RPP Baseball Off-Season Offerings

Off-Season Baseball Summary Chart

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Training Explosiveness through Strength Training

By Nunzio Signore (BA, CSCS, CPT, NASM, FMS)

Explosive Top

For parents of some young athletes (for the scope of this article I’m talking about athletes ages 13-16), lifting heavy weights seems to get a bad rap. Years ago players were told not to lift weights because it would make them too “big”.  You could even hear words like “stiff” or “tight” getting thrown around at the drop of a hat.

While I whole heartedly believe in the phrase that “age is wisdom”, this would be one of those times that I beg to differ.  Being strong is a good thing.  And if you want to be explosive you have to be strong first.  Performance, speed (have I got your attention now?) and injury prevention all are built on a foundation of strength. But exactly what type of strength training and at what age seems to be where parents (and strength and conditioning coaches for that matter) get tripped up.

Most of you who read my blogs know that I spend a great deal of time emphasizing training according to where the athlete is during the season. Let’s take a look… [Read more…]


Spring 2017 Sports Recognition Awards

Awards Logos
Pitcher of the Year
  • Chris Gerard – NorthJersey.com / The Record
  • Cooper Meldrim – Lohud.com / Journal News
Player of the Year
  • Nick Cimillo – Lohud.com / Journal News Top 5 Finalist for Player of the Year w/ final announcement coming on July 2nd
  • Aljo Sujak – NorthJersey.com / The Record
News 12 Varsity (MSG)

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Growth Doesn’t Happen Without….

By Bahram Shirazi (BSEE, MBA, Dad and Co-owner at RPP)

Today my guest post is by my business partner, Bahram Shirazi, who will talk about the growth of our business here at RPP, and the how and the why.

RPP Growth 2012 - 2016

As we look forward to hopefully another great year here at RPP, it’s a good time to review where we have come from and how we got here.  RPP’s youth clientele has increased nearly 6-fold since 2012. By any measure, that’s great and we are very proud of what we have accomplished.  But explosive growth doesn’t happen for NO apparent reason; it certainly doesn’t happen overnight, and it definitely doesn’t happen without sleepless nights. [Read more…]


Work Hard, Recover Harder

By Nunzio Signore (BA, CSCS, CPT, NASM, FMS)

Recovery Top

When talking about a complete or comprehensive training or throwing program, the conversation has to begin and end with “recovery”.

Fatigue is the Enemy of Mechanics


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Interview with Coach Mike Rozema

top-imageBy Nunzio Signore (BA, CSCS, NASM, CPT, PES, FMS)

Today my interview is with Mike Rozema with Rozema Baseball and Director of Hitting at RPP.  Mike joined us earlier this fall to work with our players and has helped expand our operations from strictly strength training and pitching to hitting as well.  I am really excited about this interview.


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The Need for Speed… Lateral Acceleration – Part 4

By Nunzio Signore (BA, CSCS, CPT, NASM, PES, FMS)


In Part 4 of this series on Need for Speed (click here for Part 3, Part 2, Part 1), we’re going to talk about lateral acceleration. As far as court and field sports go, lateral acceleration is where the athlete can separate himself among the pack. The ability to accelerate or change direction quickly while maintaining an athletic posture sets an athlete up, not only from a performance standpoint, but also visually speaks volumes about their athleticism during any recruiting process as well. [Read more…]


Six Great Ways to Help Improve Power and Bat Speed

By Nunzio Signore (B.A., CPT, CSCS, NASM, PES, FMS)

bat-speed-blog-image-1Creating power and great bat speed involves many things.  Electromyography testing (a technique for evaluating and recording the electrical activity produced by skeletal muscles) regarding “the baseball swing” and upper body involvement shows that the role it plays is minor compared to that of the lower body. Studies by Shaffer et al. (click here for report summary) stated “an emphasis should be placed on the trunk and hip muscles for a batter’s strengthening program.” [Read more…]


The Need for Speed… Linear Acceleration – Part 3

By Nunzio Signore (BA, CPT, CSCS, NASM, PES, FMS)


In Part 3 of this series on Speed Development, we’re going to get moving (click here for Part 2 and here for Part 1)… literally by starting with linear acceleration (forward). This means getting our center of mass moving as quickly as possible. Linear acceleration relates to all sports, but is best put to use on the baseball field in the form of base running, stealing and in the outfield.


Today, I’m going to break it down into three phases and explain how we train each phase separately and eventually connecting them into one fluid movement.

Phase 1- Posture – Correct running mechanics begin with good static posture. We start every session with Glute / Wall Iso Holds to help simulate what good posture looks like in mid-run.

Some of our cues are:

  • Feet approximately 3 feet away from wall (distance can vary based upon height of the athlete)
  • Wrists at shoulder height or slightly below – It’s important not to bring the hands and arms up too high due to the fact that we want to make sure the core can handle the body posture and stabilize the pelvis based on where the hands are.
  • Straight line from ankle to shoulders.

Check it out.

(Glute / Wall Iso Holds)

Phase 2 – Starting Phase (Power) – The initial push-off all the way to the first 2 or 3 steps is where 75% of the battle is won (or lost). This is also known as “first-step quickness” or “first 10-yards”. Call it whatever you want, I call it getting a good stable base of strength in the weight room before you try and go out and be powerful. Anything less is merely leaving half of it on the table.

With that being said, one way we can train power in the starting phase, is with a drill such as ½ Kneeling Starts. This drill helps to “over emphasize” the starting or “push” phase by adding extra resistance, forcing the athlete to emphasize the initial front leg push into the ground preventing a “lag in their start.  This in turn carries over to a more explosive start when in a more athletic position. We like to cue “load the front leg” as well as “throw the arms back” to help drive the same side leg up into flexion and get the athlete up quicker.

(Half Kneeling Starts)

Phase 3 – Drive Phase – Once the athlete is up and moving we need to make sure that he is continuing to accelerate by using an aggressive arm action which in turn creates a longer ground reaction time helping to produce a longer stride as well as a stronger and higher hip and knee drive. We also cue “chase the shoulders” to ensure we are keeping the load on the front leg throughout. Step drills are great to help feel what an in-sync pattern feels like.

(Step Drill)

Stay tuned for next time when we’ll talk about Lateral Acceleration.

See ya’ in the gym…


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Why Most Athletes Never Reach their Maximum Potential

By Nunzio Signore (BA, CPT, CSCS, NASM, PES, FMS)


The path to greatness isn’t a great mystery, it’s been documented by countless of great athletes since the beginning of time. Some people just seem to conveniently look the other way. Here at RPP, I see it all the time in regards to athletic training.

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