The first thing you teach your son or daughter to do when entering the world of baseball or softball is how to catch and throw. In this breakdown we are going to focus on baseball throwing drills that focus on the proper throwing techniques when young athletes are just starting out. These drills are best to incorporate into your practices for throwing warmups or when you’re just getting in some extra work at the field.
The first baseball throwing drill to incorporate into practices is throwing with your throwing arm knee down. The two players should start a couple feet apart. First, start with just wrist snaps focusing on strengthening the player's wrist. This helps players warm up slowly and ensure they have good wrist action when they throw the ball. Next, players should back up about 15-20 feet to incorporate full arm action throwing, still on their knee. Players should have their throwing hand go straight back past their head, while the elbow moves forward and the wrist comes down and the wrist snaps at the player releases the ball. This drill helps players focus on their arm action while eliminating lower body work.
Next, when players have each thrown about 20 times it is time to stand up. This next drill is going to incorporate the “power position.” Have your players start in the stretch with their feet shoulder-width apart, glove pointed at their target and hand up in a throwing position. Tell players to throw the ball to their partner, while emphasizing the hip turn without moving their feet or legs. Proper throwing techniques is all about timing, your arm, hips and legs all have to move at the correct time and in sync with everything else.
It is finally time to add in the legs and the follow through to complete the throw. Have your players first set back up in the power position, push off from the power position and use your hips to turn and follow through with the right leg (for a righty). Next, add in the step and focus on stepping, throwing, and following through with your hips and then your leg.
When young baseball or softball players are starting out it is important to take throwing step by step every practice and ensure not only proper technique, but also good muscle memory.