The US Open is rapidly approaching. On June 14-17, the world’s best golfers will battle it out in Southampton, New York. But not everyone will be there. USA golfer, Ryan Moore, has already withdrawn from the tournament, due to a shoulder injury. Moore is not the first golfer to suffer from a shoulder injury. So what is it about golf that increases the chance of shoulder injuries? This article looks at the biomechanics which lead to the injury, as well as 4 ways to avoid such injuries in the first place.
How does golf cause shoulder injuries?
Interestingly, golf can cause injuries to both shoulders, yet they may be totally different types of injury. This is because, during a golf swing, the leading shoulder and the non-leading shoulder are subjected to different forces. This difference leads to different pathologies. The former is more prone to subacromial impingement, AC joint pain, posterior instability, and rotator cuff tears, while the latter is more prone to subacromial impingement, SLAP tears, anterior instability, and also rotator cuff tears.
What can be done to avoid golf-related shoulder injuries?
A good warm-up is vital to avoiding unnecessary shoulder injuries. Warming up both shoulders is vital, because – as seen above – both shoulders can be exposed to injury. Not sure which shoulder exercises are best? Speak with our physical therapist in Raleigh, Cary, Garner, Holly Springs, or Morrisville.
Ensuring your body is receiving the right types and quantities of nutrients helps to decrease the chance of injury. Conditions such as osteoporosis can be delayed through a well-balanced and appropriate diet.
3. Don’t over-do it!
They say that ‘practice makes perfect’, but over-practicing can have quite the opposite effect. The repetitive nature of golf means that the same joints and muscles are put under strain again, again, and again. Therefore, it’s important to give your body a chance to take sufficient breaks between practices, so that your body, muscles, and tissue are given a chance to rest and regenerate.
4. Ensure you’re using appropriate equipment
Golf clubs come in different weights and sizes. The clubs that a shorter golfer uses differ from those used by a taller golfer. This is why it’s important to make sure you have the right clubs. Ensuring that the clubs match your natural swing will decrease the chance of injury. If you are unsure, you should consult with a professional golf equipment sales person, who should be informed about clubs with are appropriate for you.
What to do if you suffer a golf-related shoulder injury?
Unfortunately, despite our best intentions, sometimes golf-related shoulder injuries happen. When they do, you should seek the best possible medical treatment with the goal of getting back to your pre-injury condition. First of all, assuming your injury is not life-threatening, you should see a doctor who can evaluate the injury and refer you to an appropriate specialist. Raleigh Orthopaedic Clinic offers such evaluations at our orthopedic urgent care clinics in Raleigh, Cary, Garner, and Holly Springs. If your injury is serious, you may then be referred to an orthopedic shoulder surgeon.
Information About Raleigh Orthopaedic Clinic’s Shoulder Surgeons
Raleigh Orthopaedic Clinic is proud to have 8 highly qualified orthopedic shoulder surgeons: Dr. Robert Wyker, Dr. Lyman Smith, Dr. Hadley Callaway, Dr. William Isbell, Dr. Matthew Boes, Dr. Joseph Barker, and Dr. Edwin Cadet. They are all dedicated to quality outcomes, and have many services available on-site to ensure that patients receive the most appropriate care for orthopaedic shoulder conditions.