Thoracic Spine Mobility & Its impact on the Shoulder

Thoracic Spine The thoracic spine is situated between the cervical spine (neck) and lumbar spine (low back). The primary osteokinematic function (movement of bones) of the thoracic spine is rotation and, to a smaller degree, extension (bending the spine backward) and lateral bending. All strokes in tennis require some degree of rotation and extension. Inadequate mobility of the thoracic spine may have a deleterious effect upon the shoulder and reduction in stroke power output. Distribution of Spinal Movement in all…

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Utilizing the Kinetic Chain to Increase Serve Velocity while Protecting the Shoulder
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Utilizing the Kinetic Chain to Increase Serve Velocity while Protecting the Shoulder

Lower extremity injuries are common among all levels and ages of tennis players. In fact, some reports suggest as much as 67% of all tennis injuries are lower extremity related (1). More specifically, adductor (groin) strains are listed as one of the most frequent injuries in elite junior tennis players (2,3). Adductor strains occur during movements involving quick acceleration or rapid change of direction when paired with extreme hip abduction, such as split type movements in which the leg moves away from the body, or also large hip external rotation. Combined injury of the hamstrings and hip adductor muscles - respectively, the semimembranosus, and adductor mangus and longus - has been observed during a split type movement in sports such as tennis (4). These movements happen most frequently on surfaces with less friction such as clay. Increased prevalence of adductor strains is often anecdotally associate with increased sliding side-to-side during play.

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Groin Injury Prevention for Tennis Athletes

Lower extremity injuries are common among all levels and ages of tennis players. In fact, some reports suggest as much as 67% of all tennis injuries are lower extremity related (1). More specifically, adductor (groin) strains are listed as one of the most frequent injuries in elite junior tennis players (2,3). Adductor strains occur during movements involving quick acceleration or rapid change of direction when paired with extreme hip abduction, such as split type movements in which the leg moves away from the body, or also large hip external rotation. Combined injury of the hamstrings and hip adductor muscles - respectively, the semimembranosus, and adductor mangus and longus - has been observed during a split type movement in sports such as tennis (4). These movements happen most frequently on surfaces with less friction such as clay. Increased prevalence of adductor strains is often anecdotally associate with increased sliding side-to-side during play.

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