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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Baseball Coaching Digest: Teaching Baseball Pitchers the Correct and Proper Stride Leg Mechanics

Baseball Coaching Digest: Teaching Baseball Pitchers the Correct and Proper Stride Leg Mechanics
By Nick Dixon

One of the most common pitching flaws seen in baseball has to do with the motion and action of the pitcher's front leg or stride leg and foot. This article discusses three common baseball pitching flaws associated with the stride leg and foot.

Stride leg movement and landing foot action is an extremely important part of proper pitching mechanics. Here are three common mistakes made by pitchers that can make them suffer the embarrassment of a poor performance on the mound.

"Improper Leg Action from Balance Point to Stride"

The proper, correct and desired motion of the stride leg depends on the game situation and the presence and location of base runners. If there is no one on base the pitcher should go to the balance position, then separate, and then take the leg and foot downward in a "down and Out" or "Landing Plane Motion". This path allows the hands to separate and the throwing arm to get to the desire point with the front foot don and planted before the throwing RM COMES FORWARD.

If there is a runner or multiple runners on base, the pitcher should throw from the stretch and use the glide step to deliver the ball to the plate quicker to deter base runners from stealing.

"Improper Front Foot Landing"

The simplest way to describe a bad front landing is to say that the pitcher is landing the front foot on his heel. The front foot should land flat or on the ball of the foot. Landing on the heel makes the pitcher's delivery inconsistent and his control will suffer.

"Improper Front Leg Mechanics"

A young pitcher should be taught to stride toward home plate. The pitcher's front foot should land with the toes pointed in the vicinity of the plate. When striding toward home plate the pitcher should not land on a stiff rigid leg with their knee locked. This can cause a "pole vaulting" action and a whip like action that is a dangerous pitching flaw that can injure a player's arm over time. Pitchers have to learn to land with their front knee slightly bent, but to firm the bent leg up during the pitching motion. When the stride foot lands the knee should be bent. The lead leg must stiffen up as the pitcher's weight comes forward. This stiffening action gives the pitcher leverage or resistance to work against in creating arm whip and velocity.

I hope that you found this article to be informative and useful. Please visit the Youth Baseball Digest Blog, Baseball Coaching Digest Blog, and the Baseball Coaching Digest for more free baseball articles, baseball tips, and free baseball drills. Good luck to you and your team. Have a great day, Nick.

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Nick Dixon is the President and founder of Nedco Sports, a sports training company established in 1999. Dixon is also an active and full time high school baseball coach with over 25 years experience. Coach Dixon is better known as the inventor of the BatAction Hitting Machine, the SKLZ Derek Jeter Hurricane Hitting Machine, the SKLZ Target Trainer, the SKLZ Derek Jeter ZipnHit Pro, and the SKLZ Strikeback Trainer. Dixon is also a contributing writer for BaseballCoachingDigest, the Youth Baseball Digest, the Baseball Parent Guide, the Baseball 2Day Coaches Journal, and Blog4Coaches.

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Hello Baseball Friend,
I welcome any comments or suggestions. If you have a question or a topic that you would like to read about, please leave a comment and I will try to address that topic as soon as I can. Good luck in the coming season!
Have a great day, Nick