Suffering from an injury can be extremely frustrating. Whether it is a niggling, constant pain that indefinitely seems to hamper your swing or a debilitating muscle strain, there are a number of steps you can take to, firstly, prevent them from happening in the first place, and, secondly, recover from them as quickly as possible. As back strains and golfer’s elbow are two of the most common golf injuries, we have decided to focus our attention on these two in the hope of being able to alleviate injury concerns for as many of you as possible.
It is important to preface this article by noting that the majority of golf injuries can be staved off with the proper preparation. As amateurs, it is tempting to go out and play straight away without any warm-up. Our naivety is also our downfall. A mix of a short 5 minute aerobic warm-up and a number of stretching exercises are enough to ward off the majority of injuries. Other preventative steps you can take involve technique and clothing.
One issue no warm-up can combat, no matter how thorough, is an injury caused by incorrect technique. Executing a swing with improper technique places the body under additional, unnecessary duress. The rotation and torque of a golf swing involves the coordination of a complex number of muscle groups and a technical mishap will be punished by your body accordingly.
One consequence of improper technique is not making proper contact with the ball. Hitting the ground will mean your wrists and elbows have to take on this brutal backlash of force.
Ensuring you are equipped properly before you go out to play may be more significant than you think. Wearing restrictive clothing will prevent you from accessing the full range of movement that is so integral to a properly executed golf swing.
Making sure you have fully and whole-heartedly recovered from your injury before going back to play is essential. If you aren’t fully recuperated, you can easily re-aggravate the issue, and transform a minor issue into a more major and sustained problem.
Investing in a compression sleeve increases the circulation of blood to your heart, increasing the rate of oxygen available to your muscles, allowing you to recover far more quickly from prolonged activity.
Golfer’s elbow is essentially caused by decreased shoulder stability. The body compensates for this decreased stability in the shoulder by taking on additional force in the elbow. This injury can be healed initially by the PRICE principles of protection, rest, ice, compression and elevation.
Preventing its re-emergence however is an altogether different story. The gym is the perfect place to condition your shoulders and forearm to resist golfer’s elbow.
Downward dog push ups and kneeling angels are two exercises that will strengthen and increase shoulder stability.
In order to release tightness in the forearm and wrist, carry out bicep and tricep releases as well as forearm extensor and flexor releases.
Lower back pain
Back pain, whether it is caused by a spasm or a strain, is also healed initially by the PRICE principles. You can however, speed this process along in the gym with a combination of low impact aerobic exercise and stretching.
The likes of walking or stationary cycling are two examples of low-impact aerobic exercise that will help to alleviate back pain.
Back extensions, knee rolls, and bottom to heels stretches are just three of many examples of exercises that will mobilise your lower back and speed up your recovery.
In a sea of advice, perhaps the most straight-forward and immediate step you can take to prevent and recover from injury is to invest in the golf clothing that is so essential for a seamless swing and a rapid recovery. Are there any other tips that you think we have missed out on? Let us know!