The Baseball Zone Blog

Rick Johnston | May 20, 2017 6:53:12 PM

Get Sweaty to Get Ready - If You Want to be a Better Hitter

HEY HITTERS!!! As we've discussed in previous posts, "Show & Go" with no warm up simply does not work. It is a recipe for disaster and injury. The key to an effective warm up is simply this:

"Get Sweaty to Get Ready"

How do we do this? It is actually easier than you would think. Implement a system of exercises to WAKE UP the body and get it ready for action. If you don’t WAKE IT UP, then don’t expect it to be ready for the toughest task in all of sports...hitting a baseball. A sweaty body is a heated body with muscles able to fire. Cold bodies can’t fire with any type of explosiveness. A cold car in minus temperatures when started, barely turns over and sputters. If you immediately drive away, it will sputter until the engine warms up, then presto, it runs like it should... smooth and fluid, just like a hitter's swing should be... smooth and fluid, with no choppiness, sputters or hesitations.

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Topics: warming up, hitting instruction, baseball exercise, baseball pregame, baseball injury, baseball fundamentals, injury prevention, baseball warm up

The Baseball Zone | May 17, 2017 10:48:00 AM

Not Doing a Great BASEBALL WARM-UP?

The old show-and-go is good enough for you? Kind of reminds us of...

  • Driving a race car with the emergency brake on…
  • Writing an exam without studying…
  • Riding a bike with flat tires… you’re just not pumped up!
  • Skydiving without a parachute… only a matter of time before you crash.
  • Fishing with no bait…
  • Using a flashlight with no batteries…
  • Driving a beat up old car… you may get where you’re going but you won't be winning any races and you could break down at anytime.

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Topics: warming up, baseball, baseball warm up

Courtney Plewes | Oct 14, 2015 11:55:00 AM

Mobility vs Flexibility and Why it Matters to Baseball Players

With the changing of the seasons outside comes a subsequent change in training seasons, where many summer sports are transitioning into their off-season. As athletes start to file in from a long summer of playing the sport they love, a common theme emerges - these athletes cannot move. They have experienced a significant reduction in their mobility. As I watch them perform their dynamic warm-ups I notice shorter strides, grimacing faces, partial ranges of motion…I could go on and on. It is tough to watch because I know that it is going to take some time to work through these mobility issues before we can get to the phase where we make them better than last season. With off-seasons becoming increasingly shorter, valuable non-competitve training time is being wasted regaining lost mobility instead of being used to make serious physical gains. 

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Topics: warming up, in-season strength training, off-season strength training, baseball off-season, injury prevention, baseball warm up, ankle mobility, ankle mobs, glenohumeral joint, mobility, sports performance, flexibility, range of motion, hip mobility, thoracic mobility, shoulder stability, shoulder mobility

Courtney Plewes | Oct 5, 2015 5:23:00 PM

8 Baseball Strength Training Lessons From the Cressey Elite Mentorship

On June 14-16th of this year I was fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to attend the Elite Baseball Mentorship program at Eric Cressey’s training center in Hudson, MA. For those of you who don’t know who Eric is you can check out his website here. Basically he is THE go-to-guy in the USA for high school, college and professional baseball players.

For those of you who have been to our facility here at The Baseball Zone you will be happy to know that our facilities were almost identical, only opposite in a way! I mean that Cressey’s gym is 15,000 sq. ft. with the majority of his facility being designated for strength and conditioning with two bullpen lanes; while ours is 15,000 sq. ft. with about 3,500 sq. ft. of that being strength and conditioning and the rest baseball.

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Topics: warming up, strength training, in-season strength training, baseball strength training, strength training for baseball, off-season strength training, baseball exercise, pitching, speed, speed training, baseball speed, med ball drills, throwing skills, prowler training, prehab, baseball warm up, pitching mechanics, shoulder strength, biomechanics, sprinting speed, explosive strength, mobility, sled sprints, performance training, sports performance, strength and conditioning, elite baseball mentorship, cressey sports performance, eric cressey, athlete assessments, squat, pressing exercises, power, cleans

Ryan Armstrong | Aug 6, 2015 11:02:49 AM

My Thoughts on Cressey Sports Performance's Elite Baseball Mentorship

I was fortunate enough to have attended Cressey Sports Performance's Elite Baseball Mentorship program this past June in the Boston area along with fellow team members here at The Baseball Zone / SST Mississauga, Courtney Plewes and Rick Johnston (pictured L to R with Eric Cressey). This program has provided me with insight that gave me a better understanding of how the body works from a biomechanical perspective. This particular workshop was focused on the upper extremities, especially the elbow and shoulder, two areas that go without saying are extremely important to pitchers - and all throwers - in terms of performance, injury prevention & rehabilitation.

Here is a brief outline of the program and some of my own thoughts:

Day 1: We examined how the shoulder complex should function by looking at movement and symmetry with various athletes. Later that day we went onto the floor and watched assessments performed by Eric Cressey and Eric Schoenberg. Although this may not be my particular area of expertise I learned more about how the body moves so I can better serve our throwers here at The Baseball Zone as well as share this information with our staff.

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Topics: baseball coaching, rehab, pitching, elbow injury, shoulder injury, pitching injuries, injury prevention, elbow strength, baseball warm up, weighted balls, shoulder strength, biomechanics, pitching preparation, sports performance, notre dame, elite baseball mentorship, cressey sports performance, eric cressey, eric schoenberg, matt blake, athlete assessments, boston college, oklahoma state, cape cod league

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