Preventing Common Golf Injuries

a man swing golf club, looking into the golf course

Golf historically is perceived as being a low-risk sport when it comes to injuries. However, many young golfers, especially those who lack proper technique, suffer from acute or overuse injuries. The explosive nature of the swing can put a tremendous amount of stress on the body, and a majority of professional golfers have experienced some sort of nagging injury at one time or another in their careers. But you don’t have to be a professional to experience some of the most common injuries in golf. Even casual golfers can sustain injuries. Many injuries can be prevented.

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Acute golf injuries are usually the result of a single, traumatic episode, such as hitting the ground of a submerged tree root in a sand trap. Overuse injuries are more subtle and usually occur over time. These injuries will more often stem from the stress that the golfer puts on the back and shoulders when swinging. The three most commonly injured areas of the body are the back, shoulder, and elbow. They should be treated with great rest, a good stretching/warm-up program, and good, sound advice from a golf professional.

The main causes of these injuries include:

Lack of flexibility

Poor conditioning

Excessive play or practice

Poor swing mechanics

Ground impact forces

Intermittent play

Poor flexibility is a key risk factor for a golf injury. One survey showed that more than 80 percent of golfers spent less than 10 minutes warming up before a round. Those who did warm up had less than half the incidence of injuries of those who did not warm up before playing. The golf swing is broken down into four phases: backswing, downswing, acceleration/ball strike, and follow through. Any limitations in range of motion (ROM) will hamper the golfer’s ability to achieve the proper swing plane, thus increasing the stress on the involved joints and muscles.

a man with golf club swinging in motion

To avoid golf injuries at any level, it is important for the golfer to develop a solid swing technique. The golfer who plays with a poor swing technique will have an increased risk of injury due to the excessive stress placed on their back, shoulders, and elbows. All golfers should have a specific routine of stretching/flexibility exercises they perform prior to starting each round. Along with their stretching/ flexibility exercises, they should always hit some golf balls before a game, starting with the wedge and gradually working their way up to the driver. You should never just grab the driver and go!

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Along with mechanics and a strong pre-game warm up routine, many golfers are introducing CBD based products as a part of their program.  CBD works in different ways with the cannabinoid receptors in the body, located throughout the endocannabinoid system. As a powerful natural anti-inflammatory, CBD helps your muscles to recover faster from any existing injuries that may be affecting your flexibility. Additionally, when working to improve your flexibility, you may experience some soreness – research shows CBD taken internally or applied topically will naturally decrease inflammation, allowing your muscles to recover and ultimately become more flexible. For this reason, golfers are experiencing amazing results, especially when using products  during pre and post-workout regimens, helping reduce inflammation before and after a rigorous exercise routine.

As always, seek the advice of a sports medicine specialist / professional in your area if any injury occurs to get an accurate diagnosis and prevent recurrent problems. You should return to the course or range only when clearance is granted by a healthcare professional.

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