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THE ELITE PITCHING DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM IN THE MIDWEST!

 

ELITE PITCHING DEVELOPMENT

Elite Pitching Development program helps pitchers gain velocity, build mechanical efficiency, command pitches better, develop better secondary stuff, understand the mental side of pitching, build an individual arm care and injury prevention program, and help pitchers develop the skills high school, college, and professional coaches look for while recruiting pitchers.

Senior Director – Todd Stein has been instructing pitchers of all ages for 16 plus years.  He has students who play professional baseball, at the college level, in high school, as well as at all the youth ages. Todd not only played at the division I college level, but also played professionally in the Arizona Diamondbacks system.  He is a current coach and Senior Director for the nationally recognized Recruits Baseball Club, a former professional baseball scout for the St. Louis Cardinals and Arizona Diamondbacks, and a consultant for many college baseball programs across the Midwest.  Todd has worked with countless High School, college and professional pitchers to help them get ready for their upcoming season, showcase, or draft.  Todd truly understands how to instruct to individual needs, and puts programs in place to help each individual reach their highest potential on the mound.  The Elite Pitching Development Program is the Midwest leader is pitching development programs ranging from daily in house training to remote plans, and is used and trusted by baseball professionals.  EPD was the areas first truly individualized and comprehensive pitching development program, and we are proud to have helped many pitchers of all levels, baseball academy's, travel programs, and colleges, implement development and training programs of their own to fit specialized needs!  Pitchers health, longevity, and success is our passion, and we continue to grow, learn, and develop our program to help you!  If you are a pitcher looking to reach a higher level of play, Elite Pitching Development is crucial piece of your year round training!

AREAS OF FOCUS

Velocity Training – gaining velocity and throwing hard is an essential part of being a successful pitcher and gaining interest of coaches at the next level.  We go through an extensive throwing arm and full body strengthening program using the latest tools like bands, weighted balls, throwing tubes, medicine balls, dumbbells, and various other strengthening items to help develop arm speed, arm strength, and full body strength.

Mechanical Efficiency – Having efficient mechanics is the only way to effectively covert strength and arm speed into velocity from the mound.  We use video analysis to detect mechanical problems, and a specific series of drills to correct flaws.  This helps pitchers to build confidence in their delivery and the ability to repeat a mechanically sound and healthy pitching motion.

Command and Control – Throwing the ball where you need to is a huge part of being successful as a pitcher.  We train pitchers to not only understand what it takes to make the ball go where, but also to gain a “feel” for the movement and associate a que with the feeling of doing it correctly.

Arm Care and Injury Prevention – We help all participants build an individualized arm health care program so that they can stay healthy and prevent setbacks.  A good arm health program not only prevents injury, but allows pitchers to recover faster.  When you get injured, you are no longer able to develop as a pitcher, and can have drastic effects on your ability to reach your pitching goals.

EPD Assessment - Students begin the program with a full assessment in order to create the best training plan possible.  The flexibility / mobility assessment helps us determine if there are any underlying issues that are causing pain and or decreased velocity.  A normal range of motion is needed for athletes to perform up to their full potential.  Our mechanical assessment is done with the use of high speed cameras to determine things like lower body movement patterns, arm action efficiency, timing, direction, and many other things.  Through the Elite Pitching Development assessment process, we determine all the opportunities & possibilities for gained health, velocity, command, and secondary pitches. 

PROGRAM COST

                  $200 per month for an EPD unlimited membership (allows athletes to attend Mon - Thur from noon to 8pm)

 

 

PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS PROGRAM IS FOR ELITE LEVEL PITCHERS FROM AGE GROUPS 12U – PROFESSIONAL PLAYERS.  TO REQUEST A SPOT IN THE ELITE PITCHING DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM PLEASE CONTACT PROGRAM DIRECTOR TODD STEIN AT This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

If you can hit you can play!

It's a simple idea, but couldn't be more true. There will always be a spot in the lineup for elite hitters, regardless of age or level of competition. Today's top hitters are always working to harness their skills. There really is no off-season when it comes to hitting. 

