Ranch Fitness and Nutrition Director, Lisa Church

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So I was talking to a guy at the Florida Baseball Ranch during our open house on a Sunday. It was a beautiful Florida evening and we were chatting while enjoying our cold water and snacks. I had already given a 15-minute presentation to all that were there about what my role was and philosophies are at the Florida Baseball Ranch. But still, this guy asked me to elaborate more on my skills. Ya know, he was one of those who seemed like he was looking for a chance to debate or something.

I get it, I’m a female in a male dominated industry and it surprises people. But it got me thinking, he may not be the only one who was wondering “Who the heck is this chick at the baseball camp telling me what to do and how to do it?”
So, the question is, “Who is this chick, anyway?”

My name is Lisa Church.


Not just a chick.

I am the Fitness and Nutrition Director at the Florida Baseball Ranch. I am also the Physical Therapist Assistant to Randy Sullivan at the Florida Baseball Ranch and at our PT clinic, Sullivan Rehabilitation.

I am also Tampa Bays Fittest Female 2008, am a tenured sports specific strength trainer, an experienced performance enhancing nutrition coach, and co-author of ScaptivationTM.

I wear a LOT of hats at the Ranch!

I offer Rocketfuel Nutrition, Broga with Visualization, and Hardcore (a baseball specific dynamic core strengthening program). I lead our ScaptivationTM program, and I perform physical assessments and postural analysis, using our Baseball Ranch Assessment Tool (BRAT).

Over the coming days and weeks I will be posting more information about my success stories, training philosophies, the programs I offer, and even videos of some of each of these integral components to lead you to doing what you are here to do: Improve your performance on the mound! So be watching for that.

We have created a baseball-specific Yoga class for dudes. We call it “Broga.” Cute, huh? I have learned through the years that Yoga is a misunderstood concept for many. There have been a ton of myths about Yoga. Some of those myths include that Yoga is just for girls or sissies or tree huggers, BUT NOT FOR MEN, that it is only for flexible people, and even that Yoga is a religion! COME ON, NOW!! Not true!!

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The real question is: “Why do baseball players benefit from Yoga, anyway?”

We saw a need and created Broga as a tool to facilitate stability or strength and inhibit immobility or restrictions (tightness) in our players. We designed it to be based on the individualized physical assessments and video analysis we perform at the Florida Baseball Ranch.

Immobility in the shoulders, thoracic spine, hips, and ankles is one of the primary constraints we see in our athletes. These mobility issues manifest themselves in biomechanical inefficiencies during our video analysis. In addition to creating stability and mobility in movements that carry over to the mound, Broga teaches breathing and calming techniques, increases dynamic balance and proprioception, creating subconscious awareness of where your body is in space to build a mind-body connection translates to improved performance on the mound.

Our Broga classes end with a visualization exercise placing you on the mound pitching like a boss… just you the pitch, and the ball.

Visualizing that You are the Man!!

Visualizations frequently end in a virtual dogpile, soooo… our guys love it! They feel like they just won the World Series! The guys frequently tell me the visualizations are their favorite thing. Broga with Visualization and Hardcore which I will address next will be offered as a daily add on at our summer training program.

Hardcore is a class we offer to our players which was born out of my incessant obsession, and the guys desire to get 6 packs or possibly fall back on a Calvin Klein modeling career. …lol!


No really, let me explain something about “the core.” It is REALLY important that pitchers DO NOT perform the WRONG core exercises. Pitchers need to stay lengthened in their torso and open in their chest to avoid injury and increase velo. That’s what we specialize in at the Florida Baseball Ranch. We hear it all the time. We see it all the time. A kid watches a body building video, goes to the gym and does bench press, squats, biceps curls, and crunches. Then they wonder why they have poor performance. We look at their BRAT and see rounded shoulders, pec minor restrictions, and poor posture — the exact constraints we here at Florida Baseball Ranch work to eliminate to avoid arm action errors, poor glute activation, early torso rotation, and improper decel patterns that decrease velo and command.
During Hardcore, I develop the player’s neuromuscular motor control and stability of the muscles surrounding the spine, called the “deep core” stabilizers. From there, we progress to build strength and control to the larger muscles in the abdominal area including the “six-pack,” and other muscles like the glutes. However, during our core and glute training, each abdominal ans hip muscle is built while keeping the torso in a lengthened position and the lower half glute dominant. This trains the body and mind to fire all of the deep core, glute, and six-pack muscles while pitching. Improve core motor control helps to increase velocity, and reduces injury risk.

Lisa and the dudes

That’s your goal, right?

Throwing harder with better command and less pain?

Which is the perfect segue to our Scaptivation program.

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ScaptivationTM is an innovative program that serves two functions.

First, it helps to correct scapular inefficiencies and dysfunctions in throwing athletes which are important for reducing the risk of injury.

Second, ScaptivationTM builds motor control and strength to the 17 muscles attached to the scapula that must fire efficiently and in sequence during the throwing motion. 17 muscles attach to the scaps, and they are all vital in helping to bulletproof the shoulders and the elbows in elite level throwers.

Far too many pitchers (MOST EVEN!) do not have the motor control to engage their scapular and core muscles upon command. Therefore, they perform compensations, utilizing other ancillary muscles during a pitch and during their strength training program. This can lead to injury to shoulders, elbows, and backs. As pitchers increase strength, control, and coordination of their scapular and core musculature we see increased muscle we often see increased velocity and decreases am pain.. More muscle action during a pitch and less arm pain increases velocity and command. That’s your performance goal, right? We handle that. Again, we have written a book on it: “ScaptivationTM” that will be available to you soon.

It’s OUR MISSION for you at the Florida Baseball Ranch is to help you solve your arm pain and increase your velocity, threading the needle perfectly between building you ability and maintain the health and durability of your arm.

Rocket Fuel Nutrition is THE KEY to gaining lean mass you can move, and fueling your body in a realistic way so that you see GAINS on VELO and RECOVER! I’ve coached hundreds, maybe thousands, of athletes on how to do that. I teach nutritional principles that can get you to your individual performance and body composition goals and that can last for a lifetime.

You think that eating just chicken and Brussels sprouts are what a nutritious meal plan includes?


I only put on your individualized plan foods that you actually like!! Even restaurants foods that you like! How is this possible Because you answer an individualized questionnaire which I build your plan to accommodate. Plus, you get an app on your phone of your plan, and a online web profile that is easy to update and modify to existing needs or changes. The top gainer in our 9 week summer program last year gained 21 pounds of lean mass (muscle) and lost 12 pounds of fat, he’s now 15 years old and sits at 85 mph… I should tell you though that he went ALL IN for 9 WEEKS in our summer training program and skipped travel ball completely… Broga, Hardcore, Nutrition, and everything else EVERY DAY at Florida Baseball Summer Training Program!!!

If you would like me to design your own individualized 5-day meal plan,

CALL AMY at 1-813-655-3342 and she’ll get you set up.

People often forget that it’s your own choice how you wish to spend the rest of your life. Set goals. Make them happen by being ALL IN on making those goals a reality. And the world will be yours. You’re the MAN! Be The Man! I’m just that Chick…Lisa at the Ranch.

And I’ll be here all summer to help you with your training needs.

Learn more about the most comprehensive summer training on the planet at www.floridabaseballranch.com/summer

Lisa Church
Twitter: @ChurchofFit

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