3 Common Golf Injuries
So you want to take up playing golf. As you learn all about your swing, stance and how to hit the ball, don’t forget that golf is a sport. As such, there are injuries that you need to be aware of that are common to golf.
To the casual onlooker, golf may be seen as a sport with limited movement except walking from hole to hole. The possibility of injury is slim to none - or is it? Because of the mechanics of golf, there is the potential for many injuries to take place within the body if the techniques are not performed correctly.
Let’s talk about the three most common injuries:
1. Golfer’s Elbow – This is almost like tennis elbow. Golf clubs can be heavy and awkward to use. All of the weight is in the bottom of the club so you have to compensate for that when you swing. Also, the way that you hold the club can lead to golfer’s elbow. This condition is also called medial epicondylitis.
The muscles in the forearm get a lot of work along with the tendons that hold those muscles to the elbow. Tears can develop in the tendons from overuse or poor technique. How do you know if you are suffering from golfer’s elbow? When you extend your forearm, you might experience a shooting pain down your arm towards your wrist. It may be hard to turn your forearm without pain.
2. Torn Rotator Cuff – This is a common injury because of the golf swing. The swing involves raising the club behind you, the downswing, hitting the ball and the follow through swing. All of these things work the shoulder. It is not uncommon for the shoulder to feel sore when you start out or when you have played several rounds of golf in one day.
Tearing the rotator cuff muscle can lead to decreased movement in the shoulder. It will be harder to hold the club above your head, let alone swing it. Not conditioning this muscle before and after playing golf can make it weak and more susceptible to tearing with each swing. If you notice a soreness and inflammation in your shoulder, take a break and see a doctor.
3. Low Back Pain – You might expect this to be a common injury given the stance and the swing of golf. You are bent down over your club as you prepare to swing the club. As you swing, your body twists back to lift the club and forward to hit the ball. Your feet stay planted through most of the swing which increases your chance of a low back injury.
The muscles can experience a severe strain if your swing is off balance. Back muscles work in tandem with the abdominal muscles. If you have a weakness in either muscle group, you are more prone to injury.
Have you experienced any of these common golf injuries? Prevent them with regular exercise and strength training. Take a rest at the first sign of pain.