ACL surgeries are very involved with an extensive recovery period. If you are a pitcher trying to return from ACL surgery, follow these tips.
Learn biomechanically sound mechanics to reduce overall injury with our online pitcher training programs
1. Follow rehab exactly! Doctors, PT and Athletic Trainers are the experts. You are not going to discover something that is better than what they collectively suggest. High school players are young enough to have plenty of time to make a full recovery. Also, continue exercises long after physical therapy ends and you are released. High school players are also young enough to get re-injuryed.
2. Ease back into throwing. Your legs are going through rehab but your shoulders are getting out of shape. Talk to the PT or look check out some of our shoulder programs here. Most shoulder injuries I have seen come from pitchers throwing too hard overhand - not many injuries from underhand. Our athletes use J-Bands and the J-Band routine.
3. Spins - this would be a good time to improve spins on all pitches or even learn a new pitch. Do these about 5-8 feet away from her catcher. You can do these standing or sitting.
4. Walk through the motion. When you are cleared to walk, you can WALK through and work on timing your arms to your walking steps. You will keep your toes in the direction you are walking and do not drag. It is a literal walk with your arm circle.
Our Athlete Assessment can determine imbalances head to toe to program your return or reduce the chance of injury before an injury
5. Windmill drill. Point your toes towards your target in a relaxed lunge position. Keep your feet still with your head over the belly button. Complete full arm circles for all of your pitches.
6. Strengthen the core - just makes for better athletic movement in general. The CORE is not limited to your abdominals and trunk. This also includes your hips and shoulders. You are likely doing hip exercise as apart of your PT. Be sure to work both sides through the rehab process.
7. When you are released to throw, doing a slow motion pitch is a great way to learn how to control movements. Do this towards a catcher about 30 ft and focus on throwing strikes. Throwing strikes are a good indication of good mechanics. Slowly increase distance and speed as you feel comfortable.
The number one thing to remember, follow rehab exactly, do not rush the return, and build as much overall strength to reduce risks of more injuries.
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