How Hidden Orthopaedic Injuries Can Impact Your Golf Game

Something feels off on the links. Your swing has soured, and you’re just not…up to par. But is it all really in your head? Or could it be a genuine medical problem amplified over time?

Even the pros at Alabama Orthopaedic Surgeons know that our golf game can be affected by injuries and ailments as unique as our swings themselves. And, sure, everyone has off weeks.  But if you’ve found your golf game weakening regularly, if you’re up way too many strokes from your usual par or +2, you might want to consider listening to your body for any signs of chronic injury.

Mind over Muscle?

Like any sport, our golf game is impacted by a variety of details. You should expect some change over time depending on external factors like stress, restfulness, overall wellness, and a continued enjoyment for the game.

It took you years to learn how to putt, drive, and play the game as close to pro as possible. Why, then, can’t you seem to get back on track?

Listening to your Body

Pain is our body’s way of alerting us to damage, and it’s usually a pretty reliable system. But pain isn’t the body’s only language.

It’s well known that mental stress can affect plenty of physical operations causing such maladies as increased heartrate, high blood pressure, weight gain, and even fluctuations in blood sugar. Existing physical issues have a similar, if opposite, effect and can manifest as mental patterns centered around a certain situation or activity.

But if you’re not in obvious pain, what could it be?

Think Small

Imagine the number of muscles, joints, tendons, and ligaments involved in an activity like driving the ball 300-yards. In fact, you’d be better off listing the parts of you that weren’t involved.

But what about the finer movements? You’ve been there on the green with a direct line to the hole. You’ve made the shot dozens if not hundreds of times before. So why, at the last possible moment, did you twitch or jerk the club?  Which part of you would you blame? The wrist? The knee? What’s really going on?

The Golf Injury Checklist

Like a lot of other sports, golf involves a lot of rotating, swinging, lifting, and other finer movements requiring a quick change of direction or sudden burst of force.

The most common golf-related injuries occur in the back, shoulder (rotator cuff), elbow, knees, and not to be forgotten: the wrist.

You might know what pain in your back, elbows, and knees feel like. These are larger areas most commonly used in everyday locomotion. But finer movements—like putting—require finer muscles and tendons, most of which (short of a snap) don’t often scream with pain quite like other parts of the body.

Even larger regions can hide secret and mostly painless damage that can be internalized by the mind. It’s entirely possible that you yank the driver back short of full force because your body knows that doing otherwise might cause further injury.

How can you know for sure?

While a blog won’t solve your issues definitely, one thing’s for sure: if you suspect you might have a small or mostly painless injury invisibly adding strokes to your golf game, you should consult with an orthopaedic surgeon ASAP.

If you want to play like a pro again (or as close to one as you can), then you need to see a pro about your current situation on the green.

The club masters at Alabama Orthopaedic Surgeons know the ins and outs of performance-related injuries. On the links, there are no points for pride. So swing in to Alabama Orthopaedic Surgeons and let their masters get you back to proper form.