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Discussion: Throwing

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July 31, 2012
HJ
Men's 70
432 posts
Throwing
I read this site to learn how to play SB better. Starting 4 years ago I was shocked to see how poorly I could throw. I am constantly surprised that very few in my 60+ league have any interest in developing this part of their game. I have done some things and have gotten better, but I would like to know is
any conscientiously work on their throwing and what they have found works and doesn't work. Thank you for any help in this area of our game.
July 31, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Long toss is the best for building arm strength. My son played hardball into college, and everyone at every level he played preached the importance of a sound long toss program.
July 31, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
Long toss is the best... I don't like playing catch very long close.. I keep backing up every throw when warming up.. I'm an outfielder so the longer the better!
July 31, 2012
Webbie25
Men's 60
1956 posts
HJ-I throw a lot to get my arm in shape-the more I throw the stronger it gets. I firmly believe guys neglect this part of the defensive game, but it is as important as bicycling(or running) conditioning is to the legs. I still can get it to home from the outfield-and hope to for a few years yet.
Aug. 1, 2012
HJ
Men's 70
432 posts
Swing, thanks, I also back up but have to convince the others to do so. Do you throw at 45 degrees when doing long ball? I am told it forces correct motion at 45 for practice.
Gary and Webbie, thank you,
Does anyone use weights? I have seen programs on you tube using light weights and not going higher than the shoulder but working to exhaustion. Does anyone use rubber tubing or bands?

Webbie, I get great pleasure from assists- I play
short field- distance is increasing but very slowly.
Thanks all and more observations would be helpful.
Aug. 1, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
HJ, the angle of the long toss should be as low as you can make it while still getting the desired carry. The idea is not to be throwing popups.
Aug. 1, 2012
ShaneV
Men's 55
381 posts
A friend and former pitcher taught me years ago how
important it is to focus on using your forearm strength.
Many have a tendancy to focus on shoulder throwing but the
extra push you can achieve pushing the ball with forearm-
wrist-fingers has helped me with distance and accuracy. I
use rubber bands and some weights to strengthen the
throwing shoulder and avoid shoulder problems. Playing in
the cold for years my shoulder used to always hurt. Not so
anymore. Used to play 6 months of the year and nothing the
other 6 months.

In senior ball we are active from February to October, and
the off-season is half what it used to be. I find less time
to get out of shape helps, just enough time to rest and
heal.

ShaneV
Aug. 1, 2012
HJ
Men's 70
432 posts
Gary, totally agree if trying to get an out or ball back to infield. I read, and don't know if it is true, that long ball at 45, in practice, is the correct motion and strengthens supporting muscles and tendons. I don't know what is right.
Shane, thank you, I have just been trying to learn about using the forearm to create "whip". I
am learning key to SB is relaxing opposite muscles to let the pulling muscles (hitting and throwing) do the work to create speed w/o hindrance from opposing muscles which should relax.
Do you do any forearm strengthening exercises?
Aug. 1, 2012
Mulewhipper
54 posts
Swing is correct...long toss is a great way to build up arm strength, no matter what position you play.

No need to over think this, just play long toss consistently and try to throw hard enough to make it a nice line drive toss.

Stepping or crow hopping as you come into your toss and follow through naturally as your body finishes off.

Aug. 1, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Swing is correct????? Excuse me, who brought up long toss first?...:( LOL
Aug. 1, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
The Almighty All knowing G19 LMAO
Aug. 1, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Not saying you were wrong, but I could have at least gotten partial credit.....:)
Aug. 1, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Long toss is a good way for building arm strength, however if you’re wanting more velocity & distance on your throws, you will have to build not only your forearm muscles but MOST importantly your wrist muscles. The velocity comes from your wrist not your arm or your shoulders. Try snapping your wrist after each and every throw, it will feel weird at first, but very effective! Try hanging on a regular bases, this will also keep your muscles from tightening up.
Aug. 2, 2012
rtaven
Men's 65
22 posts
currntly in rehab for 6 months.not rotor cuff but certain weak or damaged muscles. i was not able to throw overhand for last 2 years without extreme pain. operated on and bone spur removed 6 months ago, did not fix.
rehab used bands and light weights and got me where i could throw without pain but weakly.
i now do rehab on own.
i use bat warmer to warm arm before throwing our excercise and ice or winter crest after.
long throw every other day and bands other days, 1 day off.
i do 5 band exercises inludeing 1 called nolan ryan.also planks.i will hopefully be playing other positions when not pitching next week end.throws are getting stronger and stronger.
Aug. 2, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Velocity truly comes from your legs and core. It is why no one throws flat-footed, or without striding. It is why pitchers use a wind-up before pitching and don't just stand with their feet planted and throw the ball.

