Lapel Youth Baseball League Pitching Clinic
Scott Haase (BA, AFAA/NASM-PFT) is the Vice President, Co-Head of Player Development and Pitching Coordinator for the Indiana Twins. He is also a Health Coach and AFAA Personal Fitness Trainer at Community Health Network of Central Indiana. Founder of the Healthy Velo MAX Training System, Scott works with you athletes that are self-driven to throw harder and stay healthy.
If a player is able to get their body right, they can decrease the risk of injury. To simplify the training process, we look at 3 areas of the body for youth athletes - the lower, middle, and upper body.
The foundation of the lower body starts with understanding the squat. Once the movement of the squat is mastered, we quickly move into single leg work as it will force the athlete to become really good at controlling movement on one leg. Lunge variations and split squats are perfect for this. The next area is the middle of the body where exercises like planks and sit-up variations are recommended. Lastly is the upper body. The push-up and band pull aparts are a staple for the upper body.
For more information on keeping players’ arms healthy, look online for “Pitch Smart” guidelines, keep track of pitch counts, and for those wanting to invest, a tool like the “Motus Sleeve” is great.
Ever wonder why a pitcher may not throw hard and also doesn’t throw strikes? One of the biggest mistakes coaches and parents can make with a pitcher is giving them too many things to think about. At a young age, players tend to move well and move fast, but years of mechanical cues will coach the speed out of the player. If a player is taking care of their “Arm Health,” then let’s CHUCK IT! The best time to instill this is during catch.
Are your players struggling with throwing strikes? The first thing a player needs to do is get more reps on the mound. It’s the free-throw theory! Basketball players don’t get better at shooting free-throws by shooting from half court, so pitchers should be throwing off the mound to a target more than once a week when pressure is at its peak. If a player still struggles, a mixture of larger and/or closer targets that gradually get closer to the normal distance, will help a pitcher. Other things that can help include focusing on a smaller target and taking deep breaths.