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Golf Injuries & Conditioning by Richard Grier

Golf Injuries and conditioning

“Golf is an old man’s sport”, something that is heard quite often. However the physical demands of golf for top tour pros are very high.
The average tour pro swings their driver at 120mph, this is not easily done without appropriate training, flexibility and strength.
While you may only walk about 4 miles during an 18 hole round of golf, you are exerting a lot of energy and power into almost every shot.

So what is the difference between an amateur 30 year old and a professional 30 year old?  Obviously, the skill level but most likely the conditioning level of the professional that they are able to maintain correct mechanics for a 4 hour round of golf and not fatiguing causing mechanical overloads ; this can all be fixed with effective golf fitness.

Common injuries in golf?

Due to the nature of golf the majority of injuries occur in the upper half of the body; Lower back, Upper back, Shoulder and Arms.
Rotational forces on the lower back to swing a golf club on average 80 times per round can have big effects on lower back health if you are not strong enough or flexible enough. Poor lower back and core strength can be a contributor towards a possible disc herniation or lower back muscle strain while swinging the golf club. 

Shoulder injuries are also prevalent in golfers because of the huge amounts of rotation, Rotator cuff tendinopathies and sometimes labrum tears can occur. Down to the elbow golfers can experience golfers elbow or medial epicondylitis, this is the inflammation of the inside of the elbow where your forearm flexors attach, because elbow and wrist flex so much in the golf swing this attachment site can be subject to overload and inflammation. All of the above are treatable but also preventable with adequate conditioning for your golf game.

Preventing Injuries?
You wouldn’t go run a marathon without training for it or being appropriately conditioned so the same goes for something like golf, the game of golf as evolved and this can be seen on pro tours around the world, professional golfers are elite athletes who spend as much time in the gym as they do on the course, ensuring that their bodies are able for the forces they have to create for 4 consecutive days in a golf tournament week in week out.

Flexibility – being flexible can not only decrease your chances of injury but also improve swing fundamentals and swing speed, the greater the angle between hip rotation and shoulder rotation at the top of the golf swing can improve swing speeds, hip mobility is important to allow the lower back to turn efficiently and safely while it also influences a huge amount of forces which go into the swing.

Strength – It is essential to have good hip, lower back, core and shoulder strength to not only improve your game but also decrease the likelihood of Injuries.

Treating Golf Injuries?
Should you get injured playing golf, be it your lower back, shoulder or elbow this is all treatable with appropriate treatments. Overload issues affecting the shoulder and elbow can be treated with soft tissue release, dry needling, shockwave therapy and a personalised specific program.
We will do our best to educate you on how to best condition yourself for playing the game you love.

by Richard Grier CAT

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