Golf may seem like a low-impact sport, but a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that over 60% of amateur golfers will injure themselves at least once while playing the game.
Swinging a golf club requires a lot of repetitive movement that increases the loads on the muscles, tendons, and joints. After swinging a dozen times, you are stressing on the same muscles, tendons, and joints over and over again, leaving them susceptible to strain and injury. The risk of getting injured is much higher when you are not using the correct posture or proper swing techniques.
We want you to enjoy golfing as much as we do. So, here are some tips to protect yourself from golf injuries.
Tip #1: Always Warm Up & Stretch Before Your Game
Golf may not be a high cardiac sport but it involves motions from every single part of your body. So, it is very important to do a proper warm-up and stretching routine prior to your game.
Other than stretching, you can also try to swing the golf clubs a few times. Gradually increase the range, motion, and swing speed, instead of going to the first tee and swinging as hard as you can. Doing a few swings as a warm-up allows blood to flow to your muscles and extremities, which can reduce the risk of muscle cramps and injuries.
Tip #2: Start Off Slow & Easy
Never rush into a round of golf. If you have not been playing or practicing during the off-season, you should definitely start slow at the beginning of the season. Do not try to go 100% on the first time. This will only increase the risk of getting injured. Instead, start off slowly and gradually increase the length of the play and intensity over the course of the season.
Tip #3: Play with Correct Posture
A golf swing incorporates both vertical and horizontal motions. This allows golfers to hit a ball with power and accuracy. Therefore, starting off with a proper posture is crucial in order for the body to flow freely and athletically throughout the swing.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees slightly, and rotate your feet slightly outward. Hold your spine relatively straight. Your trunk should be tilted forward, but most of that movement should come from your hips. Don't hunch over the ball as this may lead to neck and back strain.
Remember, having a correct posture while swinging is the foundation to playing golf healthily. Lower your risk of sustaining an injury.
Tip #4: Stay hydrated
Water and sports drinks are good choices for staying hydrated on the course. If you choose to drink water, you should also consider eating a snack such as salted nuts because sweat contains a high concentration of sodium. The salt intake helps maintain electrolyte levels in the bloodstream. Healthy snacks such as fresh fruits or raisins can help keep energy levels going as well.
Tip #5: Proper Footwear
Wear properly fitted shoes. You may be surprised by how many people are wearing poorly fitted golf shoes. You can buy the lightest, newest, best-looking golf shoes on the market, but if they don't fit properly, they can become the cause of your knee and ankle pain! In addition, wearing the right shoes can also increase your performance!
Injury prevention is something you shouldn't ignore. Follow the tips above to ensure your body is ready before playing. Enjoy your golf game without worrying about getting injured.