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Play a Safe, Injury-Free Game of Golf

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Play a Safe, Injury-Free Game of Golf

In a recent study, sixty percent of golf professionals and forty percent of amateurs suffered either a traumatic or overuse injury while golfing. More than eighty percent of all reported injuries were a result of overuse.


The types of golf injuries reported vary considerably, both in the affected body parts as well as cause.

Predictably, the impact of misplaced swings that strike the ground cause a ripple effect to various body parts; low back pain, followed by elbow and shoulder injuries, are the most common injuries. The incidence of wrist and shoulder injuries is also high, with a good majority of injuries being attributable to overuse injuries of the wrist flexor and extensor tendons.

But perhaps not so predictably are injuries related to backswings that don’t quite hit the mark, frequently hitting golfing partners instead. Clubs that get tossed in frustration have also caused injury to other golfers. And while we may admire golfers who have the stamina to carry their own clubs, they experience twice the incidence of back, shoulder, and ankle injuries as those who rent a cart or opt for caddy service.

Fox Valley Orthopedics recommends the following injury prevention tips to help golfers avoid overuse injuries:

  • Be gracious on the green; don’t let frustrations interfere with play and put you and your fellow golfers at risk of injury.
  • Implement a ten-minute, pre-game warm-up; it’s one of the very best ways to improve your game, and decrease the potential for golf injuries.
  • Start a regular exercise regimen that involves strengthening and stretching all major muscle groups; this can decrease your injury rate as well as increase playing time.
  • Increase your range of motion for your lumbar spine extension and the rotation of your lead hip; this can decrease the incidence of lower back pain.

Improve your swing mechanics; elbow injuries such as thrower’s or tennis elbow are believed to be related to poor swing technique.