Improving Athletic Performance Part 1 (Youth Baseball Players)

Hey guys, this is Coach Chad here at Back In Motion, and today, I'm going to talk to you about how to increase performance in youth baseball players specifically.

The big thing I want to touch upon is strengthening the lower body because that's where baseball players are going to get all their power from when you're throwing a ball, especially when they're pitching or catching.

The lower half of the body is where athletes are getting all their explosion and power to increase that velocity.

So here are a couple of lower body exercises to help increase your athlete's explosion and power in baseball.

Strengthen Lower Body Exercises

Reverse Lunge

This is a great exercise to open up those hips and get more power and explosion through those hips. You're also going to get a lot of power from the hamstrings, the glutes, the quads.

So all you're going to do is, you're going to start bodyweight first off.

  1. Stand upright, with your hands at your hips.
  2. Take a large step backward with your left foot.
  3. Lower your hips so that your right thigh (front leg) becomes parallel to the floor with your right knee positioned directly over your ankle.

Now, if you want to make this harder, we can go front rack position where we grabbed two dumbbells, we load them right here on the shoulders.

This is also going to increase core stability as well because that weight is going to want to try to pull you forward.


Now another great exercise is just traditional squats.

So keeping that butt up, chest up, and then coming back up. The same thing, we can do a front rack squat for that as well, which is going to also increase core stability.

  1. Stand straight with feet hip-width apart. …
  2. Tighten your stomach muscles. …
  3. Lower down, as if sitting in an invisible chair. …
  4. Straighten your legs to lift back up. …
  5. Repeat the movement.

Box Jumps

And the last thing is box squats, okay?

By just exploding onto the box and landing nice and softly, that's going to increase explosion to the hips as well.

  1. Load slowly by squatting to just above parallel and bring arms back behind hips to help launch off the ground.
  2. Explode with a strong forward-arm swing, and tuck the knees after you've fully extended your legs.
  3. Land on the box softly, in the same squat depth you jumped with.

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Core Stability Exercises

We want to be able to stand up nice and tall, get a lot of power through that core because that's going to help translate to getting more power to those hips and those legs for a baseball player.

Pallof Press

  1. The wrist band is going to sit right in front of me.
  2. You're going to come up and then chop down. Come up and then chop down.
  3. Engage your core and stand tall
  4. Hold this position, resisting the pull of the cable and not letting your torso rotate towards the machine, for five to ten seconds then bring the handle back into your chest.

Now the resistance is going to want to pull you this way, but you want to stand up nice and tall, working on the stability of the core.

To make this exercise harder, we're going to do this in an inline position.

So we're going to have one foot in front and one foot behind. This is going to increase balance, but also again, stability.

Unilateral Farmer Carry

This is a great exercise to work on grip strength, but also core stability as well.

So the whole goal here is you're going to have the weight right by your side.

I want it to be heavy, but not too challenging with the way it's going to pull you down like this.

  1. You want to be able to stand up nice and tall.
  2. Hold the weight by your side and walk.
  3. Keep that chest up nice and tall.

And then once you get to a certain distance, you're going to change hands and do the same thing.

This is a full-body exercise, which is going to work your legs as well, but also really work on that core and keeping that good posture.

Moving In Different Planes Exercise

The last and final exercise to make more performance in a baseball player is working in different planes of motion.

Not only working in the sagittal plane but also working in transverse and frontal.

So coming in forward like this and rotating. Doing lateral rotation, backward rotation.

Those are all great ways to increase planes of motion because in baseball, we're not always working at one plane of motion. We're working in different planes of motion as well.

So always changing up the plane is always great to increase overall performance in baseball.


So that's the three things, strength, core stability, and working in different planes of motion is going to increase overall performance in youth baseball players.

Give these exercises a try with your athlete and comment below if they were beneficial for your athlete's performance!

If you need more expert advice, feel free to reach out to us at our office by calling 239-829-6215.

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About the Author: Dr. Scott Gray

Dr. Scott Gray is the Owner of Back in Motion Physical Therapy & Performance. Each and Every Week He Helps His Clients & Patients Live Their Life to the Fullest, Get Active, and Get Pain-Free.
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