Tips for Preventing Back Pain When Golfing

Category: Back Pain | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: March 30, 2017

Back Pain While Golfing

The snow is hopefully gone for the season, and many golf courses around Minnesota will soon be opening for business. Golfing is a great way to get some exercise and sunlight, but as you’ve seen if you’re a frequent reader of our blog, it’s also very taxing on your spine. Golfers like Tiger Woods and Nick Watney have had their careers derailed because of spine injuries, and if these injuries can happen to the best, you can bet that they can happen at the amateur level. Today, we take a closer look at why golf is stressful on your spine, and how to prevent injuries from developing.

Golfing and Your Spine

Golfing is a unique sport that requires its participants to regularly torque their spine in one direction and then violently discharge that energy in the opposite direction. Your spine is critically important to your swing, and since even the smallest issue with your swing can cause the ball to fly in the wrong direction, any issues with your back will be evident throughout your round. However, there are some things you can do to help prevent back pain from ruining your round.

1. Stretch

We can’t stress how important it is to stretch before your round. Even if you’re just heading to the driving range, spend a couple minutes rotating your hips, arms and shoulders, and also stretch out your lower body. Your whole body needs to be in alignment in order to have the perfect swing, so stretch from your neck to your feet. Failing to properly stretch can lead to a pulled back muscle, which can end your round early.

2. Swing Control

We’ve all been there. You walk up to the first tee and see the open fairway, so you reach into your bag, grab your driver and try to rip one 300 yards down the fairway. If you’re trying to kill the ball with every shot, or you’re overswinging to the point that you’re overstressing your spine, you’re going to predispose yourself to injury. Stay within your swing. Odds are you’ll be more accurate, and you’ll reduce your risk of a back injury.

3. Bend At Your Knees

Whether you’re bending down to tee up the ball, read a green or pull the ball out of the hole, make sure you are practicing good bending techniques. Bend with your tees, don’t just lean forward while bending at the hip and back. Doing so puts enormous pressure on your spine, and if you’re older, you’ve already experienced plenty of natural disc degeneration. Putting excess pressure on your discs with repetitive stressful bending can lead to a bulging or herniated disc.

4. Talk To A Spine Specialist

If back pain is making it difficult to get through a round, or even a small amount of pain is causing you to miss shots, reach out to a spine specialist. As someone who generally works with a more mature population, golf comes up quite frequently when talking with a patient about their hobbies and goals. If a pain-free round is what you desire, we can find out what’s causing the pain and come up with some conservative or operative options to resolve your pain. You don’t need to compensate for pain throughout your round, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi today!


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