Sports personalities are generally instructed to keep a check on the positions of their body parts to prevent injuries. According to scientists at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, the position of the elbow may not be an indicator of injury.

As part of the analysis, 55 collegiate-level male pitchers who targeted a fastball in the direction of a target 60’6” away, were incorporated. By means of a Vicon 512 motion capture system, their kinematic data was gathered. The team used custom Matlab programming related to inverse dynamic techniques, for determining the aforesaid information regarding the subjects.

“The elbow’s position in relation to an injury and enhanced performance in baseball pitchers is highly dependent upon the trunk’s position. Our research showed that the pitching motion is complex and a direct relationship between true elbow position and how much stress is placed on a joint does not appear to exist,” commented lead researcher, Carl W. Nissen, MD of Elite Sports Medicine and Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in Farmington, CT.

The results of the study showed that the placement of the elbow was apparently not associated with increased rates of injury. This was precisely because the elbow drop or drag did not appear to be linked to elbow stress. However, with regards to pitcher performance, elbow position could be crucial. Essentially, the findings showed that a correlation between elbow position and injury seemed to be dependent on the placement of the trunk.

The study was presented at the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine’s Specialty Day in San Francisco, CA.