How to Lower the Risk of Baseball Overuse Injuries
Thursday, April 14, 2022

by Liz Bonis, WKRC

Access full interview here

EDGEWOOD, Ky. (WKRC) – Baseball is back in season, and for area doctors' offices, that means a whole new set of sports injuries.

The sports medicine team at OrthoCincy says from little league on up, for baseball, it really boils down to mostly shoulder and elbow problems. “Throwers put an unusual load, particularly pitchers, on the elbow and shoulder,” said Dr. Matthew DesJardins, a sports medicine specialist at OrthoCincy.

“Most parents and coaches are clued into that. We recommend if your young athlete is starting to get some pain in the elbow or the shoulder, that we see them relatively urgently. "That urgency can, in a very short time, keep players out of the game, according to Dr. DesJardins. He says he usually starts with reminding athletes to start with the basics.

For example, "Pitch counts are cool. Most people are really familiar with those. It's a simple way to control volume, and it's age-specific. It's good because they're simple, and people know there are still some downfalls to that. Every 14-year-old is not the same body. In fact, at 14, there's a lot of different to the body. The lows that a 14-year-old's elbow and shoulder can have are going to be different for one kid to the next kid.

"He also wants to remind parents and players that cross-training, or playing more than one sport, can reduce the odds of some common overuse injuries. "One of the biggest things that's going to be a risk for developing an overuse injury is that early specialization," Dr. DesJardins said. "When you talk about those young kids who start playing baseball in their elementary years, and then they start dropping out of basketball, and they start dropping out of soccer camps, and they're just focusing an 11-month season on baseball, those kids are definitely at more risk for injuries." He says those injuries can usually be treated with everything from rest and ice to sport-specific physical therapy.

If you’ve been noticing pain while playing any sport, you can find out more information on proper training to avoid injury HERE.