With that being said, there is a difference between working on being a better hitter and working on robotic mechanics that hold you back. When a new hitter comes in to work with me it's very easy to determine who has been force fed bad mechanics. It is easy to identify the player who gets the foot down way too early, chops down at the ball and blames every mishit on a mechanical flaw. The truth is I've had many young hitters come in and have a more mechanically efficient swing than a lot of older guys. The reasoning behind this is the young kid is doing what is natural. Attacking the baseball at a slightly uphill angle with good rhythm and arriving on time. Essentially being an athletic hitter. The older hitter, on the other hand, has been told over and over again to focus on cues that just flat out aren't efficient. Some of these cues include" swing down", "hands to the baseball", and my favorite is that every timing flaw could simply be fixed by "getting the foot down". 

Hitting is so dependent on being an athlete and having good rhythm at the plate. While proper mechanics will help hitters be more efficient, the focus needs to be on efficient body movements, arriving on time and accuracy with the barrel over robotic mechanics that limit a hitters athleticism. In our Elite Hitting Development program we want to help our hitters be as efficient as possible. We don't want to hold them back as hitters, we want to allow them to be athletes. Spots in our EHD program are filling fast as demand is high. If you are ready to make a change please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 Benefits of Strength and Core Training for Baseball Players

Strength training for baseball players is one of the most overlooked or under-utilized training opportunity in the game today.  The importance of strength, core, and stability training should not be underestimated in the development of your game. The following are a few of the benefits of strength and core training:

  • Balance and Body Control
  • Improved range of motion]
  • Stability
  • Transfer of Power
  • Injury Prevention
  • Overall Performance

Baseball, like other sports, utilizes the body as a whole.  This means that almost every play, throw or swing uses muscles from each part of the body.  All movements start in the legs, which creates a strong base for the action being performed. After the base is established, power is generated through the legs and up through the core. A strong core will transfer the energy through to the upper limbs for great athletic performance, while a weak core will only transfer a minimal amount of energy from the legs, resulting in a weak or miss play.  It is important for all parts of the body to be strong, but the core is the key for good balance and explosive movements all over the baseball field. Whether a player is running for a deep fly ball, landing on one foot, or diving for a ground ball and having to jump up to throw to first.

In the 2016-2017 year, the main goal of Recruits Baseball Club is to help the players in our program achieve their goals of becoming bigger, faster, and stronger.  Upon achieving these goals, players will find tougher plays to become more routine. Driving balls into the gap and over the fence will happen more frequently, and stealing and running the bases at an optimal level will become far easier. For these goals to be achieved, players must come into the facility and work hard on their training each week.  

YOUTH ARMS MUST LEARN CORRECTLY

Our Elite Pitching Development classes are geared towards pitchers of all ages and skill levels.  Today, we are going to discuss some of the areas of focus in our youth/beginner program.

Arm Path: We teach a specific arm path to our young pitchers when they enter the program.  We have learned that our approach to arm path is not only the most powerful way to throw, but also the most safe.  It promotes shoulder and elbow health to help keep our young athletes on the field.

Lower Body: From the beginning, we teach pitchers to move aggressively towards their target.  The goal is to create momentum which is then converted to rotational power.  We implement a number of drills and movements to help young pitchers understand and gain the feeling of HOW TO MOVE.

Arm Care / Injury Prevention: All of our students participate in an intense and comprehensive arm care program.  This is a individualized program and a huge part of their daily routine. Our methods involve weighted / underload balls, band exercises, med balls, and many other activities and movements that promote shoulder strength and stability, as well as increased range of motion and stronger arms.

Intent: EPD participants are first taught to learn how to move quickly and efficiently, ensuring the pitchers intent is to throw the baseball hard.  We believe pitchers throw hard because they have learned to put their body / arm through the most effective and powerful movement pattern. We focus on building a powerful movement pattern vs. incorporating standstill drills. 

Mechanics, control, off-speed command, and the ability to attack hitters are key when pitching in game situations. Before we can expect young pitchers to to acquire and hone these skills, we need to teach their bodies to move efficiently and safely. After students grasp these concepts, we graduate to more advanced skill building, but this remains their fingerprint, identity, and foundation to their careers ahead. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Robbie Gordon, former Recruits Baseball Club and Maryville University RHP becomes the Cardinals 36th selection in the 2016 Amateur Draft!  The St. Louis native has been working with Todd Stein and the Recruits staff since he was in Junior High, and his had work and dedication has paid off!  The 6'2 RHP features a 89-94 mph fastball, as well as a plus change up and hard breaking ball.  In his first professional outing Robbie recorded the save for the Cardinals rookie level team in Jupiter, FL.

