Pull Downs have been synonymous with our Throwing Program since Jaeger Sports was founded in 1991. It has been an especially fun part of our training with our athletes because of the mental breakthrough that occurs when an athlete figures out how to correctly pull down.
Before we dive too deeply into how to implement Pull Downs effectively, we have to do a disclaimer first. Pull downs should only be implemented and attempted if the arm is in great Long Toss shape. You should have built up a 4-6 week long toss base where you are getting out to your max distances without maximum effort and the arm and body feel healthy after those throwing days. We break this down on how to build a base and everything else in our Year Round Throwing Manual. You should know that you are completely prepared, or be under the instruction of a trained Arm Care Coach before attempting Pull Downs.
If you are physically prepared, and have a good Arm Care and Arm Strength Base built up, the Pull Downs will be a vital part of adding velocity and arm strength.
What is a Pull Down?
A pull down occurs in the second phase of the Jaeger Sports Throwing Program. After completing the Stretching Out Phase (moving as far away from your partner as you can while maintaining good mechanics and physical comfort) you begin to move in towards your parter and throwing with intent. The intent we are describing can be best understood as follows:
*If you go out during the Stretching Out Phase to 300 feet, every throw during the Pull Down Phase should be 300 feet effort. If you are successfully doing this you are guaranteeing you are using the maximum arm strength and velocity that you have on that day.
*The only thing that changes between the Going Out Phase and Pull Down Phase is the focal point and extension of the thrower. As you get closer towards your partner you will have a tendency to either let up effort level to prevent an errant throw, or you will launch the ball over your partner’s head because you aren’t used to using the maximum effort.
*This is the most important part of implementing Pull Downs correctly. You can not get discouraged if you are launching balls over your partner’s head at first. The key is to continue to change the focal point pre-throw lower and lower until you find one that is efficiently hitting your partner at waist level.
*To Review the 3 steps to effectively Pulling Down:
1-Max Distance Effort on Every Throw
2-Lower and Lower Focal Points to Continue to Hit Partner at Waist Level
3-Continuing to get Extension on Your Throws as you get Closer and Closer to Your Partner
This is the fun part for us with our athletes when we see the Mental light bulb go off for an athlete where they finally use max effort at a close distance and trust their focal point and attack. You can see a great example of this in our Jaeger Sports Long Toss YouTube Video. As with all of training, have fun with the trial and error process of finding what works best for you. Make the most of your Pull Downs and #FeedYourArm