Common Injuries for Golf Players

Are you an avid golf player and spend hours working on your swing techniques? Then these are some of the common problems that you might want to be aware of or prevent it to make sure you stay on the links. Common injuries for golf include lower back pain, elbow pain, shoulder, neck and knee pain. For professional golfers one of the most common injuries is the wrist followed by the lower back.

Lower Back Pain

This is extremely common among professional golf player as they spend long hours practicing their swings.This occurs mainly due to tightness in the hip flexors, hamstrings, gluts, lower and mid back region. Other possibilities include a poor stretching routine, poor set up position or over training. What can you do? Stretch or use a massage ball/foam roller on the hips, lower back and hamstrings where possible. Work on improving thoracic/mid back rotation motion. Apply heat or cold to the effect area (whichever reduces the discomfort) What can MyPhysio do? The most common reason for lower back pain in golfers is the proper neutral spine set up position (See Core Alpha: Spine) Evaluate and if needed correct spine angle in set up to minimize compression of the lower back disc during the downswing. Do graduated myofascial releases to reduce discomfort vs aggressive massage which may aggravate pain in the lower back and legs. Check the spine for possible scoliosis or muscle imbalances. Sports Enhancement: Learning how to set up in a relaxed, flat back (neutral spine) position maximizes rotational efficiency and maximizes power output into the ball without compromising consistency. Learning basic core stability principals (see Core Alpha: Spine) will help protect your spine so that you continue to play golf pain free for years to come.

Golfers Elbow

Most elbow and forearm injuries usually occur from having a weak wrist at impact, weak triceps, overuse injury, changing to a heavier shaft, change in swing thought, hitting excessive amounts of balls on the range etc. Golfers are more prone to getting tennis elbow than golfer's elbow. What can you do? Rest and hit less balls at the range Stretch the forearm often after a few shots, do wrist and forearm strengthening exercises only if they are pain free. Ice the elbow, tape the wrist and stretch the triceps. What can MyPhysio do? Our Golf Physios will instruct you on specific taping for golf that does not affect gripping of the club We will also check your grip position and provide advice on wrist impact positions. Myofascial releases to relieve built up tension in the forearm muscles that may be causing tendon abrasion on the elbow. Sports Enhancement Recovery is the first step, but Learning to strengthen the elbow, shoulder and wrist with a proper golf specific strengthening program using simple therabands will improve your velocity and compression onto the golf ball while preventing further injury and discomfort.

Shoulder Injuries

Shoulder injuries can occur for a myriad of reason but most injuries occur from a lack of motion in the shoulder especially for horizontal adduction (arm across chest) and external rotation( hand behind head position) causing tendon Impingement. Over training or weakness in the shoulder also exposes vulnerabilities with repetitive overload. What can you do? Ice the shoulder after each session and start a shoulder stretching program before each round. Cutting down on the number of balls per session will also help. What can MyPhysio do? Checking the specific tendon that is involved improves specificity of the rehab program Check for limited range of motion in golf related movements, pain reduction, and provide advice on a stretching program Sports Enhancement: Good shoulder ROM will improve X factor( dissociation between the hip and the arms) that creates more length for the swing which will increase distance and consistency. Good shoulder range also makes the follow through more consistent and prevents a hinging of the joint during the swing.

Neck Injuries

Neck injuries are more common than most people think. Stiffness in the neck along with a long and forceful swing can cause neck muscle spasms and reduce neck motion. This leads to a vicious cycle of pain. What can you do? Work on neck stretches before the round if you feel stiffness in the morning or after working for long hours. Heat and massage usually helps loosening up the joint. What can the MyPhysio do? Check the motion in the neck, shoulder and mid back to see which area is causing a limitation in the movement Limited movement in any of the above areas can be a cause for neck pain. Sports Enhancement For Right handed players, most golfers do not realize that during the back swing the neck will have to counter rotate to the left. Thus a lack of L neck rotation could be decreasing the amount of back swing rotation that you require. Forcing this rotation in the back swing could be putting undue stress on the neck. Thus good neck ROM is key to improve length and consistency in the back swing and follow through. Suffering from any of these pains? Contact us to find out how you can alleviate them.