Youth Pitchers: 5 Smart Tips for Reducing Your Risk of Injury

Pitching is a big part of baseball, no matter what level. But with mounting evidence of overuse elbow injuries in recent years, pitchers are under closer scrutiny from coaches than ever before for any signs of potential arm wear and tear.Eric Makhni, M.D., a sports medicine physician and surgeon at Henry Ford Hospital, says steps can be taken by the baseball community and parents to prevent and reduce the risk of these injuries in youth pitchers especially.“Pitching year-round, inadequate rest between seasons and pitching in multiple leagues all have been linked to an increase in elbow and arm injuries,” Dr. Makhni says. “These issues are increasingly magnified for youth pitchers because their body isn’t physically developed to handle that volume of use.”Emerging technology has shown potential for flagging early warning signs. A Henry Ford study led by Dr. Makhni and published in the December issue of Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery found that a wearable sleeve sensor device was shown to be effective for measuring torque in the elbow during the pitching motion.

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