Vol 8 No 4 (2019): Volume 8, Issue 4, Year 2019
Articles

Assessment of throwing arm biomechanics with a motusBASEBALLTM pitching sleeve during long-toss throws and pitching in college baseball pitchers

Jeff T. Wight
Brooks Rehabilitation College of Healthcare Sciences, Jacksonville University, 2800 University Blvd North, Jacksonville, FL 32211 USA.
Brittany Dowling
Motus Global, 200 Sunrise Hwy, Rockville Centre, NY, 11570 USA
Jaclyn O’Loughlin
Brooks Rehabilitation College of Healthcare Sciences, Jacksonville University, 2800 University Blvd North, Jacksonville, FL 32211 USA.
Published October 29, 2019
Keywords
  • Throwing shoulder,
  • Elbow varus torque,
  • Overhand athlete,
  • Throwing kinematics
How to Cite
Jeff T. Wight, Brittany Dowling, & Jaclyn O’Loughlin. (2019). Assessment of throwing arm biomechanics with a motusBASEBALLTM pitching sleeve during long-toss throws and pitching in college baseball pitchers . International Journal of Physical Education, Fitness and Sports, 8(4), 36-44. https://doi.org/10.26524/ijpefs1944

Plum Analytics

Abstract

In baseball, long-toss throws are commonly used in return-to-throw programs and for general conditioning; however, the majority of these programs are based on conventional wisdom. Few studies have examined the biomechanics of long-toss throwing and the impact of throw distance. The purpose of this study was to determine if significant differences exist among commonly-used sub-maximal distance long-toss throws and mound pitching. Nineteen college baseball pitchers (19 ± 1.3 years; 88.3 ± 8.4 kg; and 73.9 ± 18.6 cm) wore a motusBASEBALL™ sleeve and sensor which measured peak elbow varus torque (VT), peak forearm angular velocity (Vmax), and peak arm-cocking angle (ACA). Each player completed five long-toss throws at distances of 27 m, 37 m, 46 m, 55 m and five pitches from a mound at regulation (18.4 m). There were no significant differences among throwing conditions for both VT and Vmax (p<0.05). For ACA, there was a significant increase (approximately 12°) as the long-toss distance increased. Coaches and trainers should be aware that sub-maximal distance long-toss throws (27 - 55 m+) generate high-magnitude throwing arm biomechanics (kinetics, velocities, range of motion) that approach or even exceed those generated during pitching; precaution needs to be used when implementing long-tosses into throwing and rehabilitation programs.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

