Best Core Workouts For Baseball Players
Having a strong core is one of the most important parts of being an athlete in any sport. However, it is especially important for baseball players, as almost every move in the game of baseball involves using the core in some capacity. Catching, throwing, and even running requires the use of the core, and as such, when you strengthen your core, you are giving yourself the ability to improve every aspect of your game. Having a strong core also decreases your risk of injury. In addition to these benefits of having a strong core, there are innumerable other positives, including:
- Improved balance
- Increased control
- Increased stability
- Increased power in the arms and legs
Because of all of these benefits, it is important that players understand what the best core workouts for baseball are and that they incorporate these workouts into their daily fitness routines.
Workouts to Try:
Now that we’ve detailed all of the benefits of having a strong core as a baseball player, we’re sure that you’re interested in improving your core strength. Luckily, there is plenty of core workouts for baseball players that are extremely effective. We have included what we believe to be the seven most beneficial of these exercises below.
The side bridge is an extremely simple core exercise for baseball players that effectively strengthens the core and the back. In order to do this exercise, you simply lie on your side with your legs straight and on top of each other. You should then use your forearm region to hold your body off of the ground. You can begin by holding this position for 20 seconds on each side and then gradually work to increase the time that you can hold the position.
Though they are similar to traditional crunches, side crunches work the muscles on the sides of the abdomen. This is extremely important for baseball players, as having strong oblique muscles helps to increase the speed at which you can swing the bat. In order to do this exercise, you should lie on your side with your knees bent and on top of each other. Once you do this, you should perform the crunch motion by raising your torso off of the ground repetitively. A good starting point for this exercise is to complete 20 repetitions on both sides. As you continue to train, you can begin increasing the number of repetitions that you complete.
The elbow plank is included in almost every core routine, and there is a reason for this. This exercise works muscles in the front of the abdomen, the sides of the abdomen, and the back, and as such, it is a vital core workout for baseball players. To do this exercise, start on your knees with your forearms on the floor. When you are ready to begin, move your feet back until your legs are straight and you are holding yourself up using your forearms. In order to improve the effectiveness of this exercise, you should keep your back flat and your elbows shoulder-width apart. There are many different time intervals for which you can hold this position. We recommend doing three repetitions of this exercise, holding it each time for 60 seconds. As you progress through your training, you can either add more repetitions or hold each repetition for a longer period of time.
Because bicycle crunches strengthen your oblique muscles, they are immensely beneficial for baseball players. According to ACE (the American Council on Exercise), the bicycle crunch is the best exercise for abdominal muscles. To do this exercise, you should begin on your back with your legs bent, just as you would begin traditional crunches. You should then put your hands behind your head with your elbows bent outwards. To begin, you straighten one leg while bringing the other bent leg closer to your head. You should do a crunch motion and bring the opposite elbow to the bent leg. We recommend doing this exercise for 30 seconds. If that becomes too easy, you can increase the time for which you do this exercise.
Mountain Climbers are an extremely beneficial core exercise for baseball players, as they help improve core strength, agility, and speed. To begin this exercise, begin in a plank position with your arms straight and shoulder-width apart. You should then alternate bringing your knees towards your body by bending them in the direction of the opposite elbow. This exercise should be performed quickly in order to achieve the best results possible. We recommend doing this exercise for 30 seconds when you are beginning and then gradually increasing your time.
Russian Twists have a great deal of health benefits that can be extremely important for baseball players who are looking to improve their game. The primary areas worked by Russian Twists include the core, obliques, and back. Additionally, Russian Twists help to improve balance and stabilize the spine. To start a Russian Twist, you should sit on the floor with your legs in front of you slightly bent. When you are ready to begin, you should lean back, and lift your legs slightly off of the floor, creating a v-shape with your body. You should then twist your core from side to side. To increase the intensity of this workout, you can hold a weight if you wish. We recommend beginning with 3 repetitions of 10 twists and then working your way up to either more repetitions or more twists per repetition.
Heel Tap Crunches
Though the lower abdominal muscles can be difficult to exercise, heel tap crunches specifically target this region. Having strong lower abdominal muscles is extremely important, as this region helps to strengthen the spine. In order to do heel tap crunches, you should start by lying on your back with your knees bent, just as you would begin traditional crunches. You should then lift your shoulders and bend from side to side to reach your ankles with the same hand. You can increase or decrease the difficulty of this exercise by moving your feet either further away or closer to your body, respectively. You should seek to begin with 30 repetitions of this exercise. When you feel that becoming easier, you can increase your number of repetitions.
Cool Down and Recovery:
Almost as important as the workout itself is the following cooldown and recovery. When you exercise, your heart rate increases and cooldowns help to ensure that it returns to its resting rate. If you do not cool down, you are subject to dizziness, or even fainting, due to your heart rate decreasing too quickly. Additionally, skipping a cooldown could potentially lead to Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). DOMS occurs when an individual experiences discomfort in their muscles 24-48 hours after a workout. This can be painful for the individual and can prevent them from being able to exercise for a few days, hindering their fitness process. Cooling down is also extremely important to ensure that your body is able to get rid of any lactic acid buildup that occurred during your workout. Lactic acid buildup can lead to feelings of soreness, which can decrease the quality of future performances.
There are many ways that you can effectively cool down after your core workout to ensure that you are getting the best workout possible. The first of these ways is to stretch statically. Stretching after a workout can help prevent injuries and increase your flexibility. Additionally, some light cardiovascular exercise can be very beneficial. We recommend either walking or doing a very light jog, either outside or on the treadmill, or doing a low-intensity routine on a stationary bike. Cooldowns should last anywhere from 5 minutes to 20 minutes.
Another vital part of working out and achieving your goals is recovery. Though we know that as an athlete, you are motivated to continue working constantly, it is important to give your body a rest. Resting and recovering are especially important after a difficult workout, as you put your body through a great deal of stress. Recovery can help prevent injuries and ensure that whenever your next workout, your body is fully ready for the challenge.
Core workouts for baseball players are extremely important, as the core is involved in all aspects of the sport. There are many ways to strengthen your core, and we have included seven of the most effective ways in this article. We hope that these suggestions are helpful and that they will help you to improve your overall game and athletic performance.