Should I ice after pitching in a game?


Get this question a lot. What do you recommend?


I think ice serves as a mental thing for pitchers, doesn’t physically do much. Applying cold to the outside of the arm to deal with damage inside the joints seems very 19th century to me.
Shoulder Tube, isometric holds, electric stim.


Ice delays swelling but doesn’t ultimately reduce it. Ice delays the body’s natural healing process and increases the recovery time. Ice is good for severed parts for this very property–it delays the body’s natural rejection of the severed part allowing surgeons the chance to reattach it. It is better to increase fluid flow through the injured area via movement or stimulation of nerves that control those tissues. People ice to feel like they are being proactive, but the best thing is to let your body take care of itself. These systems have evolved this way because they work. I do not ice injuries or soreness ever. I would say leave the ice in the cooler where it belongs.


Light cardio to get the blood flowing and start the recovery process is mandatory. Icing is optional. IMHO.


If you have a sore arm , you might favor it or guard it, although the chance of this is very low. This might change the biomechanics, rhythem, of the scapular, clavicle, to humerous. Icing would reduce the "feeling " of soreness and lessen the chance of favoring it. … maybe.


you bring up a good point. Reducing the feeling with ice is no different than taking a couple of advil to me. It still doesn’t address the reason for the soreness. Getting blood flow going, active recovery seem better models to me.


All this anti-ice sentiment! I’ve actually never heard some of these points. I iced religiously after all games and took anti-inflammatory. I had arm issues only once in my 15 year pitching career and it was minor tendonitis. Unrelated anecdote, or evidence? Who knows.

I just know that when I did PT to heal my elbow tendonitis, the doctor always made me do an ice massage afterwards. I think I’m still on the ice bandwagon.


Cold muscles behave differently. Being cold effects coordination of movement. That has to be just as bad as favoring an injury leading to improper biomechanics.


Ice should be used only for pain. It actually delays the recovery process the body naturally performs. Soreness should be treated through using the arm again. The goal is to get blood flow back through the body and arm (the new blood kicks the crap out). Rhythmic stabilization, tubing, plyoball throws and foam rolling can all help this process.

Your everyday life affects recovery as well. How you hydrate, eat and sleep all play a roll. A rule of thumb I use is drink an 8 oz. glass of water/hour. Try to get at least 8 hours of sleep (I know we’re all busy, but try when you can), and eat as much raw food as possible as it’s the best for energy and the health of ligaments and tendons.


Rhythmic stabilization, tubing, plyo ball throws, foam rolling…I will add in isometric holds…this is all voodoo.
Go run a couple poles, put ice on and eat seeds.


I’m assuming that is sarcasm :wink:


The lowest form of humor, I know…