Coaches preach it endlessly, “Always finish with the correct follow-through.” In baseball, football, tennis, golf, soccer or any sport requiring a skilled targeting movement, how your throw, swing or kick ends up can determine the ball’s speed and direction. But how can something you do after contact with an object affect its motion? Once a quarterback lets go of the football, the position of his arm after release seems meaningless. New research from the University of Cambridge has found the answer; the development of motor memories.
For most sports skills that require an athlete to propel or hit an object at a target, the follow-through has been emphasized to prevent injury. A baseball pitcher throwing a 90 mph fastball must also decelerate his arm after the release. Without proper mechanics, the wrist, elbow or shoulder could give in to the massive force applied by the motion.Read More