Certainly there are multiple aspects to throwing, and multiple methods of training, but for a single activity the best is proper long toss.
Aug. 2, 2012
5ToolsinOhio
Men's 50
160 posts
I like 12ounce curls a few times a week..my arm is solid!
Aug. 2, 2012
hombre
Men's 60
220 posts
I posed this same question last year. There were some suggestions that I thought showed promise. I tried a little bit of everything, weights, heavy ball, elastic bands, etc. I noticed some, but very little, improvement with these techniques. However, when I began using the long toss, there was an almost immediate and significant improvement. I can now throw at least as well as the average 60 year old woman. That's an improvement. LOL
Aug. 2, 2012
stick8
1261 posts
A friend of mine is a major league baseball scout. He tells me the things they first look for when assessing prospects is the throwing arm and running speed. He told me they can teach 'em how to field and how to hit, they can't teach a good arm or speed. Either you have it or you don't. That being said long toss could unveil a good arm but that's something that was hidden inside.
Aug. 2, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
Stick, an arm is something you have or don't have no doubt about it... but if you want to maximize your God given talent you have to put in the time to get all you can out of that arm...
Aug. 2, 2012
stick8
1261 posts
That is true swing. I've long yearned to throw like Roberto Clemente and have out long tossed all long tossers but I'm not even in the same universe as Clemente. lol
Aug. 2, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
What I'm saying stick is throughout the year I build arm strength.. I am have a stronger arm in my last game than my first game... I had a rotator cuff injury when I was 17 and throwing 96 mph... they didn't have an operation in 79 and I had to live with it.. I have a bone spur that cuts a grove in my tissue while I throw early on... if I stop throwing the tissue grows back into the spur and causes me pain... towards the end of the year there is a nice groove that lets me throw relatively pain free...This year I am throwing better because I'm playing more and the groove is established.. The longer my long toss the stronger my arm gets! The harder my long toss is before a game and the stronger my arm is in the game.. FYI
Aug. 2, 2012
HJ
Men's 70
432 posts
Swing just said something I never heard. Has anyone else experienced that hard long toss before a game gives a stronger arm in the game?
If this is true, then perhaps at least all outfielders should do hard long toss before every game.
Aug. 2, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
HJ, it stretches out everything, so longer throws makes your arm more prepared for the game... you don't get to throw that much during a game, so the more you get everything to max stretch the better your arm should perform.. I know it works for me especially with the injury I have been playing with for the past 30 plus years.. If I knew I was going to be playing this long, I would of went under the knife along time ago... Thanks Senior softball. LMAO
Aug. 2, 2012
stick8
1261 posts
Swing you mentioned you threw 96 mph when you were 17. You had an arm!! An arm that and I suspect many others would love to have had. All the long tossing in the world wouldn't work for someone like me to get an arm even somewhat close to that. Either yoiu have it or you don't. Your right in that long toss may mazimize what I have. But on the occasions I play outfield I'm pretty good at hitting the cut-off man!! lol
Hope your arm stays pain free!!
Aug. 2, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
thanks Stick.. yes, I had a cannon.. now it's a bbgun! LOL I still can throw it a bit, but it's never been close to what it was.. I went from mid 90 to mid 80s in a month.. it was sad! I love playing as we all do and SS has given me a third life in sports...
Aug. 3, 2012
5ToolsinOhio
Men's 50
160 posts
One of my teammates has the heavy softballs for warm ups, balls come in different weights and works great in pre-game.
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Be very careful with those. Very easy to injure yourself if you aren't. I certainly don't see all the games, but I have never seen one being used before an MLB game that I have been to.

Tools, you can jump me for that comment, but especially for older arms/shoulders they can be a concern. You think and do as you wish, I am just warning others.
Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Swing you telling fishing stories?...lol
96mph @ 17 sounds really impressive..because I've seem what you have now and it's more like a POP gun then the BB gun you stated...lol..What draft round did you go in?..I know back then if you threw 90 you got drafted.
Hey Mr.know it all(G19) how do quarterbacks build their arm strength?, they tend to use more of their arm and shoulders standing flat footed, but get good velocity on their throws!
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Call me what you want. But why make yourself look stupid in the process?

You really think velocity ultimately comes from above the waist? Wow.......:(

The QBs you watch on TV might still get good velocity because they were blessed with hoses, or they would not have made it to the point that they are on TV.

Count how many times you see a QB throwing flat-footed from a clean pocket. It will be ZERO. Count how many times you see a pitcher pitch flat-footed. It will be ZERO. Count how many times an outfield makes a throw in an attempt to throw out a runner flat-footed. It will be ZERO. See a trend here?

Again, why voluntarily make yourself look stupid?

Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Hey Mr. know it all,

Did I touch a nerve???? You sound upset! I never said that legs don’t help with velocity but you call me stupid??? You’re a freaking Joke! Can you throw with good velocity? Oh don’t answer that? I forgot you don’t play! Most football games I watch, the QB’s are either throwing off balance or standing flat footed with good follow though. So I thought I’d ask the KNOW ALL MIGHTY how they get their velocity and he calls me stupid…..lol
I only have a 3rd grade education and I’m trying to learn from SSUSA’s all-time Keyboard King! But he wants to give me insults….That’s not being very nice!
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
You are if you think the lower body (more than just legs) only "helps".

"You’re a freaking Joke! Can you throw with good velocity? Oh don’t answer that? I forgot you don’t play!" You continue to make my point. Thanks!

I already explained, they get their velocity in those cases from hard work AND being blessed physically. That is why those are the guys you are seeing on TV. AGAIN, watch when they throw from a clean pocket, they ALL step into the throw. Gee, I wonder why? LOL

Same reason pitchers stride and outfielders step, if not crow-hop, into their throws.

Aug. 3, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
RJ1, I hurt my senior year before draft.. damaged goods I was no draft for me... sad to say.. Anyway, I was on a gun during a Cleveland Tryout at SF State. Our Coach had me go out there and throw. FYI
Aug. 3, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
RJ1 btw if you run the bases a little harder I would of turned my pop gun into a BB gun LOL
Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Mr. know it all,
I said I only have a 3rd grade education…I’m trying to learn. I know you’re the one to ask about all things. I really think with all the knowledge you bring to this site, you would make a GREAT COACH…The players may kick your ass, because you’re a jerk, but good coach none the less!!!! (i.e.Bobby Valentine)

Swing, I’ll make a deal with you if we meet up in Vegas….I’ll run on you if you run on me, the one who gets thrown out has to buy the other 2 beers??? If no one gets thrown out we can have a beer anyway…I don’t think you can go from Pop to BB….lol
Aug. 3, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
LMAO.. sure thing... I'm in!
Aug. 3, 2012
Mulewhipper
54 posts
I'll make sure to trip him coming around 1st base for you Swing...slow him up a bit.
Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Mule,
I only go from second to home, so tripping me won't work, I never touch 1st base....LMAO

Ok Swing we are on for Vegas, it should be fun...

Are the Baron's coming down to Southern Cal on Labor day weekend for the SPA worlds?
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
If the SPA worlds are being held in Southern California, what was just held in Dalton?
Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Gary you tell me? You seem to know all that there is about the Senior game!
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
I hope you at least have a lot of old, family money from somewhere because your top floor seems a bit empty.
Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Gary, I see you can dish it out but you can’t take……..
What’s really your issue?
You get beat up as a kid? Were you one Sandusky’s Kids! I think so!
All your education and your still a DICK...
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
What can't I take? Your basic inability to grasp simple concepts is of no consequence to me. Your lack of an open mind is your issue, not mine.

And I see you are still calling, or should I say yelling, names.

"I already explained, they get their velocity in those cases from hard work AND being blessed physically. That is why those are the guys you are seeing on TV. AGAIN, watch when they throw from a clean pocket, they ALL step into the throw. Gee, I wonder why? LOL

Same reason pitchers stride and outfielders step, if not crow-hop, into their throws."

You never have directly responded to this.
Aug. 3, 2012
HJ
Men's 70
432 posts
Any helpful additional helpful comments on throwing are welcome. Please call a truce on the other stuff.
Aug. 3, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
HJ, fair enough.

The best thing you can do, as many have said, is proper long toss.
Aug. 3, 2012
rightrj1
Men's 55
204 posts
Gary I did answer your question, read my post…..Just because someone doesn’t agree with you, you have to revert to name calling. I think the word Stupid is name calling & yes I stooped to your level and that’s what you can’t take!

You say velocity come all from your legs, I said it helps, but the real velocity comes from wrist and forearms. You disagreed and called me Stupid!! Then you expect for me to agree with you!

If you really must know THROWING HARD and Accurate IS GOD GIVEN TALENT, yes long toss and hard work will help but what does it really add 1 maybe 2 mph or an extra 10 maybe 15 feet….That’s a lot if you have never been a thrower! And even more for 50+ year old men!

You always, jump in when not asked too!! I asked Swing about SPA and you jumped in for no reason, you don’t play, so why is it any interest of yours what SPA or SSUSA call their tourneys? Worlds, Nationals who really cares, as long as we can play ball!

Your Social skills are really lacking!!! That’s why NO one on this board wants to deal with you!!

