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Is Your Golf Game Up to Par?

Kamerin Hargrove
Research suggests that over half of all serious golfers struggle with a physical issue that affects the amount of golf they play. The data reveals that the risk of injury among amateur golfers has an incidence between 15.8% to 40.9% on an annual basis, while the lifetime incidence of injury in amateurs ranges from 25.2% to 67.7%. Most chronic golf injuries occur at impact–the phase of the golf swing where the club meets the ball, and the low back is the most common injury site. Other common causes of golf injuries include overuse, poor swing mechanics and not warming up before play.  

Kristyn Spillane, PT, DPT, SCS, CSCS, TPI-C is a physical therapist at Howard Head Sports Medicine (HHSM) and an avid golfer. She performs golf screenings to determine the limitations putting players at risk of injury. Spillane explains, “A golf screening can identify areas of compensation and correlate them with present swing faults to determine the limitations that put a golfer at higher risk for injury.” 

Spillane and other HHSM therapists use innovative physical therapy techniques to prevent, rehabilitate and improve performance training for golfers. “My goal is to help golfers get back to the sport they love to hate!” jokes Spillane.  

“Studies have shown that just five minutes of warm-up exercises produce significantly greater clubhead speed and carry distance with the driver,” explains Spillane. She guides her patients through dynamic warm-up routines and functional resistance training, both of which have shown to increase max driving distance.    

"The benefits of playing golf outweigh the risks associated,” says Spillane. “Virtually all studies investigating the relationship between golf and health conclude that it has a positive effect on both physical and mental health, and even helps increase longevity.”  

The goal is to identify weaknesses before they inhibit performance or the desire to play. To schedule a golf screening or physical therapy for a golf injury, call Howard Head Sports Medicine at (970) 476-1225.