I was wondering if the pitching starting position had any significant importance with regards to balance on your back leg once one begins their front leg lift. Initially, my son was taught to start from a legs together position. We had a private pitching coach that tried to adjust his starting position to legs spread apart at shoulder width. And, of course, some pitchers starting position is facing forward, stepping back, then stepping forward into a sideways position during front leg lift. I’ll admit that I taught my son to start with his feet together. My untested theory or reasoning for this was not to waste energy in one’s wind-up. When my son was being redirected by his pitching coach to start sideways with legs spread shoulder width apart, doing so was causing my son to swing his front leg more open effectively pulling his pitches to the left of the plate. This caused him some issues in the first spring game of 2014. After that game, I went out the same day to try to figure out what was causing his problem and I video’d his mechanics. Immediately, I noticed he was swinging his leg out instead of stepping out and the cause seemed to be related to the change in his starting position. Anyway, I instructed him to go back to starting with his legs together and the issue was corrected. I talked with his pitching coach about it and asked him if the starting position with legs apart was important to his overall mechanics, as it did not seem to be an issue that mattered too much and he said it would be okay if my son returned to a start position with his feet together. I’ve said all of that to say this…I was on another forum and a commenter stated that my son should begin with his feet apart because it would give him better balance. While this theory makes no sense to me as it relates to balancing on one’s back leg during his motion, I was wondering if there was any truth to his suggestion.
The width that the feet are apart at the beginning of the stretch is not so important as is the weight distribution. In other words, you want to begin with all the pitcher’s weight loaded on his back leg. His head should be over his back leg. This will cause a natural width of the feet from the starting position. The reason that the weight must be loaded over the back leg prior to the start of the motion is because it will allow him to fully shift his weight toward the target before hand break and it will also allow him to take full advangtage of using his back leg to push himself down the mound. Hope that helps.
So, let me make sure I understand. At the beginning of a pitch, when the pitcher is in his SET position but still AT REST and no motion has begun, there is no official stance that is better than another, i.e. feet together or shoulder width apart, correct? Currently, my son starts with his feet together from a SET REST position and then begins his wind-up….he seems to do okay in properly shifting his weight to his back leg while maintaining good balance…. Thanks for your input….
If he’s using the windup and stepping to the side before he lifts his leg, I don’t know if it matters if his feet are together or not. I would think that having both feet on the rubber and about a foot or so apart would be a good position to start from. He needs to feel comfortable how he starts.
he does not face forward in the beginning…he stands sideways with both feet together before he begins his leg lift….the only possible benefit I can perceive between beginning sideways with feet apart vs feet together is that, with feet apart, when the pitcher lifts his leg, it may force him to put more weight on the back leg possibly benefiting forward momentum as his weight is transferred from back to front movement….even so, it does not appear to be anything of significance…..balance on the hind leg must still be maintained during the leg lift either way….I appreciate your comments…
Troy, I’ve watched his videos in the other thread and I see no reason to change his starting position. His weight shift is fine and his front leg position at hand break is fine too. I would focus on keeping it simple and only work on the things Dick instructs at this age to help him with timing.
Thanks. I appreciate you taking a look at his videos and your comments.
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