The golf swing is a high-torque maneuver that requires a high lateral bending motion. If you slow down a video clip of a player swinging you can see just how poorly suited our anatomy is for the motion. And if you’ve ever watched a beginner swing, you don’t have to slow down the video.
I think that most ammeter golfers as well as experienced golfers understand the risks of getting hit with a ball or a club, but what about the long term effects of just playing the game? Its all in the swing or as Chubs would put it “its all in the hips”.
Data from a sample size of 30 beginner golfers showed that there was a high prevalence of weight shift to the incorrect foot at the top of the backswing and increased with use of longer clubs such as a driver. Improper swing has adverse effects on the trunk, shoulders and legs. Injuries occur most commonly due to improper swing for beginners and repetition for experience golfers.
“To have a complete understanding of the mechanics, muscle activity, and kinesiology of golf injuries, it is essential to have an understanding of the golf swing. The golf swing has ﬁve distinct stages: setup, backswing, transition, downswing, and follow-through” (Parziale & Mallon, 2006).
The most crucial step in the swing that accounts for nearly one in four golf injuries is the follow-through. After contact with the ball, the hips extend, the spine and shoulders rotate to the left, the left forearm supinates and the right forearm pronates. The deceleration of the club after the follow-through is what causes hyperextension in the lower back, the most common injury among male golfers.
Prevention of golf related injuries is most effective when including a stretching and strengthening exercises. The sooner you get out there and start stretching, the less at risk you are for injury!