Initial Shoulder Mobility from 47 Performance
There has been debate about the overall health of the shoulder of an overhead athlete, specifically that of baseball players. With repetitive motion of throwing, and the long seasons, with improper care, it appears that injury is inevitable. Baseball requires extreme peak forces to be exerted on the shoulder synovial joint, increasing likelihood of injury. Fortunately, there are things an athlete can do to decrease these probabilities.
To start, the anatomy of the shoulder needs to be addressed. As mentioned before, the shoulder is a synovial joint, meaning it is a fluid-filled joint cavity, with versatile mobility, unlike other joints, such as cartilaginous or fibrous joints. As seen in Figure 2, the humerus, coracoid process, acromion, clavicle, and scapula are the bones comprising the shoulder. The mobility of the shoulder comes from the glenoid fossa insertion with greater tubercle of the humerus. Surrounding the bones are the coracohumeral ligament, inferior transverse scapular ligament, bicep tendon, capsular ligament, subscapularis tendon, and supraspinatus tendon. Tendons are dense connective tissue, attaching bone to bone. Surrounding these ligaments of the joint cavity is muscle; bicep and tricep brachialis, coracobrachialis, pectoralis major and minor, deltoid, trapezius, teres minor, rhomboid, latissimus dorsi, and serratus anterior. What covers the muscle is called fascia. Fascia is fibrous connective tissue that surrounds muscles, known as epimysium.
Stecco et al. (2016) found that fascia modalities implying manual massage as treatment observed an improvement in overall health. Since fascia is the most superficial, in terms of shoulder complex, it is of the upmost importance for overhead athletes to preserve the integrity of the shoulder fascia. Driveline Baseball found that there are extreme levels of peak force placed on the shoulder during external rotation and scapular tilt (throwing motion layback), reaching upwards of 40 pounds of force on the shoulder complex.