References

  1. M.G. Ciccotti, K.M. Pollack, M.C. Ciccotti, J. D’Angelo, C.S. Ahmad, D. Altchek, J. Andrews, and F.C. Curriero, Elbow injuries in professional baseball: epidemiological findings from the Major League Baseball injury surveillance system, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 45 (2017) 2319-2328.
  2. G.S. Fleisig, J.R. Andrews, C.J. Dillman, and R.F. Escamilla, Kinetics of baseball pitching with implications about injury mechanisms, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 23 (1995) 233-239.
  3. G.S. Fleisig, D.S. Kingsley, J.W. Loftice, K.P. Dinnen, R. Ranganathan, S. Dun, R.F. Escamilla, and J.R. Andrews, Kinetic comparison among the fastball, curveball, change-up, and slider in collegiate baseball pitchers, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 34 (2006) 423-430.
  4. K.E. Wilk, C.A. Arrigo, T.R. Hooks, and J.R. Andrews, Rehabilitation of the overhead throwing athlete: there is more to it than just external rotation/internal rotation strengthening, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 8 (2016) S78-90.
  5. K.E. Wilk, K. Meister, and J.R. Andrews Current concepts in the rehabilitation of the overhead throwing athlete, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 30 (2002) 136-151.
  6. M.J. Axe, W. Hurd, and L. Snyder-Mackler, Data-based interval throwing programs for baseball players, Sports Health, 1 (2009) 145-153.
  7. M.J. Axe, L. Snyder-Mackler, J.G. Konin, and M.J. Strube, Development of a distance-based interval throwing program for Little League-aged athletes, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 24 (1996) 594-602.
  8. K.E. Wilk, P. Obma, C.D. Simpson, E.L. Cain, J.R. Dugas, and J.R. Andrews, Shoulder injuries in the overhead athlete, Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, 39 (2009) 38-54.
  9. M.J. Axe, R. Wickham, and L. Snyder-Mackler, Data-Based interval throwing programs for little league, high school, college, and professional baseball pitchers, Sports Medicine and Arthroscopy Review, 9 (2001) 24-34.
  10. M.J. Axe, T.C. Windley, and L. Snyder-Mackler, Data-dased interval throwing programs for collegiate softball players, Journal of Athletic Training, 37 (2002) 194-203.
  11. M.M. Reinold, K.E. Wilk, J.Reed, K. Crenshaw, and J.R. Andrews, Interval sport programs: guidelines for baseball, tennis, and golf, Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, 32 (2002) 293-298.
  12. A.V. Stone, S. Mannava, A. Patel, A. Marquez-Lara, and M.T. Freehill, Defining the long-toss: a professional baseball epidemiological study, Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, 5 (2017).
  13. J. Watkinson, A strength, speed, power approach to improving throwing velocity in baseball, Strength & Conditioning Journal, 19 (1997) 42-47.
  14. B. Dowling, M.P. McNally, W.A. Laughlin, and J.A. Onate, Changes in throwing arm mechanics at increased throwing distances during structured long-toss, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 46 (2018) 3002-3006.
  15. G.S. Fleisig, B. Bolt, D. Fortenbaugh, K.E. Wilk, and J.R. Andrews, Biomechanical comparison of baseball pitching and long-toss: implications for training and rehabilitation, Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, 41 (2011) 296-303.
  16. T. Miyanishi, N. Fujji, M. Ae, Y. Kunugi, and M. Okada, A three-dimensional comparative study of the motions between speed throw and distance throw in the university baseball players, Japan Journal of Physical Education, Health and Sport Sciences, 40 (1995) 89-103.
  17. N.R. Slenker, O. Limpisvasti, K. Mohr, A. Aguinaldo, and N.S. Elattrache, Biomechanical comparison of the interval throwing program and baseball pitching: upper extremity loads in training and rehabilitation, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 42 (2014) 1226-1232.
  18. C.L. Camp, T.G. Tubbs, G.S. Fleisig, J.S. Dines, D.M. Dines, D.W. Altchek, and B. Dowling, The Relationship of throwing arm mechanics and elbow varus torque: Within-subject variation for professional baseball pitchers across 82,000 throws, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 45 (2017) 3030-3035.
  19. M.E. Feltner and J. Dapena, Dynamics of the shoulder and elbow joints of the throwing arm during baseball pitch, International Journal of Sport Biomechanics, 2 (1986) 235-259.
  20. C.E. Agresta, K. Krieg, and M.T. Freehill, Risk factors for baseball-related arm injuries: a systematic review, Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, 7 (2019).
  21. D. Fortenbaugh, G.S. Fleisig, and J.R. Andrews, Baseball pitching biomechanics in relation to injury risk and performance, Sports Health, 1 (2009) 314-320.
  22. T. Matsuo and G.S. Fleisig, Influence of shoulder abduction and lateral trunk tilt on peak elbow varus torque for college baseball pitchers during simulated pitching, Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 22 (2006) 93-102.
  23. J.H. Buffi, K. Werner, T. Kepple, and W.M. Murray, Computing muscle, ligament, and osseous contributions to the elbow varus moment during baseball pitching, Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 43 (2015) 404-415.
  24. S.A. Conte, G.S. Fleisig, J.S. Dines, K.E. Wilk, K.T. Aune, N. Patterson-Flynn, and N. ElAttrache, Prevalence of ulnar collateral ligament surgery in professional baseball players, American Journal of Sports Medicine, 43 (2015) 1764-1769.
  25. M.A. Rothermich, S.A. Conte, K.T. Aune, G.S. Fleisig, Cain E.L. Jr, and J.R. Dugas, Incidence of elbow ulnar collateral ligament surgery in collegiate baseball players, Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, 11 (2018) 2325967118764657.
  26. J.L. Zaremski, J. McClelland, H.K. Vincent, and M. Horodyski, Trends in sports-related elbow ulnar collateral ligament injuries, Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine, 5 (2017).
  27. K.J. Boddy, J.A. Marsh, A. Caravan, K.E. Lindley, J.O. Scheffey, and M.E. O'Connell, Exploring wearable sensors as an alternative to marker-based motion capture in the pitching delivery, PeerJ, 7 (2019) e6365.
  28. E.C. Makhni, V.A. Lizzio, F. Meta, J.P. Stephens, K.R. Okoroha, and V. Moutzouros, Assessment of elbow torque and other parameters during the pitching motion: comparison of fastball, curveball, and change-up, Arthroscopy, 4 (2018) 816-822.
  29. T. Matsuo, R.F. Escamilla, G.S. Fleisig, S.W. Barrentine, and J.R. Andrews, Comparison of kinematic and temporal parameters between different pitch velocity groups, Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 17 (2001) 1-13.
  30. D.F. Stodden, G.S. Fleisig, S.P. McLean, and J.R. Andrews, Relationship of biomechanical factors to baseball pitching velocity: within pitcher variation, Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 21 (2005) 44-56.