Average golfers play roughly 37 rounds each year and numerous days practicing. Over the last decade, golf has seen a marked increase in adoption across the country with $24.3 billion spent on fees and equipment in 2002 alone. Almost 10% of the U.S. population plays golf regularly.
While golf is often viewed as a low-risk and low-impact sport, it does have its share of common injuries. These include low back pain as well as shoulder and elbow issues. Of all maladies, low back pain is the most common due to the fast rotation experienced in the golf swing. Improving the range of motion of both the leading hip and the lumbar spine extension might reduce your chances of low back pain. Using a golf bag carrier or a caddy might also decrease your chance of back injury from carrying a heavy bag. If your back pain does not resolve within a reasonable time please contact us for an office visit with Dr. Hayden, our orthopedic surgeon.
The second most commonly injured area in golf is the elbow. Hitting the ground first during a swing could result in medial epicondylitis ( which is also known as golfer’s elbow). Additionally, lateral epicondylitis commonly occurs when right handed golfers over-swing. Both strength training and stretching of the area tend to reduce the chance of both of these injuries.
Shoulder issues afflict both amateur and professional golfers. Over time, issues that might afflict the shoulder include bursitis, tendonitis, rotator cuff issues, and arthritis. If you are experiencing long-term shoulder pain, especially in your lead arm, contact us for a professional medical opinion.
The last common area of injury, especially for professional golfers, is the leading wrist. Some of the most commonly injured components of the wrist are the flexor and extensor tendons. Before you experience serious wrist injury, consider performing strength training exercises on the area.
Some basic technique and routine changes can be performed to reduce your chance of incurring many golfing injuries. Thorough warm-ups before a round are very helpful as is proper golfing technique.
If you are a golfer experiencing pain, give our practice a call for more information. Dr. Hayden enjoys an occasional golf game and understands both the causes of and solutions to some of the most common injuries. When you arrive at our office for your appointment, Dr. Hayden will begin by examining the source of your pain. If he is unable to determine the cause, he might order additional tests to help pinpoint the afflicted area. Whatever happens, we will do our best to get you back on the course soon.