Throwing Athletes, Don’t Throw Your Rotator Cuff Away! Please do Corrective Exercise

A great Monday morning so far, breakfast with my kids, walked my daughter to school and both boys came to work with me. I wonder if any of the trainers and strength coaches who were at the Performance Enhancement Specialist workshop that I taught for the National Academy of Sports Medicine in Houston Texas this weekend had sore glutes Sunday? Hope so!

As I was thinking about what to write about today, I came to the realization that I just can not get away from throwing/overhead athletes and injuries. Reading an article like this just drives me berserk! take a few minutes and give it the once over

There were some pictures on the site to support the article that I wanted to share.

First look at the left knee of this pitcher, Miles Morgan, from Texas Tech;

It is moving inwards/caving in as his arm comes forward. This means that there is wasted energy created in his lower body that never makes it through the core and to the shoulder. This will cause his shoulder musculature to compensate for that lack of force from his lower body and core and often times lead to rotator cuff injury. Maybe we just need to talk about add in MPH to his fastball, which corrective rotator cuff exercises and core stability training can do because too many people are missing the injury prevention aspect.

Guess what? Miles Morgan missed nearly two seasons after tearing his rotator cuff in March of 2007. Hmmmm…do you think a muscular imbalance in the lower extremity or weakness in his core stabilizers could have contributed to this???

Next, take a look at the dynamic internal rotation of the humerus on this young pitcher here;

If his humerus does not rotate internally properly and the rotator cuff can not decelerate the humerus then the forces that are translated to the elbow are destructive.

Just ask this poor kid that, Shea Nixon, who suffered a fractured growth plate in his elbow during a January baseball camp. Nixon plays for a 13 and under team. His injury came when throwing form third to first base when he heard a “pop” in his elbow. Do you think he had the rotator cuff strength to decelerate the throwing motion???

Limiting pitch counts, mandating recovery days after pitching and encouraging players to take one season off from baseball a year is a start, but that is like taking the batteries out of the smoke detector when it starts beeping. At best, it delays the inevitable, the problem is still there and often lies somewhere else (foot/ankle, hip/core, shoulder etc.).

It is pretty basic, start with an integrated assessment, get an individualized Corrective Exercise, core stability and integrated training program, do it well and often!

Thanks for reading!

Eric Beard
Athletic Performance Enhancement Specialist
Corrective Exercise Specialist

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This entry was posted in Eric Beard, injury prevention, overhead athletes, pitchers, rotator cuff, rotator cuff strenghtening. Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

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