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Improve Your Shoulder Strength on the Baseball Field with These 3 Baseball Workouts

Posted on December 08, 2017 by Coraline Huard

baseball-workoutsWithout strong shoulders, it’s tough to excel on the baseball field. Whatever your level now, there’s room for improvement! Use these three baseball workouts to strengthen your shoulders for better fielding, hitting, pitching, and throwing potential.

Understanding the Importance of Shoulder Strength for Baseball

Before we get into the exercises, let’s take a look at the mechanics of baseball. Shoulder strength, as it turns out, is essential for just about every move you make on the field. Flexibility is equally important, so don’t skimp on the stretching. Remember to warm up before every workout and game, too.

Start Every Baseball Workout with Arm and Shoulder Stretches

Before you start to stretch, spend a minute or so jogging. This warms up your entire body and increases your circulation, reducing the likelihood of injury. When you’re warmed up, you’re ready to stretch your arms and shoulders using slow, smooth motions while inhaling and exhaling deeply:

  • Lock your elbows and hold your arms straight out in front of your body. Bring your shoulder blades together as you pull your arms straight back while keeping them elevated.
  • Shrug your shoulders toward your ears, and then drop them back down into their natural position.
  • Do shoulder circles by lifting your arms away from your sides so that your body looks like a big “T.” With your elbows locked and your arms parallel to the floor, make circular motions in a forward direction, beginning with large, loose circles and gradually decreasing the size of the circles. Do this for at least 15 seconds, and then repeat the motion with backwards circles.
  • Look for chest, neck, and back stretches to complement your shoulder stretches. All of these muscles are connected, so it’s important to stretch them all, even when you’re only focusing on shoulder workouts.

Baseball Shoulder Extensions, Arm Curls, and Wrist Curls

This quick baseball workout can be accomplished with free weights or resistance bands. If you use resistance bands, be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for safe use.

  • Start with shoulder extensions. Place your hands by your sides. With your elbows locked and your hands facing down, raise your arms up and forward until they are level with your shoulders. Slowly lower them back down to the original position. Repeat 12 times.
  • Move on to arm curls. With your elbows bent and your arms by your sides, lift your forearms to shoulder height. There are a number of arm curl variations you can try as you build strength and improve your range of motion. Repeat 12 times.
  • Finish with wrist curls. Hold your arms at your sides with your elbows bent and your forearms straight out in front of you. Flex your wrists toward your biceps, keeping your elbows still. Repeat 12 times.

Do as many repetitions of 12 as you feel comfortable with, and gradually increase the number of repetitions over time.

Flex T’s, Hitch Hikers, & Scarecrows

Another quick baseball workout for your rotation, this one should be done with light weights in the three to five pound range. High repetitions build a combination of strength, endurance, and flexibility while working out your shoulders and surrounding muscles.

  • Start with Flex T’s: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, and hold your upper arms out from your sides at shoulder level so that your body makes a T. Bring your forearms up to form a large “U”.
  • Move into Hitch Hikers from the Flex T position. Bring your right arm down across your chest, toward your left hip, and then bring it back up again. Repeat slowly, aiming for 20 to 30 repetitions. Repeat the motion with your left arm. You should feel your shoulder rotating as you do this exercise, which will help develop the muscles needed for throwing.
  • Go back to the Flex T position. This time, you’ll be bringing your forearms down while keeping your upper arms straight out by your sides, forming and upside down “U” shape and then returning to the right side up “U” shape. Do 10 reps with your forearms in a straight position. Do another 10 with your hands turned outward as if you were gripping a steering wheel, and then finish with another 10 with the backs of your hands facing one another as if you were standing in a door frame and gripping its edges.

Getting Started with Baseball Shoulder Workouts

When it comes to shoulder exercises, it’s very important to start off slowly, using just a little resistance and working at a pace that feels comfortable to you. It is equally important to expand your range of motion gradually; it’s easy to overdo it and cause an injury that could keep you off the playing field or even have a negative, lifelong impact. Injury prevention is as important as shoulder strength. While it takes time to build your muscles gradually, the payoff is strong, healthy shoulders that serve you on and off the baseball field.

 

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