Recovery for Pitchers

Posted: November 2, 2012 in General Health
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I spent last weekend in Houston at Dynamic Sports Training hanging out with Lee Fiocchi. Lee was nice enough to have me down and take some time to impart some knowledge on me. Needless to say, I learned a lot. He also brought up a few basic points that I hadn’t thought of in awhile. Two of these points came up when we were discussing recovery for pitchers. After reading “Condtioning” for Pitchersyou know that lactic acid levels have returned to normal during an outing so flushing the lactic acid from the muscles is not necessary after an outing. It is beneficial to increase blood flow to the muscles that were damaged with micro fractures so more oxygen is delivered to the area which will increase recovery rate. While this helps, I think the two points Lee reminded me of are much more important and definitely less strenuous.

1. Proper nutrition/Hydration- As many times as I remember coaches telling me to make sure I ran after I pitched, I don’t ever remember a coach telling to eat afterwards. We stress refueling our bodies after any kind of weight training, but not after an extremely taxing activity like pitching. That doesn’t make sense to me. Follow the same nutritional guidelines listed in the post workout part of the Nutrition section. The protein consumption could be slightly less, but it is still important as your body will need some source of protein to break down to help repair the muscles. Make sure you are drinking the proper amounts after a game as it is hard to properly replace the water during the game. It is suggested that you consume 16 oz of water for every pound you lose during exercise. Pitchers can lose between 5-10 pounds in a start during the summer, so what would mean 80-160 oz of water to return your body to an optimal level. Also, our body is able to break down nutrients more efficiently if we are properly hydrated. Eating and drinking will help maintain or increase your body weight, as well. Most athletes struggle with maintaining weight during season, and for pitchers this can result in a decrease in velocity.

2. Sleep- Sleep is the best time for our bodies to recover both mentally and physically. For any athlete during any time of the year, adequate sleep is important. Obviously this is amplified in season. So going out the night after you pitch or after a game is not ideal because you are pushing back your recovery time severely.

Try these two tips out and see if you notice a difference over the next few days after you pitch. Thanks again to Lee for the hospitality. Check out his website and blog for more information on how he does things at Dynamic Sports Training.

  1. Ben Snyder says:

    Great insight, Barrett. I’m glad to see that knowledgeable individuals are taking on the long-held myths perpetuated in the baseball world. Science and proof trump ancient practice!

  2. Thank you! And I agree. Hopefully the baseball world will come around one day.

  3. Chris Litton says:

    Good stuff!

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