Feet and the Pitching Duel

Take me out to the ballgame
Take me out the crowd
Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks
I dont care if we never get back
Let me root, root, root for the home team
If they dont win its a shame,
For its one, two, three strikes.your out
At the old.ball.game!

Spring is upon us, the sounds of the stadiums are audible, and aromas of grass and hotdogs waft the air. You gear up to watch your favorite team and players. Everyone is healthy. Hopes are high. Maybe this will be the year. But what should your Ace pitcher be concerned about? Proper mechanics, thats what.

Mechanics are everything when it comes to sports and reducing the risk of injury. Especially for you average Joe athletes. Your favorite pitcher goes through 6 phases of motion to throw that inside fast ball.

  • Wind up
  • Early cocking
  • Late cocking
  • Acceleration
  • Deceleration
  • Follow through

Through the course of these phases he is placing increasing loads of pressure on his feet, especially the arches. In the theoretical normal foot, the body can manage these forces. In a foot outside the norm, which ironically is normal, these forces increase ones risk of injury. You add the length of the MLB regular season plus preseason, and the feet easily become fatigued. This fatigue will also increase the risk of injury. So what does your start pitcher need to do to counter all of this?

  • A good custom orthotic is always a winner
  • Be it shoe or ankle, soft or semi-rigid, these support the arch, enhance muscular activity of the lower limb, AND improve balance
  • Exercise
  • Exercising the intrinsic muscles of the foot can help battle fatigue. Such exercises are: towel pick-ups using the feet AND toe curls.
  • Balance training
  • Exercises that focus on the lateral and frontal hip muscles can also help combat fatigue
  • Taping/Bracing
  • Low Dye taping to help prevent over pronation of the foot

So as you enjoy the MLB season, take note of your pitcher. Before you start hurling insults at him for giving up a few runs, you might consider that his feet are hurting him. Remember: it is just a game. Have fun and act responsibly.

If you have need of an ankle/foot specialist please contact Dr. Bowman at 713-467-8886 or visit www.houstonfootspecialists.com.

Category: Foot Pain

Tags: Baseball, Bracing, foot pain, Injury, Orthotics, Taping