24 Apr Golf Injuries: Adjusting the player to improve the play
Golf very often appear to be a low-stress sport. The fact is, though, golfing causes a variety of injuries. Many of these injuries are routinely aggravated or complicated because golfers continue to play despite the injury.
With the increasing numbers of players, a preventative approach that addresses the mechanics of injuries is a paradigm whose time has come.
Prevention is important medicine and the emphasis needs to be placed on proper prevention, especially in the recreational golfer. The necessity for proper mechanics, proper warm-up, and participating in flexibility and strengthening exercises must be encouraged.
Studies performed in both the U.S. and England reported overuse and poor swing mechanics to be responsible for most injuries.
Golfers tend to develop habits that are destructive to be both our bodies and our game. Because we develop comfort zones with these improper techniques, we become reluctant to change. All too often these acquired habits are underlying cause of the problem should be diagnosed and corrected first. Then address the swing mechanics.
The common sites for injury include the low back, elbow, wrist, and shoulder. Initial treatment should include a preventative approach to these injuries. Special care should be taken to improve biomechanical functions of the athlete and modification of the swing.
The data collected from research studies involving golf-related injuries demonstrates that low back disorders comprise the greatest percentage of all golf injuries. Though most of the studies conducted on golf injuries are performed by large sports medicine clinics, most, if not all, studies confirm that most of these injuries are a musculoskeletal origin and involve biomechanics disorders.
Overuse, insufficient back stability, and poor swing mechanics were responsible for most of the injuries.
The studies confirm that injuries occurring during the game are often the result of physical ailments and hinder the golf swing and compromise play.
Back problems occur from both injuries received playing golf and, in the elements, comprising golf.
The golf swing requires a significant degree of h8gh velocity rotational torque in the lumbar spine causing a high degree of compression and torsion stresses in the low back. Furthermore, these stresses-when applied by weekend golfers whose bodies are not well prepared for such demands in addition to less efficient swing techniques than professionals predispose a vast majority of golfers to low back and other muscoskeletal injuries.
Most individuals playing in pain are doing so unnecessarily. The recommended approach to these golf injuries is to address the cause of the injury. Usually it’s the dysfunctional biomechanics of the spine, joints and their supporting muscalatures.
Once these mechanisms have been corrected, an evaluation of the swing mechanics should be inspected.
Think about it. Most low back injuries in golf are the result of chronic rotational and compression forces placed upon the spine during the take away, forward swing, acceleration and follow-through components of the swing. These injuries develop fixations which result in spinal dysfunction and associated inflammation.
These injures are then complicated by muscle splinting (spasms) which is your body’s natural preventative mechanism to prevent further injury. Simple muscle relaxers and anti-inflammatories often help mask the pain but will not address the biomechanical dysfunctions.
Most low back problems, including most disc related disorders, should not require surgical intervention. These disorders are scientifically proven to respond best to manipulative therapies.
Manual manipulation of fixed joints helps to improve biomechanical and neurologist function by:
- Restoring normal motion
- Relaxing tight muscles
- Improving coordination
- Inhibiting pain
Restoring proper biomechanics, improving muscle coordination and developing proper techniques are the keys to maintaining an enjoyable and active life-style.
A preventative approach that addresses both cause and prevention, and not simply temporary relief of symptoms, is a paradigm whose time has come.
Enjoy the times “just a swing’n.” The key to injury prevention is in the preparation. And a bad day o the golf course is better than no day on the course. So, tee it up.