The second ball throwing drill in this series is the med ball push. Catch up with previous articles on throwing drills here and here.
This is drill to the drills often used by fast bowling coaches. Yet it used used to develop an understanding of how the body generates speed through the body and into our hands for many of the other disciplines.
So you can use this drill for facilitating the kinetic chain in batting and throwing too.
This drill assists in the development of:
Good throwing mechanics using ground forces to kick start the flow of speed up through the body and into the throwing hand.
A more robust physicality to repeat the throwing action perfectly over and over again.
An increase in ball velocity.
Yes, this drill will make you a faster thrower!
We know that the legs play a huge part in the development of the throwing action.
If leg efficiency shifts by 20% - strength or technique - then the shoulder needs to work 33% harder in order to produce the same output velocity.
So, if we learn to use the ground and legs effectively then we can produce some amazing throwing results.
One of the best methods for learning how to use ground forces and legs optimally is this drill.
Paul Tweddle - Somerset CCC Fielding Coach - asks his fielders to perform this drill with the simple instruction of:
“I want you to hop 3 times on your back leg and then do whatever you need to in order to propel this weighted ball into that wall as hard as possible”.
Initially, the results are quite funny as some people throw off one leg, some with no contact with the floor at all and some only use their arms with no body action.
As a result, the ball ball limps to its destination.
Then the next instruction:
“The ground is your friend. Use the ground. Slam your front leg into the ground.”
Then all of a sudden things start to happen.
Notice in the video how Wayne manages to achieve the points listed above.
This throw, with a 1kg ball, occurred 5 minutes into Wayne’s first session with weighted balls:
He started to feel how his body can produce ball speed and power output if he uses the ground effectively.
Other key coaching points are:
This is a two hand drill.
This is a push, not a throw. So start with the ball nestling up against the body. The throwing side arm parallel to the floor then drive the ball towards the target.
Notice in Wayne’s video how he creates a pyramid with his base when the image pauses.
Again, relate this leg shape with what we see in the worlds best fast bowlers at point of release and power hitters at point of contact.
This “pyramid” shape helps players to use the ground effectively and fire momentum from the legs, into the hips, through the trunk, shoulders, arms and into the hands.
The back leg should drive over and through (think baseball outfielder) post ball release, not before.
With practice, Wayne will become even more efficient with this drill and in time these drill will improve Wayne’s ball velocity. He already has a good arm. In time, it will become great!
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