StrikeOut Strippz has been a product I've wanted to write about for some time. Unfortunately, it looks like I waited too long. The online store for purchasing these is no longer functioning, and the inventor's blog has not been updated since June 2009. Instead of writing my typical "Please, don't buy this" stuff, I'm simply going to highlight a few reasons why this product was something you shouldn't buy.
If you've heard of using a towel for pitching drills, then you can probably get a fairly accurate concept of how to use the StrikeOut Strippz. Simply imagine attaching the towel to your fingertips -- or maybe strapping the towel to the back of your hand -- so you don't have to grip it when doing the drill. Voila! You've got yourself a do-it-yourself version of the StrikeOut Strippz.
There's no question that a vinyl strip (Why are there two strips???) attached by a glove is going to be a lot easier to use, and convenience means something. Maybe spending $24.95 on such a product would have made sense for you.
The Strippz were part of a package that included instructional DVDs meant to teach coaches and parents how to teach the inventor's idea of "perfect mechanics" to their young pitchers. The methods involved rhyming (so you know it has to be correct!) and a few questionable body and arm positions.
The methods are no doubt successful, though the techniques being taught remain questionable. Pitchers who followed the teaching cues learned repeatability, a very valuable attribute for any pitcher because it leads to improved control. Of course, repeatability is only achieved through practice.
Practicing anything enough is going to result in learning. Repetition leads to repeatability. It's that simple. The trick is having something to repeat, and that's exactly what this product did. Whether or not the StrikeOut Strippz mechanics were the best thing to repeat -- and judging by the materials on their website, they aren't -- remains to be seen.
If you really want to learn how to be a better pitcher, find an actual pitching coach. There's only so much that can be contained in a 76-minute DVD.
If all you need is a system to repeat and your money is tight, you should use Google and find someone who's giving away "perfect" mechanics for free. There's no reason to pay for it.
To have a look at this questionable product for yourself, click here, but please, don't buy this (if the ordering system is ever fixed).
Do you know of another stupid pitching product out there? Tell me about it.