NJ’s Most Comprehensive Training for Pitchers and Players

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

baseball facility

Those of you that have trained with us previously already know the breadth and depth of our training programs.  Given our recent move to Paramus, NJ, for all of our new friends and neighbors in north New Jersey, I would like to personally give you a welcome to one of the most comprehensive facilities for training and developing pitchers and baseball players. 

This off-season is already off to a fast start.  With athletes from middle and high schools all over, and professional ball players from various MLB teams (including the Twins, Padres, Diamondbacks, Orioles, Rockies, Reds and Devil Rays) already having joined us, I would have to say this is going to be our best off-season yet.

Just in case you’ve never been to RPP before

Here is a quick summary:

    • Strength and Conditioning

      1. Philosophy
      2. Movement, Strength and Power Assessment
      3. Strength Programs
      4. Arm Care
    • Pitching Development Programs

      1. Philosophy
      2. Pitching Programs
      3. Video Review and Analysis
      4. Kinematic Sequence Analysis
      5. Pitch Design
      6. Ball Release Video and Analysis
      7. Throwing Programs
      8. Back to Throwing Programs
    • Hitting Development Programs

      1. Philosophy
      2. Hitting Programs
      3. Video Review and Analysis
      4. Kinematic Sequence Analysis
      5. Swing Plane Analysis
      6. Swing Plane Program

Below is an expanded summary of each program…

Strength and Conditioning

    • Philosophy – When you’ve been training athletes as long as I have been, then you better have an approach and a philosophy with the athlete’s long term development in mind.  With that said here is a summary:
      1. Training athletes with an eye on their “Long Term Athletic Development”
      2. Coaching fundamental movement patterns (squat, hinge, jumping, hopping, sprinting, push, pull, single-leg, core stability)
      3. Energy system development (conditioning)
    • Movement, Strength and Power Assessment –  Our assessment is an extensive evaluation of the athlete’s overall strength and mobility. Physical limitations and imbalances from a strength and mobility standpoint, can have profound effects on the athlete’s ability to perform. The assessment covers a variety of topics, including mobility, stability, strength, power and force production, all of which directly correlate to performance on the field.

Power production assessment

    • Strength Programs – Our world-class strength training programs are 100% designed around the highly specialized and explosive nature of baseball.  They are the cornerstone of who we are, and are designed to go hand-in-hand with periodization of our pitching and hitting development programs. Athletes train with us between two to five times per week (depending on level and type of program). You need to be at least 13 years of age to take part in our strength training programs.

Velocity Based Training

    • Arm Care  – When talking about a comprehensive program, the conversation has to begin and end with arm care. When an area of the body is fatigued or sore, movement is compromised throughout the entire chain, causing a negative effect on bio-mechanics and increasing the risk of injury.  Our manual therapy protocols, and pre-and post-throwing routines are designed around pitchers and ball players.  Needless to say, we go to great lengths to make sure that all athlete’s learn how to take care of their arms.

baseball arm care

Pitching Development Programs

    • Philosophy – In an athletic movement where action begins and ends in less than a couple of seconds, there are several topics that we believe must be incorporated into any development program
      1. Healthy pitching mechanics
      2. A proper kinematic sequence to efficiently transfer velocity and acceleration up from the ground
      3. Sufficient mobility to get into successful positions on the mound in order to better perform the task
      4. Sufficient strength to both stabilize and accelerate the body and maximize velocity at the point of release
    • Pitching Programs – We offer a variety of different pitching programs throughout the year.  Each geared towards very specific objectives.
      1. Summer Elite Pitching Development Program generally involves college-level pitchers working on improving their velocity and ball movement with pitch design.  The daily program includes weighted balls and a daily throwing routine and weekly mound time.
      2. Fall Pitch Design programs focus on younger pitchers (middle and high school) working on overall mechanics, delivery and ball movement with pitch design.  We use a variety of pitching correctives as well as Rapsodo and high -speed video to help improve overall movement patterns.
      3. Winter Elite Pitcher Development Program (Pitching Lab) generally focus on preparing our pitchers for the spring and summer seasons beginning with a ramp-up, a pitching protocol which covers pitch varieties, pitch selection, high-intent throwing, game situations and command and control.  Given that all our programs are combined with strength training, our pitchers generally also improve their throwing velocities as well.

pitching lessons near me

    • Video Analysis / Pitching Mechanics and Delivery – Our 4-camera video system for pitchers is a state-of-the-art technology that captures delivery from 4 different angles simultaneously.  It is an invaluable tool, not to mention a big part of how we evaluate our pitcher’s timing and postural disconnects from both a movement and mechanics standpoint.

analyzing pitching mechanics

    • Kinematic Sequencing Assessment – Generating and transferring speed throughout the body requires a transfer of segmental peak angular velocities that allows pitchers to transfer force up the chain more efficiently.  This is commonly referred to as the “Kinematic Sequence”.  This high-speed sequencing can only be viewed through motion capture sensors placed on the pitcher’s body during delivery.  Correct sequencing can not only helps reduce stress on musculoskeletal structures of the throwing arm but help maximize performance as well.

