Watch that swing

by By Hafiz Rasid (hrasid@sph.com.sg)
published on 30 June 2016

The next time you are headed to the golf course or tennis court, watch the way you swing as the wrong technique may result in injuries that can impede your activities of daily living.

Dr Andrew Dutton, a medical director and orthopaedic surgeon with over 17 years of experience, said: “Poor swing postures or patterns could contribute to injuries especially to the back, neck, shoulder, elbow, wrist and fingers. These injuries could compromise your swing and distance on the greens, disrupting your game.”

Some of the common injuries that those taking up golfing and tennis can experience include rotator cuff impingement, tennis’ elbow, tendinopathy, carpal tunnel syndrome and back pain.

To play it safe on the greens, Dr Dutton shared some tips to minimise the risk of injuries while helping to improve on your performance.

Refine your swing

Always take note of your posture before and during your swing. Dr Dutton recommended standing shoulder-width apart to ensure that your weight is evenly distributed.

Avoid hunching as it may cause neck and back strain. Practise your swing without over-emphasising specific muscle groups.

Over-emphasising specific muscles may cause injuries due to excessive strain.

Prepping time

Never underestimate the importance of warming up before your game as it helps to stretch and loosen the muscles.

Once you have finished playing, stretch with cooling down exercises too. These will help to condition the body post-game and assist in soothing tensed muscles.

Incorporate other exercises

Dr Dutton advised those who take up golfing or tennis to also include other workouts in their fitness program.

He said: “Be sure to do strength training all year round. It helps in improving your club head speed in golfing. Regular aerobic exercises can help boost your performance in the court, as it helps in building up stamina and endurance. Remember to add stretching too as over time, it may help to improve your range of motion for a smoother swing.”