THE EFFECT OF PITCHING WITH UNDERWEIGHT AND OVERWEIGHT BALLS ON PITCH VELOCITY IN COLLEGIATE BASEBALL PITCHERS
Hillary Ake1, Hunter Haynes2, Riley Galloway2, Paul Donahue2, John C. Garner3. 1University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. 2Univeristy of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, MS. 3Troy University, Troy, AL.
BACKGROUND: In recent years there has been increased interest in the implementation of weighted baseball training as a strategy for increasing pitch velocity. Therefore, the purpose of this retrospective study was to examine the efficacy of overload (20% greater than regulation weight) and underload (20% less than regulation weight) throwing on the pitch velocity of collegiate pitchers over the course of an off-season. METHODS: Pitch velocity of varsity collegiate baseball pitchers (N=56) from 2012-2015 was examined following the completion of two separate off-season throwing programs. The weighted implement (WI) group (n=35) used overload (6oz) and underload (4oz) baseballs in addition to normal throwing activities with a regulation baseball (5oz) during the 2012 and 2014 off-seasons. The normal throwing (NT) group (n=21) participated in normal throwing activities only during the 2013 and 2015 off-seasons. Pre- and Post- training pitch velocities were collected using the Stalker Pro Sport 2 Radar Gun during off-season testing sessions and scrimmages. A 2x2 repeated measures ANOVA was used to determine if differences existed between the two throwing programs and pitch velocity between the two time points. RESULTS: No significant interaction was found between the two groups (WI and NT) and the two time points (pre- and post-offseason). No significant main effect found for time (p=0.07) and no significant main effect for group (p=0.27). The pre- to post-velocity for the WI group was 87.25±2.32 mph and 87.54±2.73 mph, respectively. The pre- to post-velocity for the NT group was 86.800±1.319 mph and 86.99±1.27 mph, respectively. CONCLUSION: The present study found no significant differences in pitch velocity between pre and post off-season testing for the weighted baseball throwing program as compared to a traditional throwing program. This indicates that the implementation of 20% overload and 20% underload throwing did not significantly change pitch velocity amongst collegiate pitchers. With the growing popularity of weighted implementation for throwing sports, further investigation is needed on alternate over/underloads and programming strategies to determine the efficacy for increasing pitch velocity.
Ake, H; Haynes, H; Galloway, R; Donahue, P; and Garner, JC
"THE EFFECT OF PITCHING WITH UNDERWEIGHT AND OVERWEIGHT BALLS ON PITCH VELOCITY IN COLLEGIATE BASEBALL PITCHERS,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Proceedings: Vol. 16:
1, Article 226.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijesab/vol16/iss1/226