While it is highly probable that a youth athlete could experience some performance gains by throwing weighted balls, we do not program them into a training program for youth athletes under 14 years old for a few of reasons. Firstly, because there is still so much low hanging fruit left within a youth athlete’s training economy, virtually any training stimulus will help them experience performance gains and improve movement quality. Rather than move through a highly specific and complex movement stimulus early in an athlete’s development, we should instead introduce more general programming initially. By building out a solid strength base, emphasizing proper warm-up and recovery, and introducing light amounts of variability in the form of PlyoCare balls, we can still see a significant amount of performance gains without adding unnecessary complexities and higher exposure to stress.
Once an athlete has built out that necessary strength base and requisite experience using variable training implements, we then begin to introduce weighted ball pulldowns into their training routine in a safe and constructive manner. This will hopefully push back any onset of plateau and avoid incurring any unnecessary stress while the body is underdeveloped.
If you have any questions as to how we program youth athletes and want to learn more about our remote youth training options, please visit the link here or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.