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strength training
lower body exercises
barbell bench press
high intensity cardio
barbell rows
compound exercises
chest exercises
medicine balls
great foundation
dumbbells
Strength Training For Pitchers: What You Need To Know
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Strength Training for Pitchers: What You Need to Know

Are you thinking about developing your own pitcher strength training routine, but don’t know quite where to start? You’re not alone.

Strength training for pitchers is one of the most complicated topics in all of athletic training. This is because there is a great deal of misconceptions, and a severe lack of knowledge.

Every strength training routine must be focused on these key aspects:

  • Increasing full-body strength
  • Developing power and explosiveness
  • Decreasing injury potential

Training the Lower Half

Developing the lower half of the body is essential for pitchers. During the initial phases on the pitching delivery, kinetic energy is transferred through the legs and into the core before reaching the arm. This is why it’s critical that these areas have a great foundation of strength.

There are several ways you can strengthen the lower half of the body including: weightlifting, medicine balls, kettlebells, and high-intensity cardio.

For any weightlifting exercise you should focus on compound exercises such as squats, deadlifts, cleans, and lunges. These exercises train multiple muscles with a single movement. All lower body exercises should be focused on increasing explosive and power. Both are key to your velocity.

Training the Upper Half

There are some important principles to training the upper body as a pitcher. You must avoid exercises such as barbell bench press, military press, and heavy shoulder workouts. These workouts can potentially damage the rotator cuff, and must be avoided.

Like the lower half, you should focus on compound exercises in your upper body training such as dumbbells bench, lat pulldowns, and barbell rows. Typically, you should focus on a 2:1 ratio of back to chest exercises. This is because the back is utilized much more in the throwing motion.

High-Intensity Cardio

Yes, high-intensity cardio is an essential piece to your pitcher strength training routine. High-intensity cardio exercises will not only prepare you for pitching, but will increase lean muscle mass in the quads, glutes, and core. You must avoid exercises such as poles or long distance. There is no benefit of using aerobic exercises as a pitcher because there is no aerobic component involved.

Instead, focus on sprints, hill sprints, plyometrics, agility’s, and interval training. If your coach tell you to run poles, politely ask him if you could run interval sprints instead. Interval training is one of the specific cardio techniques to pitching.

Pitcher strength training is very difficult. Just make sure you’re using exercises that you believe will be beneficial towards your pitching. I hope you don’t think bicep curls are going to make you throw faster!


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