Slogging is not in the Oxford dictionary so don’t bother looking it up. It appears all the time disguised as training, usually included as integral part of warm-up or disguised as aerobic work. I am beginning to think it is a disease. It consists of thousands of very percussive negative foot contacts ambulating very slowly. Slogging is slower than jogging, hence the term slogging. Yesterday I was driving by one of the Major League baseball complexes here where I live when I saw a painful sight up ahead on the sidewalk. There were eight big guys (pitchers) slogging along doing their “flush run” to remove the lactic acid after they pitched. All I could think of was why? It was a flashback to 1986, I thought that we had progressed from this. What does this have to with pitching or anything for that matter? It is certainly not preparing for the ballistic explosive movements involved in pitching. It is not removing lactate because that was metabolized in the time it took them to walk off the mound to the dugout if in fact there was any produced. Slogging will make you slow and compromise explosiveness. So why do it? It occupies time and the administrators like it because it looks like you are having the pitchers’ work. They can relate to because that is what they do. It is even more impressive if you monitor and record the heart rates and then give them to the general manager in colorful charts and graphs. By the way the it is the same front office people and scouts who jump all over the pitching coaches and conditioning coaches when the pitchers velocity if down. If you slog eventually it will compromise velocity. It is a simple proposition you are what you train to be. If you train slow, sooner not later, the body will adapt and you will be slower. Instead use short sprints, in place jumps, short shuttle runs, power endurance circuits, intervals with short rest on a slide board, all would be better use of time than slogging. If you feel you need to do aerobic work then find a mode that allows the pitcher to work with a degree of intensity and that is low impact. If you do aerobic work I recommend nothing over twenty minutes and no more than one out of every six workouts. Remember the goal is create adaptable rather than adapted athletes. Slogging is not even good for general fitness, it creates more problems than it solves.
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Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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Vern Gambetta

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