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(Washington Post)   This is why you throw like a girl. (Hint: It's science)   (washingtonpost.com ) divider line
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2610 clicks; posted to Sports » on 13 Sep 2012 at 6:09 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-09-13 03:35:35 PM  
That was really interesting. My brother's last dog (a ball-obsessed goldie) used to bring him the ball for fetch until she started to get tired. Then she would bring it to me for a while. When she was finally tongue-on-the-ground exhausted, she would drop it at my mother's feet and wait for the two foot toss. She was a very good girl :)
 
2012-09-13 04:02:31 PM  
I coach women's softball, and I see this a lot. I can attest that about a half hour of instruction is usually about all that it takes to start a young player down the path to a hard overhand throw. Then it's practice. And the only way to get better at throwing distance is to... practice throwing for distance.
 
2012-09-13 05:44:37 PM  
No, this is what it means to throw like a girl. They still don't know why.

It's actually really easy to teach a girl to throw better, like a boy. Show her which foot to step with and tell her to keep the ball outside of her shoulder when it comes over the top, practice that a few times and the rest will naturally fall into place. For some reason, girls try to bring the ball up straight up over the back of their heads. My guess is they find it easier to aim that way.
 
2012-09-13 05:50:25 PM  

CreamFilling: No, this is what it means to throw like a girl. They still don't know why.

It's actually really easy to teach a girl to throw better, like a boy. Show her which foot to step with and tell her to keep the ball outside of her shoulder when it comes over the top, practice that a few times and the rest will naturally fall into place. For some reason, girls try to bring the ball up straight up over the back of their heads. My guess is they find it easier to aim that way.


I figure they short arm it to keep their tits from swinging too wildly.
 
2012-09-13 05:58:56 PM  

rumpelstiltskin: CreamFilling: No, this is what it means to throw like a girl. They still don't know why.

It's actually really easy to teach a girl to throw better, like a boy. Show her which foot to step with and tell her to keep the ball outside of her shoulder when it comes over the top, practice that a few times and the rest will naturally fall into place. For some reason, girls try to bring the ball up straight up over the back of their heads. My guess is they find it easier to aim that way.

I figure they short arm it to keep their tits from swinging too wildly.


All the more reason to teach them to throw properly.
 
2012-09-13 06:20:07 PM  

CreamFilling: It's actually really easy to teach a girl to throw better, like a boy. Show her which foot to step with and tell her to keep the ball outside of her shoulder when it comes over the top, practice that a few times and the rest will naturally fall into place. For some reason, girls try to bring the ball up straight up over the back of their heads. My guess is they find it easier to aim that way.


I've had at least three people try to teach me to throw better using a similar technique and it never really took. I think I'm just lacking the necessary arm strength to make a difference. I play on a coed softball team in the summer and they always stick me on third base (after watching me pathetically trying to throw the ball in from the outfield).

There are a few girls on the team who can throw with decent speed, but they're all pretty well built and have played baseball most of their lives. Even with the velocity they still can't come close to the distances achieved by even the most amateur guy on the team.
 
2012-09-13 06:27:41 PM  
I can't throw normally using my left hand.
 
2012-09-13 06:46:26 PM  

miss diminutive: I've had at least three people try to teach me to throw better using a similar technique and it never really took. I think I'm just lacking the necessary arm strength to make a difference. I play on a coed softball team in the summer and they always stick me on third base (after watching me pathetically trying to throw the ball in from the outfield).


I couldn't think of a worse spot to put a player in the infield with poor throwing ability.

1st base = Good
Catcher = Good (for a non-stealing softball league)
Pitcher = Good
Third Base = Have to heave it across the diamond and right in line with where right-handed batters will tend to pull the ball
 
2012-09-13 07:13:36 PM  

OSULugan: miss diminutive: I've had at least three people try to teach me to throw better using a similar technique and it never really took. I think I'm just lacking the necessary arm strength to make a difference. I play on a coed softball team in the summer and they always stick me on third base (after watching me pathetically trying to throw the ball in from the outfield).

