Food for Thought… Pitching.

I came across this video the other day from the NFCA tip Tuesday in regards to pitching styles, and it really puts things in perspective. You see softball like all other sports changes on a daily basis. If you’re not willing to change, continue to learn, listen, and ask for help, then you’re not a good coach.  Having coached for almost 20 years now, I would be lying to you if I told you I haven’t changed things that I did over the years. A lot of that is because I continue to research things, I continue to go to clinics, and ask questions. It’s important!

One thing that I try to relate continued growth and learning to is baseball. Lets talk quickly about baseball since softball and baseball are very similar, and many people clump the 2 together. About 10 years ago you never heard of launch angles, and exit velocity. Now, that’s spoken on a daily basis when talking about hitting and home runs. You see, people began to do research, they continued to learn, and grow. They used their research to formulate drills, and incorporate them into hitting lessons and so on.

So let’s get back to this video. You see 10 – 15 years ago, all you heard was, “slam the door” and warm up using “wrist flips”.  Some of the best pitchers in that time frame pitched like that. Then we began to do research, we learned that the most “elite” pitchers threw a different way.  Mens fastpitch pitchers threw a different way as well. Why? Why did these pitchers throw completely different from the others. Part of it is studying what the body does naturally, compared to a forced action. Part of it was injuries that were occurring in pitchers both at a young age and even in college. You see people began to research and study the different methods.

I’m not saying you can’t be a great pitcher with the slam the door, hello elbow mechanics, you very well can be, especially at a young age. However, you may incur injuries more frequently. You may top out at lesser speed then the elite. You will not have as much movement as you like. These are some things that are hindered by slow and forced mechanics. All in all, we live in a day and age where we can take the best DI pitchers, and slow them down with technology on our phones. I challenge you to look and see for yourselves what mechanics the best use. The evidence will be clear as day!


Until next time!

Coach Jason (Jay) Bolden

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