Whether you are out on the golf course every day or just once in a while, you want your experience to be as fun, rewarding, and comfortable as possible. Unfortunately, many golfers suffer from back pain that makes playing their favorite sport anything but comfortable.
Back pain, especially lower back pain, is one of the most common medical complaints among golfers. If you are one of the unlucky players who suffer from back pain, there are things you can do to make the sport you love more comfortable and less stressful. Here are some practical tips you can use to eliminate back pain while out on the links.
See your doctor for a thorough physical. If you have not already done so, make an appointment with your doctor to discuss your back pain and discuss preventative measures you can take.
Go slowly if you have not played for a while. Many golfers, especially those of the weekend-warrior variety, tend to go all-in and suffer back pain as a result. If you have not played for some time, reenter your favorite sport slowly. Consider hitting a few balls at the driving range or playing a short round while you build up your strength and stamina.
Get in shape. Golf uses the core muscles, including your abdomen, back, pelvis, and buttocks. If your core is not properly conditioned, you will likely suffer aches and pains after playing. Make strengthening your core an integral part of your normal workout routine.
. Start with stretches. You may be anxious to hit the links, but your body needs time to prepare. Do some simple stretching exercises before you head for the first hole, and cool your body down with some more stretching before hitting the watering hole at the end of the course.
. Get plenty of rest. Your game, and your body, will suffer if you are tired. Get plenty of rest the night before the big game — your back will thank you.
. Improve your stance and your swing. Using improper form puts extra pressure on the muscles throughout your back, especially the middle and lower back. Check with the pro at your country club to make sure your swing and stance are up to par.
. Play as much as possible. Regular play will help to strengthen your core muscles and make back pain less likely. If nothing else, it gives you an excuse to play more golf. If you need a way to convince your spouse to let you play more, tell her (or him) it is good for your back.
. Choose a golf bag with dual backpack-type straps. Carrying your bag over one shoulder is just asking for trouble. A backpack-style bag will distribute the weight evenly and save your back.
. Keep your weight under control. The heavier you are, the more pressure a game of golf will put on your back. Losing weight before you start playing seriously will be good for both your back and your score.
Playing golf should be fun, and while back pain may be a common complaint among golfers, you do not have to succumb to the problem or resign yourself to physical suffering. With the right preparation, you can enjoy your favorite sport pain-free. From losing weight and staying in shape to seeing your doctor and improving your stance, there are plenty of things you can do to golf painlessly.