Jeremy Tecktiel, TRAQ Project Manager, interviewed a Division II college pitcher who has been using a free athlete account for TRAQ. We won’t be using his name or the name of his school in this blog in order to preserve his eligibility.
In high school, this athlete used Plyo Ball ® and weighted balls and had experience with Driveline programming, but, as he said in the interview, “I wasn’t on a regimen. I was just going based off the feel of my arm and what I thought would help.”
When he saw that we had released a free version of TRAQ for athletes, he jumped all over it. “It is definitely a lot easier for me to get better doing this [using TRAQ recommendations], rather than going out on my own as some people do, unfortunately. They go and they throw weighted balls at a wall not knowing the purpose of the drill, and… TRAQ… has helped me a lot, personally, just knowing what I am doing and why—I actually understand why I am doing things on certain days now. You have videos before every workout if you don’t know what you’re doing, and then the videos of each throwing exercise, and that’s really helpful.”
These comments show an insight into key Driveline principles: systematic experimentation, analysis, and refinement. Nothing about our programming at Driveline is arbitrary, and understanding why it is structured the way that it is and how to follow that structure is paramount to getting better.
TRAQ has given this athlete a greater understanding of his body and the rationale behind his training, but it has also helped make his training more organized. “It is so much more organized [now],” he says. “Before, it might have been, ‘I feel really good, maybe I’ll just try to juice it up today’, and people could get hurt doing that. It is important to stay organized and strict to yourself that way, and TRAQ does a really good job of that.”
More than anything, he stressed how TRAQ has helped keep him accountable: “I think it is the perfect way to hold guys accountable. A lot of athletes, even committed athletes, will kind of skip out on some stuff and convince themselves that they are going to be OK. TRAQ really holds you accountable and makes you realize how hard you are actually working.” Needing some help holding oneself accountable is something we can all relate to!
He speculated that about 90% of his team uses some sort of Driveline programming: “For the guys that want to get better and they don’t know how to, we think the best way would be to implement the Driveline throwing program and getting them using Plyo Ball ® and teaching them how this stuff works.”
TRAQ has made it a lot easier for him to plan for his offseason. Coming off a busy summer and fall of throwing, he took November off and did a lot of mobility training and lifting. “Talking to coach,” he says, “I needed that little bump in velo. I looked over the templates and read a lot of the stuff you offered, and I started with the four week on-ramp template starting December 1st, and then after that the four week velo building program template.” Identifying his goal and then using TRAQ to craft an offseason approach that will help him reach that goal will have him well prepared for next season.
For athletes of all ages and levels, he has some advice: “I don’t see how you can’t take advantage of this. I think it is ridiculous that someone would overlook this because what you guys have to offer [is so good].”
Learn more about TRAQ here
By a Division II athlete and Jeremy Tecktiel