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Better Pitching Starts with Better Balance

better-pitching-starts-better-balanceMatt Whiteside is the owner of All-Star Performance Baseball Camps and Clinics, and director, pitching instructor, and coach of the St. Louis Gamers. He previously played in the MLB for six years over the course of a seventeen year professional baseball career. Additional educational resources for players, coaches and parents are available at gamersacademy.net.

Preseason Pitching Workout: Week 5

Every athlete needs to have exceptional balance, no matter what sport he or she plays. This already essential component becomes absolutely critical as the movement performed grows in complexity, which is why I like to take a week in our pitching program to focus on what we call the Balance Point—a point in time in the delivery where everything begins to happen at once. Because of the momentum being generated by a pitcher, it’s impossible to freeze the motion at this point. Instead, be aware this moment, and focus on key performance indicators to assess whether your pitchers are as balanced and efficient as they can be.

Elements of the Balance Point

  • Loading of the hips
  • Separation of the hands
  • Push of the back leg

Key Indicators

  • Stride Length
    • 80% of your pitcher’s height—about 5 ½ of his shoe lengths
  • Stride Direction
    • Follows a straight line from plant foot, to landing foot, to target
  • Shoulders
    • Parallel to the ground (not the mound) throughout the motion
  • Head position
    • Behind the front knee at foot strike
  • Back leg
    • Straightens out from the push as the front foot lands
    • Finishes elevated (use a bucket as a guide!)

    Balance Point

    Balance Point with Pitching Post

    Balance Point with Power Plate

Baseball, Matt Whiteside, Coaching, pitching mechanics, preseason

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