Winter and baseball don’t usually mix. But that doesn’t mean you can’t use this time to get better while everyone else loses their edge. For pitchers, the offseason should be about building strength, tinkering with mechanics, and maybe even developing another pitch. Here are our top five offseason training tips for pitchers:
1. Run sprints – Keep in mind that pitching a baseball puts an explosive, intense demand on your body. That’s why it’s imperative to train a similar way. Start getting in the habit of running sprints as part of your workout in place of long distance runs. You may be thinking, “Wait a minute. I always run long distances after pitching in a game. What’s the deal?” Here’s the short answer: Those runs are meant to eliminate all of that lactic acid that built up while you were pitching. Not to mention, they can help reduce soreness and keep your arm in good shape for the duration of the season. Things are different, however, in the offseason. Whereas endurance running can actually teach your body to become slower, sprints promote more explosiveness.
2. Do active, dynamic stretches – Ideally, your muscles will act like a rubber band supplying stored energy when stimulated. Static stretching, on the other hand, reduces one’s ability to be powerful by diminishing the stretch reflex response.
3. Improve lower body strength – Lower body strength is critical for pitchers who want to make it to the highest level. This allows the proper torque to be developed that’s required for the pitching motion. Once you have a strong lower half, a stable core transfers that power up and into your arm. In turn, this means more velocity on your fastball and better protection from potential injuries.
4. Do push-ups – Don’t have access to a gym in the offseason? Push-ups can be done just about anywhere and are a great closed-chain exercise for pitchers. Of course, push-ups are much easier on joints and muscles in comparison to barbell bench presses, which leave your shoulders in a susceptible position.
5. Do long toss – Several times a week, grab your throwing partner and get in some long toss. Doing so improves arm strength, endurance, and velocity. Don’t think of long toss as a reason to lollipop throws back and forth to each other, though. Every time you throw, the ball should be on a line.
Athlete Training That Works
We’re proud to be known as the go-to performance center for baseball training and softball training. At BRX, we understand how to bridge the gap between the weight room and the challenge of being an overhead athlete. For pitchers, it’s not about just getting stronger. Our clients receive individualized workout programs that allow them to become more flexible, agile, powerful, and explosive.
Our staff never makes any guarantees, however, the results speak for themselves. Take pitcher Ben Heller, for instance. The New York Yankees right-hander sat around 92-94 mph with his fastball. After an offseason of training with BRX, he hit 100 mph in a spring training game and sat between 95-97 mph the following season.
If you’re ready to get after it this offseason and turn heads in the spring, BRX is here to help. Call now to get started with any of the following:
- Endurance training
- Functional training
- Agility training
- Speed training
- Strength training
- And more
Don’t forget to check out our BRX Baseball eBook.
Moving The Head Away From Home Plate
The acceleration phase occurs when the shoulder begins to move forward from the early cocking position and ends at ball release. Should a pitcher’s head move toward either side, there’s a good chance they will struggle with control. Repetition in front of a mirror should lead to improvement in terms of keeping your head in line with home plate.
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