Softball Throwing Mechanics – Grips and Releases

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 140,013
    Softball coach Suzy Willemssen demonstrates grips and releases for pitching.

    Suzy Willemssen

    Suzy is an instructor at the Frozen Ropes Baseball/Softball facility in Chantilly, VA, the head coach of Blue Jays Gold, an 18u ASA junior olympic team and is also the Varsity Softball Head Coach at Chantilly HS. Prior to the Chantilly position, she was the Assistant Varsity Softball Coach for West Springfield High School from 2003-2005 and the Assistant Junior Varsity Softball Coach in 2002. In 2004 Suzy was awarded the Patriot District Assistant Coach of the Year. Suzy played softball at the University of Iowa where she majored in physical education. She has worked numerous softball camps and clinics throughout the Northern VA area and is known for her knowledge, passion and enthusiasm for the game.

    Hi, my name is Susie Willimson and I'm a Travel Ball in high school softball coach. I have Christie here with me and we are going to go over some basics softball skills. This one particular would be throwing and I will be going to be discussing now the proper grip when throwing a softball. With the softball, preferably you want to have what's called the C grip or you can have a backward C, and you want to take your three fingers, you can use two, but most hands aren't large enough so, you have a three finger grip. You want to make sure your finger tips at the first knuckle are across the same and you want to have your thumb underneath your index finger, what this is going to ensure that you'll have a more powerful and a more active throw. Like I said before, larger hands can use a two-finger grip and with that you would have it such that your thumb would be splitting the two fingers. So, that's how you want to grip the softball and preferably three finger grips also you just have your little pinky, little finger is just pretty much along for the ride. So, after we have our grip, we want to have a couple of things we want to make sure we are doing, and now will be going to be talking about our arm circle. Also you do notice with Christie's grip that we have the ball more in the finger tips, we don't have it jammed in her palm. So, again we want some space inhere as well. Now, we want to talk about the arm circle, which is very important. With the arm circle -- Christie, I'm just going to have you turn this way a little bit, there is a couple of things that you can keep in mind as far as like a little deduce. If you are going to be throwing from the outfield, you want thumb to thigh and when you are bringing your arm circle, go ahead Christie, you want it to be nice, loose circle and you want to make sure that you have your palm facing away. So, for an outfield throw again you are coming -- it's going to be thumb to thigh, palm away and then when she starts to throw she is going to be coming around, elbow leading, ball is snap down and through, we say wave, good day.

    Now, for an infield throw, it's going to be more chest to thigh, a smaller circle again, the palm will be facing away, again coming through, leading with the elbow, snap down, coming off our index finger. Catchers, it would be thumb to ear, coming back for a quicker throw, again elbows leading, nice and easy arms back come snap down and through. So, those are some basic things to think about regarding grip and the arm circle, when we are doing our throwing mechanics.