Navigation Links
Study finds pitching mound height affects throwing motion, injury risk

A study involving several Major League Baseball pitchers indicates that the height of the pitchers mound can affect the athletes throwing arm motion, which may lead to potential injuries because of stress on the shoulder and elbow.

The study was led by William Raasch, M.D., associate professor of orthopaedic surgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, who also is the head team physician for the Milwaukee Brewers. Major League Baseball funded the study in an effort to help prevent injuries among professional baseball players.

The results of the study were presented at the 2007 MLB Winter Meetings at the joint session of the Major League Baseball Team Physicians Association and Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society.

The researchers recruited 20 top-level, elite pitchers from Major League Baseball organizations and Milwaukee-area NCAA Division I-A college pitchers for the study, which was conducted both during 2007 spring training in Arizona and at the Froedtert & Medical College Sports Medicine Center in Milwaukee.

Our researchers employed a motion analysis system using eight digital cameras that recorded the three-dimensional positions of 43 reflective markers placed on the athletes bodies. Then we analyzed the pitching motion at mound heights of the regulation 10-inches, along with eight-inch and six-inch mounds, as well as having the athletes throw from flat ground, Dr. Raasch explains.

The study focused on determining if there is increased stress on the shoulder or the elbow based on the height from which the pitcher has thrown. A kinematic analysis provided information regarding pitching motion (position and velocity), while the kinetic analysis determined the forces and torques generated at the shoulder and elbow.

We found that compared to flat ground, pitchers using a 10-inch mound experience an increase in superior shear and adduction torque in the shoulder meaning theres a greater amount of stress on the joint surface and surrounding structures. That greater stress may result in injury to the shoulder including tearing of the rotator cuff or labrum which may result in surgery and long-term rehabilitation. It also can make it difficult for the athlete to replicate the same throw and develop a consistent strike, Dr. Raasch says.

The most notable kinematic difference was the increase in shoulder external rotation at foot contact. This probably represents a change in the timing of the foot contact relative to arm position, because the foot lands earlier in the pitch delivery during flat ground throwing than with a slope, he says.

While the study did not result in enough data to recommend reducing the 10-inch mound height, which became standard in 1968 and also used in college and high school baseball, Dr. Raasch says the findings give trainers information that can help them determine if pitchers would be better off practicing on flat ground especially after an injury.

Nolan Ryan, who played major league baseball for 27 years, often threw pitches more than 100 mph, even past the age of 40, and he liked to throw on flat ground in his waning years. I think others might follow his lead, Dr. Raasch says. He adds that he hopes subsequent research during spring training in 2008 will provide even more valuable findings for baseball players and trainers.


Contact: Toranj Marphatia
Medical College of Wisconsin

Related biology news :

1. First study hints at insights to come from genes unique to humans
2. Community-intervention study links successful town makeover focused on boosting calcium and exercise
3. Study finds health professionals, public unprepared for genomic medicine
4. New study changes conditions for Spanish brown bears
5. Adolescent girls with ADHD are at increased risk for eating disorders, study shows
6. From the backyard to the ocean: New study shows streams act as key nitrogen filters
7. ORNL study finds rivers play part in removing nitrogen
8. US rush to produce corn-based ethanol will worsen dead zone in Gulf of Mexico: UBC study
9. Study suggests new way to screen infants for fetal alcohol syndrome
10. Imports from Latin America may help US meet energy goals, study finds
11. Irritating smells alert special cells, NIH-funded study finds
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/2/2015)...  SRI International has been awarded a contract of ... to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) PREVENT Cancer Program ... modern testing and support facilities, and analytical instrumentation to ... studies to evaluate potential cancer prevention drugs. ... Drug Development Program is an NCI-supported pipeline to bring ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... ANN ARBOR, Mich. , Oct. 29, 2015 ... with Eurofins Genomics for U.S. distribution of its ... DNA-seq kit and Rubicon,s new ThruPLEX Plasma-seq ... DNA to enable the preparation of NGS libraries ... in plasma for diagnostic and prognostic applications in ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... 2015 In the present market scenario, security ... various industry verticals such as banking, healthcare, defense, electronic ... demand for secure & simplified access control and growing ... hacking of bank accounts, misuse of users, , and ... PC,s, laptops, and smartphones are expected to provide potential ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 ... Accutest Research Laboratories, a leading independent ... (CRO), has formed a strategic partnership ... Temple Health for joint work on ... ) , --> ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , November 25, 2015 ... cat and human plaque and pave the way for more ... problems in cats     --> ... most commonly diagnosed health problems in cats, yet relatively little ... now. Two collaborative studies have been conducted by researchers from ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Orexigen® Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: OREX ) ... chat discussion at the Piper Jaffray 27th Annual Healthcare ... discussion is scheduled for Wednesday, December 2, at 8:00 ... replay will be available for 14 days after the ... NormartVP, Corporate Communications and Business Development , BrewLife(858) 875-8629 ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , Nov. 24, 2015 Cepheid (NASDAQ: ... speaking at the following conference, and invited investors to ... NY      Tuesday, December 1, 2015 at 11.00 ... NY      Tuesday, December 1, 2015 at 11.00 ... Conference, New York, NY      Tuesday, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: