Non-Pitching Drills/Exercises

My son suffered a stress fracture of his olecranon a few months ago, and then re-injured it when he was doing his rehab throwing program. He’s currently in his 2nd week of a 12-week shut-down, with no throwing whatsoever while he heals. He’d still like to do what he can to improve as a pitcher during this time. He’s working with a physical therapist on general strength and flexibility. I’m wondering if anyone can recommend any exercises or drills he can do to improve his pitching without throwing a baseball (lower half, mechanics, etc.)?


I would suggest keeping to the schedule of his 12 week shut-down, while he heals. In other words, do nothing but shut-down and heal. Your son has a propensity for re-injuring himself, even under a rehab program. So, keep it simple, keep it low key, keep it shut down. Even with non-throwing, stay off the exercises and whatever drills you’re looking for.

Thanks for the response, but his doctor actually encouraged him to do some non-throwing workouts to stay in pitching shape while his arm heals. I agree he doesn’t need to be doing anything that involves stress to the injured arm, but I’m hoping for some exercises to help with his lower body pitching mechanics (or something like that).

…but his doctor actually encouraged him to do some non-throwing workouts to stay in pitching shape while his arm heals

Well then, ask the doctor to answer your question(s).

Anyone want to offer any helpful ideas? To recap, my son is shut down from throwing for 10 more weeks due to an elbow injury. His doctor encouraged him to stay active doing drills and exercises that will help his pitching without using his arm, but he didn’t give us any specific drills. I’ve always heard that a big part of pitching is in the legs and core, so I’m looking for some things that will help develop his lower half. The only weight workout he can do without using his arm is squats, which he’s doing. Are there drills that train good lower half mechanics without throwing?

I know the answer that I gave you was not the answer that you were looking for - obviously.

Then why?

Because it never ceases to amaze me how doctors will tell people like yourself, to go ahead and do something, without the foggiest idea, of what? Even worse, If you ask this doctor … “what would you suggest?” the first thing out of their mouth is … “Well, I’m not trained in that area.” DUHA!

With your son’s history and your wanting to continue his physical training, and no medical guidelines from this doctor, be warned that this venture has your son’s health at risk, unnecessarily. Add to that, a “quick buck” opportunist will be willing to sell you on a training program, unscripted, that any professional knows well enough to walk away.

Again. my suggestion would be to relax, take it easy and let your son recuperate at his own speed. Allow his body to heal itself as nature intended. Those months of recuperation will go by quickly and without incident if allowed to.

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Agree with Coach B. Unless the Doctor gave him the drills & program I’d stay away from random drills suggested by strangers. Did the doctor recommend physical therapy? If not wouldn’t hurt to ask if he could get a prescription. Normally beneficial to the rehab & therapist always gives homework. If you are using insurance may have to satisfy deductible before it pays.

Okay, gotcha. Coach B, you’re right - that’s exactly what the doctor said.

He is working with a PT, but he has mainly given him general stretches and strengthening work to do (planks, etc.).

Just to clarify - you think it would be a bad idea for him to do even exclusively lower-body work? I wouldn’t dream of him using his arm at all while he’s shut down, but I recall seeing some drills in the past that sort of mimic the lower-body motion of pitching, but without using the arms at all.

My son is rehabbing shoulder surgery (bicep tendon subluxation). I think he was a few weeks in before the doctor cleared him for running and later when he was cleared for lower body workouts. He asked earlier and was told no. Your sons situation is certainly different but I would ask the doctor and/or the therapist for specific drills.

Work on a pick-off move, many players don’t work on a pick off and it shows. It is primarily foot work. There are plenty of videos which he can watch to learn the proper technique. A few weeks of focussing on pick offs will pay dividends. I would focus primarily on 1st base pick-offs.

Obviously without throwing

That’s a great idea. Thanks.