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So my son would like to start an armcare/throwing program to keep his arm healthy and increase velocity. Up to this point his focus has been on throwing mechanics and staying healthy. He is a hs freshman, average size 5'9" 125 lbs.  He has lifted some but is really just starting out, has already had his first growth spurt and is midway thru puberty.  From my limited knowledge it seems like these programs work best done consistently and multiple days per week over a long period of time.

Have any of your son's done such a program? What was the time commitment weekly and was it part of their regular strength and conditioning program? What was the result? Specifically I am trying to figure out whether he would do this separately and then do a regular gym workout as well or if these programs like driveline, velo U or others incorporate a full body workout to save the time on a separate trip to the gym. With other sports and positional training he needs to use his time as efficiently as possible.

I also would love to hear your son's offseason/winter training schedules and routines.

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I would consult with a baseball specific trainer to make sure his body is structurally able to handle whichever program you choose. They may even be able to recommend something for his current body structure. At 125, I doubt something like Driveline would be good for him.

100% agree.  In addition to a throwing program he needs to be doing an appropriate workout routine (core, legs, arms, etc..) for his age and baseball position.  My 3 sons pre-dated Driveline but we followed a throwing regime put together by a baseball specific trainer.   

One of the things I learned as a parent of pitchers (and applied to my sport) was that overhand sports such as baseball require a lot of mobility and flexibility especially in the shoulders and thoracic areas which meant working with different work out bands in many different parts of the body above the waist.  Larger weights can be used for larger muscles below the waist, and the core needs to be strong.

The throwing program and the physical workout go together, and complement each other.  As @TerribleBPthrower suggests, try to find a baseball specific trainer to help with both.

JMO.  Good luck!

Your son needs some cheeseburgers not a throwing program.....

In all seriousness, like others have said find a place/trainer/etc that does this. Obviously be careful and do your research, but just taking a one size fits all program could potentially do more harm than good.

I will say because you mention strength training and throwing.....The general rule of thumb is to do your throwing routine prior to your strength training. You don't want to be fatigued when throwing, it increases the chance of getting injured.


He does need to eat cheese burgers but it seems like despite eating 2 dinners with a large bowl of ice cream every night he can barely maintain his weight. Son is built like a runner and is very active so it's uphill battle.

I don't know about arm care/ throwing programs. There are so many remote training options and I thought they incorporated strength training, arm care, plyo balls, bands and a complete  full body workout but I guess that's not the way it works. I am just trying to educate myself on what my son needs to compete in hs. There is little to no guidance at HS.


He's not a pitcher but a catcher and OFer but needs to gain arm strength to be more competitive at his position.

It does make sense to do the arm care/ throwing portion first before lifting.

Last edited by BB328

I agree with others that you need to consult a trusted trainer. I would start with meal prep. A bunch of boys would do it on Sundays and make steak, chicken and potatoes or pasta to put in prep containers. They ate a meat/carb meal for each meal, even for breakfast, then ice cream or a shake after dinner. They all put on weight. 125 seems low to start anything  with weighted balls. When my son did driveline, he did the offseason workout and the recovery. He did gain strength and velo but he was at least 175lbs when he started. I would focus on weight room and diet until he can add some mass. He can throw everyday while doing that but his gains will start with weight and muscle.

Last edited by baseballhs

It will be tough for him to put on weight until his body is ready for it. My son was 6’, 145lb as a rising junior. A college coach at a showcase told him if he wanted to be taken seriously as a recruit he needed to add weight. Started out by tracking calories for a week. Then built a diet that would take him from 2500 calories to 4500 calories. The less sugar the better. He had a smoothie everyday between breakfast and lunch that was usually 800+ calories. The kid needs to be the one driving it. If it is the parent it will feel like a chore and could cause other issues.

Do you expect your son to grow taller? If so he may not be ready to put on substantial weight.


