STOP Thinking Long Toss Is About Building Arm Strength
April 22, 2016
The 4th installment of my "STOP" series:
Today we dispel the idea that long toss is about building arm strength as it's the most common response I receive when I ask 'Why is long toss so important?'
Even a recent NYT Op-Ed insinuated that a healthy pitching arm is centered around developing arm strength:
STOP thinking long toss is about building arm strength. It's not.
It's been known for more than 20 years that velocity is NOT about arm strength:
When you see a pitcher who throws 95 mph, is his throwing arm any bigger than his non-throwing arm? NO.
Long toss is about timing.
What kind of timing? Let's look at hitting.
When hitters practice, they work on hitting the ball with the maximum amount of energy.
Where does that energy come from? Their arms? NO. Their legs.
So hitters practice to perfect the TIMING of transferring energy from their legs into their arms. This is called 'The Kineic Chain' and it's also used in pitching:
When a pitcher throws 60 feet off the mound, their timing can be off but they will still get the ball to the plate.
When a pitcher has to throw 180 feet (the max recommended distance that you can learn about here), if their timing is off they won't get the ball there.
As Tom House of the National Pitching Association says: "Distance magnifies throwing mechanics mistakes."
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