Course Instructor (P5)

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Golf Swing Faults

1. Poor static posture at address characterized by a cervical and lumbar spine kyphosis and forward lumbar flexion greater than 45º.

2. Poor dynamic posture during the swing. Instead of rotating the hips and trunk fully (due to range of motion / flexibilitylimitations), the golfer will extend during the backswing, flex forward during the downswing and extend at the finish.

3. Lateral shifting (backward movement) during the backswing due to a mechanical inability to rotate the hips and trunk.

4. Lateral shifting (forward movements) during the downswing.

5. Bending of the lead arm during the backswing.

6. Inside takeaway AKA Flat takeaway – bringing your hands back and inside of the target line. Often seen in the backswing of those golfers who are attempting to compensate for a slice.

7. Over the top swing pattern which is due to an extension movement in the downswing. This pattern has a tendency of causing a hook shot because of a closed clubface. The pattern resembles a wood chopping movement.

8. Improper arm position at impact. At impact your arms should be straight forming a V shape.

Golf Swing Faults

9. Early wrist release in the downswing AKA Casting. Unlocking the wrists too early will cause a loss of power. Often seen in golfers with exaggerated, long, backswings resulting in wild, off target shots.

10. Early follow through on the downswing. The golfers left arm, left hip and left knee are in front of the ball at impact and the hands and club lag behind.

11. Hips parallel to the ball at impact caused by restricted hip rotation. At impact the hips should be opening up slightly toward the target and the shoulders should be parallel to the target line.

12. Pivot foot faults such as: A) an open pivot foot; B) having your pivot foot positioned with the heel off of the ground (up on the toes). This position prevents proper weight transfer. Being on the toes with the pivot foot causes the golfer to hit shots fat or thin.

13. Improper clubface position at impact. When the club is open at impact (meaning the heel of the club head is closer to the target than the toe of the club head) the spin produced by the impact causes the golf ball to slice. A slice shot is a ball that flies severely to the right of the target for right handed golfers.

14. Cupping of the left wrist at the top of the backswing will cause a slice. Your left wrist should be flat at the top of the backswing. This will put your club face in a square position. A square club face will help to remedy a slice.

15. Fanning the clubface open on the backswing which leads to a slice.

16. Improper set up with your right shoulder higher than your left and your head in front of your hands.

Golf Injuries

Management And Effects On Performance

  • Back Injury
  • Muscle Pulls
  • Knee/Thigh Injury
  • Hip and Pelvis Injury
  • Shoulder Injury
  • Elbow Injury
  • Wrist and Hand Injury
  • Heat Stress

Golf poses a unique situation for the clinician. We are aware that this sport is not subject to high levels of compression or weight bearing on the spine, as seen in contact sports like football or weight lifting. Rather, golf can contribute to torque or rotational insult. This is related to an accumulation of various shearing forces in the horizontal plane. The golfer is also subject to applying excessive movements of the spine in a ballistic manner increasing tensile stress on those structures. 9 The principle forces of the golf swing will be translated through most structures from the base of the cervical spine through to the ankle and foot. But the area most often impacted is the lumbar spine. We will be exploring various injuries of the extremities and trunk, but initial attention will be paid to that area that affects the golfer the most, the low back.


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