As medical professionals, we need to take the lead in the implementation of preventative and corrective exercises with our athletes. Too many times, we sit back and pretend that we do not see the problems right in front of our faces. Our job is as much about the prevention of injuries as it is treating the injured. We need to use our knowledge to advise coaches and athletes. It’s time to be proactive, rather than reactive.
The shoulder is the most mobile joint in the body which makes it one of the most vulnerable to injury. There is a mountain of evidence and research supporting preventative exercise programs and their effectiveness in reducing injuries in overhead athletes. One example is the 5-year Major League Baseball study showing that preseason weakness of External Rotation and Supraspinatus strength is associated with in-season throwing-related injury resulting in surgical intervention in professional baseball pitchers. There are many programs and exercise routines available to sports medicine professionals, however many of these programs fall short based on functionality, exercise sequence, and ease of use. Effective shoulder care programs should be: evidence and research supported, simple yet comprehensive, well structured, versatile, practical, efficient and address scapula stabilization as well as the rotator cuff function. All of these criteria are met with the Crossover Symmetry System.
Crossover Symmetry has been proven to effectively treat shoulder pathologies in overhead athletes but is even more valuable when being used as a preventative program. It is important to note there is a side effect….performance enhancement, which I am sure the coaches and athletes won’t mind. The Crossover Symmetry System was developed based upon EMG analysis of the shoulder musculature and the positioning of athletic movement. These exercises were then sequenced to facilitate scapular activation before progressing to the rotator cuff exercises, thus providing a solid foundation for the rotator cuff to function.
The Crossover Symmetry exercises are clearly illustrated on an aluminum exercise chart enabling athletes to efficiently perform the prescribed protocol with the proper resistance. The system includes custom outdoor resistance cords with sleeved coverings to protect users in the case of cord breakage and also increases the lifespan of the cords up to 5x that of conventional therapy cords.
How does the system fit on the field and the training room?
- Foundational shoulder program
- Using the system as a blueprint, the Athletic Trainer can individualize the rehab based on the athlete’s injury, pain, progress, etc.
- Bridges gap between rehab and sport performance drills.
- Transitions the recovering athletes from a treatment table onto their feet.
- Connects the kinetic chain with appropriate gravitational forces and sensory-motor feedback.
- Rapid return to sport, assess severity of injury, and quicker intervention
- Use of our Red Flag Screen to assess severity of injury and instruction on exercise modification.
- Key to rapid return is firing inhibited muscles through neuromuscular scap/cuff activation.
- Preventative Program
- Daily use has been proven to decrease the incidence of shoulder injuries in overhead athletes.
- Each phase of the system can be completed in 3 to 5 minutes on the field. The system is also portable and can travel with the team.