http://www.softballcamp.com/

 
SIGN IN:   Password     »Sign up

Message board   »Message Board home    »Sign-in or register to get started

Online now: 3 members: Art Melloh, Enviro-Vac, att17; 57 anonymous
Change topic:

Discussion: Throwing

Posted Discussion
June 4, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Throwing
While playing in Reno this past weekend, I had the pleasure of getting 6 assist while playing my right field position…I think I have an above average throwing arm….I think throwing is God given…Not like hitting where if you’re a bad hitter, you can become a good hitter just bye practice! I was asked how can you a better thrower, and my answer was you either have a good arm or you don’t. Long toss may make it SLIGHT better, but over all we all have what we have when it comes to throwing……..What do you guys think?
Can an average arm , become a GUN just bye practicing?
June 4, 2014
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
rightrj1, a great question. I hope there is discussion. I never had a great arm. I never even had a decent arm! Second base or pitcher for me. I have noticed, by playing the outfield a lot more the past year, that long tossing has strengthened my arm but probably by only 15 or 20 feet. I still have a less than average arm (although it is a very accurate arm).

I can't remember a single player in my decades of softball who progressed from an average arm to a decent or good arm, never mind a strong arm. I think you are right that throwing-arm power is God-given and there is a limit to how much you can develop it.

On the other hand, I have seen players who had a strong arm lose that strength as time went by, usually by lack of use (not warming up, not coming to practice, etc.) to the point where as an older player they have a very average arm.

I wonder if there will be other opinions.
June 5, 2014
Fred S
Men's 80
93 posts
I agree totally. I never had and arm and couldn't hit. All the practice in the world couldn't make my are stronger but plenty of practice turned me into a pretty good hitter.

