Golf Injury Prevention Tips Revealed

By Dr. Gary Gendron

Have you ever wondered why so many golfers have bad backs? Golf is one of America's favorite pastimes. Many find the sport relaxing and therapeutic, to others is the source of there never ending pain. The twisting and bending motions of the typical golf swing impact the spine in ways that most chiropractors cringe about. If you look at the typical golf magazine they will say that the perfect form is a reverse C. Having your spine arched backwards to get the full back swing may look good on paper, but it puts a tremendous amount of force on your lower back and posterior joints. This is the most common injury that we see related to golf lower back pain and result in sciatic pain.

I would like to share a story with you about a patient who came into my office with a rather typical problem that might sound familiar to a lot of you. Mr. Jones is about 72 years old, he is retired salesman and his general state of health is fair. He is slightly obese; he is also suffering from mild arthritis. When Mr. Jones first came into our office he stated that he typically gravitated toward traditional western medicine and stated that his wife made him come to our office for an evaluation.

When he first arrived in our office, he stated that was unable to play golf because of his back pain and sciatica. He wasn't able to swing the club and walking even from the golf cart to the green, he had to use his golf club as a cane! By the way, this typically is what motivates most golfers to get treatment-when they can't play golf anymore. Mr. Jones further stated that he could not sleep at night because of the pain and it was impacting his life where he couldn't go to the mall with his wife and walk around due to the pain and it was getting very frustrating for him. He stated "he had went to his medical doctor who gave him muscle relaxants and pain pills and he stated that the pain pills temporarily helped, but when they wore off, he was in more pain than ever". Mr. Jones further stated that he had not been to a chiropractor before. When he first came to our office, he had mixed reviews from some of his friends, some got excellent results and some other people did not get results. He also stated that his medical doctor referred him to a neurologist who performed many tests and told him to do physical therapy which he did, with no relief. The neurologist was also talking about surgery and he was not thrilled with that recommendation so he and his wife decided to seek a different type of care.

He stated that he expected chiropractic care to help him to play a round of golf again. We evaluated Mr. Jones and after a complete neurological and orthopedic evaluation, determined that he had a pinched nerve that was causing his discomfort. He would require a series of conservative treatments consisting of spinal manipulative therapy together with Class IV laser therapy. He was also advised to use ice. Initially his treatment program was three time a week for approximately four weeks.

After the first visit Mr. Jones stated that he did feel better and after his fifth or sixth visit he had almost no pain. He stated that at that point he was able to get off all his pain medications and muscle relaxants. After his first week of care, when the pain was considerably less, we began a light stretching exercise routine followed by isometric exercises and then progressed to resistance training, specifically targeting golf. During Mr. Jones second week of treatment, we agreed that that he could begin to swing his club slowly in the yard and if that felt comfortable he could go to the driving range and hit some balls. He felt great about this as he was anxious to get back on the course. After three weeks Mr. Jones was able to play golf without pain and his sleeping pattern was back to normal and he was able to go for that walk in the mall with his spouse, which made her happy.

One of the most common things I hear from patients is "why did I wait so long?" Mr. Jones was surprised and questioned why his medical doctor didn't refer him here quicker. I told Mr. Jones that some allopaths are more supportive than others in referring to chiropractic physicians. I explained to him that chiropractic was the best place to start with an injury such as his as it is the most conservative treatment and there is no side effects to it and if the person doesn't get the proper results to try more aggressive treatment such as pharmaceuticals, injections or as a last resort, surgery. Mr. Jones is now a raving fan and he said "I can't believe I feel so good! I have more range of motion in my back which allows me to have a fuller back swing and follow through. It has even taken a few strokes off my game!"

Mr. Jones is a typical patient. When a patient truly understands their condition and what caused it, they can take steps to correct their problem and prevent any further aggravations in the future. Mr. Jones is now on an active exercise program. He is eating better and he's lost some weight. He stated that he has felt better than he has in years. - 32188

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