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Studies Reveal Pro and Amateur Golfers Alike Commonly Experience Injuries!

The term “sports-related injury” generally brings to mind sports such as football, ice hockey, rugby, even basketball. Rarely do golf injuries enter the sports injury conversation. Golf may be one of the few sports in which people of all ages can participate, but injuries present themselves, and they are quite prevalent, for both professionals and amateurs.

According to a 2006 study at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, which reviewed the available research and literature, golf injuries can be placed into two categories; those traumatic in nature and those caused by overuse.

The most common is the traumatic group. What first comes to mind when considering traumatic sports injuries is likely a neck injury caused by a collision between linebacker and running back. Obviously, that doesn’t happen often in golf. Research has shown that traumatic injuries associated with golf most often occur in amateurs and they are generally caused by incorrect golf swings. The golf swing utilizes virtually the entire body and is quite biomechanically complex. Since the professional golfer has shed most of the incorrect facets of his or her swing doesn’t suffer the sudden, traumatic lower back injury, wrist injury, or a host of others that amateurs face.

Golf-related injuries for professional golfers, according to the study, most often come by way of years of repetition. In other words, overuse. Professionals may suffer from lower back pain, but the pain and injury is not caused by, say, over-rotation on the back swing or by over-swinging to gain more yards.

The most common injuries, for both the overuse and traumatic categories, are those associated with the lower back, neck, wrist, elbow and shoulders. Other injuries, such as being struck by a golf ball or club, are rare, but they do happen. Usually, such injuries occur due to inattention and most commonly in younger age groups.

Golf is a game that can be played by most anyone for the majority of their lives. To increase the longevity and of enjoyment of the game, golfers would do well to learn correct mechanics of the golf swing, insert a pre-game warmup into their regular routine, and maintain physical fitness and flexibility.