I couldn't think of a worse spot to put a player in the infield with poor throwing ability.

1st base = Good
Catcher = Good (for a non-stealing softball league)
Pitcher = Good
Third Base = Have to heave it across the diamond and right in line with where right-handed batters will tend to pull the ball


THANK YOU! That's what I said. It made no sense to put me there, but we had some douche who would only play 1st base and then a girl who couldn't really run was the catcher.

/strangely enough we didn't win many games
//still had fun though
 
2012-09-13 07:22:01 PM  
Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.
 
2012-09-13 07:42:05 PM  

LarryDan43: Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.


Link
 
2012-09-13 08:06:35 PM  
Throwing is with the legs, not the arms.
 
2012-09-13 08:10:12 PM  
I used to pitch in high school...

No story or anything... I just wanted you to think I was cool.
 
2012-09-13 08:16:49 PM  
Did anyone else think this article was going to be about Tim Tebow?
 
2012-09-13 08:21:54 PM  
umpbump.com

/remains unimpressed
 
2012-09-13 08:48:51 PM  

The Skeptical Chemist: LarryDan43: Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.

Link


What's funny is that video pretty much matches the article. Most of the guys rotated their hips and shoulders together, at least when they rotated them at all. The one guy with a decent throw was the one who rotated separately and kept the ball outside his shoulder.
 
2012-09-13 09:04:03 PM  

miss diminutive: CreamFilling: It's actually really easy to teach a girl to throw better, like a boy. Show her which foot to step with and tell her to keep the ball outside of her shoulder when it comes over the top, practice that a few times and the rest will naturally fall into place. For some reason, girls try to bring the ball up straight up over the back of their heads. My guess is they find it easier to aim that way.

I've had at least three people try to teach me to throw better using a similar technique and it never really took. I think I'm just lacking the necessary arm strength to make a difference. I play on a coed softball team in the summer and they always stick me on third base (after watching me pathetically trying to throw the ball in from the outfield).

There are a few girls on the team who can throw with decent speed, but they're all pretty well built and have played baseball most of their lives. Even with the velocity they still can't come close to the distances achieved by even the most amateur guy on the team.


Well, it sounds like you're just uncoachable. My wife is the same way-- "My throws never go where I want them to..." So I show her what she's doing wrong, how to do it right, and then practice with her until she does it right. And then she goes back to the way she was going it before because she "likes it better," but she doesn't stop complaining that it doesn't work.
 
2012-09-13 09:34:23 PM  
The Skeptical Chemist
LarryDan43:
Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.

Link



Awesome; reminds me of a few, rather poor attempts at doing an overhead Volleyball serve with my off-hand.
 
2012-09-13 10:02:09 PM  

CreamFilling: Well, it sounds like you're just uncoachable.


Or maybe I'm too coachable? I learned it improperly once and it stuck forever.
 
2012-09-13 10:27:40 PM  

miss diminutive: CreamFilling: Well, it sounds like you're just uncoachable.

Or maybe I'm too coachable? I learned it improperly once and it stuck forever.


Ok, I'm not entirely convinced you're not actually my wife. No matter what it is, no matter what kind of information or instruction anyone gives her, she'll still insist that the way she learned from her mom is the right way. And the strangest thing is she doesn't even like her mom.
 
2012-09-13 10:41:26 PM  

The Skeptical Chemist: LarryDan43: Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.

Link


Yeah, it makes me laugh that I'm totally lost when throwing a ball left handed. I can bat on either side of the plate and I can shoot a hockey puck with both hands as well but throwing is completely horrible for me.
 
2012-09-13 11:23:58 PM  

CreamFilling: miss diminutive: CreamFilling: Well, it sounds like you're just uncoachable.

Or maybe I'm too coachable? I learned it improperly once and it stuck forever.

Ok, I'm not entirely convinced you're not actually my wife. No matter what it is, no matter what kind of information or instruction anyone gives her, she'll still insist that the way she learned from her mom is the right way. And the strangest thing is she doesn't even like her mom.


