By Daniel Taylor DC
It’s a beautiful Sunday afternoon on the golf course; the greens are freshly cut and the sun shining. You drive up to the tee box for the first shot of the day. You bend over to put the tee in the ground and out of nowhere the stabbing, knife-like low back pain hits you hard.
If the above scenario sounds familiar, know that you are not alone; studies reported that 50 percent of those who golf regularly suffer from chronic low back problems. Whether this pain is caused from placing the tee into the ground, riding in the golf cart or hitting the golf ball, know that there are options to eliminate this pain.
There are three fundamental causes of golf injuries: poor posture, lack of flexibility and lack of balanced functioning muscles. Golf is a game of repetitive motion that places torque on one side of the body. This is hard on the body and worse for amateurs because of improper swing mechanics that cause a greater load of stress on the low back. Imagine going to the gym and only working out one side of your body for years while neglecting the opposite side. Now picture yourself bent over in your golfing stance while hitting the ball a hundred times during a period of three to four hours. It’s easy to see how golfers set themselves up for injuries.
Another aspect of your golf game that chiropractic can improve is your swing. Every golfer can agree that it is essential that the body is balanced from head to toe in order to have the perfect golf swing. In order to perform your best, you need to have unrestricted, fluid motion throughout the spine and pelvis. An improper stance will have a profound effect on your golf swing. Think of the body as a machine that stores and uses energy. Angular momentum only exists through fixed axis rotation (your spine). Your arms, hands and golf club all rotate around the spine. When the spine turns, the body creates a centrifugal motion for the club to follow. In order for there to be a fluid motion there must be a healthy, freely moveable spine and proper balanced muscles. Still unsure if chiropractic could help your game? Ask one of golf’s greatest about chiropractic. “I’ve been going to chiropractors for as long as I can remember. It’s as important to my training as practicing my swing”
– Tiger Woods.
Common golf related diagnosis include:
• Sacro-iliac (SI) joint dysfunction: This basically means that the SI joint has lost its normal fluid motion due to a fixation. Typically 2-4 visits can solve this complaint.
• Facet Syndrome: Facets are the name for the joints in the spine. At times these joints can experience abnormal motion (commonly from a golf swing) and become fixated. Very similar to SI joint dysfunction and often the two conditions exist concurrently. Again 2-4 visits usually.
• Sprain/Strain injuries: Very common with any athletic event. Typically minor conditions can self-resolve. However proper stretching, support and in office rehabilitation are always recommended.
• Sciatica: Often the most misdiagnosed disorder on the golf course. Everyone thinks pain down the leg is sciatica. However, there are actually many causes for pain down the leg and a proper diagnosis is essential in order to properly treat the symptoms. This complaint is a large part of our practice. Call today to learn more.
The next time you are on the golf course focus on these things:
1. Are your feet balanced and comfortable at address?
2. Do your feet have to flare out in order to turn on the backswing?
3. Do you find yourself walking slightly crooked the day after a round of golf?
4. Do you find it difficult to get out of bed for a few days?
5. Is it painful to play the game?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then contact us so we can address these issues. As avid golfers ourselves, we understand how easy it is to hurt yourself trying to hit that 300-yard drive.
At Compton Chiropractic, we offer spinal adjustments, decompression, preventive swing advice, rehabilitation exercises, physical therapy and nutrition in order to reduce pain and improve spinal posture and mobility. We treat a wide variety of village athletes including those who participate in pickle ball, tennis, softball and swimming.
So the next time you are on the greens ask yourself, ‘is your swing hurting your back or is your back hurting your swing’?
11974 County Rd., STE 101
The Villages, Fl.32162.
Located in the Palm Ridge Plaza off CR 466.
Accepting New Patients
Golf Cart Accessible