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Pitching Mechanics: Follow-thru

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  • Pitching Mechanics: Follow-thru

    I am including a few pictures of my nine y/o pitching. Any suggestions or observations you have, especially with regard to his follow-thru, please let me know. I'm thinking his back is a little too straight up/down on follow thru. I know video is better, but this is what I have available today.
    Last edited by johnlanza; 01-23-2013, 11:31 AM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by johnlanza View Post
    I am including a few pictures of my nine y/o pitching. Any suggestions or observations you have, especially with regard to his follow-thru, please let me know. I'm thinking his back is a little too straight up/down on follow thru. I know video is better, but this is what I have available today.
    A photo at foot strike would help. I don't think he's too straight - looks like a good athletic stance to me. As to the follow through, he needs to let the glove side knee stiffen after landing and let the right hip keep coming through. That brings the right leg up and over to allow the body absorb some of the arm deceleration. That goes a long way to keeping a healthy arm, however, for whatever reason, younger kids have a hard time doing it.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by johnlanza View Post
      I am including a few pictures of my nine y/o pitching. Any suggestions or observations you have, especially with regard to his follow-thru, please let me know. I'm thinking his back is a little too straight up/down on follow thru. I know video is better, but this is what I have available today.
      Looking at the fourth picture in the sequence, I would bet that he doesn't stride any farther than he is at that point. If his front foot goes from where it is there to directly down with the knee bent, he probably lets the glove side knee leak forward, costing him velocity and putting more strain on his arm and shoulder. You can find footage on youtube of Lincecum at 9. Incredibly, he was using the same mechanics he uses now. Long stride, exaggerated hip-shoulder separation, and a big kick over at follow through.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by johnlanza View Post
        I am including a few pictures of my nine y/o pitching. Any suggestions or observations you have, especially with regard to his follow-thru, please let me know. I'm thinking his back is a little too straight up/down on follow thru. I know video is better, but this is what I have available today.
        In no way am I a pitching instructor. That is why I hired one . However, I might be a bit of assistance on throwing mechanics. He is very young and has a long way to go. Picture's one, three, and four look awesome! In picture two I would try and get him to push off from picture one. He is bringing his foot straight down after the kick. This is taking the need for a kick out of the equation. See if you can get him to start his foot forward, instead of going down into a slide step. In picture five is a classic case of the lack of a follow through. See if you can teach him to pick up some dirt on the outside of his left foot. Show him how to swing his arm all the way through with minimum bend in his knee. Just some stuff that I see. Like I said he is young, and has a long way to go. Looks like a ball player to me.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by MD Diamond Sports View Post
          In no way am I a pitching instructor. That is why I hired one . However, I might be a bit of assistance on throwing mechanics. He is very young and has a long way to go. Picture's one, three, and four look awesome! In picture two I would try and get him to push off from picture one. He is bringing his foot straight down after the kick. This is taking the need for a kick out of the equation. See if you can get him to start his foot forward, instead of going down into a slide step. In picture five is a classic case of the lack of a follow through. See if you can teach him to pick up some dirt on the outside of his left foot. Show him how to swing his arm all the way through with minimum bend in his knee. Just some stuff that I see. Like I said he is young, and has a long way to go. Looks like a ball player to me.
          Good catch. Between frames one and two he should have that hip headed to the plate. Personally, I haven't taught a balance position in years. I don't think elite pitchers balance at the top of their leg lift. I think the minute the leg starts coming up, the body heads for the plate. It can be a lot of fun getting hold of a pitcher at this age. I envy you.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Roothog66 View Post
            Good catch. Between frames one and two he should have that hip headed to the plate. Personally, I haven't taught a balance position in years. I don't think elite pitchers balance at the top of their leg lift. I think the minute the leg starts coming up, the body heads for the plate. It can be a lot of fun getting hold of a pitcher at this age. I envy you.
            I know that our pitching instructor (DIII pitching coach) teaches the balance, power, and finish position. However, his balance position is a rearward hip rotation for additional forward hip rotation. This is not a long position, and at the end of the kick the power position (forward) starts.

