A Closer Look at Forearm Fire

Forearm fire is the terminology that we at Fastpitch Power use to describe the proper release of the ball in windmill pitching. Some of you may have heard part of it referred to as “internal rotation,” describing the positioning and movement of the pitching arm, elbow, and wrist as they travel down the back side of the arm circle and move through the throw zone. It’s a natural and powerful movement, and we believe it is critical to pitching with maximum velocity and command while minimizing the chance of injury.

Because forearm fire utilizes the arm’s natural articulation together with gravity, many pitchers just do it without thinking about it. For those who don’t, it can be frustrating to learn. Today’s video provides a breakdown, and an explanation of its advantages over upward elbow snap, sometimes referred to as “hello elbow.”

Watch on YouTube

Here is a fantastic example of forearm fire in action: the video below is a commercial featuring the ace of the Japanese national team, Yukiko Ueno. If you’re not familiar with Ueno, she is among the fastest windmill pitchers in the world. The middle of the video shows her pitching in slow motion from a rarely seen close front angle. You get a great sense of the positioning of her elbow and wrist coming down the back side of the arm circle, and the loose whipping action of her arm coming through the throw zone.

Watch on YouTube

As always, please feel free to leave any questions in the comments!


About the author


Phil Schonberg is a co-founder of Fastpitch Power, inc. He teaches all aspects of fastptich softball, specializing in windmill pitching and coaches' training.

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  1. Ken Jordan

    Just wanted to thank you for all the free info and videos that you have provided. I wish I could visit in person. We are planning on visiting Carly in Pittsburgh soon. We have been working on fore arm fire for around two months and have struggled with it to be honest. That is until I watched your video and a Carly article on Pre motion. My daughter has always had a back swing up until three days ago. Getting rid of it and keeping it simple really did the trick. I am talking a difference of 5 to 7 mph. Her timing on her mechanics was fixed almost instantly. We are so excited I just had to tell you. Thanks So Much. It wasn’t easy getting her used to palm up but we are finally seeing some huge results. Cant wait to get a lesson with Carly, it will be nice to talk to someone that doesn’t think we are crazy. Great drill on reach, track , fire too. Just love all of the free advice that you have on the web.

  1. IR versus "Hello Elbow"

    […] as it provides a good visual demonstration. PS I am not hawking this site- just a consumer Video: Windmill Pitching Release Mechanics Reply With […]

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