During the off-season Robbie works with the Recruits pitchers of all ages and gives back to a program that he fully believes plays a major impact in his success both on and off the field!  

Good luck Robbie! Your Recruits family is wishing you a long and successful career!  

PROPER ARM PATH AND TIMING

A pitcher's arm path and timing is a mystery to most, and it's not just about the positions, but the timing of when the arm is in certain spots...  I'll use Greg Maddux for an example here because of his healthy and long MLB career.  I know people are going to write this off because he wasn't your prototypical "power" pitcher, but in his younger days he threw hard! So for you velocity obsessed guys out there you should pay attention also!

This is the position your arm should be in at foot strike.  Not to be confused with weight bearing foot strike...  This is the spot where the front foot makes contact with the ground.  The importance of this position is simple...  Momentum! If the arm gets up early it has to stall out or wait for your body to catch up leading to a start, stop, start arm action killing the movement pattern.  You will notice that the front foot is down, but the front knee is not yet settled in line with the front foot.  Also, the arm is not quite vertical... 

 

The next pic is Maddux at what I like to call weight bearing foot strike...  It needs no further explanation...

Can you see the difference in the two???  Notice how the body weight is now transferred to the front leg, and it's beginning to stabilize? As well as the lower body differences, note that the ball is now vertical with the throwing elbow just below the shoulder.  

Now that the front foot is actually down and stable, its time for the hips to finish rotating and the trunk to follow.  The throwing arm scapula will now rotate upwards (note the elbow is now higher than the shoulder opposite of the previous pic) causing the arm to lay back in the most natural way possible without yet putting the elbow in front of the ball.  What this means is that the UCL is not under a lot of stress through this part of the lay back phase, which reduces the amount of time the ligament is actually loaded, reducing stress on the arm! I know this will confuse many of you...  TO LEARN MORE ABOUT ARM HEALTH AND INJURY PREVENTION SIGN UP FOR OUR ELITE PITCHING DEVELOPMENT CLASSES THAT ARE AN ALL INCLUSIVE TRAINING PROGRAM FOR PITCHERS AND NOT YOUR TYPICAL ONE SIZE FITS ALL PROGRAM!

The final pic is at ball release... 

Note his forward trunk tilt and front leg stability in this shot giving him the ability to throw on a downhill angle forcing pitches to move south through the strike zone.  The timing of how the arm works in relationship to the body is crucial for not only arm health, but also velocity, command, and movement. 

Want to learn more?  We can help!  ELITE PITCHING DEVELOPMENT DON'T FALL INTO THE TRAP OF BUYING AN EXPENSIVE COOKIE CUTTER ONLINE PROGRAM THAT WILL MOST LIKELY DO MORE HARM THAN GOOD!

 

MARKETING YOURSELF IN BASEBALL

With the High School season underway, and the summer season right around the corner, now is a great time to begin marketing yourself to college coaches across the country!  There are many ways to accomplish this, High School ball, summer club teams, and showcases are the first to come into mind, but a baseball resume that can be seen by coaches can help drive interest as well!  Our online player profile is a perfect way to market yourself to schools that potentially be a good fit for you.  Our profiles are a little different than the others that are on the market...  The profiles are built on a Facebook platform which gives players the ability to post pictures and videos, connect with other players and coaches, as well as includes a full pro style scouting report showing recruiters the things that interest them most!

There are three different profile options available for players to take advantage of.  Don't miss this opportunity to be noticed!

Info can be found at www.recruitsbaseball.com  

Pitchers… To your continued development!

