Sports Chiropractic… Fitness vs Fit To Play

Biomechanics Of A Golf Swing 

About two months ago I decided this is the time to learn to play the game. I have been taking lessons weekly and doing my best to practice in between. Some of you may know I have always focused on treating young and old athletes, keeping a keen eye on my golfers. In February I was approached by a PGA Professional, Stuart Blasius. Little did he know I had attempted to play this game about 10 years ago and it ended in frustration and disappointment.

So the obvious question is why would this time be different then the last? He reminded me The PGA of America comprises 27,000 men and women professionals with one singular goal in mind - to make the game of golf more enjoyable for you. But, that wasn’t enough for me. Stuart began explaining the science of the swing and the game and I began to hear the overlaps in our thinking, “freedom of motion”, “tension is an enemy”... Wait a minute are you talking about biomechanics or mechanics of a swing? The answer is both, with the proper body alignment and freedom in joint motion coupled with the knowledge of swing mechanics you will have an enjoyable game.

As an athlete, golfers understand the importance of keeping their bodies physically fit to stay competitive and in the game as long as they can. We are talking about being “fit” and being “fit to play”. There is a difference between “Fitness” and being “Fit to play golf”. These two concepts often get lumped together. First, lets talk about “Fitness”. When an individual is “Fit”, we are referring to their cardiovascular capability, their overall strength and flexibility, eating well and training often. But being fit does not mean you are fit to play! Properly developed golf fitness programs target specific areas that need work. 

Are You Fit To Play? 

How do you know if you are fit to play? Some golfers figure that out when they begin to play and feel pain in different places, their back, knees, hips, etc. That reminds me of that saying,” pain equals NO gain.” They will wait for something to hurt before getting assessed. A pre-game functional movement assessment with a fitness evaluation should be done prior to the start of any sport. I am certain an athlete that is properly assessed and is actively engaged in a training and/or rehabilitation program to address key areas of weakness or imbalance is less likely to get injured, will play longer and will perform better.

Advice

If I could give my golfers a piece of advice it is to work with a trained sports physician to assess for your level of fitness and develop in conjunction with your personal trainer and a golf coach a “fit to play” highly effective exercise and rehabilitation protocol.

Do you play golf, and if so are you an advanced player or some one just starting out? Share with us in the comments below!

Author
Dr. Lori Nuzzi

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