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Spring Golf Prep & Healthy Tips by Dr. Marshall P Allegra

Spring Golf Prep & Healthy Tips by Dr. Marshall P Allegra

Most golf injuries are a result of poor mechanics and overuse. Non-golfers do not understand that you use your entire body to execute a golf swing in a complicated, coordinated movement.  It truly is a sport and not just a hobby.

Most common injuries in golf

  • Back Pain
  • Elbow Tendonitis
  • Rotator Cuff
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Knee Pain
  • Wrist Pain

Warm Up the Golf Swing

Find some open space in your home or outside in the yard/garage and make 50% swings to warm up and get the muscles in your back and torso loosening up again after a long winter lay-off.

Then move towards 75% swings and then full swings. Aim to complete 100 golf swings a day to build up your muscles and flexibility/range of motion again. No golf ball needed. Just practice swings.

You may want to play a round of air golf before you hit the course. Like air guitar, this is practicing your swing motion without the club in hand.  This will loosen up your joints and muscles to the once familiar swing motion.  Warming up before playing any sport is essential.

Working on your mobility can ward off evil injuries. Stretching and rotating your knees, hips, and lower back as well as your neck and shoulders feels wonderful and is a great help. Balance plays a big part in your game and your safety.  Work on your core strength and cross body coordination as well as the oblique muscles needed for your ultimate torso rotation/swing.

Stretch:

Hopefully you have been moving all winter and if not…start stretching. You probably know where you are most tight but pay particular attention to shoulders, back and hamstrings. Tight muscles limit your range of motion in your golf swing. You will self-correct, adjust and create a new funky swing move that you cannot repeat. Loosen up.

Strengthen:

Women tend to be particularly weak in hands and forearms. Work on building your strength in your arms. I like to specifically work my left arm at the start of season. Your left arm does a lot of work in the golf swing (for right-handed golfers) and likely you are very right hand dominate after winter…especially if you play tennis or paddle. I like to try to get both sides equally coordinated and strong.

Playing a full 18 holes requires a lot of repetitive movements, putting stress on the same muscles, tendons, and joints time after time. To try and avoid injuries:

  • Ease into the 18-hole game with a shorter one at first.
  • Dress for success with proper footwear and appropriate clothing for the weather
  • Don’t forget your sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat
  • Warm up for 10-15 minutes to stretch and increase your range of motion
  • Be mindful of posture- poor posture leads to back, neck and shoulder pain
  • Brace yourself if certain body parts tend to be weak and need support

If you are experiencing pain apply ice/a cold pack for 15-20 minutes at a time to reduce inflammation, every 3 hours if possible. You can use heat when inflammation subsides. Rest it out, take an anti-inflammatory or analgesic if allowed.

If the pain does not diminish within a few days to a week, you might be wise to visit an Orthopedic Specialist to rule out serious or chronic injuries.

Think well, live well, be well.

Dr. Marshall P. Allegra

879 Poole Avenue, Hazlet New Jersey, 07730
Phone: (732) 888-8388

Dr. Marshall P. Allegra is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon in private practice in Monmouth County for over 25 years. As an experienced diagnostician, Dr. Allegra can expertly determine injuries, and then determine the best treatment options to return you back to your normal life, restoring functionality and range of motion as quickly as possible and avoiding long term implications.

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