Arm pain question

Hello. My son is 12 and a pitcher. He started with upper arm pain last week after a week at Copperstown. He only threw 5 innings there. See where pain is at n photos. His pain is only with throwing hard. If hev throws normal spread like just having a catch there Is no pain. We have appointment today with doctor Just curious

if anybody else had paint here. Uploading… thanks


“My son is 12 and a pitcher.”

He may be biologically 11 or 10 still. Either way delayed, advanced or equated is how you learn male growth tendencies. This is the key indicator of where he is really at with regard to training increases or any evaluations. What’s your best guess?

“He only threw 5 innings there”

Pitch counts and innings are not what injures you !!!

Youth pitchers below biologically aged 16 when all growth plates in the elbows solidify need much less adrenalin assisted competitions for proper bone growth.

“He started with upper arm pain last week after a week at Copperstown.” “See where pain is at n photos.” “His pain is only with throwing hard.” “We have appointment today with doctor Just curious”

Most Dr.'s diagnose this as deltoid muscle tears.

I always ask people to get x-rays of the proximal Humeral growth plate, a very large one and the last to solidify at biologically 19. This growth plate breaks and a small fissure can be seen by good radiologists.

It is caused by the incorrect recovery of his arm after he throws and releases the ball, his humerus levers against his flexed Pectoralis major and it becomes a fulcrum that separates the shoulder and tracts the growth plate. It’s called “little league shoulder”.

If it’s cracked you will have to treat it like a broken arm, totally shutting him down for 7 to 8 weeks.

Then the mechanic that is causing the problem need to be mitigated, if that’s the problem.

1 Like

Thank you for your response. He was diagnosed with a widened growth plate ( little league shoulder). You talk about biological age…how do you determine that? Did you also say this could be from poor mechanics? Thanks again


“He was diagnosed with a widened growth plate ( little league shoulder).”

Hopefully x-rays were taken to confirm this? If not it’s still prudent to treat it as a severe break!

“You talk about biological age…how do you determine that?”

X-rays are the only way to determine exact biological age by having them taken of both elbows near his chronological birthday.

At matched (equated) biological and chronological age 16 all growth plates in the elbows have solidified.
This solidification happens earlier in the throwing elbow of pitchers because of premature closure from tension stress with any mechanic even healthy mechanics. You do not get this back, it’s permanent damage and nobody escapes it.

Timing of change in voice helps, family genetic history and the best one “coarse hair changeover” all help in determining when more aggressive training should start and more competitive opportunities should happen. Until then less adrenaline assisted competitions would be prudent, no more than 3 consecutive months a year. the rest of the time training can be used to get all this correct before any competitions.

When you notice growth spurts shut him down from pitching.

“Did you also say this could be from poor mechanics?”

Yes and there is an exact kinesiological pathomechanical diagnosis for it and how to mitigate it!

The injury is caused during the recovery phase of the traditional pitching motion.

When traditionally trained pitchers take the ball back by pronating their forearms they must then intuitively supinate their drives with the forearm flying outwards (outside of vertical) centrifuging.
when they release the ball the elbow drives down (best for elbow to pop up to recover) and the arm is flung acrosse contracting ball side perctoralis and the arm stops by slamming against the opposite rib cage, this action has the humerus lever against the Pec. and tracts the head of the Humerus away from it’s fossa actually dislocating it and laxing the posterior shoulder ligaments. This levering action puts tremendous stress across the large proximal Humeral growth plate and cracking it. The fix is “don’t do that”!

Mitigation: When you get your Dr’s release!

Mechanical change has the pitcher recover their ball side arm by having the body finish rotation to at least 175 degrees so the Humerus stays lined up with the acromial line (the imaginary line that runs thru your shoulder tips) to recover.
Ask him to stay tall and body rotate fully by throwing from over the top.

I ask my clients to put their ball side hand in their back pocket, this works very well even if they don’t achieve pocketing.

Ask him to learn and understand forearm pronation of all his pitch types also.

Take over Mother because most men have proven incapable of making these changes in the past!