Patient came into the clinic with a long history of lower back pain. He injured his back early in college while lifting weights during strength and conditioning. From there, it was a battle with back pain and groin pain. He had x-rays and MRIs and even a surgical procedure for a sports hernia. During this time, the patient missed many baseball practices and a few games due to pain and injury.

The fall before his senior year of baseball we first met, and my evaluation revealed common findings with a strong, dynamic athlete who had spent years in a weight room — deficits in his ability to connect well between the chest and pelvis while moving freely through his hips. This combination not only causes a great deal of overload and stress on the back but also the adductor muscle group.

With the main issues identified, we set up a 4-phase plan that included: 

  1. Pain management
  2. Skill acquisition exercises — body awareness
  3. Skill application — more difficult exercises implementing now body awareness
  4. Skill strengthening exercises — actual performance movements with new awareness, coordination and strength

During this time, I also talked with him about what types of discomfort are okay to feel and what aren’t. We created a baseline activity level to start and gradually moved his exposure back to full load both in the weight room and on the field.

His plan also included daily warm up and cool down routines to reinforce the new movements we were working on, which also helped to prepare him for the movements required during lifting, practices and games.

Post program, the player was able to participate in every practice and game at 100%.

Now, let’s get to the numbers you’re most interested in — the on-field results.

Before the program and during his pain years are listed first, followed by the after-treatment numbers of his senior season.

Batting avg: .271, .325, .330
After Treatment: .369

Slg %: .375, .629, .494
After Treatment: .692

OB %: .331, .391, .376
After Treatment: .446

HR: 3, 16, 7
After Treatment: 18

RBI: 18, 55, 51
After Treatment: 48

H: 39, 64, 77
After Treatment: 79




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