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Spring Sports: 9 Stretches and Exercises to Prepare for Baseball Season

Stretches and workouts for baseball players


While regular exercise offers many benefits to your overall health, baseball season comes with the extra perk of playing your favorite game while enjoying beautiful weather. But without the right baseball exercises to balance out the body, this enjoyable spectator sport can lead to chronic injuries.

Let’s unpack nine essential baseball stretches and exercises in this one-stop guide for baseball players ready to tackle a “batter”-than-average season.

Benefits of Getting Ready for Spring Season Early

Preparing for baseball season early has tremendous benefits for players, both physical and mental.

By starting early, players can:

  • Gradually build up their strength, flexibility, and endurance, which can help prevent injuries later on. 
  • Develop good habits, such as eating a healthy diet and getting enough sleep, which can benefit long-term health. It takes 21 days to ingrain a habit, so the earlier you start, the further along you’ll be.
  • Get into the right mindset for the season, which helps players stay motivated and focused throughout the year. 

So if you're excited about baseball, start hitting the gym as early as possible and enjoy the many health benefits of the season! 

Best Stretches for Pitchers 

Injuries are scarce if you can stick to a solid baseball stretching routine. These three stretches for pitchers also work for all players in the infield and outfield. 

1. The Towel Stretch

The towel stretch is a great way to improve the shoulder's range of motion and flexibility. It involves a strap, towel, or anything with enough length being dropped down the middle of the back behind the neck. The stretched arm should be internally rotated with the palm facing backward and the opposite arm above the head to give a deep stretch. If the non-throwing arm goes way beyond the throwing arm, this indicates tightness in the throwing arm, and work needs to be done to get it loose. Without the necessary attention, tendonitis could develop over time. 

2. Chest Stretch

Chest stretching can be done with or without a partner. With a partner, raise your arms away from the body in a sideways direction and have your partner pull both arms back simultaneously. Without a partner, find a door and put your entire arm along the frame. Take a small step forward, lean against the wall, and rotate your body to the side of the leg you've moved forward. Stay in this position for about 20 seconds before repeating the process on the opposite side. Our guide to cool down stretches can be a great guide when practicing chest stretches.

3. Arm and Shoulder Circles

Arm and shoulder circles are a rather basic and simple starter exercise, but they will still get the upper part of the body moving and working. It's a perfect way to start your baseball stretching routine before moving on to more demanding stretches and exercises. Standing straight, start making circular motions with your shoulders, moving them up and back slowly and methodically. Once the shoulders are warm, bring the whole arm into the activity. Again, begin slowly and build speed as the muscles warm. Learn more about this and other good beginner workouts with our guide to warm up stretches.

Best Strength Training for Batting 

Becoming a confident batter—and besting last season’s average—comes down to strength and explosivity. These three baseball strength training activities will build muscles strong enough to knock every ball out of the park. 

4. Plyo Push Ups 

Plyo Push-Ups are preferable to a simple bench press as they take the shoulder through a larger range of motion without the stress of heavy weight. To perform, energetically extend arms from the lowest point of a push-up and land with hands shoulder-width apart. This exercise develops the chest explosiveness that baseball players need for powerful hitting. Check out our full guide to pushups for more tips.

5. The Twist

This exercise focuses on a batter’s core muscles, which are crucial for transferring power created by the lower body into the upper body. 

To perform this exercise, lay on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Place your hands behind your head, keeping your elbows wide. Next, lift your shoulders off the ground and twist your torso to the right, bringing your left elbow to your right knee. Hold this position for a few seconds before returning to the starting position. Repeat on the other side by twisting your torso to the left and bringing your right elbow to your left knee. Remember to keep your core engaged throughout the exercise and avoid pulling on your neck with your hands.

Our guide to core exercises is a great place to discover more exercises to help improve your swing.

6. Band Face Pulls 

Band Face Pulls help baseball players strengthen the muscles that stretch from the upper back to the shoulder blades, which can lead to injury to the rotator cuff. To perform, hold resistance bands in front of the face with arms extended out, thumbs pointed, and shoulder blades pinched. Slowly pull your hands toward your face. Complete three sets of eight reps each.

Expand your shoulder exercise know-how with our 3 favorite shoulder workouts for beginners.

More of the Best Workouts for Baseball Season

Looking for more of the best baseball exercises to keep you fit this season? It’s tough to pick our favorite baseball workouts, but these three are crowd-pleasers.

7. Lateral Bound

A lateral bound, like the plyo pushup described earlier, is a plyometric exercise, a form of exercise that involves rapid and repeated stretching and contracting of the muscles, designed to increase strength.

The lateral bound helps to improve lateral stability and power. To perform one, start standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, then jump laterally to one side while swinging your arms for momentum and landing on the opposite foot.

8. Sprinter Starts

Sprinter starts are an exercise that sharpens an underrated baseball skill: improved acceleration. To perform this exercise, begin in a runners’ starting position with elbows extended. Next, fire your legs explosively, using your arms for momentum. Drive your feet hard into the ground, in a piston-like motion, as you run about 10 yards. Afterward, rest for 30 seconds, then repeat for five reps.

9. Rowing Machine

A strong upper back is imperative for a good baseball season, and the rowing machine targets all the muscles you need to strengthen. To use the rowing machine, sit with your feet securely strapped in, grab the handles with an overhand grip, and push back with your legs while pulling the handles towards your chest. Keep your back straight and engage your core muscles for maximum effectiveness. It’s easy to fall in love with the rowing machine once you start. Check out our guide for beginners to craft your own rowing machine workout.

If you’re looking for a gym home run to perfect your baseball strength training and stretches, visit your local Planet Fitness, where memberships start at just $10 a month. Or get started now for free on the PF App