Condition and Recovery

  1. TAP Extreme Duty Pummel Balls

    Many coaches, players, and individuals have realized the benefits that stem from performing explosive, dynamic exercises with a medicine ball. I was first introduced to such throws in high school when I began training with Coach Ron Wolforth and his Athletic Pitcher program. In this program we performed a series of catapult throws that incorporated a number for different dynamic movements. Usually the first exercise that we would do was from our knee. We would start on one knee and then rare back and throw the medicine ball as hard as we could from this position. The goal was to generate enough energy to throw the ball with force and then let that momentum carry you off the ground and over your plant leg. Continue reading →
  2. TAP Slam Net - Rotational Explosiveness

    For those of you familiar with Oates Specialties you know that we are always searching for new explosive exercises to train athletes. One of our newest products, the TAP Slam Net, is a tool that allows an athlete to perform ballistic, multi-directional exercises that forces him to focus on controlling his body while moving at top speeds. Continue reading →
  3. Overload Training

    My last article focused on weighted balls and the benefits in which they can have for a throwing athlete. Since weighted balls are a type of overload training I thought that my focus this week should involve the overload principle. Continue reading →
  4. Visit to Hanover High School in VA

    Last week I had the opportunity to travel to Mechanicsville, VA, a suburb of Richmond, to visit with Coach Hunter Hoy at Hanover High School. Since Hanover High School opened 8 years ago, their baseball program has become a dominant baseball force in Virginia, culminating with an appearance in the State Championship game 2 years ago. Due to the success of his high school program, I was very interested to see the types of workouts and practices Coach Hoy implements for his players. Continue reading →
  5. The Need for an Off-Season

    As I find myself in the middle of the summer I think back to the many baseball games I played throughout past summers. Whether it was Little League All-Stars, select teams in high school, or the summers in college playing in New England, North Carolina, and Cape Cod, I spent a hefty portion of my life playing ball during the summer time. This is far from rare as the common thought in baseball is that if you are serious about the sport you will play year around. Summer ball into fall ball into the regular spring season and so on. Continue reading →
  6. Arm Care and Staying Healthy

    As the end of May approaches baseball teams at all levels are reaching the critical point in their seasons. High schools are in the playoffs, colleges are having their conference tournaments and everybody is eyeing their respective championships. This is an extremely important time for pitchers to be at their peak playing conditions and is certainly a bad time for them to head to the DL with arm injuries. However, it is often at this point in time that many pitchers do end up injured, as the number of games and innings pitched mount, and the stress that accompanies the importance of each individual game increases. Even the pitchers on those teams unfortunate enough to be through with their season are often heading to summer ball to log more innings. Because arm health is probably the most important thing to a pitcher (and often a team) I want to discuss a couple of things I did while playing at the collegiate and professional levels to help keep myself healthy and able to answer the bell when it was my turn. Continue reading →
  7. Little League Syndrome

    Injuries have become a prevalent part of the game of baseball in today's day and age as is evident by the increasing number of Major Leaguers who spend time on the disabled list during the course of a season. This trend is alarming enough for the grown men on big league rosters but what is even more distressing is the growing number of injuries to adolescent baseball players. Continue reading →
  8. Recovery Time during Workouts

    There have been several questions from readers of this blog regarding the amount of time it takes for the body's ATP energy system to recover after an exercise. This is a very important question and yet one of the most difficult to answer precisely. Most research on the topic shows the rest time for full recovery of the ATP energy system to be approximately 2 minutes. However, there are a number of variables which affect the amount of time needed for recovery. Continue reading →
  9. A Quicker First Step: Giant Flat Bands

    Giant flat band resistance loops are fairly common in the sports and conditioning world. However, many people do not know just how versatile these bands can be. They can be used to assist stretching hamstrings, groin, hips, glutes, and quads. Others use them in the weight room as they wrap the bands around the ends of weight bars while doing exercises such as bench press and squats. Continue reading →
  10. Train Smart-Get Impressive Results

    These past couple of posts may be a complete revelation to you or it could be something you've been incorporating for years just from intuition. A little over a year and a half ago it was a total eye-opener for me. I had been seriously training since I was about 17 years old and yet my world changed at age 23 in terms of training. I had just arrived home from playing in the Appalachian League and met with my pitching coach/trainer Ron Wolforth (of Pitching Central and The Baseball Ranch) to talk about the upcoming offseason. He gave me a short lesson on the body's energy systems (much like my last article) and how we needed to target the ATP system. Continue reading →

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