Throughout the course of the offseason all pitchers work very hard on a variety of different aspect of their game.  We do things like weighted ball throwing programs, band work, mechanical drills, secondary pitch development as well as many other things… 

The thing I want you to think about today is related to arm health and strength.  Most pitchers, at least the ones in our Elite Pitching Development Program saw significant gains in not only arm health but arm strength which directly correlates in game velocity and pitchability…  Not just peak velocity, but average velocity and being able to hold that late into the games without feeling soreness or pain.  So now I ask, how are you planning on not only keeping your velocity and arm health where it was this offseason, but what are you doing to continue on your path to seeing the gains needed and desired to play at the next level?  It is no different than your workouts in the weight room…  If they stop, your gains that you worked so hard for this offseason will begin to taper off.  The same holds true to your arm health and strength, resulting in a loss of performance.  Don’t let your spring season erase all the hard work you put in this winter or slow your progression to reaching your individual goals.  Stay the course with your throwing routine, arm care work, mechanical drill sets, and overall strength training!  Most of us simply can’t afford to take steps in the wrong direction.

 

Get registered for your in season Elite Pitching Development classes today, and continue making strides to your long term goals of playing at the highest level possible!  

A quick understanding of extension...

What is extension?  To keep it very simple, its letting go of the baseball closer to the strike zone / home-plate.  Simple right?  Well not exactly...  The best way to achieve proper extension is not by reaching out further with your arm, or striding out further with your lead leg, its actually getting more forward trunk tilt resulting in getting the ball closer to the target.  See a good example of extension here.

What are some of the key benefits to more extension?

1. Releasing the ball closer to the target giving a pitcher the appearance of more velocity.  Point A to point B faster.

2. Giving hitters less reaction time.

3. More time to accelerate the throwing arm resulting in more velocity

4. Later and more explosive movment

Gaining a little bit of extension can help in so many ways, and has proven to be advantageous to pitchers of all age groups. Need some help getting there?  Elite Pitching Development can help! 

Arm Injury Explosion & Arm Care

The amount of arm injuries we are seeing in pitchers is on the rise quickly!  In my personal opinion it's due to many different variables, but I am only going to briefly discuss what I see as the top few. 

Longer seasons - Seasons are starting earlier and lasting longer sending pitch counts through the roof...  As well as the spring and summer seasons, now when they finish up they blend right into fall baseball with typically runs another 6 or 7 weeks.  The fall season rolls into the showcase season for the High School boys, and lets face it, when college money is on the line participation is a must!  To make it through the rigorous workload of all this the throwing arm must remain strong, flexible, and in shape all year round. 

Bad Pitching Coaches - Right along with the number of arm injuries going up, so is the number of self-proclaimed pitching experts.  Many, and I am very tempted to say most pitching guys out there are teaching things completely wrong!  This obviously makes each and every throw / pitch more stressful on the arm and body leading to the elevated injury reports. GET YOURSELF INVOLVED IN QUALITY INSTRUCTION THAT IS SPECIALIZED FOR EACH INDIVIDUAL ATHLETE.  THIS MUST INCLUDE TESTING PRIOR TO GETTING STARTED, VIDEO ANALYSIS, AS WELL AS AN ARM HEALTH ROUTINE!  CHECK OUT OUR ELITE PITCHING DEVELOPMENT CLASSES! 

Lack of arm care - Pitchers must have an individualized are care routine that they can stick to!  It MUST be done all year long regardless what season you are in or if you are currently throwing or taking a break!  These programs should vary throughout the year and change based on your specific goals and timing around the different seasons.  Stronger, more flexible, and more conditioned arms are proven to be less injury prone.  

If you are looking to not only build a year long routine that suites you best, but also minimize injuries, build velocity, fine tune your mechanics, and develop better secondary pitches, Elite Pitching Development is the program for you! 

 

Importance of Carbohydrates in Post Workout Nutrition

Everyone knows the importance of protein ingestion after high intensity workouts.  But is just eating protein enough? NO!

 

The body uses glycogen (carbohydrate stores) as the main source of energy during skeletal muscle contraction in high-intensity workouts.  As the muscle repeatedly contracts, our muscle glycogen rapidly depletes depending on the intensity of the workout.  Therefore, the depleted glycogen in our muscles must be replenished to avoid our bodies from using MUSCLE WE JUST BROKE DOWN for energy. More importantly, replenishing those stores quickly after a workout will increase the rate at which our muscles absorb the protein we ingest and the amount of protein our body uses for muscle recovery.  So what kind of carbohydrates should I eat after my workout?  Within the first 30-45 minutes post workout, try to consume carbs that have a high glycemic value, such as white rice, potatoes, or pasta (simple carbs).