Kinematic Sequencing Assessment pitching mechanics

    • Pitch Design – Pitching is about many things. But, the advent of technology is also demonstrating that the point of release is just as relevant in being successful as a pitcher as anything else. Our highly advanced Pitch Design programs are based a thorough and deep understanding of the concepts and using cutting edge technology and incorporating data analytics and high-speed video capture to help pitchers develop their pitch movement patterns.

Pitch design program results graph

    • Ball Release Video and Analysis – The advent of technology such as high speed video cameras can provide imagery and visualization which is essential in helping pitchers assess and improve their ball movement patterns.  Whether it’s your 4-seam, 2-seamchange-upcurveballcutter or slider, improving pitch repertoire and ball movement with the use of a high speed camera is a must in today’s environment.

Rapsodo pitching ball release analysis

    • Throwing Programs – Our Throwing Programs cover several different objectives including producing a higher velocity ceiling, throwing/arm maintenance and back-to-throw programs (rehab). Our programs are designed to build arm strength, durability and athleticism by gradually exposing your arm to the intensity levels that you will face while creating a higher velocity ceiling. The program incorporates throwing correctives, precision long toss and weighted balls, along with pitcher specific warm-up, post-throw and recovery protocols.
  • throwing program pull down
    • Back-to-Throwing Program – This program is done in conjunction with physical therapy to progressively and safely create a structured lifting/throwing program to help throwers come back from injuries such as TJ, labral issues as well as impingement and shut-downs from inflammatory issues due to poor mechanics and over-use.

Hitting Development Programs

    • Philosophy – Our hitting philosophy is based on four basic tenants which we believe should be the foundation to any hitting development program, regardless of level of play:
      1. A healthy swing
      2. A proper kinematic sequence to efficiently transfer velocity and acceleration from the body to the bat
      3. Sufficient mobility to perform the task
      4. Sufficient strength to accelerate the body and maximize power at contact
    • Hitting Programs – We offer a variety of different hitting programs throughout the year.  Each geared towards very specific objectives.
      1. Elite Summer Hitting Development Program generally involves college-level player working on improving their hitting mechanics and performance at the plate.  The hitting program includes extensive work on kinematic sequencing and swing plane analytics and improvements.
      2. Fall Hitting Development Program programs focus on younger players (middle and high school) working on overall mechanics, kinematics, swing path metrics and correctives, and overall plate performance.
      3. Winter Hitting Development Program (Hitters Rx) generally focuses on preparing our players for the spring and summer seasons.  Sessions are 2x per week and incorporate kinematics, swing plane correctives and game-type situations.

kinematic analysis K-Vest

    • Kinematic Review and Video Analysis – For those old enough to be able to repeat much of their mechanics (generally 16 years old), we will test their kinematic sequencing with a K-Vest, a motion capture system designed for measuring and assessing hitters’ movement patterns. Based on the results, we will prescribe hitting correctives to improve their sequencing, optimizing the most efficient force transfer from the pelvis to the torso, to the arms and then the hands. While every player has a different swing mechanics, they all should have efficient sequencing.

Kinematic sequence baseball swing

    • Swing Plane Analysis – Technology is making it easier and easier to analyze high speed movements like a baseball swing.  Blast Motion sensors allow us to evaluate and break down a swing into many components including the Attack Angle (degrees), Early Connection (degrees), Connection at Impact (degrees), Time to Contact (seconds), On Plane Efficiency %, Vertical Bat Angle (degrees), Power (kW), Rotational Acceleration (g), Bat Speed (mph) and Peak Hand Speed (mph).  Every player in programs hits with a Blast Motion sensor and we frequently use the metrics to analyze each player’s swing.
    • Swing Plane Program – Ensuring players have an optimal swing plane is a significant part of the program.  Our hitting assessment covers a wide variety of topics related to the swing plane, including among others Attack Angle, Rotational Acceleration, Power and Bat Speed.  Through visually guided tee work and instant feedback from motion capture sensors, we begin to guide each player’s swing towards an optimal plane for contact.  Every pitch has a downward descent angle.  It so happens that this angle is generally between 6-12 degrees depending on level of play and type of pitch.  Assisting players to be on plane with the incoming pitch is the only way to help improve consistency at contact.

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