Return to Throwing Safely
We know what it will be like. You’ve been waiting to play dodgeball for an entire year and as soon as you get an opportunity to play you’ll want to play with 100% intensity from the get go! We all get carried away. But as we all know, the throwing action puts a lot of strain through your shoulder and elbow. Doing this safely is so important to prevent injury.
That’s why we’ve teamed up with dodgeball-god Alex Harrison to put together this return to throwing guide to help you prepare your body for when indoor dodgeball returns.
Why this plan is useful:
We want to help you avoid busting your shoulder early and so you don’t battle through the pain for the rest of the season.
There's a lot of research around how long it takes to build up your "throwing load" after an extended period away from throwing. So, we have combined research and our knowledge of dodgeball to come up with this plan.
Fundamentally, this plan is a recommendation on how you can build up your throwing load safely, so that when indoor dodgeball returns, your body is ready.
We’ve broken it down into three simple chunks over the next few months so it’s easy to follow. You can also download a version of the full calendar at the end of the blog.
Throughout April you will need to build up your load slowly as this will be when your shoulder is most vulnerable. On your rest days, utilise the ‘throwers 10’ list of exercises shown here (Throwers 10 Exercise Program - YouTube) to really stabilise your throwing muscles and reduce the risk of injury.
Remember, take it easy. We’re building it up slowly.
May is the time to get zen and strengthen other parts of your body as you increase the power of your throws. Increasing power will increase the stress on other areas of your body, so you should start to incorporate unilateral exercises (10 Best Unilateral Exercises | T Nation (t-nation.com)) into your routine as well as continuing with the ‘throwers 10’ exercises.
If you don’t have access to all the equipment here, don’t worry. Try to improvise and use other equipment available to you.
Now we’re talking! By June you should be feeling good and getting back up to 100%. Make sure you recognise the importance of warming up properly and recovery after your sessions. This is critical to maintaining a strong and healthy body and to prevent injury ongoing.
We recommend continuing these exercises permanently as you don’t want to lose the gains you’ve worked so hard to achieve.
And there you have it! Now, this guide is a recommendation, it’s not exact science. However, the combined years of experience that Alex, Mark & Henry support the recommendations we’ve made here. It is also important to listen to what your body is telling you and be sensible in your return to dodgeball. Do not expect to be as strong as you were in your last session. It can take time.