The problem with a strong are, as Omar stated, it gets weaker over the years and I haven't found too many outfielders who will admit it and take that into account as they get older. They still try to fire home when they have a hard time reaching the cutoff's.
June 5, 2014
TexasTransplant
Men's 70
420 posts
I suspect that there is an element of truth in what you are saying. I would submit, however, that few of us spend nearly the time working on our throwing that we do on our hitting. I know that personally, while I hit several times a week, year round, any throwing in limited to pre-practice and pre-game, warm-up time.
June 5, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Omar, TX, Fred you all are correct, most players don't practice throwing, and most of them warm up with that DAM HEAVY BALL, I always wondered why, to me it seems like going into the gym, and pressing 300 lbs and then start your workout with 150 lbs....My arm hurt me for 3 months after using that heavy ball.
I also find that lifting heavy weights cuts down on a fluid throwing motion, which cause weaker throws! Yes, as we age, the strength starts to leave, but so does the base runners speed, so I guess it's a wash! LOL
June 5, 2014
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
rightrj1, only if we can reach the cut off man to relay and try to put out the turtle! I also warmed up with that weird heavy ball once and it made my arm sore also. Never again. Yet there are guys who swear by it. Takes all kinds, I guess.
June 7, 2014
Webbie25
Men's 60
1981 posts
Rightrj-great topic. For those of you that have not seen his arm-in Vegas this year with a reasonably fast man on first, I hit a line drive down the first base line and he came all the way to the line, got the ball, and threw our guy out by 5 steps at third with a one hop cannon shot throw. We are still shaking our heads over that one.
I still have a viable arm also, at almost 62, and I WORK on throwing throughout the year. Taking care of my arm over the years has played a big part. I throw during batting practice while chasing balls-throwing them into the pitchers area rather than the bucket a lot, throwing extra in warmup and working up to pretty hard throws most of the time, and in league games I do take extra shots at throwing runners out on the bases that I would not take in a tournament, just to get the throws in. And this does make my arm appreciably stronger as the year goes on. And I do not like the heavy ball either. Consistent throwing with a regular ball helps accuracy and strength.I believe if everyone practiced throwing as they practice hitting, you would see stronger arms.
June 7, 2014
HJ
Men's 70
442 posts
I can't get anyone on my league team to practice throwing. I have been told that consistent long toss and throwing the ball at a 45 degree angle in the long toss will improve arm strength. That said, getting rid of the ball fast and accurately hitting the cut off man in a place where he can quickly get rid of it appears much more effective than trying to get the lead runner unless you truly have an accurate cannon. Usually the long throw is ineffective and usually lets the batter get to 2nd eliminating the DP. Any team having 6 guys thrown out by 1 outfielder in 1 game doesn't seem to learn much. You don't run on the accurate cannons.
June 7, 2014
garyheifner
361 posts
A teammate and I work out at the same health club. One day a week, throughout the winter, we threw a 1 pound weighted ball for about 10 minutes and then about 10 minutes with a game ball. Not saying we have monster arms now, (3 tournaments) but so far we have had no should or arm pain and we are both visibily throwing with much more velocity and distance.
Fingers crossed it doesn't change.
June 7, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Webbie, thanks for the kind words.....I guess we are all in agreement, that throwing is God given and most guys don't practice throwing at all. Most guys don't practice throwing, is because most guys don't know how to throw properly....Meaning over the top, good leg push, and follow-though with wrist snap upon release...Some guys have told me i have a weird release, I always say I throw with my wrist, not my arm....The only bad thing with having a good arm is 1 throw and then guys won't run anymore....Makes for no fun sometimes on my end!
I have also notice a lot of guys don't charge the ball either, making it a even longer throw to the cut-off man. Long Toss has always help me stay fluid, as well as yoga & Spinning (indoor bike Cycling) try it, it might help you!
June 8, 2014
Webbie25
Men's 60
1981 posts
Rightrj-I just finished a 30 mile outside bicycle ride and will do the same today-that's how I stay in condition. Last summer I rode more than 1000 miles in the 'warm' months. Riding outside makes spinning boring--LOL. I do stop riding 4 days before a tournament to 'revitalize' and be rested. But stronger legs also makes a difference in my throwing, too.
Good outfielders are aggressive to the ball to try to prevent extra bases. The 70 foot bases have helped outfielders keep extra bases down, too.
June 8, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Webbie, That's great..Any type of Cardio where you're using your legs will always help with throwing...Just remember to stop coasting and medal at least 1/2 your bike ride...LOL I love it when outdoor bike riders come to my spin class and can't keep up, that's the 1st thing I tell them "you have to keep the pedals going indoors", there's NO coasting...LOL and Watch out for them cars!
June 8, 2014
Webbie25
Men's 60
1981 posts
RJ how long do you spin? Just curious. I have 2 different rides that I do mostly. One is from 30-50 miles, depending on my physical condition-mostly flat and I press for the best times I can, ranging from a 15 to 18 mph average. No coasting. You fight the wind for 1/2 the ride, and 1/2 is with the wind. The other is about 20 miles, but I do 3 climbs-first one is 2 miles up a 4-5% grade for 2 miles and back down, the second is 1 mile at about 6% and back down, and the third is about 6-7% for 2 1/2 miles and back down and back home. You earn the coast down during the climbs, and I go from 2-3 hours each ride. I do believe it would challenge even you! LOL
June 9, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Webbie, I'm an instructor for 24 hour fitness...I've taught as many as 5 classes in one day, the class is an hour...I usually teach five classes a week! The bikes have tension adjustment on the flywheel to simulate hills and the pace is based on the music I play.. I used to be a runner and the old knees won't allow the pounding, so I discovered biking, but had too many close calls with my fellow car drivers, so Spinning was it for me, I've burned as much as 1600 calories in an hour spinning, the only thing I find more rewarding is swimming & Softball.
I would love to join you for your hill rides, sounds like fun, especially the Coasting back down hill....LOL
June 10, 2014
Webbie25
Men's 60
1981 posts
Ok, you win-LOL, I know you are in great shape. My point was that stronger legs to help your throwing if you work at it.
June 10, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Webbie, we agree strong legs do help throwing....Most of the guys that know I teach Spin are tried of me mentioning it to them.....LOL For me, it keeps the Blood Pressure & Cholesterol in check. One thing I don't do is lift weights, all cardio, lifting weight REALLY messes up my throwing motion, the muscles look good, but I cant hit the cut off man. I think the Yoga helps also! Keeps me loose and fluid! Keep riding that bike and since you have beat me on the field, we both win! LOL
June 10, 2014
Mario
Men's 50
381 posts
Arm strength can be improved, just like hitting can be improved. All one has to do is a training regimine for throwing strength. Long toss, or burn out at long distances will do it. If you do this at 200' for 15-20 mins a day 3 times a week you will get a stronger arm. I agree that some are blessed with a natural strong arm, but its just like hitting if you work at it you will get better at it. At our age most guys don't want to do the work, but believe me if you play burn out at 200' every other day for about 6 weeks your arm strength will be better!!
June 10, 2014
Mulewhipper
68 posts
Arm strength can be improved, but one shouldn't be throwing weighted balls or anything other that the ball they will be throwing. And the arm strength you get from lots of extra throwing won't be life changing, it will only slightly improve what you do have as well as your endurance.

