Good pitchers know that "staying back" is key to an effective pitching delivery. Here are four drills to help hurlers keep their weight back and increase the speed and accuracy of their pitches.
From an open-hipped position (front foot toward the target/catcher), the pitcher does a snap drill, driving the back knee in to the front knee. Then she immediately takes a step back with the back leg. It almost has the feeling of "falling" back. The pitcher should fall back along the straight line of force. If she goes to either side, she was off-stride or off-balance.
Snap Drill Variation
Same drill as above, but when the pitcher drives the back knee to the front, she stays there, on balance, until the catcher throws the ball back.
Full Motion Drill
From the pitching plate, the pitcher repeats the Snap Drill, but with her full motion. In order to do this drill, the pitcher should be throwing at maybe 75 percent. We don't want to teach her to drive and step back on every pitch.
Full Motion Drill Variation
Same as above, but from a pitching motion. I have to remind my pitchers, who are just now learning how to throw a rise ball, that the lower body mechanics for a rise ball should not be carried over to a fast ball. After all, most pitchers in NCAA D-III are very successful without a rise ball (though this is changing).
We try to end each of our practices with a speed/strength drill. These can be long toss, speed circles, triple-arm circles, etc.