Back pain is the most common problem among golfers. When an athlete is experiencing pain it will negatively impact your performance. How can we avoid back pain as a golfer? One of the biggest myths is that club head speed at ball impact is depends on maximum spinal rotation during the backswing. The true source of power generation in the golf swing involves the creation of elastic energy, which is thought to be the power generator for most athletic maneuvers. In the case of the golf swing, it is generally thought that the rotator cuff, latissimus dorsi and pectoralis major muscles are the “power muscles,” as well as the muscles of the arm and forearm. To effectively pre-stretch these muscles, no spinal rotation is needed. The only purpose for pelvic and spinal rotation in the backswing is to achieve a body position that allows for effective club head delivery at ball impact. There are three main reasons to urge your patients to adopt a short backswing that reduces spinal rotation:
- A short swing with less spinal rotation gives a golfer more control of the golf club and club head throughout the swing, which translates into better control of the golf ball.
- Research has demonstrated that short backswings achieved the same clubhead speed at ball impact as long backswings.2
- A short backswing will help to minimize the torsional stress in the lumbar spine.
An aggressive lumbar spine rehabilitation program should be instituted as both a therapeutic and preventive measure. The golf swing is inherently stressful and injurious to the lumbar spine. Thus, it is very important to make sure the lumbar spine’s stabilization mechanism is well- trained.
Our experience working with golfers over the years including many professional members has made us experts in handling biomechanical injuries that can occur in the sport of golf. If you’d like to improve your swing and ensure the longevity of your game, do not hesitate to schedule an appointment to see how we can help you.