HJ, sorry for screwing up your thread.
Aug. 3, 2012
frampton
Men's 55
55 posts
When I was a teenager, I worked with darts and a dartboard -- started out just using my wrist, then moving to wrist and forearm/elbow, then wrist/elbow/shoulder, then adding the hips and torso. The idea was to make all of the "snaps" occur at the same time. That gave me the muscle memory to transition to long toss, so the dart action could be "imported" to the softball throwing motion. (When I was a freshman at Cal, I talked to the baseball coach about what would be involved in trying out as a walk-on -- he probably looked at this long-haired skinny hippy who hadn't played high-school baseball, but he did give me a xerox of exercises I could use to strengthen my throwing arm, which were basically hanging from a bar and long-tossing.)

I did try to go back to this after my surgery (last year, to replace the shoulder joint), at least, until my surgeon said throwing hard posed a risk to the point in my humerus bone where the implant's spike went into the bone. (Too much risk of a Dave Dravecky fracture at that spot, which would require additional surgery,) But, getting those four separate actions working as one was what gave me a very strong arm from my 20s through my 40s (until arthritis left my throwing shoulder bone on bone; basically, I never gave it any time off, as in the softball off-season I played very competitive volleyball for all those years).
Aug. 4, 2012
Gary19
Men's 50
2615 posts
Not trying to nitpick here, and if I did say it I apologize, but exactly where did I say "velocity come all from the legs"? And no, "real velocity" comes from the lower half, NOT all but much more than the wrist and forearms. I know someone told you that, but it just isn't true.

And no, I don't believe I ever called you stupid, but just wondered why you seemed hell-bent on making yourself look that way.

"I already explained, they get their velocity in those cases from hard work AND being blessed physically". I am the one that made this statement above, so no you aren't telling me anything I haven't already known for decades. Nice try, though....:)

So I guess ALL the college and professional players who swear by long toss are just wasting their time. Seriously, is that what you are implying?

As far as SPA, I was just wondering how many "World" tournaments can be held in the same year.
Aug. 4, 2012
boston
297 posts
My take on this issue is a combination of what many of you have said. Arm strength is vital and is often God given. Can you increase your velocity and arm strength, yes. Learning proper technigue (use of the legs) and strengthing your foreamrs and triceps. All power starts from the ground up (biomechanics and exercise physiology)one of the few things i remember from college days. lol One of the problems many of us have as seniors is we were extremely active athletes in high school and college. I for one played baseball, football, hockey, basketball and ran track either in high school or in the many city leagues we had year round. Then baseball and basketball in college and continued in competitive leagues. The wear and tear we have put on our bodies is incredible.
I have had right shoulder surgery and right elbow surgery. I practically had to learn to throw all over again. I lift weights build up my triceps, stretch my shoulders and arms. My warm up throws are minimal before a game maybe 15 w/ about 5 long toss. We are all physically different some have to work harder than others but there are no easy answers. Try a little bit of everything and keep what works for you. One of the best workouts is also 12 oz curls after the games. Make sure you use plenty of forearm and wrist though.lol
Finally, we truly need to quit turning constructive and many times helpful threads into shit. We are not school children. Nothing gets accomplished demeaning each other and having pissing contests online.
Enjoy the weekend got to go play. Stay thirsty my friends.

Aug. 4, 2012
CAPT D5
124 posts
Boston, you mention keeping the threads positive. I decided to stop posting after realizing how tempting it is to be drawn into unproductive exchanges. I will continue to limit my posts after seeing how easily some are drawn onto petty ego games. If a very few habitual posters could learn, even at their advanced age, to practice more positive and healthy attitudes this board could be even better. It takes courage to change negative behavior, but it's worth it and truly warrants admiration. It will be interesting to see if habitual posters can show the character to limit the b.s.
Aug. 4, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
HJ, Using bands, Long toss, and throwing regularly will help you maximize your potential... A person with a 70 mile hr arm is not going to throw 80 miles an hour in this life time.. I've only heard of a pitcher increasing his arm speed in a shoulder operation.. other than that it's what you have to start with for the most part!
Aug. 4, 2012
bkb555
87 posts
best way to build arm strength is to use it....if you had it when you were younger, it is just a matter of maintaining....if you didn't have it when you were younger, you will be a cather or firstbasemean the rest of your life..or worse, an underhand pitcher......you won't have to worry about throwing out your arm, but the bullets that come back through the middle are your biggest concerns...lol...yikes
Aug. 5, 2012
swing for the fences
Men's 50
981 posts
HJ, one important thing I forgot to mention.. if you throw a lot and feel it after playing don't be afraid to pack it ice and cool it down so the healing begins... Probably the most important thing you can do in recovery of a lot of throws!
Aug. 5, 2012
garyheifner
349 posts
HJ---

I made an over the shoulder catch a few years back and hit my shoulder on a fence post. Lots of pain the rest of the year. Bought one of the weighted balls. Played catch over the winter just bouncing it off the basement wall. The one I got is kinda like a super ball-really bounces. Continued to use before every game the next season and my shoulder/arm not only recovered but got stronger. Don't throw it hard. Just play lob catch. Still use it.
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