I'm not saying I learned it the right way, just that the way I did learn is so engrained that it can't be unlearned.

/and don't leave your shoes right behind the door
 
2012-09-14 12:15:57 AM  

CreamFilling: miss diminutive: CreamFilling: It's actually really easy to teach a girl to throw better, like a boy. Show her which foot to step with and tell her to keep the ball outside of her shoulder when it comes over the top, practice that a few times and the rest will naturally fall into place. For some reason, girls try to bring the ball up straight up over the back of their heads. My guess is they find it easier to aim that way.

I've had at least three people try to teach me to throw better using a similar technique and it never really took. I think I'm just lacking the necessary arm strength to make a difference. I play on a coed softball team in the summer and they always stick me on third base (after watching me pathetically trying to throw the ball in from the outfield).

There are a few girls on the team who can throw with decent speed, but they're all pretty well built and have played baseball most of their lives. Even with the velocity they still can't come close to the distances achieved by even the most amateur guy on the team.

Well, it sounds like you're just uncoachable. My wife is the same way-- "My throws never go where I want them to..." So I show her what she's doing wrong, how to do it right, and then practice with her until she does it right. And then she goes back to the way she was going it before because she "likes it better," but she doesn't stop complaining that it doesn't work.


Nope, you have your wife all wrong, she doesn't like it better, just just likes to complain. All women love to complain, it's what they do. If she kept doing it your way, she wouldn't be able to complain anymore. This is the same reason why the farkette in this thread refuses to relearn the correct way to throw a ball. It has nothing to do with strength, my two year old son can throw rocks, and i'm fairly certain she could beat him up. Strength is not the reason she can't throw a ball, the inability to complain is the reason why she can't throw a ball.
 
2012-09-14 12:19:24 AM  
I've always been impressed by the amount of calculus it takes to throw a ball to someone accurately, and the effortlessness of the whole process.
Putting it down on paper, not so much.
 
2012-09-14 12:56:51 AM  
DNRTFA, but based on its associated graphic, both the guy and girl examples "threw like a girl". Specifically, neither thrower demonstrated hip rotation or step-through.

"Girl throws" are so underpowered because the typical mechanic is the result of pure wrist/arm motion, and doesn't incorporate the hip shift/step through that transfers more of the thrower's mass (and energy) into the throw. Strong "guy" throwers stride naturally through the throwing motion, transferring additional kinetic energy through their hip rotation in the process of the release. The same theory applies to a pitcher's "stride". As his front foot lands, the torso and hips rotate, expending the stride energy into the arm's throwing motion.

TLDR: Girls don't step into their throws, making their arms do all the work. LOL
 
2012-09-14 05:15:07 AM  
I had a laser-cannon arm all my younger life. But a tennis-serve-induced shoulder injury at 37 and monkey-bars-related should injury means that I now throw like a....shot putter.
 
2012-09-14 08:18:44 AM  
Seriously... I thought this was all sorted when we did the above linked off-hand throws from guys last time this stuff came up? It's practice and how you're doing it, and that's pretty much it. Yeah there is some strength difference, but you get that between different guys too, it's not as much of a deal as you're figure. The 78% figure sounded about right in the article - purely as a muscular variance distance only - was probably a 30%ish difference on the average in distance tween the strongest and weakest throwers on my baseball teams as a kid.

Just... learn how - and do it. A lot. Now keep doing it till you're sick of it. Now do it some more. Now do it till you want to stab yourself in the eye with a fork rather than keep doing it. After a few months of that you're good!

/yeah it's a lot easier to learn when you're a kid. This shiat is a biatch to pick up older. I.e. you want your daughter to be able to throw properly? Teach her or have her taught young - end of story.
 
2012-09-14 09:25:35 AM  

The Skeptical Chemist: LarryDan43: Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.

