Train Heavy To Throw Harder

Although this study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research was focused on male handball players, the results have implications for any team sports athlete who's interested in throwing harder. Scientists wanted to know if heavy or moderate load weight training would work best for increasing throwing velocity, so they recruited 26 experienced handball players and had them engage in heavy or moderate sessions of bench press and pullover training.

After 10 weeks, the handball players who lifted heavy weight increased their bench press one rep max (1RM) and pullover 1RM significantly. They could also throw the handball harder than the guys who lifted moderately heavy weight. That was true whether throwing velocity was measured with a run up to the throwing point or from standing still.

True Strength Moment: It's a generally accepted principle of strength athletes that lifting heavier weight for fewer repetitions is the best approach for developing muscle size and strength. While it's a good idea to start your team sports strength training using 75% to 80% of your 1RM for 6 to 8 reps per set, after a couple months you might want to experiment with supersets, circuit training and other techniques to see how they enhance your athletic abilities.
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