How to Build Arm Strength for Baseball

Majority of all baseball coaches will tell you the best way in building arm strength for baseball is going to the weight room to lift weights followed by an excellent long-toss workout program.

Baseball coaches of all levels tend to agree on how fast a baseball player can throw is often defined by genetics, but there are some ways a player can better arm strength. Mechanics, total-body strength, and Flexibility are factors coaches, and trainers stress to improve arm strength.

Arm Strength

Long toss is the regularly suggested approach to strengthening a baseball player’s arm. If you desire to build strength in your arm, you’ve got to throw, throw, and throw.

The shoulder is one of the most important parts of the body when it comes to baseball. Whether a baseball player is pitching, hitting, running down baseballs in the outfield, or diving for an infield ground ball, it is vitally important to build, maintain and protect the shoulder.

If a baseball player’s shoulder is unhealthy then they will not be able to perform to their potential and could cause career-ending injuries. Flexibility and balance, which support a player’s range of motion in the arm and ability to better physically assert himself, are also vital components of throwing.

Baseball Throwing

Beyond long toss, mechanics affect throwing velocity. A player must have proper body rotation, weight distribution, release point of the ball and a balanced, straight follow-through to ensure the transfer of dynamic energy onto the ball.

If the player is not throwing property, they’re not going to get the maximum velocity out of his body, adding proper mechanics will also decrease the risk of injury.

Baseball is different from other sports in the aspect of one body part or limb experiencing intense wear and tear. Baseball players must work hard to strengthen their rotator cuff to withstand the stresses of throwing and overuse.

For athletes that want to benefit from this arm strengthening training, I can’t stress enough how crucial heavy weight training for the lower body is, this includes squats and lunges.

Shoulder Exercises

For the upper body, lighter weights and elastic bands. This work strengthens the rotator cuff and muscles around the shoulder. Proper shoulder warm-up exercises are extremely important for baseball players before they begin their specific baseball activity.

Baseball player’s want to make sure they use the proper arm exercises in order to prevent compromising the function of their joints. Overuse may cause tendonitis, or worse, a career-ending injury.

Prevention And Stresses

The strenuous movements and high velocity that is placed on the shoulder, rotator cuff, is the reason for pitch counts and the injury list. Baseball player’s want to make sure they use the proper arm exercises in order to prevent compromising the function of their joints. Overuse may cause tendonitis, or worse, a career-ending injury.

Most coaches agree that the gene pool comes into play. I think it’s just a matter of mastering the mechanics of throwing and maximizing what your potential is.

Programs For Building Arm Strength For Baseball

Start with five minutes of three to four short drills to strengthen and loosen the rotator cuff.  Then move on to ten minutes of long toss, starting at 60 feet and working up to 180 feet and above. We have the position players throw the way they would in a game situation.

How To Build Arm Strength For Baseball Catchers

The catchers working out of the secondary stance and throw the ball as if they were gunning down a base stealer heading down to second base.

The problem most catchers make, who want to improve pop time is that they do not have good posture or technique getting into their secondary squat position. Understanding what it is and the importance of how to do it can take tenths of a second off your pop times.

The dilemma is most coaches do not teach the proper squat technique. They merely advise you to get down in a catcher position and work on blocking drills. There is a performance advantage in getting into a proper stance for a catcher who desires to improve his pop-time.

How to Throw Hard Having Body Control

The reason a proper squat position will significantly improve the power of movement is that it gives the catcher a stable foundation of balance and to build strength. Power for the catcher is the action of explosive force in the delivery of his throws. The act of explosive force will never occur if the catcher already has a weak foundation.

Most catchers with poor pop times do not recognize or have the sense to get into a stable secondary squat position. A secondary squat position is knees out, feet straight with a vertical spine position. Once the catcher is in his secondary position, he can more effectively enhance power through an efficient set of optimal throwing mechanics.

How to Build Arm Strength For Baseball Outfielders

Shuffle
There are many times when you can’t get yourself set up to use a crow hop. So how do you gain momentum to make a long throw? The answer is a shuffle of the feet. It’s very similar to the type of shuffle you would use when leading off a base. The difference is that on the last shuffle before throwing the ball, you will cross your back leg behind your front leg, plant it, push off and throw.