June 10, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Mario, I'll have to disagree with "Arm strength can be improved, just like hitting can be improved" No way, No how!! All the practice in the world will not make an average arm a gun! Weights and hitting practice can make you a better power hitter, only because your swing strength has increased, long toss will slightly strengthen it, but just a little, proper technique will also help a little, but IMO you have what you have, pop gun, pistol, or cannon! LOL
June 10, 2014
Mario
Men's 50
381 posts
rightrj1 we agree to disagree. Being a coach and trainer over years I have helped men and women add up to 10 mph on there throws using this program. I would say that the average increase was in th 7-8 mph. Still better than when they started. All these speeds were from the shortstop hole on a baseball field to first base. So it does work. If anyone does this even at our age you will gain velocity.
June 12, 2014
stick8
1298 posts
Dale your right, prolonged practice of long toss can improve arm strength slightly or in some cases a little better than slightly. 5-7 mph sounds about right. But if one doesn't have a natural good arm all the long toss in the world won't give them that hose where they can easily throw runners out going from 1st to 3rd or 2nd to home. It's the same thing with speed. There are exercises one can do to develop a quicker jump or first step but to develop breakaway speed thru exercise just doesn't occur. A friend of mine is a major league baseball and he always says they can teach you how to hit, they can teach you how to field but they can't teach speed or a good arm.
BTW, we missed you in Knoxville. I'm sure you heard--we ran with 10 all weekend and still came in second. We played our you know what's off and I'm still a bit sore, those infields were rock-hard!!
June 12, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
I would think more like 2-3 mph with a lot of practice....5-8 mph seems little much...Major league ball players don't add 5-8 you never see pitcher's go from 88 to 93 mph or 93 to 98.
I think as ball players, that's the one thing we all have in common, "we all pretty much have what we have" seem funny, but I find it true to form 99.9% of the time..
June 12, 2014
swing for the fences
Men's 50
1003 posts
I agree with RJ on this one... you can't teach an average arm into being a cannon.. you can increase some arm strength, but you will never take an average arm and make it outstanding! Most guys that have cannons have good or great mechanics already, along with God given talent! Just like taking an average runner and making him a speedster... not going to happen... you can make an average runner faster but at the end of the day he's just a faster average runner!












June 12, 2014
Omar Khayyam
999 posts
One of the sweet things about senior ball is that since we are all on the decline in strength, stamina, etc., we can become better than our peers just by staying in shape or having good genetics or losing weight, etc. For example, I was never the fastest player on my teams in the past. I was usually in the top half since I gave running my all and I was slender, but there were always guys with more natural speed than me.

