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Low Back Pain with Golfing

by | Jul 31, 2018 | Fitness Info, Functional Medicine, Physical Therapy, Sports Medicine

You hit a drive off the 1st tee that goes 50 yards shorter than your average from last year. You can’t help but notice that the pain in your low back definitely limited how well you were able to swing the club. As the round progresses, the pain only gets worse and your game suffers.

Low back pain accounts for over 30% of all the golf related injuries affecting the over 30 million golfers in America annually. In addition, the annual related costs of low back pain to golfers was approximately $91 million in 2013.

Current research suggests that as individuals age, spinal mobility as well as the bodies ability to absorb forces to the spinal column decreases. Unfortunately, this means that older golfers are somewhat more susceptible to low back injuries. During the downswing and follow through phase of the modern golf swing, a golfer is generating similar amounts of force as a football lineman hitting a tackling sled. These intense forces over time can potentially cause injury to the lumbar discs, facet joints of the spine and the paraspinal muscles.

While it is almost impossible to determine the main cause of low back pain without completing a thorough physical therapy evaluation or a functional movement screening, it will be beneficial to all golfers to increase spinal mobility and core strength in order to address low back pain. One exercise that will address limited spinal mobility is a supine lower trunk rotation. While the athlete is laying flat on their back with knees bent, they will rotate both legs together to the right and then the left until a stretch is felt. An effective and common core strengthening exercise that will be beneficial is the standard plank. The athlete will try to keep their shoulders, hips and trunk in a straight line while being supported on the toes and elbows.

If you are already suffering from back pain that affects your ability to enjoy golf, rehabilitation of that injury should be under the direction of a skilled orthopedic Physical Therapist who will be able to decipher the cause of your pain and develop a plan of care to decrease your pain and improve your performance. At Odom Health and Wellness in Minnetonka, our physical therapy team is highly skilled in the use of manual therapy, therapeutic exercises and re-education to improve back pain with golfing.

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3899905/


If you wish to learn more about our Physical Therapy services, please call us at 952-224-1919 or send us an email at office@odomsportsmd.com.


Author: Kevon Brown