Posts Tagged ‘deceleration’

Anyone who has followed Baseball Training in the last 2 years or so has had to have heard HOLDS. If you have not where have you been? There was a special on HBO about it how it helped one Major Leaguer rise from the ashes into stardom. Okay I will explain. HOLDS are a concept of making throws with different weighted balls without actually throwing them. Hence the name HOLDS. The reason is to develop strength in the deceleration phase of the throw. For those not familiar, the deceleration phase is where most injuries occur due to the body needing to be strong enough during this phase in order to slow the arm down from high acceleration portion of throwing a baseball. The idea is that the stronger we are in the deceleration phase, the body will allow the arm’s acceleration phase to accelerate faster creating faster throwing velocity. So in a nutshell the body will only allow itself to throw a ball as fast as the body will allow it to slow down the arm. The theory is great, but the Jury is out holds as a Velocity Program.

Now I will say that I do holds myself and that some of my students do holds as well. But many academies have jumped on this program due to one person endorsing it as a Velocity Program. I am here to tell you that HOLDS SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A VELOCITY PROGRAM but PART OF A VELOCITY PROGRAM. I am saying this because there are some students that have received benefits from the HOLDS in my academy from a strength and stability perspective but I don’t think that it should be an end all be all when it comes to building Velocity in pitchers. Now for kicker. Do you all remember the TOWEL DRILL? Why all of a sudden is this drill completely ditched from the teachings of some of the best instructors in the USA? Especially when these same instructors are promoting holds with a 2 oz. ball and a sock. Sounds to me the towel drill is still being used but in disguise of a sock with a 2oz ball in it. I personally like the towel drill from different parts of the delivery. I can honestly say that I gained 7 mph my senior year in college and I can attribute that to training hard but also I did towel drills. My point is if we are going to promote HOLDS why did we ditch the towel drill. The towel drill is the same thing as the holds with the 2oz ball and sock. The towel drill gives the same effect as the hold with a 2 oz. ball inside a sock. In fact the weight of the dish towels that were used years ago to perform the drill weighs about the same anyway. I am not saying to do 1000 reps of towel drills daily, I am just saying that maybe the towel drill has its place, like holds, weight training, sprints. etc..

Speaking of Sprints, My next post is going to be on Sprints and how they can help increase you velocity in throwing! Leave a comment or an opinion!