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Friday, January 21, 2011

Youth Baseball Training - Pitching Drills for Little Leaguers

Youth Baseball Training - Pitching Drills for Little Leaguers
By Jake Wyatt

In youth baseball training, the coach shouldn't wait until problems develop to use pitching drills. Pitching baseballs should be practiced all the time to promote good pitching habits and fundamentals. Here are some pitching drills that can be used by Little League coaches.

Before beginning pitching drills, you must know pitching mechanics. The type of pitching drills and number of throws depends on the age and strength of the player. Every coach should teach the mechanics first. This will be boring for the players but the coach must require proper mechanics of all his pitchers to prevent injuries.

Here are some great pitching drills for young players:

1. Balance Drill. This involves the pitcher "playing ball" from the mound, to get the feel of compensating for the slope of the mound. Have a "catcher" set up in front of the plate, giving a good target to the pitcher. Since the distance is shorter, the pitcher can work on his mechanics while not using his arm as much. This drill helps reinforce the wind up and throw, with balance, while throwing strikes.

2. Stay-closed Drill. This is another drill that helps reinforce good mechanics. Again, the catcher will position himself six or so feet in front of home plate. After warming up, have the pitcher stand sideways on the mound with his feet spread the approximate width of his stride. Next, have the pitcher shift his weight to his back foot to throw the ball to the catcher. You want the pitcher to develop good tempo by smoothly transferring his weight from back to front. The goal of this drill is to make sure the pitcher's head stays on line with the target and to have his head down as he finishes the pitch (have him take his hat off and pick it up at the end of the drill to reinforce this). The goal is to throw efficiently, not hard, in this drill.

3. On-your-knee Drill. This drill reinforces the hip and trunk rotation needed for a mechanically correct delivery. Have a right-handed pitcher place his right knee on the ground, with his left shoulder closed and pointing toward the catcher. Have the catcher set up in front of the plate to make the drill easier. Have the pitcher "rock back" and throw the ball. Make sure the pitcher keeps his head in line and finishes the delivery properly. This drill is good for developing curve balls and changeups.

Making pitching drills part of your regular practices will improve your team's pitching consistency and help prevent injuries as well!

In order to be the best possible baseball player, training should happen year-round and be a joint effort between the coach, the player and the parents. Get more free tips to improve baseball performance, reviews of e-products related to baseball, and links to training resources at
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1 comment:

  1. Hi, thanks for the pitching ideas and drills. I plan to use them.

    left hand baseball


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