Jaeger/Sullivan Return to Throwing Manual & Schedule
About Lesson


Listening to Your Arm and Body

 “Your Arm is the Boss”

— Deskaheh Bomberry, Sacramento City College, Pitching Coach

The ultimate goal of our Return To Throwing Schedule is to make it your own, by Self-Regulating as soon as possible. To Self-Regulate means to be completely in tune with your body and instincts. This may feel a bit foreign to you after going through a major surgery and months away from throwing, but the more you bring a great deal of awareness to how your body is feeling and adapting to new routines each day, the better you are going to understand what it means to Self-Regulate, and navigate this entire Throwing Schedule. Especially as you begin to get into a consistent rhythm with the way the Throwing Schedule gradually progresses.

Though we will make many suggestions to help guide you throughout these protocols based on a great deal of experience – along with leaning on a model based on Brittany Dowling’s (MOR Optimized Throwing Program) initial 10 week Build-Up – we strongly encourage you to “listen to your arm and body”, and “trust your instincts” as you go through this process so that eventually, your throwing routine runs itself.

Although these suggestions will give you a very detailed road map that you can rely on throughout the process, ultimately, the most important guide is YOUR arm, YOUR body, and YOUR instincts – especially after the initial 10 Week Build-Up Phase, when you will have had a great deal of time under your belt to get very intimate with your arm with regard to volume, distance, and effort. This ability to “feel” your way through your throwing session each day, and adapt on the fly instinctively, is what we mean by Self-Regulating.

In addition, Self-Regulating not only includes what your work-load is like on a given day, but whether or not you feel like adding a day or taking a day off to your Throwing Schedule in a given week. We want it to be YOUR call. Our goal is for you to get to know your arm and body so well that it feels completely natural to allow the rhythm, pace, and feedback of throwing to take over.

Therefore, at some point, as you start to feel very intimate with your arm and routine, you’ll find that the best way to Self-Regulate is to go out each day and simply take your arm for a walk. Be open-minded and curious. Let your arm dictate how many throws it wants to make, how far it wants to go, and for how long it wants to do it.

Thus, there comes a point where there is simply no longer a “pre-determined formula” – there is no longer a “set amount” of throws, increments, or distance on any given day. What distance you start at, how many throws you make at that distance, when you back up, how far you back up, when you decide to come back in, and with what type of intent you come back in with, are all based on Listening To Your Arm, Body and Instincts…it will tell you EXACTLY what it wants and needs each day.

Ultimately, your feel and instincts are your greatest guide and teacher, and hopefully, in short order, you will begin to notice how comfortable and empowering it is to trust these feelings. Ironically, this is similar to how you would normally go about getting your arm into peak shape based on any other typical off-season had you not had surgery.

The bottom line is that there isn’t a formula or metric that can understand and predict what best works for you on a given day…Self-Regulating is by far, the most accurate measurement and barometer that you have. And it is by far, one of the most essential aspects of our entire philosophy, and ultimately, your return to peak preparation and performance.


*We have scheduled the Self-Regulation to “formally” begin at Week 20 because this is when the incremental Throwing Schedule is replaced by “Light, Medium, and Heavier” days of throwing. However, please keep in mind that we encourage you to begin the Self-Regulating process as soon as you feel ready at any point in the Throwing Schedule.

*You may realize that by Self-Regulating, you’ll actually want or need more time at any of the 3 Phases throughout the entire process of our Throwing Schedule. Please trust this feeling and be patient knowing that the difference between returning to competition in 10 months post-surgery, versus 11 or 12 months, is a moot point when it comes to ensuring that you are going to be in the peak shape of your life and are best positioned to optimize this condition for the remainder of your career.

*Though your pre-surgery throwing distance is a great barometer as to how far out you may want to extend your distance in our Throwing Schedule, the ultimate guide is still your arm, body and instincts. In other words, there isn’t a “set number” or “target number” of how far you should ultimately extend out to distance wise before you feel completely “stretched out” or “opened up”. Simply let your arm be your guide.

Join the conversation