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J Athl Train. 1993 Winter; 28(4): 346, 348-350, 352-354.
PMCID: PMC1317739

Posterior Rotator Cuff Strengthening Using Theraband® in a Functional Diagonal Pattern in Collegiate Baseball Pitchers

Phillip A. Page, MS, ATC, EMT, LAT
Phillip A. Page is Physical Therapy Student at Louisiana State University, New Orleans, LA 70112-2262.
John Lamberth, PhD
John Lamberth is Assistant Professor at Mississippi State University.
Ben Abadie, EdD
Ben Abadie is Assistant Professor at Mississippi State University.
Robert Boling, PhD
Robert Boling is Assistant Professor at Mississippi State University.
Robert Collins, MD
Robert Collins is Team Physician at Mississippi State University.


The deceleration phase of the pitching mechanism requires forceful eccentric contraction of the posterior rotator cuff. Because traditional isotonic strengthening may not be specific to this eccentric pattern, a more effective and functional means of strengthening the posterior rotator cuff is needed. Twelve collegiate baseball pitchers performed a moderate intensity isotonic dumbbell strengthening routine for 6 weeks. Six of the 12 subjects were randomly assigned to an experimental group and placed on a Theraband® Elastic Band strengthening routine in a functional-diagonal pattern to emphasize the eccentric contraction of the posterior rotator cuff, in addition to the isotonic routine. The control group (n = 6) performed only the isotonic exercises. Both groups were evaluated on a KIN-COM® isokinetic dynamometer in a functional diagonal pattern. Pretest and posttest average eccentric force production of the posterior rotator cuff was compared at two speeds, 60 and 180°/s. Data were analyzed with an analysis of covariance at the .05 level with significance at 60°/s. Values at 180°/s, however, were not significant. Eccentric force production at 60°/s increased more during training in the experimental group (+19.8%) than in the control group (-1.6%). There was no difference in the two groups at 180°/s; both decreased (8 to 15%). Theraband was effective at 60°/s in functional eccentric strengthening of the posterior rotator cuff in the pitching shoulder.

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Selected References

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Articles from Journal of Athletic Training are provided here courtesy of National Athletic Trainers Association