Baseball season has begun. It’s time to get those shoulders ready to throw. Whether you’re getting ready for a summer league or just playing pass with your kids, it’s important to properly warm up before you start.
Injuries to the rotator cuff are among the most common injuries seen in baseball. The rotator cuff is composed of 4 muscle knowns as the S.I.T.S muscles: Supraspinatus, Infraspinatus, Teres Minor, and Subscapularis. These muscles allow us to lift and rotate our arms, they also work in unison to stabilize the shoulder joint. The act of throwing puts a large amount of stress on the front part of the shoulder. If you are throwing repetitively, over time, it can cause the rotator cuff tendons to fray, which may lead to an eventual tear of the muscle or tendon.
Common signs and symptoms for rotator cuff tears include: pain, discomfort, and weakness. You may find it hard to reach above your head; simple tasks such as combing or washing your hair, dressing and undressing may become difficult. Sleeping may also be limited due to pain at night. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, go to the “New Patients” tab on our website or give us a call to set up your FREE 30 minute pain consultation with one of our physical therapist and we can get you back to throwing pain free.
Here are some exercises you can do at home to help prevent shoulder injuries during the season. For all exercises below: Keep weight light to prevent compensating with other muscles and don’t allow your shoulders to hike up toward your ears.
Begin with arms relaxed by sides with a 1lb to 5lb weight.
Slowly raise your arms to the side to form a “T” then lower your arms back down in a controlled manner. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Slowly raise your arms in front of you at a 45 degree angle up to shoulder height, and then lower your arms down in a controlled manner. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Slowly raise your arms straight out in front of you, and then lower your arms down in a controlled manner. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Be sure to not let your arms just fall when lowering. Keep your back upright and straight; maintain good posture. Keep your shoulders relaxed.
Begin with arms by sides with your elbows bent at 90 degrees with a 1lb to 5lb weight.
Slowly rotate your arms side to side in a controlled manner. Remember to keep your shoulders relaxed while performing the exercise. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Begin with shoulders and elbows flexed to 90 degrees with a 1lb to 5lb weight.
Slowly rotate your arms side to side in a controlled manner. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Cross your throwing arm in front of your body. With your other hand, grab your elbow and gently apply a pull until you feel a gentle stretch in the back or your throwing shoulder. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat 2-3 times.
Back in Motion Physical Therapy – Portland, Maine