What is Functional Range Conditioning and CARs... and why do we use them for our Baseball Athlete’s?

It is through these CARs (Controlled Articular Rotations) that we are able to see where your body has not only a dysfunctional / decreased range of motion but also what your body does to compensate for the lack of motion or articulate capabilities that the joint should be capable of.

But to understand this you must understand what your joints are – only then can you understand how they function – Your joints are a series of bones and connective tissues surrounded by a capsule that allows the bones to move or ARTICULATE independently of each other.

Each joint has an optimal level of total “articulation” that it should be capable of producing – which is the foundation of “articular capabilities” or what the performance industry and Baseball in general blanket statement as “mobility”

Dr. Spina defines these CARs as:

Active, rotational movements at the outer limits of articular motion.

So Why does rotating our hips, shoulders, any of our joints matter? Let’s start with the basics.

Assessment Before Prescription

First, in order to know the function of your joints, and what must be Prescribed to Develop them, we must first Assess them. One way to do this is through CARS. We can watch the rotation, and see where your body is compensating for the lack of “mobility” in your joints often times as seen in the video when trying to move one bone or joint many others are involuntarily included in the movement Because the joint of focus lacks the ability to move independently

The Joint Capsule

Secondly, your joints are enclosed in a Capsule. The capsule surrounding your joint is the fastest neurotransmitter in your whole body.This means that all human movement starts first with the function, strength and neurological response of the joint FIRST – before anything else.

So without supremely functioning joints – high performance movements like the pitch or swing are beginning with a series of compensations and deficient Motor patterns

The Aim of FRC

So what we aim to do with FRC is to create space within your joint so you can have a healthy joint capsule and to use isometrics (PAILS/RAILS, PALS/RALS, Hovers) to activate the motor neurons within your joints and to strengthen your joints.

This allows you to not only be mobile and achieve more extreme joint positions and ranges BUT to also to have strength and force production capabilities in all areas of your joints achievable range of motion. This is the most science based method of Developing Baseball Specific Mobility – and the ONLY method we use at S8.

As a baseball player This will allow you to transfer more power up the “kinetic chain” not just faster but more explosively as well since your joints are functioning at top capacity.


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