Now, those greyhounds are having knee or hip problems, or have gained significant weight over the years, or have a heart condition, or are paying the lung capacity price for decades of smoking, etc. and I am becoming the faster runner just by staying much the same but not diminishing as fast.
June 14, 2014
Webbie25
Men's 60
1981 posts
rightrj-I also have never lifted weights at all. I was taught when I was young it could interfere with my muscle coordination. Whether right or wrong- I never have lifted.
You can only improve arm strength and technique so much-for sure you can never create a 'cannon'. But I still say if guys worked on their throwing as much as they do their hitting, you would see 'improved' arms.
June 14, 2014
rightrj1
Men's 55
208 posts
Webbie, I was a heavy weight lifter in our 20's & 30's, you know to look good for the ladies..lol...I've always had an above average arm, from as long back a Pee Wee ball, When I lifted, my arm sucked BIG Time, I stopped lifting and after a few months the motion comes back...I'm just like everyone else, I don't practice throwing, aside from warming up for BP & games, & when shagging balls in BP I try to practice hitting the BP bag to keep my accuracy in check, but that's about it!
There are so many factors involved in throwing guys out going from 1st to 3rd and 2n'd to home. Getting in good throwing position, charging the ball, seeing the runner, catching the ball on a good hop, the transfer from glove to hand, gripping the ball, foot work in position, bunny hop, release & follow though with wrist snap! Then watching the guy, walk to the dugout...PRICELESS!

LOL
June 14, 2014
TexasTransplant
Men's 70
420 posts
rightj, despite you're earlier contention, and my somewhat agreement, I think you just named a bunch of things other than arm STRENGTH that can be improved: throwing mechanics, positioning, charging the ball aggressively, and game awareness. I've always thought that one of the things that sets baseball/softball apart from some other sports is that proper application of technique and knowledge can make a person an outstanding player even if they are not blessed with outstanding physical attributes. Of course, everything else being equal, fast and strong will usually prevail over slow and week! :)
June 14, 2014
garyheifner
361 posts
One above said never throw a weighted ball. Our shortstop had arm rehab and they had him throwing a weighted ball into a net. You don't gun a weighted ball, you lob it. All I know is that we both have significantly stronger arms than in recent years. RE: weight training. Just got to see Resmondo play. Three man outfield-holding gappers to a single. Cannons. Average HR over 400 feet. One guy hit one over the 300-over 90 feet of grass over a two lane highway and one hopped the apartment complex on the other side of the highway. You do the math.

Yes they are much younger but although they were of different heights they all had small waists and HUGE chests-Arms. They have been doing a whole lot of weight training or a whole lot of steroids. When they swung the bat, you could barely make out its shape. Weight training has to have some benefits to softball. I heard one guy yell to an M player on another team-how much are you benching these days-the guy said he was down to only "405".




June 14, 2014
stick8
1298 posts
rightj I forgot to add scout after major league. A friend of mine is a major league scout and he tells me after they deem prospects character to be worthy they mainly look for arm strength and speed. Coaches can teach players how to hit and how to field but they can't teach speed or a good arm.
June 19, 2014
Mulewhipper
68 posts
Swing is correct...it just can't be done...we can all work hard and make ourselves better...but there is a limit.
Sign-in to reply or add to a discussion or post your own message and start a new discussion. If you don't have a message board account, please register for a free nickname. It will only take a moment.
Senior Softball-USA
Phone: (916) 326-5303
Fax: (916) 326-5304
2701 K Street, Suite 101A
Sacramento, CA 95816
Send us e-mail
Senior Softball-USA is dedicated to informing and uniting the Senior Softball Players of America and the World. Senior Softball-USA sanctions tournaments and championships, registers players, writes the rulebook, publishes Senior Softball-USA News, hosts International Softball Tours and promotes Senior Softball throughout the world. More than 1.5 million men and women over 40 play Senior Softball in the United States today. »SSUSA History  »Privacy policy

Follow us on Facebook

Partners