How to Develop Arm Strength for Baseball

Three Parts:Exercising for Arm StrengthPracticing ThrowingExercising for Leg Strength and Full-Body Strength

Repeatedly throwing a baseball over long periods of time without having developed your arm strength may cause injury to your shoulder, arm, or wrist. Injury from throwing a baseball can be prevented if you develop your arm strength through several different methods. In addition, throwing strength starts with a strong body, as a throw involves your whole body. Therefore, it's also important to work your lower body, as well, to give you the base you need to throw well.[1]

Part 1
Exercising for Arm Strength

  1. 1
    Use forty-five degree front lateral raises. Stand in front of a mirror. Have a dumbbell in each hand (5 pounds each). Your arms should be down at your side. Lift your arms together until they reach about shoulder height. Move your arms back down.[2]
    • Your arms shouldn't be straight out in front of you or straight out to your sides. Rather, they should be in the middle between those two positions, at a forty-five degree angle.[3]
    • Repeat 12 times for one set. Do two sets.[4]
  2. 2
    Do dumbbell curls. Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Your elbows should be in front of your body. Your palms should be facing upward, but slightly away from you as your arms start just below the 90-degree angle. Lift the dumbbells together upward toward your chest. Bring the dumbbells back down to the starting position.[5]
    • The weight is dependent on you. You should be able to do this exercise comfortably for about 12 repetitions. Start with 5 pounds in each hand if you don't know where to begin.[6]
    • Try to do 3 sets.[7]
  3. 3
    Use tricep push downs. Hold the same dumbbells out in front of you again with your arms at a 90-degree angle. However, your palms should face the floor. Push your arms down slowly until they reach your thighs, breathing out as you go. Hold the position for a second, then bring your arms back up, breathing in.[8]
    • You can use a small barbell instead of dumbbells.[9]
    • Try 3 sets of 10 repetitions.[10]
    • You can also turn this move into tricep pull downs. All you do is flip your hands over so your palms are facing up. You use the same movement, going down towards your thighs.[11]
  4. 4
    Do close-grip bench presses. Lay on your back on a bench. The bench should have supports to hold a barbell. Add weights, starting small. Put your hands semi-close together on the bar above you, about shoulder-width apart. Lift the bar off, and bring it straight down towards your chest slowly, while you breathe in. Push the bar back up as you breathe out.[12]
    • The close grip helps work your triceps more, which is important for throwing.[13]
    • Try repeating the exercise 8 times. Do 4 of these sets.[14]
    • If you've never done this exercise before, it's good to have someone spot you.
  5. 5
    Try medicine ball throws. Hold a medicine ball in front of you. Stand with a wall to your left or right. Turn toward the wall very quickly, and as you do, let the ball go.[15]
    • Repeat this exercise to improve arm strength.[16]
    • This exercise also works on your core strength. Try to keep those muscles tight as you move.[17]

Part 2
Practicing Throwing

  1. 1
    Work on the wrist throw. Grab a partner. Place your throwing arm in the air at a 90-degree angle, but support it at the elbow with the glove on your other hand. Using just your wrist, toss the ball to the other person.[18]
  2. Image titled Develop Arm Strength for Baseball Step 5
    Work on throwing in different positions. Sit with your legs outward. Start with your arm in the air at a 90-degree angle, supported by the glove on your other hand.[19]
    • Start by using just your arm from the elbow up to throw the ball.[20]
    • Move on to twisting your whole torso while throwing, as well as your hips.[21]
    • Next, move up to one knee and practice twisting and throwing from that position. Try to throw across your knee (angle-wise).[22]
    • Finally, stand up, and keep focusing on following throw by twisting your torso. You can also add a crow hop, where you jump forward on your forward foot as you wind up.[23]
  3. Image titled Develop Arm Strength for Baseball Step 3
    Practice long throws three times a week. Outside of practice, you should be practicing throwing three times a week. You'll need to spend about 15-20 minutes throwing each time you practice, throwing at various distances.[24]
    • If your age is 7- to 12-years-old, spend four minutes on each of the following distances: 30 feet, 60 feet, and 90 feet.[25]
    • If you are 13- to 20-years-old, spend four minutes on each of the following distances: 30 feet, 60 feet, 90 feet, and 120 feet.[26]
    • Try to throw straight across the field instead of making them arc high. Don't throw with all your force, but you want to make a good line from where you are to who you're throwing to.[27]
  4. 4
    Try throwing a football around. This exercise works particularly well for little league players because it works the arm, as well as the rest of the body, but it can just be a fun activity to do with a friend or a parent. Simply get an appropriately sized football, such as a junior football for little leaguers, and grab a partner.[28]
    • Put the emphasis on targeting the ball. Make sure the ball is going into your partner's chest.[29]
    • Throw at least 15 to 20 times each time you choose this exercise.[30]

Part 3
Exercising for Leg Strength and Full-Body Strength

  1. 1
    Try push-ups. Lay face-down on the floor. The balls of your feet should be touching the floor, pushing your legs up slightly. Place your hands flat on the ground at shoulder-height. They should be just wider than shoulder width. Use your hands to push you up from the ground, keeping your body straight. Lower yourself back down, still keeping your body straight.[31]
    • Try squeezing your glute muscles to help keep your body straight.[32]
    • You can also do this exercise with your hands balanced around an exercise ball.[33]
  2. 2
    Do lunges. Start in a standing position. Take a large step forward, bending your back leg down as you step. The knee of your back leg should almost touch the ground but not actually reach it. Don't stop at the floor. Instead, keep going, bringing that leg forward and pushing the other leg down. Keep moving forward, alternating which leg goes towards the floor.[34]
    • Keep your front shin as straight as possible. Your knee should push forward to be in front of your toes.[35]
    • Lunges help work your leg muscles and lower body.
    • You can add dumbbells to increase the weight as you lunge. The dumbbells will also help strengthen your arms a bit as you move.
  3. 3
    Use Russian twists. Start with your legs a couple of inches off the ground. Lean your torso back as well. You can hold a weight in front of you or simply work without one. Twist your body so that your hands touch the ground near one hip, then move to the other one. Keep moving back and forth. Make sure your feet don't touch the ground. You can cross your feet if it helps.[36]
    • Russian twists are great at building core strength.[37]
    • They especially work on the transverse abdominal muscles.[38]
  4. 4
    Try squats. Place the barbell on your shoulders. It should be across your traps. Your feet should be at least hip-width apart. You can angle them out if you want. Keeping your torso as straight as possible, bend your knees, lowering your self towards the ground. Your knees should come forward as you go. When you feel your thighs hit your calves, push back up until you're standing straight again.[39]
    • Your weight should stay on the front part of your heel[40]
    • You can do a squat with or without a barbell. Start without one.
    • Try 15 repetitions. Do 4 sets.[41]


  • Always warm up and then stretch before attempting to throw or workout. Not doing so could damage the muscles you want to make stronger.

Sources and Citations

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Categories: Baseball