the youth pitcher to practice perfectly without enduring the wear and tear of throwing. This will help prevent overuse.
- Crossover Tubing Simulated Throws – These crossover throws start in a similar set position as in the stretch when on the mound, except the feet are in reverse. This means the throwing arm is facing the target. To start the drill reach across the body and touch the opposite knee with the ball or handle in the throwing arm pulling the tubing around the body. Pull the throwing elbow up and all the way around alining the shoulders in the correct direction towards the target. This means the throwing arm is cocked behind the head with the shoulders facing the target but the feet are still facing the opposite way. Never move the feet. You are completely twisted around your body. From this position launch the shoulders first and then simulate the throw with the tubing pulling from behind the arm.
- Crossover Throws Football – Perform the same movements as the previous drill but with a football in replace of the tubing. Finish with good pronation as before.
- Crossover Throws Baseball – Perform the drill the same way again but with the baseball in replace of the football. Feel the hips and shoulders separate as the arm is cocking and then feel the release firing the shoulders and the throwing arm.
- Crossover Visualization Throws – Once again before the same drill perfectly in the mind without performing the actual throws.
All of these youth pitching drills to increase pitching velocity do not need to be performed all at once but should be performed in order.
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