Raise your hand if back pain has ever prevented you from playing your best on the course?
*In this hypothetical situation, there are tons of hands in the air (and we really do care).*
Back pain, and more specifically lower back pain, is one of the most common issues among golfers, especially as they age. In fact, 84% of GolfForever’s subscribers reported that pain had significantly impacted their golf swing, and as a result, their game.
While aging can negatively affect the body in a number of ways, you can do something about it.
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“About 80% of the aches and pains associated with aging are preventable based on your lifestyle and choices you make,” Dr. Jeremy James, co-founder of GolfForever, a personalized golf fitness and pain relief digital program and app, told GOLF.com.
So how exactly can you manage, reduce and ultimately get rid of your back pain so you can play your best golf forever?
Read on for Dr. James’ shared best advice for eliminating pain from your game.
1. Develop mobility in your upper back
Focusing your efforts to develop mobility in your upper back and shoulders is extremely important when it comes to addressing back pain, especially if you’re feeling it in your lower back. That might sound counterintuitive, but by improving your mobility in your thoracic spine and shoulders with the help of a program like GolfForever you will actually help relieve the pain you feel in your lower back when you swing.
This is because you are better able to rotate back and through your swing, which alleviates the torque on your lumbar spine, eliminating the cause of most lower back pain.
2. Develop endurance in your core muscles
Your core plays a vital role in powering your golf swing. It also plays a vital role in stabilizing your back as you swing,. However, your core can’t properly stabilize and support your spine in the golf swing if you don’t work on your core strength.
According to Dr. James, that means more than doing some influencer’s ab workout you saw on Instagram. Rather, you need to develop endurance (the ability to sustain a muscle contraction over a long period of time). This is where GolfForever’s programming comes in: They use exercises like planks, bird dogs and side planks to develop this endurance through isometric holds.
Simply put, GolfForever is designed to strengthen your core in a way that will stand up to the demands of a violent rotational movement like the golf swing, which is exactly what you need to feel and play better on the course.
3. Dial in your warm up routine
The impact a good warm-up routine can have on your golf swing cannot be understated. You wouldn’t walk into a gym and immediately start running on a treadmill or lifting heavy weights without getting your body loose and warmed up first because you’d put yourself at risk for injury. The same applies to playing golf — getting out of the car and heading straight to the range or the 1st tee without prepping your body is a recipe for disaster.
Whether or not you feel pain when you swing a club, a good warm-up can help you play your best golf. In fact, 87% of GolfForever’s users say the program’s warm-up routines significantly help their on-course performance in part because a good warm-up reduces their pain and prevents injury. If that’s not enough to convince you, give the below warm-up routine a try the next time you play. We bet you’ll feel a difference from the 1st tee to the 18th green.