Link


I was thinking that's what exactly the article was trying to explain. And I have a pretty decent right arm, but when I throw leftie... it's not pretty. (Like the third guy in the video)
 
2012-09-14 09:33:54 AM  

Some Junkie Cosmonaut: Seriously... I thought this was all sorted when we did the above linked off-hand throws from guys last time this stuff came up? It's practice and how you're doing it, and that's pretty much it. Yeah there is some strength difference, but you get that between different guys too, it's not as much of a deal as you're figure. The 78% figure sounded about right in the article - purely as a muscular variance distance only - was probably a 30%ish difference on the average in distance tween the strongest and weakest throwers on my baseball teams as a kid.

Just... learn how - and do it. A lot. Now keep doing it till you're sick of it. Now do it some more. Now do it till you want to stab yourself in the eye with a fork rather than keep doing it. After a few months of that you're good!

/yeah it's a lot easier to learn when you're a kid. This shiat is a biatch to pick up older. I.e. you want your daughter to be able to throw properly? Teach her or have her taught young - end of story.


Of course it is, that's why even in a society where women are trained from birth the same as men to hunt by throwing shiat, they're still like 25% worse at it for velocity according to that article.
 
2012-09-14 09:52:18 AM  
If I try to talk through a throwing motion while throwing, it goes to hell really quickly.

/also tends to let my arm swing out, thus can throw a football significantly better than a baseball.
 
2012-09-14 09:58:12 AM  

The Skeptical Chemist: LarryDan43: Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.

Link


And just consider that after he broke his right arm when he was wee, Billy Wagner learned to throw 100 mph with his left arm.
 
2012-09-14 11:18:54 AM  

jimpoz: The Skeptical Chemist: LarryDan43: Want to see a guy throw like a girl? Have him throw off-handed.

Link

And just consider that after he broke his right arm when he was wee, Billy Wagner learned to throw 100 mph with his left arm.


I have been telling my wife since we were married that once we had kids, i was going to tie their right hand behind their back. Lefty specialist has to be one of the best on-field positions in baseball. Best job in the world is bullpen catcher.
 
2012-09-14 11:24:34 AM  

roc6783: Best job in the world is bullpen catcher.


Not on the roster, if the bullpen in in the field of play you risk getting a foul ball to the back of the head, minimal pay.

3rd string QB is far better.
 
2012-09-14 11:51:07 AM  

roc6783: Lefty specialist has to be one of the best on-field positions in baseball.


Cookie Receptionist: Detectives Colt and Loser?
Wes Luger: That's Luger.
Cookie Receptionist: Oh, I'm sorry. LOOGY.
 
2012-09-14 12:11:46 PM  

bacongood: 3rd string QB is far better.


Kickoff specialist was the best, but the kickoff line being moved again eliminated that position. :/
 
2012-09-14 12:20:15 PM  
Throwing like a girl is as easy as throwing a "softball" underhand instead of throwing a "baseball" overhand
 
2012-09-14 12:21:10 PM  

IAmRight: bacongood: 3rd string QB is far better.

Kickoff specialist was the best, but the kickoff line being moved again eliminated that position. :/


Which is going to get you laid:

"I'm a NFL quarterback."

"I'm a NFL kickoff specialist."

Also, if the kicker F's up - everyone knows it and yells for him to fire. If the 3rd string QB gets in a game as long as he remembers to tie his shoes and doesn't shiat his pants, everyone thinks he did a great job.
 
2012-09-14 12:24:09 PM  
Actually, Keith Van Horn had the best job ever for a year - Signed to a guaranteed contract in order to make a trade work out (Kidd to the Mavs), with it being clear that his new team (Nets) had no intention of him actually playing. Made $4.3M to have been in the league and pretend he wanted to play again. He had already been out of the league a year when the contract was signed. It was pretty awesome.
 
2012-09-14 12:26:14 PM  

bacongood: Also, if the kicker F's up - everyone knows it and yells for him to fire.


If you're the kickoff specialist, all you have to do is kick it far every time (provided the actual kicker doesn't get hurt). Also, all you have to say is "I play for the ______." to get laid. Frankly, if you're an NFL player and can't get laid, then you have some serious issues.
 
