I’ve gotten many questions over the past month from high school and college pitchers asking me how they can train their upper body in a safe and effective manner. For January’s “Workout of The Month” I thought it would be a good idea to give you a “behind the scenes” look at one of the college pitchers upper body strength training sessions.
College Pitchers Upper Body Strength Training Workout
Cochise College Pitcher, Sam Spadafore
West Liberty University Pitcher, Yale Hughes
St. Lawrence University Pitcher, Emmett Dunn
1A. Single-Arm Neutral Grip Dumbbell Press 5 sets x 8 reps each arm
1B. Forearm Wall Slides w/lift-off 3 sets x 8 reps
1C. Back to Wall Shoulder Flexion 3 sets x 8 reps
2A. Rope Inverted Rows 5 sets x 10-12 reps
2B. Banded Face Pull/Pull-Apart Combo 5 sets x 20 reps
3. Overhead Medicine Ball Rotational Slam 3 sets x 12 reps (6 reps each side)
4. Kettlebell Bottoms – Up Carry 3 sets x 20 yards each arm each set
Some additional notes to this workout:
1A & 1B – Forearm Wall Slides w/lift-off, Back to Wall Shoulder Flexion – These are a couple arm care exercises I use with pitchers to drive good scapular upward rotation (Forearm Wall Slides) and shoulder mobility (Back to Wall Shoulder Flexion). I use these exercises as fillers in between the main lifts that require longer rest periods in-between sets.
2A – Rope Inverted Row – In this case I used a rope instead of a bar to get some dynamic grip strength work in without having them use heavy dumbbells which may aggravate thier biceps tendon.
3 Overhead Medicine Ball Rotational Slam – This is used as a power/core movement.
4. Kettlebell Bottoms-Up Carry – This exercise is one of my favorite exercises to use as it teaches our rotator cuff to fire more reflexively and establish good scapular control. Key points to note with this exercise is you shouldn’t be “feeling” anything in the anterior (front) portion of your shoulder. You should “feel” this exercise in the back of your shoulder and your entire shoulder girdle should be working as one.