Youth Pitchers (<14-years-old)
“Opening up” too much with the lead foot/leg. For a RHP the left or lead leg lands too far to the first base side of the pitchers mound. This results in the throwing arm falling behind creating increased stress on the glenohumeral joint (GHJ) capsule as well as internal impingement.
Usually caused by delayed motor learning, poor control over the balance leg/hip and/or trying to throw harder than they have the ability to.
Regardless of age they may be “physically” too young to pitch correctly. Allow another year for their physical maturity to catch up.
Concentrate on throwing strikes and NOT throwing hard!
Teach balance drills for the lead as well as the balance leg.
Pitchers HS aged and older
Secondary to increased weakness of the lead and balance legs and the need to throw harder the older pitcher begins to “close down” too much with the lead leg landing too far to the 3rd base side of the mound if they are a RHP.
Usually caused by weakness of the hip abductor and hip extensors of both legs, tight hip flexors especially the Psoas muscle of the trail or balance leg, tight external rotator’s (ER) of the lead leg preventing good internal rotation (IR) of the lead leg.
May lead to poor follow through and deceleration, over rotation, longer than normal acceleration phase.
Build foundational strength in the hip rotators, hip abductors and hip extensors. Build up endurance specific to baseball.
Increase flexibility training of the hip flexors, quadriceps and ER’s of the hip.
Good scapular program based on 100 pitches a game!
When in doubt seek the consultation of a healthcare professional who has experience with sports related injuries and knowledge of the mechanics involved in the sport!