Softball Shoulder Injuries: Prevention & Treatment

Christopher C. Dodson, MD October 4th, 2018

Protect Your Shoulders This Softball Season With Our Help

As an athlete, you don’t want anything to interfere with your ability to play your sport. Now that it’s spring and softball season has begun, players are back on the field and training to win. A successful softball season involves teamwork, sportsmanship, and athletic dedication. However, it does not include season-stopping shoulder injuries. How can you protect your shoulders and avoid an injury this spring?

The Sports Medicine specialists involved in the Injury Prevention Program at Rothman Institute can help keep your shoulders fully functioning while you’re throwing the ball or swinging the bat. We understand the importance of keeping your body strong when you are a committed athlete, and so we utilize the most advanced medical techniques to evaluate and treat sports injuries. With our help, softball shoulder injuries won’t be an issue for you this season.

Shoulder Injuries: Our Services

Below is a list of a few shoulder injuries we treat that softball players are vulnerable to.

  • Throwing injuries: A constant and repetitive throwing motion may lead to structural changes in the shoulder or an acute or chronic injury.

  • Shoulder sprains and strains: A strain is an uncomfortable stretch or tear in the ligament, whereas a sprain is categorized as a stretch or tear in the muscle of tendon.

  • Shoulder dislocation: A shoulder dislocates when the top of the humerus (arm bone) detaches from the socket of the scapula (shoulder).

  • Rotator cuff tear: This specific injury parallels a sprain; a rotator cuff tear occurs when one of the rotator cuff tendons is torn.

  • Little League shoulder: Categorized by pain in the upper arm growth plate of a young athlete, little league shoulder is also caused by repetitive motion of the area.

How to Prevent Softball Shoulder Injuries

In an attempt to prevent any sports injury, make sure to stretch before games and practices. Warming up before intense activity prepares your muscles and body for what is to come. If you are a pitcher and have shoulder pain for longer than a few days, see a Sports Medicine specialist for an examination. Exercising through pain may exacerbate the injury. Furthermore, observe the pitching guidelines, which contain recommendations for how many pitches you should throw depending on your age.  

Having an awareness of the warning signs for a shoulder injury increases your chance of stopping the injury before it starts. Does your shoulder feel more stiff lately since you began playing softball? Do you have difficulty rotating it? How strong do you feel when throwing a pitch? Consider these questions before and during your softball season.

How to Treat Softball Shoulder Pain

If you realize that you have an injury and are past the point of prevention, do not lose hope; there are various forms of treatment available. First and foremost, you may need to take time off to rest your shoulder. During this period, ice and prescribed medication can alleviate the soreness and inflammation. Softball shoulder exercises may be recommended by your doctor or a physical therapist after the pain subsides. Strengthening the area is an essential step of you getting back in the game.

If you are a focused and dedicated softball player, the last thing you’ll want to think about is a shoulder injury. Nevertheless, for the sake of your health and to elongate your athletic career, the specialists at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute recommend learning as much as you can so you can stay in the game. In addition to being experts in their field, our Sports Medicine physicians serve as educators to patients who want to stay healthy and avoid injuries. For more information about how to prevent and treat softball shoulder injuries, or to schedule an appointment, please visit us here or contact us at 1-800-321-9999.

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