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man swinging a golf club

Getting back into the swing

It has been a long winter – and probably a long time since you have picked up your golf clubs. Although golf is a low-impact sport, it definitely can cause injuries. Physical therapist Chad Kofoed explains how to get your body ready for the first round.

Golfing for the first time after a couple months off can be tough on your body. Most people will likely experience soreness in their lower back, hips and shoulders after the first couple rounds. Here are a few tips to make sure that soreness doesn’t turn into pain:

  • Prepare. Before hitting the course, you want to go to the driving range a couple of times beforehand. Start with a small bucket and build up from there. This will help prepare your muscles for that first full round of the year.
  • Stretch. Stretching can improve your range of motion, making it easier to swing the club.
  • Easy does it. The actual motion of golfing is not the only thing that strains your body during a round. Soreness can also come from walking around the course and carrying your clubs. Start the year off using a push cart or only playing nine holes to build endurance needed to play an entire round. If you regularly ride in a cart, this is less of a concern.
  • Don’t let your skills get rusty.  If you are an avid golfer during the summer, try heading out to an indoor driving range during the off season. Regular exercise can also keep your muscles strong and ready for the season.

Both physical fitness and preparation are keys to improving your golf game. Golfers at any skill level should work on both to help them hit the ball farther, maintain good health, fitness and body mechanics.

Warm up exercises

Here are a few simple, dynamic warm up exercises you can do before you step out on the course:

Overhead squat

Three way lunges

High knees

Toe touches

Shoulder stretch

Supine twist

Quad stretch

Our orthopedic urgent cares in Bloomington, Maple Grove and Woodbury are open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week. We provide walk-in care for athletes of all ages and abilities. No appointment needed! Our physicians, physical therapists and athletic trainers are here to help you get back on course.

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