A Biomechanical Comparison of Pitching from a Mound Versus Flat Ground in Adolescent Baseball Pitchers

A Biomechanical Comparison of Pitching from a Mound Versus Flat Ground in Adolescent Baseball Pitchers

(Nissen et al.; Sports Health; November 2013)

  • The fastball pitching motions of 15 adolescent baseball pitchers, including upper extremity kinematics and kinetics and lead- and trail-leg kinematics, were evaluated while pitching from the mound and flat ground. Student t tests were used to determine the differences between the 2 testing conditions.
  • Maximum external glenohumeral rotation was similar between the 2 conditions (134° ± 14° mound vs 133° ± 14° flat ground, P = 0.10). Ankle plantar flexion of the lead leg at ball release was greater in the flat-ground condition (-20° ± 10° mound vs -15° ± 12° flat ground, P = 0.01). A statistically significant increase in glenohumeral internal rotation moment (33.6 ± 12.1 Nm mound vs 31.7 ± 11.6 Nm flat ground, P = 0.01) and an increase in elbow varus moment (33.3 ± 12.3 Nm mound vs 31.4 ± 11.8 Nm flat ground, P = 0.02) was measured when pitching from the mound as compared with flat ground.
  • Pitching from the mound causes increased stress on the shoulder and elbow of adolescent pitchers as compared with that from flat ground.