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How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch

by
author image Steve Silverman
Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.
How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch
How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch Photo Credit Dale Davidson/Demand Media

Fastpitch softball is a game that is dominated by pitching. Pitchers can throw the ball at speeds up to 70 mph and they can also throw drops, risers, curves and changeups. A fastball that reaches 70 mph thrown from a distance of 46 feet corresponds to a baseball thrown at better than 90 mph. To hit a high speed with your pitch, you will throw the ball with a windmill motion.

Step 1

How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch
Photo Credit Dale Davidson/Demand Media

Grip the softball with your thumb on top of the ball going across the seams. Your forefinger, middle finger and ring finger should be on the opposite side of the ball, with your middle finger directly underneath your thumb. Space the ball out on your fingertips so the ball does not get deep in your hand.

Step 2

How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch
Photo Credit Dale Davidson/Demand Media

Stand with your right foot on the pitching rubber and your left foot about 12 to 18 inches in front if you are a right-handed pitcher. Do the opposite if you are left-handed. Start with your weight primarily on your back leg. As you begin your pitch, transfer your weight from your back leg to your front leg.

Step 3

How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch
Photo Credit Dale Davidson/Demand Media

Bring your pitching arm back to shoulder height. As you begin your motion forward with your arm, bring your glove hand down so you can gain additional leverage as you throw the ball. Concentrate on the catcher's mitt as you prepare to release the ball.

Step 4

How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch
Photo Credit Dale Davidson/Demand Media

Step with your left foot directly toward the plate. You cannot take a rocker step backward or step to the left or right when you are delivering a windmill pitch. You must step straight ahead. Release the ball when it gets to thigh level as you come forward with your step to the plate.

Step 5

How to Teach Beginners the Windmill Fastpitch
Photo Credit Dale Davidson/Demand Media

Snap your wrist forward as you let go of the ball. You are not just letting the ball leave your hand, you are snapping your wrist to gain extra speed and momentum. Keep moving your pitching arm forward until you have made one full revolution. This will give you maximum speed on your windmill pitch.

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