Medicine Ball Exercises to Improve Mechanics


Medicine ball exercises are a great resource for a couple different reasons. The first reason I like to incorporate them into training programs is the mechanical benefits it has on the throwing delivery and swing. A pitcher obviously can’t throw at max intent every single day, so drills that can work on movement patterns without putting stress on the arm can be a valuable tool.

The second thing I think medicine ball drills are good for are working on max intent and producing power. Strength wise, using a 6-10 pound medicine ball is not going to be a high stressor on strength, but rather working on the speed-strength section of the force and velocity curve. Refer below:


When in season or in the heart of your off season throwing program, be careful to to not implement too much rotational volume, as you are getting plenty of rotation with your throwing. If you choose to do some of these drills prior to throwing, keep the volume low with high intensity.

I’m going to take you through three medicine ball exercises that I like to incorporate into programs to improve mechanics and power output.

Single Leg Slam

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The single leg slam is always one of the first medicine ball exercises I implement with athletes because I think a lot of people struggle with the hip hinge portion of the exercise when hitting or throwing. This is a great exercise to work on lead leg stabilization that a lot of players struggle with. The set up is pretty straight forward. Start on one leg and raise the ball up overhead. When you go to throw the ball straight down, push your hips and foot straight back rather then squatting down when you throw. This is the hip hinge movement we are looking for. As the hips go back the torso becomes more horizontal.

Weight: 8-10 pounds

Pre-Throwing Set/Rep Example: 1x5/side

Pre-Lifting Set/Rep Example: 3x5/side

Rocker Slam

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The rocker slam is a very dynamic movement that closely simulates a lot of movements in the throwing delivery. Start with your feet a little wider than shoulder width apart. Have your lead hip and foot facing straight ahead. Lean forward into a bent front leg, lean back into the rear leg and swing your hands back, up, and around the rear shoulder. Proceed to slam the ball directly in front of your lead foot. I love the rotational path this drill forces you to take. You don’t get to rotational or to linear. It is a mix of the ferris wheel and merry go ‘round analogy.

Weight: 6-10 pounds

Pre-Throwing Set/Rep Example: 1x3/side

Pre-Lifting Set/Rep Example: 3x5/side

Split Stance Anti-Rotation Toss

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This is another great drill that I posted on Instagram recently. Focus on the thoracic spine (middle of your back) to provide the only rotation to throw the ball. Notice my hips don’t rotate and my lead leg stabilizes as I release the ball. The split stance provides another variation to keep the core tight and to resist rotation.

Weight: 4-8 pounds

Pre-Throwing Set/Rep Example: 1x5/side

Pre-Lifting Set/Rep Example: 3x6/side


To wrap this post up it’s important to understand when working on power output with these exercises to throw or slam the ball with max intent. We are trying to see how much force and power we can produce. As I said earlier in the post, one part of using medicine balls is for power and the other is to work on mechanical changes. When trying to hammer down a movement pattern it is okay to go at a lower intensity. As you get comfortable with it continue to pick up the intensity.

These are just three of many medicine ball exercises to choose from. These will get you started in the right direction. I hope you found this post helpful and if you have any questions about implementing these into your program, comment below or send me an email at

- Jared