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For Intermediate Pitchers with 1 to 2 Years of Experience

Practice alone does NOT make perfect.  Practicing the RIGHT THINGS makes perfect.

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This information is for those softball pitchers are PAST the "beginner" stage... they have implemented the basic mechanics, have developed good pitching speed, and have the control needed to place the pitch where they want it.  These recommendations are from Colorado Pitching Instructor GERALD WARNER, and are based on questions and E-mails received from visitors to this website. Topics change and are updated regularly, so re-visit often.


The Basics...Grip, Stride, Arm Rotation, Release
MECHANICS FIRST – Learn, practice, and develop good pitching mechanics NOT worry about throwing strikes when you are learning how to pitch.  Learn how to do it right, make certain that everything is correct and smooth, then later you can start adding speed.   Control (throwing strikes) should not be an issue in the beginning.   First learn the correct way of doing the pitching motion and delivery.  Then LATER you can work on being accurate and throwing strikes... (click here for full article)

Three Essentials for Fast Pitches
There are three primary phases of the pitching sequence that contribute to the speed and control of the pitch.  These are the common elements of virtually every high-velocity pitcher.  Many sequence photos in this article were selected at random from an analysis of pitchers... (click here for full article)

11-Years Old - Does She REALLY Have a Rise Ball?
It’s a great dream…a young pitcher throwing the infamous rise ball.  Pitchers and their parents like to brag about how many pitches they throw…even though all of them often look alike with no movement at all.  A true rise ball is not merely a pitch that is released low and thrown to a chin-high spot.  We discuss the correct spin direction, the very fast spin speed, and fast pitch speed required for a “legitimate” rise ball elsewhere on this website.  In 20 years of training scores of pitchers of all ages and observing thousands more we are yet to see a pre-teen pitcher with a true “moving” rise ball...  (click here for full article)

An Indoor Drill to Increase Your Pitching Speed
We have found that the most beneficial speed-increasing drill for softball pitchers is one that can be done at home…and it is a simple one to set up.  It involves hanging a remnant piece of carpeting (or an old rug, or even a heavy tarp) from a joist in the ceiling of a basement or garage... (click here for full article)

How to Correct LOW (and INSIDE) Pitches
Unintentionally throwing pitches too LOW or low and INSIDE is usually attributable to a being “off-plane” during the arm swing, the pitcher's closing rotation, or when a pitcher strides too far off the power line (for a right-hander, that means stepping left of the power line) So when a pitcher throws pitches inside...or inside and a same-side batter, it is likely one or more of the problems... (click here for full article)

How to Correct HIGH Pitches
We receive many questions regarding control of pitches…and one of the more frequent is correcting the problem of consistently throwing high, or high and outside.  If that is your problem, here is a list of several possible things that you can do to become more accurate... (click here for full article)

For Increased Speed and Accuracy - "Finish" the Pitch
A leaping-style pitcher must have a strong, fast push-off from the pitching rubber in order to drive her stride leg out fast and far.  Then the power, speed, and landing of the stride determines how effectively the pitcher can push back against her stride leg to give her the resistance for a hard final arm “whip” to throw the ball with maximum speed... (click here for full article)

Recent Questions from Visitors to the Site,  & Our Recommendations
Many of you who visit this site call or e-mail us with your topics and questions.  Click on this link to take you to some of the recently-asked questions...and our answers.  click here for all articles  
We would appreciate hearing from you too, on any question or recommendation relating to girls softball pitching.

The image and reputation of softball, not just in the U.S. but around the world, has been tarnished by the dramatic increase in the number of illegal pitch calls recently, for the most part caused by the "leaping" violation...not keeping the rear foot in contact with the ground until the forward / stride foot lands.  In many cases, the calls were confusing to the pitcher, her coach, and in the case of televised games, even the announcers... (click here for full article)

Toe Drag...How to Correct the Leaping Problem
Young pitchers…and often even those with years of experience… can develop a “leaping” problem.  Pitching rules
(for girls and women) state that a pitcher cannot become totally airborne during the pitching sequence…at least one foot has to remain in contact with the ground until the other foot lands.
click here for full article

The Best Pitch Location - Low or High?
We did an extensive 3-year study on the basic subject of pitch placement and which locations resulted in the most hits, and which resulted in 3rd strikes.  After studying thousands of during-the-game pitches thrown by travel ball, college, and high school pitchers, we now have some statistics to support what many coaches and pitchers have always emphasized.   Here is a summary of the results... (click here for full article)

The Best Change-Up
"It doesn't matter if you grip it with two fingers, four fingers, your knuckles, or your elbow...the best change-up is one that looks like you are throwing a fastball, then crosses the plate slow enough to mess up the batter's timing."  Here are brief descriptions of the basic styles change-up.    None is the "right" one.    Although most pitching instructors have a favorite style, what is right for the instructor might not be right for you... (click here for full article)  

