Preventing Shoulder Injuries With Shoulder Rehab Exercises
Injury prevention is a key component of athletic training. Utilizing shoulder rehab exercises will enable baseball players to strengthen the muscles associated with throwing and allow baseball players to not miss training or competition due to injuries or shoulder fatigue. Strengthening the muscles in the shoulder and rotator cuff enables athletes to compete at higher levels during competition and focus on greater technique during training. Preparing the body before activity will increase athletic performance and prevent injury. Warmups should always be utilized before physical activity and focus on specific body parts which will be used during the activity, in this case baseball players and their shoulders. This will keep players from experiencing unnecessary fatigue and injury.
Active and dynamic warmups, such as the KB Powerbands Partner Externals, are a great way to isolate the body parts being utilized during throwing motions and will make for much more effective and vigorous training. This warmup is especially important for pitchers who will be performing the throwing motion at a higher volume and intensity than any other player on the field.
Focusing On The Deceleration Phase Of Throwing
As mentioned in the video many of the shoulder and elbow injuries experienced by baseball players are done so in the deceleration phase of the throwing motion. The deceleration phase of the throwing motion refers to the motion performed immediately after the ball is released when the baseball player is trying to slow down the arm motion. This places extra stress on the ligaments, tendons, and muscles of the shoulder and elbow.
Athletes, particularly pitchers, can train the body to be more efficient when going through a decelerated arm movement by actively focusing on this movement using shoulder rehab exercises. By performing these movements at slower speeds baseball players will be able to increase blood flow to the muscles responsible for performing this motion and help prevent injuries like rotator cuff tears and impingements. These motions will also isolate the muscles of the shoulder, placing extra emphasis on allowing the muscles to slow the arm after the ball is released.
These shoulder rehab exercises are excellent for baseball players returning from a shoulder injury and for baseball players looking to strengthen their shoulders and avoid injuries which could sideline them for a significant amount of time.
How Proper Core Strength Can Aid in the Deceleration Phase Of A Throw
The entire body works as one unit. Athletes experiencing pain or discomfort in the calves can end up experiencing knee or hip problems due to an altering of their natural movements. Compensating for a deficiency or weakness in one part of the body often leads to injuries in another part of the body.
Developing proper core strength will allow baseball players to have greater body control as they go through a full speed throwing motion. Rotational power is controlled through the abdominal muscles and can help, or impede, a baseball player’s velocity and accuracy when throwing. Inadequate core strength can also lead to altered movements in a baseball players throwing motion, leading to added stress on the elbow and shoulder during the deceleration phase of a throw.
These shoulder rehab exercises place extra emphasis on developing core strength and preparing the body for full speed throwing motions during throwing or pitching drills. Shoulder rehab and prevention drills should be utilized by athletes of all ages and in any sport in which a large volume of throws will be performed during training or competition. Quarterbacks and even sprinters can benefit from these shoulder rehab exercises because of increased shoulder stability and strength.
Best Shoulder Rehab and Core Strengthening Triple Combo
To perform the shoulder rehab exercises athletes will need a set of KB Powerbands with two handles and an anchoring partner. Be sure proper resistance, or combination of resistance bands, is utilized during the shoulder rehab exercise drill. Resistance should not be so great that athletes need to lean or rotate the body to complete the shoulder rehab exercise. Shoulder rehab exercises should be performed with just the shoulder and if form begins to break down then the resistance should be reduced until proper form can be achieved.
For the purposes of the shoulder rehab drill, partner one will always be the athlete performing the shoulder rehab external rotations, while partner two will be the anchoring partner working from a static or stationery position to increase core strength.
Partner one and partner two will both grab one end of the KB Powerbands and separate until there is no slack in the KB Powerbands. From this position partner two will stand with feet slightly wider than their armpits and hold the KB Powerbands straight out in front of their body with both hands. Be sure to pinch the shoulder blades together and do not let the shoulder roll forward and remain in a static hold not allowing the body or arms to rotate. Resistance should be kept in the abs throughout the shoulder rehab exercise. Partner two will stay in this position for the first two shoulder exercises.
For the first shoulder rehab drill partner one and partner two will be facing the same way, side to side. Partner one will place a towel or arm high in the armpit to allow the shoulder to perform the exercise. Keeping the elbow at a 90-degree angle partner one will begin to rotate the hand and forearm away from the body, not allowing the body to lean while completing the movement. Be sure the elbows are kept stationery throughout the entire shoulder rehab exercise. Externally rotate the arm as far as the body will allow before slowly returning the arm to the beginning position and repeating the process. Athletes should utilize a 3-4 count as they slowly return the arm to the starting position. This will increase shoulder stability and strength, helping to maximize the shoulder rehab exercise. Athletes will perform 8-10 repetitions of the first shoulder rehab exercise on one side before changing and performing the shoulder rehab exercise on the opposite arm. As partner one changes arms partner two will rotate will rotate and face the opposite direction so the opposite side of the abdominal muscles are strengthened.
The second shoulder rehab exercise requires partner one to face partner two and raise the arm so the upper portion of the arm is parallel to the ground. The upper arm must remain parallel to the ground throughout the entire shoulder rehab exercise and the elbow will remain at a good 90-degree angle. Partner one will rotate the upper arms up and down taking extra time on the way down to help focus and strengthen the arm on the deceleration phase. Do not allow the body to lean to help complete the shoulder rehab exercise. Athletes will perform 8-10 repetitions on each arm. Partner two will rotate as partner one switches arms.
The final phase of the shoulder rehab exercises involves the most dynamic movement of the three shoulder rehab exercises. For this shoulder rehab exercise partner two will assume a seated position and hold their hands in the same position as the previous two shoulder rehab exercises. Partner one will perform an extended side lunge while mimicking a throwing motion. As partner one steps out and performs a good side lunge the arm will remain straight and rotate up and to the outside of the body. It is important the athlete performing this drill keep their feet and chest pointing straight ahead. Make sure the shoulder is performing the external rotation and place extra emphasis on shoulder and core control as the arm and body return to the starting position. Athletes will perform 8-10 repetitions of the extended side lunge from each side of the body. Partner two will rotate positions as partner one switches arms.
Be sure athletes are rotating between the static core strengthening holds and the external rotations to give shoulders proper recovery time. Athletes will perform 2-3 rounds of the shoulder rehab exercises to prepare their bodies for throwing drills, which can be incorporated immediately following the completion of these shoulder rehab exercises.
Head to the baseball training section for demonstrations of other great throwing and baseball specific drills which can be performed following the shoulder rehab exercises.
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