Should my baseball athlete be icing their shoulder every day?

Therapeutic Associates
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My 15 year old son is a catcher for high school baseball team. He has caught 8/10 games so far. He didn’t play in the game a few days ago because he said his arm is hurting. He thought he would be OK with only 1 day of rest between games last week, but he sat out the entire game. Should he be icing his arm everyday after throwing or should he be icing everyday regardless if he throws or not? I have read conflicting reports that say icing is not good for recovery.

Disclaimer: Please note, this reply is for informational purposes only. It’s not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician, physical therapist, or other qualified health provider with a medical condition.

Things to Know

  • Icing is a helpful tool to manage inflammation and its associated pains.
  • The pain that he is experiencing in the shoulder could be associated with a wide array of causes.
  • A PT can identify exactly what the injured tissues are and how we can further treat them.

Without doing an examination it is hard to comment on your son’s condition, but we can provide some general information regarding his pain. 

In general we can say that icing is a helpful tool to manage inflammation and its associated pains. 

The pain that he is experiencing in the shoulder could be associated with a wide array of causes. Some of these include:

  •  general muscles soreness 
  • strains and sprains of muscles and ligaments 
  • other potentially more serious traumas

These tissues can take anywhere from weeks to months to heal. We recommend that your son been seen by a trained physical therapist to get a better picture of the problem. A PT is well trained in assessing these types of conditions using a thorough process that can help identify exactly what the injured tissues are and how we can further treat them. They can also help you figure out if your son requires further assessment by another medical provider. 

In the meantime icing should not exceed 15-20 minute intervals greater than once every few hours. It is recommended to use a barrier between the ice and the skin.

We’ve provided links to additional resources below.

Shoulder-Pain-Doing-Pushups---Physical-Therapy-Treatment

Shoulder Strengthening for Baseball 

Shoulder strengthening can help reduce the risk of injury and soreness after throwing. Follow this 4-week shoulder program to help build shoulder strength and coordination for baseball or softball players of any age. All exercises can be done from your own home with limited time and equipment.

Read More »
Dynamic Warmup Baseball

Dynamic Warm Ups for Baseball

Dynamic stretching is becoming more commonplace in professional and collegiate athletics, and a trickle down has been seen in high school and youth athletics as well. It is based on repetitive completion of whole body movement patterns in order to increase blood flow to the muscles.

Read More »

Experts in Sports Injury Recovery

We are committed to providing effective, efficient, and compassionate care to help you return to pain-free sport. Our passion is to help every patient reach their goals on their journey to recovery and optimal performance.

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