How to Create a Striped Ball
A striped softball is an excellent tool to assist a pitcher with making certain that she has  (a) the correct rotation and (b) the maximum spin speed on her breaking pitches.   If you are highly intelligent, have very good athleticism, and are skilled in freehand art, then you too can create a striped softball.   Otherwise, you can get a 12-year old to do it for you.  Seriously though, this is one of the best tools for a pitcher who is constantly trying to improve her drop, curve, screw, and rise balls.   (click here for full article)

What is an "Average" Pitching Speed?
Pitchers, parents, and coaches often ask what the typical pitching speed is for a pitcher of a certain age.   Since girl pitchers in various communities and different regions of the U.S. have different abilities and experience, and play at a variety of levels of competition, there is not a specific answer that will work for everyone...  (click here for full article)

Foot Placement on the Pitching Rubber
We often receive questions regarding where a pitcher must place her feet prior to the start of the pitch, and during the pitching motion.Unfortunately, the rule for girl pitchers can vary from one league to another, and even between the national sanctioning organizations such as... (click here for full article)

How to Stop the "Leaning Forward" Problem
Every softball pitcher can pitch with better speed and better control if she brings her shoulders back and “comes back tall” as she releases the ball.   Biomechanics studies have shown that a pitcher will have maximum “torque”…and therefore throw harder…if she does not lean forward as she finishes the pitch. 
(click here for full article)

The Drop Ball   Part I - The "Peel" Drop
Every serious softball pitcher needs to develop an effective drop ball.  A good drop can be an effective "controlling" pitch…it keeps the batter worried, always trying to guess what the pitcher is going to throw next.  More important, it is effective at creating swing-and-miss strikes… if the ball drops several inches as it approaches the plate, the batter generally swings above the ball.  At the least, a good drop causes the batter to hit only the top portion of the ball, resulting in an infield ground ball...
 (click here for full article)

"Stepping Style" vs. "Leap-and-Drag" Pitching - Which is Best for You?
There are two fundamental styles of pitching in fastpitch softball…based primarily on the aggressiveness and length of a pitcher's stride  (with her non-throwing side leg) .  The common names used for windmill pitching styles are either  "leap-and-drag" or "stepping style"Neither is better...both styles of pitchers can be taught to throw hard fastballs, good breaking pitches, and develop good stamina.
(click here for full article)

Five Steps You Need to Take to Become a Softball Pitcher
We have seen too many promising young pitchers ultimately get frustrated, and in some cases quit pitching softball because they were encouraged to do too much too quickly.  Sometimes a pitcher, a parent, or even a coach brags about how many pitches a young pitcher can throw.  Trying to learn new pitches before you are doing the fundamentals correctly is a waste of time.  Learning to pitch takes a long time...with a lot of hard work and practice... (click here for full article)

Why You Need a Good Change-up
Few softball pitchers, even those with good speed, are able to overpower all batters with their fastball.   In time, some of the better hitters will be able to time a fastball-only pitcher and start getting their bat on the ball.  The change-up offers a change-of-speed alternative, but more important, it gives a pitcher an exceptional psychological tool to keep batters guessing.  A good deceptive change-up can increase a pitcher’s effectiveness by more than 50%... (click here for full article)

Warm-up Right - Pitch Better
Warming up properly and completely…in practice or before a game…is essential for good pitching performance.  Depending on the pitcher and the types of pitches she throws, warm-up time varies from as little as 15-minutes to more than 1-hour.   The better and more complete your pre-game preparation, the better you will pitch... (click here for full article)

What Pitches to Develop Next
Develop a GOOD change-up pitch…then use it.  The speed of the change-up should be about ¾ the speed of your fastball…at least 12-15 miles per hour slower.  We recommend that your third pitch is a drop ball.  Finally, you should learn to throw one more pitch that works...a curve, a screwball... (click here for full article)

Pitch Better by Using the "Power Line"
The "Power Line" (sometimes called the "Line of Force") is an imaginary line from the center of the pitching rubber to the rear point of home plate.   Experience has shown that a majority of female softball pitchers will be better balanced, AND will also have an increase of pitching speed…with better accuracy…if the stride foot touches against the power line when landing... (click here for full article)


Other relevant articles on this website

Increase the Speed of Your Fastball

A Potentially Dangerous Pitch Release...the "Over-the-Top" Drop/Fastball

What Pitch to Call...And When

Recommended Products for Pitchers

Does a Rise Ball REALLY Rise?

The Drop Ball Part II - The "Snapover" Drop

Make Your Breaking Pitches Break Better

Crow Hopping and Foot Dragging Rules

Every Pitch...Even a Fastball...Has an Arc

How to Select a Pitching Instructor

Throw Faster by Using a Good "Body Lean"

What REALLY is an Earned Run?


If you have questions or need more information
E-mail us
,  or call Pitching Instructor Gerald Warner in Colorado at (720) 200-4575

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