Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
School of Kinesiology and Recreation
Specific injuries at the elbow and glenohumeral joints have been linked to several kinetic variables that occur throughout the throwing motion. Ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) sprains have been linked to excessive elbow valgus and shoulder external rotation torques occurring during the late-cocking phase of throwing. Shoulder external rotation torque during the late arm-cocking phase and shoulder distraction forces during the deceleration phase contribute to tears of the labrum. Additionally, it is believed that the peak distraction force generated during the arm deceleration phase also contributes to SLAP tears and rotator cuff pathologies. Very little research has been done to directly examine the relationship between pitch velocity and the kinetic variables that contribute
to injuries at the elbow and shoulder. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the correlation of pitch velocity with elbow valgus torque, shoulder external rotation torque, and shoulder distraction force in a group of NCAA Division I collegiate baseball
Sixty-seven NCAA Division I college baseball pitchers were analyzed using highspeed motion analysis. Eight electronically synchronized high-speed (240 Hz) digital cameras tracked the movement of reflective markers placed over 26 anatomical
landmarks on each participant in order to calculate the values of the kinetic variables examined. After warming up, participants threw fastballs off an indoor pitching mound towards a strike zone target. The average of the 3 highest velocity fastballs thrown for
strikes was used for data analysis. The relationship between pitch velocity and peak elbow valgus torque, shoulder distraction force, and shoulder external rotation torque was analyzed using a Pearson's correlation coefficient.
A weak positive correlation was found between fastball velocity and shoulder distraction force (r = .26, p = .02) but there were no significant correlations between fastball velocity and elbow valgus torque (r = .20, p = .05) or fastball velocity and shoulder external rotation torque (r = .10, p = .22).
The results of this study indicate that there is very little association between fastball velocity and several kinetic variables at the elbow and shoulder joints in Division I college baseball pitchers.
Post, Eric, "Correlation of Shoulder and Elbow Kinetics with Ball Velocity in College Baseball Pitchers" (2013). Theses and Dissertations. 100.