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            • #7
              Isn't the back foot supposed to come up and over at follow-through?? Maybe that happens a little after the last picture was taken.

              To me, he looks too "crouched down" in the last picture. But what do I know?
              Last edited by bbrages; 01-23-2013, 12:21 PM.

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              • #8
                A cue I learned from a HS coach this year that worked well for my 10U pitchers is to focus on getting the bottom of your rear foot pointed to the sky. If you don't bend at the waist or you drop the elbow and throw across your body, you won't get the bottom of the rear foot pointed to the sky. When I first tried it with my team I was afraid they would artificially get their rear foot in that position, but it wasn't an issue.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by azmatsfan View Post
                  A cue I learned from a HS coach this year that worked well for my 10U pitchers is to focus on getting the bottom of your rear foot pointed to the sky. If you don't bend at the waist or you drop the elbow and throw across your body, you won't get the bottom of the rear foot pointed to the sky. When I first tried it with my team I was afraid they would artificially get their rear foot in that position, but it wasn't an issue.
                  The problem with that cue (and I used it for years) is that it simply tries to get them to mimic a symptom of a correct follow through. I never understood why I couldn't get a lot of kids to do this until I changes my method to teaching them to allow the throwing shoulder and throwing side hip to come around and to pull their knee in. That just naturally results in the leg coming over. Otherwise they keep trying to do it in awkward ways.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MD Diamond Sports View Post
                    I know that our pitching instructor (DIII pitching coach) teaches the balance, power, and finish position. However, his balance position is a rearward hip rotation for additional forward hip rotation. This is not a long position, and at the end of the kick the power position (forward) starts.
                    I've abandoned balance. I stick a bucket behind them and teach them to push the hip to the plate and touch the bucket with their lift leg. We used to teach kids to pull the leg up and hold that balanced position. What happens, though, is that it results in a late push to the plate and a shorter stride.

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                    • #11
                      I'm no expert, but I would say it looks like he is aiming the ball and that's why he has no stride. He is literally dragging his back foot.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Roothog66 View Post
                        I've abandoned balance. I stick a bucket behind them and teach them to push the hip to the plate and touch the bucket with their lift leg. We used to teach kids to pull the leg up and hold that balanced position. What happens, though, is that it results in a late push to the plate and a shorter stride.
                        His balance is not a pause. It is going up (the kick) in a balanced position. Once at the top of the balance position the power position starts.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by themaker75 View Post
                          I'm no expert, but I would say it looks like he is aiming the ball and that's why he has no stride. He is literally dragging his back foot.
                          ^ I'm not an expert either, but I wouldn't say he has "no stride", rather I believe he's striding more than is really comfortable for him. His stride is bigger than is appropriate for the rest of his mechanics.

                          Most pitchers drag the back foot, don't they?

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                          • #14
                            He needs to be bringing his right foot up and over. I used the wrong word in stride. He is striding and just stopping there. His back right foot is just dragging and you can see from the picture he is aiming the ball instead of just throwing it. Look at the follow through on his hand. He's not going to generate any speed like that.

                            This is also a dangerous way to end your pitch because he is in no position to field a ball hit at him. And even at 9 kids are hitting shots. We had an unfortunate incident at our Mem Day tournament in the 9U category where the pitcher had his shin fractured on a hard hit ball to him.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by MD Diamond Sports View Post
                              His balance is not a pause. It is going up (the kick) in a balanced position. Once at the top of the balance position the power position starts.
                              I figured that from the vocabulary. I'm speaking more to coaches who teach it as if it were a pause by having a kid stand there with there leg in the raised position. It gives a young pitcher the idea that they're supposed to hold that pose. From the OP's photos, for example, you can see that his body is in the same position in photo #1 and #2. I'd bet he's been taught this.

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