2012-09-14 12:51:31 PM  

IAmRight: bacongood: Also, if the kicker F's up - everyone knows it and yells for him to fire.

If you're the kickoff specialist, all you have to do is kick it far every time (provided the actual kicker doesn't get hurt). Also, all you have to say is "I play for the ______." to get laid. Frankly, if you're an NFL player and can't get laid, then you have some serious issues.


And make sure you don't kick directly where someone like Hester wants it. And handle the onside kicks. And every once in awhile try to make a tackle, which will result in you getting ran over and having the replay shown 8 times as the announcers laugh at you.

3rd string QB has literally no duties beyound holding a clipboard.
 
2012-09-14 12:57:14 PM  

bacongood: And make sure you don't kick directly where someone like Hester wants it. And handle the onside kicks. And every once in awhile try to make a tackle, which will result in you getting ran over and having the replay shown 8 times as the announcers laugh at you.


If your'e the kickoff specialist, you're there because you kick it through the end zone. You shouldn't be doing any of that. If you're the 3rd string QB then yeah, you can end up taking a lot of hits. Also, 3rd string QBs usually don't dress.
 
2012-09-14 05:22:42 PM  

Super_pope: Some Junkie Cosmonaut:Yeah there is some strength difference, but you get that between different guys too, it's not as much of a deal as you're figure. The 78% figure sounded about right in the article - purely as a muscular variance distance only - was probably a 30%ish difference on the average in distance tween the strongest and weakest throwers on my baseball teams as a kid.

..................................................................... . ...................................................................... ...........

Of course it is, that's why even in a society where women are trained from birth the same as men to hunt by throwing shiat, they're still like 25% worse at it for velocity according to that article.


Mmm hmm - as I said strength will always be a factor ;p Doesn't mean you have to suck if you're not a guy though. 25% less on the average is hardly bad, I'd rather imagine you'd get that or worse comparing one of these hunter-culture dudes to some Joe Average modern citizen? Quite possibly more.

Also I'm not sure studying cultures like that necessarily gives the whole answer. People that are living that kind of life tend to produce pretty high-end physical specimens in overall strength and endurance. This means they were probably on the average testing men and women at least somewhere near the higher end of potential - and the male/female strength gap starts getting way the hell bigger at the high end. And yeah, any culture where hunting is a big enough thing that kids are taught to throw, there's gonna be more physical development overall. Some of the aboriginal dudes that still live the oldschool life at least some of the time out there may look like Joe Skinny in a loincloth, but they can probably out-wrestle any 6 of you while tap-dancing on quicksand, cause the life they live is pretty much the ultimate form of physical conditioning. 'Till you're about 30 of course, at which point your body pretty much implodes - but hey!

What I'd like to see is one of these research guys that has 10 years or whatever to blow take a large group of kids, male and female, cross-spectrum of body types and activity levels, but all just modern society type culture, and run an experiment with them. Train half of 'em to throw, let the other half learn or not catch as catch can, see what you get. THAT would definitely answer some questions about this pretty much once and for all I think. Wouldn't have prior contamination, subjects in a culture that might bias, etc. etc.
 
2012-09-15 04:05:02 AM  
I coached youth baseball for years from T-ball to Legion level. Anyone can be taught to throw correctly. I had little girls who at 10 years old could gun the throw from third base with any boy on the team. I had a LOT of 14-15 year old boys who had never played baseball, or played catch with their dad's, who were being "forced" to do something athletic by their parents to make them more well-rounded. I had to work really hard on the stepping forward with the leg opposite and getting the ball into the "loaded" position (arm all the way back, thumb underneath). I had an older sister who was a great softball pitcher. In HS, back in 1961, she had one game where she struck out every batter (yes, it was underhand fast pitch). The hardest thing to do in coaching (humble opinion here) is to teach a 12 year old who's been playing for years to use the glove as a conduit to get the ball into the throwing hand. That's one of many reasons I love Bryce Harper.
 
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