Whatever position they play, it's important for pro baseball players to maintain maximum flexibility, says Marlon Byrd, a former major leaguer who now works as a trainer in Calabasas, California.
For both pitchers and position players, being able to throw a ball with maximum force and efficiency isn't about having big arm muscles so much as being flexible enough to employ the proper form.
Pilates is another flexibility-promoting approach for both MLB players and nonprofessional athletes.
Pilates involves specific exercises, a special breathing technique and concentration in order to connect body and mind.
Pilates moves can be done with a mat on the floor or with resistance equipment such as springs and pulleys.
In the fall of 2017 through February 2018, Laressa Mems, the lead instructor at Club Pilates in Novi, Michigan, worked with a pitcher in the Oakland A's organization who was suffering back pain and tightness in his hip flexors.
"The exercises we gave him are the same ones we give our stay-at-home moms," Mems says. "Everybody is able to do Pilates."
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