Golf is one of the world’s most popular sports and has been capturing the interests of both the young and the old. However, this same sport may lead to certain injuries in the back because of the innate nature of the game, which causes muscle strains and aches, sending you to your local Land O Lakes chiropractor to help relieve the back pain.
Golf may lead to certain back injuries when not employed properly. Moreover, those who have preexisting back injuries and back pain may find it more difficult to enjoy their favorite sport.
What Golf Can Do To Your Back
Poor mechanics in golf such as a poor swing can lead to several musculoskeletal injuries. Specifically, the following are some of the most common problems associated with golf and how do they develop:
- Neck strain
- When you hit the golf ball with the golf club, you usually employ a downward gaze. Although looking downwards may not cause immediate neck injury, frequent playing of golf may build up stress on the neck area and subsequently lead to neck stiffness or strain.
- Low back pain
- A common effect of playing golf is low back pain arising from incorrect swinging and hitting with the golf club. When you swing your body incorrectly, the soft tissues along the back may be torn causing poor back support. In return, the spine may be misaligned in order to carry the weight of the body.
Frequent playing of golf using poor ergonomics may cause long-term effects on the spine. Nevertheless, there are certain ways that you can employ to turn this otherwise back-injuring sport into something safer so you may enjoy playing golf without the fear of developing back injuries. The following are some of the measures that you can employ:
- Use a correct stance and posture
When playing golf, make sure to have your feet shoulder-width apart. Never arch your back when hitting the ball and maintain the spine as erect as possible.
- Take an easy swing when hitting the ball
- An overswing is the most common cause of back injuries when playing golf. Never swing the club too fast or too hard and make sure to move your body, arms and wrist in unison to allow the back to absorb the tension better.
- Dont forget to warm up
- Your back may suffer from more injuries when the muscles are not accustomed to the activity. Take some time to warm up before playing through performing neck, shoulder and back stretches. You should also employ arm and wrist exercises.
- Lift your golf clubs properly
- Aside from the sport itself, lifting heavy golf clubs can be the source of back injuries. When lifting, use proper body mechanics and never jerk the heavy equipment straight to your shoulders and back to prevent early injury.
- Use proper golf shoes
- When you use inappropriate footwear while playing golf, your feet may dig into the sod making your legs and knees tensed during the swing. This further produces more stress on the lower back. In this line, make sure to use golf shoes with short cleats.
Golf may be unhealthy for your back especially if you do it using inappropriate body mechanics. However, employing safety measures can make you enjoy golf stress-free. If you have been playing golf and feel back pains, you may need professional help to identify any underlying back injuries. Visit your chiropractor for effective managements for back pains.