The effectiveness of proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation exercises on shoulder joint position sense in baseball players

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athletic training , 2003
Kitano, Ichiro
The purpose of this study was to determine if shoulder joint position sense (JPS) before and after a throwing bout could be improved with a 6-week Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) intervention for collegiate baseball players. A total of 12 subjects (age = 21.25 ± 1.22 years, height = 184.15±5.5 cm, weight = 88.94 ± 11.7 kg) were randomly placed into the control or PNF intervention group. The subjects in PNF intervention group performed PNF diagonal 1 (Dl) and 2 (D2) pattern exercises of the upper extremity with maximal repeated exercises three times per week for six weeks. Shoulder JPS was measured at two reference angles, at 10± from full external rotation (ER) and 60± of internal rotation (IR), as shoulder proprioception through active reproduction of active positioning (ARAP) with a Kinesthesiometer (Lafayette Instrument Co, Lafayette, IN). Analysis of Variance for shoulder JPS revealed no significant difference for shoulder JPS between PNF intervention and control groups across testing day and testing conditions. No significant interaction was found for treatment intervention groups by testing days by testing conditions. Additionally, no significant (p > .05) main effects were found for treatment intervention groups across testing days and conditions. Improving shoulder JPS through long term PNF exercise training in overhead throwing athletes is still unclear. Further research is needed to determine the effectiveness of PNF exercises to enhance proprioceptive abilities of the shoulder in collegiate baseball players.