Stop Throwing Like A Girl!

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Now I'm sure you have all taken gym class before. Matter fact, I know most of you enjoy sucking up the beautiful sunny days out in the lawn playing all your favorite sports. I was playing catch a good female friend the other and I couldn't help but poke fun at the fact that she threw like a girl. Obviously it was all just giggles, but I noticed the fact that girls throw a way that is completely different and at a shorter distance from my own throws. My initial hypothesis would be due to the muscular capacities between both males and females. But there's just something different about the way a girl throws than for boys. 

obama-throws-like-a-girl.jpeg                      baseball_cliff_lee2.jpeg

   Now I was able to find two lovely photos, one of President Obama throwing in what appears to be a girly motion while the other is from MLB pitcher Cliff Lee. Lee seems to be throwing in a posture which others aside from myself would view as manly. After doing some more research, I found an interesting blog on the mechanics of throwing a ball for each gender. The article is entitled "Throw like a girl, you can do better" written by a Tamar Haspal, talks about how the disparity between males in females while throwing. She takes her information from  Jerry Thomas, dean of the College of Education at the University of North Texas in Denton, in which he says that there's a separation between "nature and nurture" in throwing motion. This means that boys develop the correct form of throwing through constant practice. Better put, while the girls are playing with barbies, we are learning how to properly throw a ball. Now let me stop myself by saying this shouldn't come off as sexist in anyways as I find the female throwing motion adorable. But I digress, Thomas continues onto saying that girls go on the throw "51 to 69 percent of the distance boys do". Now from that statistic alone, you would assume it has something to do with boys being stronger. But even though strength does play a factor, there's the formation

  The biggest issue with the way girls throw is that they do not properly rotate when making the throw. Most of the power from a throw comes from "the separate rotations in the hips and shoulders". Girls tend to "rotate both their shoulders and hips together" which decreases the velocity in the throw. Though not entirely certain, professor Thomas believes that there is some form of evolutionary involvement in the way genders throw. He states that in earlier times, throwing rocks was a form of entertainment and celebrated skill. Men who threw rocks "got the women", and women's "rotation came from women having to throw while holding a baby."

  It's interesting how such a subjective topic as throwing a ball can have ties to the evolutionary chain. As I said before, I have nothing against the way a woman throws a ball, I'm just going to rip on my guy friends who happen to replicate that form. To be honest, i've seen girls who have thrown better balls than guys. I guess it's all about the lesson, and time you actually want to spend into doing something better. Stay smart


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1 Comment

Speaking from a perspective of a softball player, I feel I can throw farther and faster than many guys I know. The theory you found connecting to the evolutionary chain makes a lot of sense though, I never thought throwing rocks would have a connection to the way girls and guys naturally throw. My only argument is, just because males are born with better throwing mechanics does not mean girls can’t learn how to throw “like a boy”. Coming from the softball world, it sounds like nonsense to me that guys can throw better than girls, but then again I grew up learning how to throw correctly, using the “kinetic chain”. Using this mechanism, I learned how to throw with my whole body, not just my arm, like you mentioned in your blog. The link below tells you a little bit more about what the kinetic chain is. In baseball and softball, both guys and girls use this as the basis of their throwing motion. So when comparing a baseball throw vs. a softball throw, who do you think has the stronger and farther throw?

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