As far as height I don't know how much taller he will get.  He actually surprised me that he grew again in the past 2 months. I think he's always been average as far as growth goes firmly in 50th percentile. I would think if we are lucky he might hit 5'10". He's already taller then both of us.

But he has no facial hair yet. The men in our family are usually very lean in their youth, not super tall and athletic. Unfortunately not really the prototypical baseball physique.

I am curious why plyo balls are not recommended at his weight. Is it because the growth plates are still open? I know driveline has a youth program perhaps that might be better.

I love the meal prep idea on Sundays. Are you saying avoid the sugar component because it's just bad for you or is there an additional reason?

We just set him up with a baseball specific trainer just for weight lifting only. After winter sports end he will add a speed and agility component to his workouts.

Some kids try to move to the black (or green) plyo ball before their body is ready and cause serious injuries. Every trainer I’ve talked to over the years has said the athlete need a good foundation of strength, especially in the shoulder and arm before starting with weighted balls. Ask the trainer what he thinks. Most that I’ve talked to will try to add arm strength through methods like weight training and mechanics and only go to weighted balls as a last resort.

As far as food, their body will respond to what is put into it. If they use sugary peanut butter and uncrustables to gain weight it won’t be as effective as clean food (chicken, beef, fish, rice, etc.). Daves Killer Bagels are a great source of better carbs, chipotle bowls with extra meat are awesome, smoothies with protein, etc. Also look at the ingredients for everything. The more ingredients the worse it is. Naked Protein or Klean Protein are two of the best you can buy.

We never did the prep thing, but it is a good idea if you have time. Again, this has to be the player wanting to do it, not the parent.

Thanks this makes everything clearer to me. My son has asked for my help in setting up a program for him so I am trying to educate myself as best I can. There are some kids in his organization that are using weighted balls who throw pretty hard so he seems to think that is the best way forward. But frankly he doesn't look like the players that are using them. They are much more solid and filled out looking some are beginning to have facial hair. His trainer was saying the same thing to build a foundation of strength and mass first.

The biggest lesson I learned with mine was getting him to take ownership of the weight room and food. I said if you want to pitch/play in college you will compete with grown men. They are bigger and stronger period. If the steroid era taught us anything, size and strength matter if you have the ability. Now obviously there are outliers that are skinny but throw 95 and hit the ball 425ft, but in general a base line of size and strength should be firmly established before dedicating too much time to sports specific training. My son always said, I eat all the time. My response was how many calories a day? He had no idea and until he started tracking calories he understood when I said you need 4-4500 calories a day to grow and get serious about the weight room. Junior year he started at 6'3" 155 and spring of senior season he was 6'4" and 188lbs. Teenagers have so many hormones going nuts in their body at that age they will grow if they eat. Mine was also blessed with a good metabolism which kept him lean even while pizza and fast food were still part of his diet. But at that age if they eat enough, they will grow. For him it took, weight gain shakes, lots of PB and J, high protein yogurts, chicken n rice and he consumed enough pizza and McDonalds that I would've been a complete fat a** with that diet. Now, yes, it's obviously going to do him a lot more good eating somewhat clean but if they eat enough and lift hard, they will grow. On the weight training side, yes be very careful. I taught him form since I still lift and put him with a trainer that I knew personally so once he was on his own, he understood how to lift properly. Heavy compound movements with good form and 4000 calories at least a day and once it starts showing they generally become hooked. The changes were insane so much that the other parents and some of the players who didn't play summer travel with him were like who is this guy? As far as throwing programs Jaeger is the guy. Good luck, mine has completed his first fall in college and will be in the starting rotation which is great, but dad is just happy he's coming home on Saturday.

My son and his best friend, both 23, started working with VeloU. They went out and met face to face in the fall and now are dong remote workouts. BF was a tall skinny pitcher when they started, he's added 12 pounds after a lifetime of trying and failing to put on weight. Seems like it might be expensive for HS kids, though? Son is also working with a nutritionist through them.

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