“Get in the weight room and make it a habit. Most of the top players are strong. If you throw harder you will get more innings. If you hit the ball harder you will get more AB’s.”– NAIA Pitcher, California on how high school players can ease the transition to college baseball
Every year, we ask college baseball players what advice they would give high school guys trying to make a successful transition to college baseball. Every year, we get some variation of the response above: “Get in the weight room!”
Take the advice of the guys who have lived the experience and survived the difficult transition to college baseball. If you want to play college baseball, now more than ever, you need a strength program in high school. Building a baseline level of functional strength is incredibly important for recruiting and for being prepared for the rigorous college season. Functional strength means strength that is useful to performing baseball-specific movements more efficiently. A strength and conditioning program that improves functional strength is the answer to many baseball deficiencies and allows a player to throw and hit harder, run faster, bend and move more efficiently, stay healthy and much more.
So what does this mean for recruits wanting to play baseball in college? Plain and simple, make building functional strength a big part of your development plan. As we discuss in our article, Why Size and Physicality Matter in Recruitment, college coaches are looking to recruit physical players. While not everyone develops physically at the same time and not everyone can be 6’3”/205, everyone can add strength and mobility that will help them perform better, stay healthy, and get recruited. Getting in the weight room consistently is one of the single most important things you can do for your development. A quality strength and conditioning program in high school provides the base and preparation necessary to make significant gains in college when your body matures and allows you to improve as a player by leaps and bounds.
So how do you go about creating a quality strength and conditioning program? We share some basic exercises you can do in this guest blog by former college baseball standout and PT Alex Wirta, but there are many people who offer great strength and conditioning advice specific to baseball for free. Here are five of our favorite free resources that are well known in the baseball community:
- Eric Cressey, Cressey Performance
- Driveline Baseball, Baseball Development Powerhouse and Industry Leader
- Zach Dechant Website and YouTube TCU Baseball S&C
- Joey Bergles, MS, CSCS, DNS
- Ryan Faer, Cleveland Indians
All 5 of these resources share a wealth of strength and conditioning information and are must follows on social media. Their profiles, websites, or blogs are linked above and from there it is easy to find their other resources. These resources are a great place to start doing your research and summer is a great time to learn about and implement a strength and conditioning plan that is right for you. Don’t wait, it’s time to get to work!
Disclaimer: As always get approval from your parents, doctor, and school strength coach before you start any conditioning program.