Golf seems like a gentle sport. Players don't get punched or tackled. Although the inherent dangers of golf aren't obvious, golfers may be injured and sidelined by pain.
Luckily, with a little prevention and good form, most golf injuries are avoidable. According to experts, the biggest issue with golf is the image that it's sedentary. People don't realize that players need good flexibility, strength, and proper technique or they could get hurt.
The list of possible golf injuries is surprisingly extensive. Many result from some aspect of the swing, which involves an explosive forward motion and violent muscle contractions. Because you're holding a club with a relatively heavy head that acts as a long lever arm, the forces are magnified. Other injuries result from improper form and from the repetitive nature of the sport.
Common golf injuries include:
For athletes who have experienced a sports-related injury, UPMC Center for Sports Medicine’s orthopaedic surgeons and board certified physical therapists will help to speed recovery and restore function.
Training Tips and Techniques
To help prevent golf-related injuries, the majority of professional golfers today are on structured fitness programs. Fitness is an integral part of a healthy and competitive golf game.
Beyond being fit, experts suggest players should work with a golf pro to learn proper technique. Good form puts less stress on the body, and helps to improve scores. Also, a poor swing can increase the risk of injury.
Before playing, players should get in the habit of warming up their muscles and stretching, and make that part of their routine off the course, too. Some ideas for warming up include:
- Taking a brisk five-minute walk before playing
- Walking the first fairway
- Making sure to stretch, focusing on the lower back, hips, legs, and shoulders
Individuals should consult a physician before beginning any kind of training or conditioning program.