Low back pain affects a majority of the population, usually somewhere between 80-90%. If you haven’t ever experienced a bout of low back pain, consider yourself to be quite lucky!
When it comes to golf, the top injury that prevents golfers from playing or stopping is back pain.
Luckily, we know from research that there is a highly correlated factor in golfers that is associated with back pain.
That factor is hip mobility, particularly hip internal range of motion. Hip internal rotation is when the top of your thigh bone rotates inward towards your body. This is what hip internal range of motion looks like when sitting in a chair.
In the golf swing, you get into hip internal rotation at the top of your backswing and at the end of your swing when you’re posting on your lead leg.
If you have any lack of mobility in the hips, your body will still do what you tell it to do. Therefore, it will make up for that lack of motion in your hips somewhere else, which is usually the low back. Unfortunately the low back is not really meant to rotate. So repeatedly rotating in an area that’s not meant to rotate can eventually lead to pain.
If you’re not sure if your hips are limited, check out the video below to test yourself. We’re usually looking for about 45 degrees of hip internal range of motion.
Usually hip mobility can be improved pretty easily through some self massage techniques. You can check out some in the video below to help you see if this helps improve your mobility and your back pain. If however, you try these for about a week and you’re not seeing any improvement, I recommend that you reach out to a physical therapist or another qualified healthcare provider to further evaluate you.
If you’re struggling with back pain or any kind of pain and it’s affecting your ability to play well, as frequently, or as enjoyable as you’d like, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me HERE so we can get you feeling your best. Because when you feel great, you golf great!