A pitchers’ windup and throw might get all the attention. But it’s the moment immediately after releasing the ball that actually poses the greatest risk of injury.
Picture it: The shoulder tends to follow the ball. Meanwhile, the rest of the body remains on the mound. These opposing, powerful forces threaten to tear muscles and ligaments in this critical area.
Strong rotator cuff muscles—especially in the back of the shoulder—stabilize the joint against unhealthy rotation. You can build them up with resistance bands like the TheraBand CLX, research shows. Pitchers who completed a six-week strengthening program increased their muscles’ ability to withstand force, potentially protecting them from injury.
The study used moves that worked the shoulder in a diagonal pattern. Incorporate exercises like the one below into your routine to decrease your odds of landing on the disabled list this season.
- Assume a hands-and-knees position. Place one hand in the last Easy Grip Loop.
- Place your other hand in another Easy Grip Loop 2 or 3 loops away and then place that hand on the ground below your shoulder.
- Lift your hand up and outward against the CLX with your thumb facing upward until your arm is parallel with the ground.
- Hold and slowly return.
*Do not exceed 300% elongation. Some exercises may require longer lengths of CLX.