Avoiding Golf Injuries

 With golf being such a popular sport throughout the ages it is important to understand the injuries that can be sustained and identify them early enough to catch them before they become a problem. We all know golfers hate to be sidelined with an injury!

Golf injuries are mostly due to overuse, but there are some traumatic injuries that can also occur on the golf course. Golf requires explosive power for driving off the tee and fairways. These repeated actions can put stress on the tissues and cause injuries.

A safe, efficient, powerful and repeatable golf swing is the combination of good technique, biomechanics, sequencing, timing and physical ability. Without adequate muscle flexibility, joint range of motion, stability and strength, it is virtually impossible to create a full, safe, consistent and dependable golf swing.  Therefore as a golfer it is essential for you to identify and understand your body’s physical limitations and weakness, and then work specifically on those limitations and weaknesses to help improve your golf swing.

 

The most common golf injuries are:

1. Lower Back Pain

2. Golfers Elbow

3. Knee Pain

4. Shoulder Pain

 With golf being such a popular sport throughout the ages it is important to understand the injuries that can be sustained and identify them early enough to catch them before they become a problem. We all know golfers hate to be sidelined with an injury!

Golf injuries are mostly due to overuse, but there are some traumatic injuries that can also occur on the golf course. Golf requires explosive power for driving off the tee and fairways. These repeated actions can put stress on the tissues and cause injuries.

A safe, efficient, powerful and repeatable golf swing is the combination of good technique, biomechanics, sequencing, timing and physical ability. Without adequate muscle flexibility, joint range of motion, stability and strength, it is virtually impossible to create a full, safe, consistent and dependable golf swing.  Therefore as a golfer it is essential for you to identify and understand your body’s physical limitations and weakness, and then work specifically on those limitations and weaknesses to help improve your golf swing.

 

The most common golf injuries are:

1. Lower Back Pain

2. Golfers Elbow

3. Knee Pain

4. Shoulder Pain

 

1. Lower back Pain

 

Lower back pain is the most common golf injury, accounting for around 20% of all golf injuries. The repetitive action of the golf swing is the number one cause of low back pain in golfers. Numerous structures of the lower back can be affected – the discs, ligaments, muscles or facet joints – but in golfers, particularly older ones, the discs are the most commonly affected. Correcting your posture throughout your swing and working on a core stability and strengthening program is going to help prevent this from occurring.

 

2. Golfers Elbow

 

Golfer’s elbow is a result of overloading the gripping tendons of the forearm at the point where they insert into the humerus (upper arm) bone on the inner side of the elbow. Pain is caused by forceful gripping activities such as when gripping the golf club, particularly if you have a ‘wristy’ technique. If you are playing golf for the first time in a long while make sure that you regularly stretch the muscles which work over the wrist. Many people get symptomatic relief from Golfer’s Elbow by wearing a brace, massage and ice. A progressive eccentric strengthening program can be prescribed by your Physio to allow the tendons to adapt to the load.

 

3. Knee Pain

Knee pain is fairly common in golfers. Weight bearing and rotational forces on the knee during the golf swing, in addition to prolonged walking can aggravate existing knee injuries and lead to knee pain, particularly in the leading knee. Often the original knee injury is sustained doing a different activity or sport, but later in life golf becomes the activity that causes knee swelling and pain. Pain in the knee joint can lead to weakness of the Quadriceps (thigh) muscles. Exercises to maintain Quadriceps and Hamstring muscle strength are encouraged to provide support for the affected joint.

 

4. Shoulder Pain

Shoulder pain can occur in golfers due to damage to the Rotator Cuff muscles. The Rotator Cuff muscles are small muscles situated around the shoulder joint, which can become damaged during the repeated stresses of the golf swing. Golfers have to ensure they maintain flexibility, strength and endurance of the shoulder muscles.

 

If you look after your body and try to prevent these injuries from occurring you will be able to play and enjoy the game for a lot longer.