Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
School of Kinesiology and Recreation
Kevin G. Laudner
Rebecca L. Begalle
Background: Due to the extreme forces on the glenohumeral (GH) joint during the throwing motion, and the high number of repetitions that occur during overhead sports, alterations in range of motion are a common occurrence in overhead athletes, particularly baseball and softball players. The presence of limited GH motion that occurs as a result of posterior shoulder tightness can increase the risk of injury. Despite clinical evidence pointing to the use of joint mobilizations and muscle energy technique (MET) for the treatment of various pathologies, there currently is no data examining comparing the overall effectiveness of joint mobilizations and MET to determine the best treatment method for posterior shoulder tightness.
Purpose: To compare the acute effectiveness of MET and joint mobilizations for reducing posterior shoulder tightness.
Methods: Forty-two asymptomatic high school baseball and softball players were randomly assigned to one of three groups. Fourteen participants received one application
of joint mobilizations, and fourteen participants received one cycle of MET, between pretest and posttest measures of passive GH internal rotation, external rotation, and horizontal adduction ROM. The remaining 14 participants served as the controls, and did not receive any applied treatment. Data was analyzed using separate one-way analysis of covariance, for both measures of internal rotation and horizontal adduction at two different time periods, immediately after treatment, and 15 minutes after treatment application. The dependent variables consisted of the post-test range of motion values and the covariates were the pre-test range of motion values.
Results: Acute results determined that there was a significant between group difference was present between the group receiving MET as compared to the control group (p=0.04) No differences existed between MET and joint mobilizations, joint mobilizations and control for the acute posttest measurement of horizontal adduction. No significant between group differences existed for the acute results of internal rotation. There were no significant between group differences for either horizontal adduction or internal rotation at the 15-minute posttest.
Conclusion: The results of this study indicate that the application of MET to the horizontal abductors provides acute improvements to GH horizontal adduction ROM in high school baseball and softball players.
Reed, Maddox L., "A Comparison of the Immediate Effects of Muscle Energy Technique and Joint Mobilizations on Posterior Shoulder Tightness in Youth Throwing Athletes" (2016). Theses and Dissertations. 702.