Building Arm Strength For Baseball
There’s no substitute for throwing a baseball. Often players ask what they can do to improve their arm strength. While there are some significant resources for weightlifting and other conditioning exercises that can help, I believe long toss is the single most beneficial thing you can do to gain arm strength.

Tips for Grips and Throws
Regularly use a full arm motion, don’t use a quick throwing motion like an infielder or catcher.
Always grip the ball across the seems. An improper grip on the baseball can lead to a tail, or a dip when you throw.
Throw over the head(overhand), not three-quarter or from the side. Throwing the ball over the head (overhand) with the proper grip will allow you to throw the ball on a line.

How to increase arm strength for baseball infielders

Weighted baseball, if correctly used, will work in raising the speed of the ball that you throw. The weighted baseball is not only for pitchers. Weighted baseball is also used to build arm strength for all position players.  Today in Baseball the speed of the players and overall game is much faster than it was in the past. This transition is why arm strength plays a big part in today’s recruiting.

How to improve arm strength for youth in Baseball

Arm strength for baseball is a valuable weapon especially if you are looking to play at the highest level. Some high school baseball players are just born with strong shoulders and natural arm strength. All this allows them to throw at high velocity with ease and minimal effort. Of course, this is done without any specialized training and makes us all wish we had that gift.

Limits are set for baseball player’s own good. A proper resistance program is a great way to keep the shoulders healthy. This will create arm strength for a very demanding baseball season. Don’t forget that maintaining arm strength includes a recovery system that includes ice treatment to keep inflammation down, rest to rebuild the broken down muscle tissue from use, stretching to gain range of motion, strengthening exercises to prevent future injuries, and a throwing program to build velocity and throwing durability.

Building arm strength for youth in baseball

Here is what I did with my son a few years back to build arm strength for baseball. We started with lighter and heavier weighted balls at age 16. He has since graduated from High School. We put together a conservative program and built up slowly. My son who uses his left hand to throw already had a strong core and rotator cuff. During the arm exercises which would be about 15 reps, I would monitor him and his reactions carefully, and always ask if he had any pain or discomfort during or after the workout.

Programs On Building Arm Strength For Baseball

In building arm strength for baseball, we used 6, 7, 8, 9,10,11 and 12 ounce balls. For “arm velocity increases,” we would use 3 and 4 ounce balls. This outline is from a program I found online. I purchased the Precision Impact Weighted Baseballs; they are stitched balls that are the same as a real baseball. I wanted my son to have the same feel and grip like a real baseball.

How Long Does It Take To Build Arm Strength

After about six weeks we saw tremendous improvements in his arm strength and his throwing technique in general. I am a huge proponent of light and heavy weighted ball work now. He did the building arm strength for baseball program once a week in season and twice a week in the offseason. The in-season work seems to keep his arm loose and improves his mechanics.

Can Anyone Build Arm Strength for Baseball

Would I recommend using weighted balls at a younger age? Yes and no.  I would, but only if the base/core strength is present and if the proper mechanics are already current. Everybody is different, but this is what helped my son a great deal.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to building arm strength for baseball. Especially when it comes to incorporating heavy ball training. Every athlete’s physical maturity is different, and each training session should be pieced together to fit each athlete’s workout.  When developing muscles, every athlete should follow a structured plan. There is always a risk when using any form of weights.

Weighted Baseball for Building Arm Strength

Does the weighted ball program outweigh a proper long toss program?  I am not expert when it comes to the analytics on the arm building programs, I don’t have exact figures in front of me, but I know from personal experience that it has worked.  I don’t know if at the time of writing this article if there has been any proper testing, but I will be excited to read it when they do come out with an official one.

Change Your Arm building Workout

Changing your current training regimen will not call for drastic measures. If you feel that you need a change and maxed out all the benefits of regular throwing and long toss, and your lower body and core (the base) are both developed and ready to go, then an adequately supervised weighted ball program may make some sense. But monitor this training closely.

There is no rush when it comes to adding velocity to your throws and building arm strength for baseball. It takes a variety of workouts during the season and offseason to get there.