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Tips for Preventing Injuries on the Golf Course

Friday, June 15, 2018 8:19 AM

With Father's Day around the corner, that's when you know golf season is in full swing! Whether it is a full golf tournament or a bucket of balls with Dad, injuries are common in golfers. Before hitting the green, see how you can prevent injuries with these tips from Jason Sweas, Physical Therapist at NorthShore:

GolfSafetyTips

  1. Warm up. Before swinging a club, warm up your body. Do a few jumping jacks or take a brisk walk around the parking lot. Stretch the major muscle groups such as arms, legs, core, hands and wrists, and shoulders.
  2. Lift carefully. Think about picking up your golf clubs from your trunk or on the course as an opportunity to practice good mechanics with a focus on using your leg strength and an engaged core. A golf push cart can help you save energy, reduce injury risk and perform better.
  3. Start slow. Make the first swing a small swing; with each one increase the range of motion. After a few swings add in golf balls to practice and help loosen the body up.
  4. Protect against the elements. Apply sunscreen to the face, arms, legs and the back of the neck and ears to prevent sunburn. Wear a hat or sunglasses to protect your eyes against the sun’s rays.
  5. Maintain proper posture. Your golf posture can help produce more consistent swings and also reduce stress to your body. Pay attention to how better golfers keep an athletic posture – sitting into their hip joints with a straight back.
  6. Keep a smooth swing. Engage all of your muscles – arms, legs, core, back – to produce a smooth swing. Overuse of any one part of your body will decrease your performance and may lead to injuries.
  7. Keep it under control. A controlled swing not only allows you to hit more accurate shots, but also helps prevent injuries. The golf swing is a complex motion and swinging too hard is like driving a racecar without brakes.
  8. Strengthen and build year-round. Strength, endurance and flexibility training year-round will improve your game and prevent injury. This could include strength training, yoga, Pilates or other fitness classes.
  9. Stay hydrated before, during and after the round.

To reduce the risk for injury, contact NorthShore Physical Therapists for a Golf Movement Screen or talk to your primary care physician about what exercises you can do to improve your golf game.

What golf injuries have you experienced most often?