How to Teach Fastpitch Pitching?

Fastpitch softball is a thrilling sport, where the pitcher’s skill can greatly impact the game. Mastering the art of fastpitch pitching is essential for players looking to excel in this competitive field. The right techniques and strategies can make a world of difference.

This blog post offers valuable insights and effective methods for teaching fastpitch pitching. By following these tips, coaches and players will see improvement in both pitching speed and accuracy. We’ll discuss drills, mindset, and ways to overcome common challenges faced by pitchers.

Dive into the world of fastpitch pitching with us and discover the secrets to unlocking your full potential. Our comprehensive guide will elevate your skills and transform you into an unstoppable force on the mound.

The Basics of Fastpitch Pitching

Understanding the Mechanics

Before delving into teaching methods, it’s crucial to grasp the fundamental mechanics of fastpitch pitching. A proper pitch consists of several components:

  1. Windup: The initial stage where the pitcher prepares for the pitch.
  2. Stride: The forward motion of the pitcher’s lead leg toward home plate.
  3. Release: The moment the pitcher lets go of the ball.
  4. Follow-through: The final stage, where the pitcher’s arm completes its motion.

Key Elements of a Good Fastpitch Pitch

There are five essential elements to consider when teaching fastpitch pitching:

  1. Speed: The pitch’s velocity is a crucial factor in determining its effectiveness.
  2. Accuracy: The ability to consistently hit the target is vital.
  3. Movement: A pitch with lateral or vertical movement is harder to hit.
  4. Deception: Keeping the batter guessing about the type of pitch thrown.
  5. Endurance: The ability to maintain performance throughout the game.

Teaching Fastpitch Pitching Techniques


Teach pitchers various grip techniques, such as:

  1. Four-seam fastball: Fingers across the seams for a straight, fast pitch.
  2. Two-seam fastball: Fingers along the seams for a pitch with slight movement.
  3. Changeup: A slower pitch, gripped deeper in the hand or with a modified grip.
  4. Curveball: Fingers along the seams, with a wrist snap to create spin.

Proper Stance

A proper stance is the foundation for a successful pitch. Instruct pitchers to:

  1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, toes parallel to the rubber.
  2. Square their shoulders with the target.
  3. Keep their glove arm pointing toward the target during the windup.

Stride and Release

To ensure a powerful and accurate pitch, teach pitchers to:

  1. Stride with the lead leg, keeping it slightly bent.
  2. Release the ball with a whipping motion, snapping the wrist downward.
  3. Maintain a consistent release point for each pitch type.

Drills for Fastpitch Pitching

Speed Drills

  1. Long Toss: Increases arm strength and endurance.
  2. Resistance Bands: Improves wrist snap and forearm strength.

Accuracy Drills

  1. Target Practice: Hitting specific spots on a catcher’s glove or a target.
  2. Bullseye: A competition-style drill, aiming for the center of a target.

Movement Drills

  1. Towel Drill: Emphasizes proper wrist snap for pitch movement.
  2. One-Knee Drill: Focuses on upper body mechanics to enhance pitch movement.

Building Confidence and Mental Strength


Encourage pitchers to visualize successful pitches and situations.

Positive Reinforcement

Reinforce good habits and successes with positive feedback.

Goal Setting

Help pitchers set achievable goals to track progress and maintain motivation.

Monitoring Progress and Adjustments

Video Analysis

Analyze video footage to identify areas for improvement and make adjustments.

Periodic Assessments

Evaluate progress regularly to determine the effectiveness of coaching methods and make necessary changes.

Common Mistakes and Corrections

Rushing the Windup

Rushing the windup can negatively impact accuracy and control. Teach pitchers to maintain a steady pace throughout the windup.


Overstriding can cause pitchers to lose balance and control. Ensure pitchers stride within a comfortable distance from the rubber.

Inconsistent Release Point

An inconsistent release point can lead to erratic pitches. Work on maintaining a consistent release point for each pitch type.

Communication and Collaboration

Open Dialogue

Encourage pitchers to express their concerns, challenges, and successes.

Collaboration with Catchers

Foster strong communication between pitchers and catchers to maximize performance.

Pitch Selection and Strategy

Developing a Pitch Arsenal

Teach pitchers to throw various pitch types to keep batters off balance.

Game Strategy

Discuss game situations and pitch selection strategies to maximize success.

Injury Prevention and Recovery

Proper Warm-up and Cool-down

Instruct pitchers on proper warm-up and cool-down routines to reduce the risk of injury.

Rest and Recovery

Ensure pitchers have adequate rest and recovery time between outings to prevent overuse injuries.

Advanced Techniques and Continuing Education

Advanced Pitches

Introduce advanced pitches, such as the riseball or screwball, as pitchers progress.

Ongoing Education

Encourage pitchers to attend clinics, workshops, and camps to refine their skills and learn new techniques.


How often should a pitcher practice?

Pitchers should practice at least three to four times a week, focusing on various aspects of their game, including mechanics, pitch types, and accuracy.

When should a young pitcher start learning different pitch types?

Once a young pitcher has developed a strong foundation in mechanics and has mastered the fastball, they can begin learning other pitch types, typically around 12-14 years of age.

How can a pitcher improve their endurance?

Endurance can be improved through a combination of cardiovascular exercise, sport-specific conditioning, and proper rest and recovery.

The Art of Fastpitch Pitching Mastery

Teaching fastpitch pitching is a multi-faceted process that requires a deep understanding of the game, mechanics, and individual strengths and weaknesses. 

By focusing on the fundamentals, using effective drills, fostering mental strength, and addressing common mistakes, coaches can elevate their pitchers to new heights. 

With dedication, practice, and a keen eye for detail, both pitchers and coaches can work together to achieve success on the mound.

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