Explore UPMC.com
Show the Banner?

Baseball and Softball Conditioning Workouts

Contact Us

To schedule an appointment with a physician or other Sports Medicine expert, call
1-855-93-SPORT (77678).

UPMC Rooney
Sports Complex
3200 S. Water St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15203

UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex
8000 Cranberry Springs Drive
Cranberry Township, PA 16066

Why Baseball and Softball Players Need Offseason Conditioning

Of the 30 million young athletes involved in organized sports today, nearly 300,000 suffer an injury each year playing baseball alone.

Today’s baseball and softball players often play year-round on many teams, allowing little time for rest.

This places a strain on the body and makes young athletes more likely to get overuse injuries in key areas, including:

  • Shoulder
  • Elbow
  • Core
  • Lower limbs

Conditioning exercises for baseball and softball players

Stretching is a vital part of your conditioning routine. It can help prevent injuries and improve performance.

When stretching, we advise athletes to perform 5 repetitions of each exercise holding the stretch for 30 seconds. Relax between each rep and set of exercises.

It's also important to stretch the muscle at its end range of motion.

For strengthening exercises, we suggest 8 to 15 repetitions per set.

As a general guideline, you should feel:

  • The muscle starting to “burn" around the eighth or ninth rep.
  • As though you want to put the resistance band or hand weight down by the twelfth rep.

Strengthening programs are most effective when targeted specifically for the demands of a sport.

Based on positions, baseball and softball strengthening exercises should focus on different areas of the body:

  • Pitchers need strong muscular endurance to be able to throw multiple innings.
  • Outfielders need a strong arm to make the cut-off or hit the catcher at home plate.
  • Middle infielders need to be able to throw quickly and accurately to make the double play.

Preventive exercises for baseball and softball players are:

  • Posterior capsule stretch
  • Sleeper stretch
  • External rotation at 90°
  • Internal rotation at 90°
  • Scapular plane elevation
  • Single arm row
  • Forearm pronation
  • Forearm supination
  • Wrist flexion
  • Resisted throwing
  • Front/prone plank

Check out these how-to videos for each baseball conditioning exercise. Share them with your players or teammates so they can have a productive and successful offseason.

A small amount of muscle soreness and fatigue is normal when starting a baseball or softball workout program. But, if you have lower back or joint pain that persists, stop the exercise program and see a sports medicine specialist.

Follow these preseason conditioning and in-season programs to maximize your performance and minimize baseball-related injuries.

Preseason Baseball Conditioning

Ideally, begin your preseason conditioning 8 to 12 weeks before your season starts.

Training Activity

What to Do

How Often


Baseball-specific exercises for:

  • Rotator cuff.
  • Shoulder girdle.
  • Forearm.
Speed and Agility 2 to 3 times per week.
  • Start with high reps, low intensity.
  • Progress to low reps, high intensity.
  • Vary reps and intensity from exercise to exercise. This addresses both endurance and power within the same workout.

These will help build fatigue-resistant muscle and increase power in the:

  • Rotator cuff, shoulder, girdle, and forearm.
  • Core.
  • Lower body.
3 to 4 times per week.
  • Begin with a good cool down after each workout.
  • For a more active recovery, add cross-training or pool workouts 1 to 2 times per week.
1 full day of complete rest per week.

In-season Baseball Conditioning Training

Training Activity

What to Do

How Often


Shoulder-specific exercises focusing on the:
  • Rotator cuff, all planes, especially internal and external rotation (with arm at side and at shoulder level).
  • Forearm and shoulder girdle (around shoulder blade).
2 times per week, but not before games or heavy practices.
  • Exercises for the core and lower body.
  • Maintenance strengthening of rotator cuff, all planes, especially internal and external rotation (with arm at side and at shoulder level).
1 to 2 times per week, but not before games or heavy practices.

Learn More About Preventing Baseball and Softball Injuries

UPMC's HealthBeat Blog:

From our Health Library:

Show the Feature Bar?

UPMC | Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences Supplemental content provided by Healthwise, Incorporated. To learn more, visit www.healthwise.org

For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

UPMC is an equal opportunity employer. UPMC policy prohibits discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, sex, genetics, sexual orientation, marital status, familial status, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected group status. Further, UPMC will continue to support and promote equal employment opportunity, human dignity, and racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity. This policy applies to admissions, employment, and access to and treatment in UPMC programs and activities. This commitment is made by UPMC in accordance with federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations.

Medical information made available on UPMC.com is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, UPMC.com is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

Pittsburgh, PA, USA | UPMC.com