To begin with, how do you know you’ve had a wrist injury?
Well, obviously pain in the wrist is an indicator. But swelling in the wrist after playing, a feeling of weakness in the wrists or hands, numbness in the hands, or the appearance of a small lump on the back of the wrist (known as a ganglion) are also potential signs.
Ganglions could occur after an acute injury, like taking too large a divot, or in fact, could occur as a repetitive type of injury after playing repeatedly.
How Do You Prevent Wrist Injuries?
Here are a few common ways to prevent the onset of wrist pain.
1. Effective Warm-Ups
Warming up is perhaps one of the most important things. We do not advise stretching before a round of golf. Instead, warm up the muscles by simply going through the normal movement of golf, that is swinging the club lightly several times.
Go to the driving range before your round and hit some balls lightly with a quarter swing, and then a half swing. This is probably the best way to warm up. Stretching is best after a round.
2. Improve Wrist Strength and Flexibility
So once the muscles are warm, when you’ve exercised them, then you want to try and work on flexibility. In between rounds, strengthen your muscles by doing wrist curls and wrist rolls. These types of exercises are helpful in protecting the wrists.
3. Don’t Over Exert Yourself
Obviously picking the clubs up out of the car and carrying your clubs can run a risk. So being careful as you do those things is important.
Further reading on wrist injuries:
4. Wear Golf Gloves
Wearing golf gloves is important. The enhanced grip of a glove decreases the amount of grip force necessary, which then lets the forearm muscles relax a little bit more.
5. Adopt Proper Posture
Using proper golf posture is vital, too. So instead of putting the death grip on the club, try to stand with the body in a more relaxed position. Proper posture allows the hands to relax a little bit more as well.
Sitting down with a trained golf professional or a golf injury specialist, like a physiotherapist or a sports medicine physician can be helpful to try and understand that posture and to minimize injury.
How Do I Take Care of a Wrist Injury?
Well, one option is to go through a proper therapy program, most often directed by a sports medicine physician. At Athletic Edge Sports Medicine, we have all the resources in-house to deal with these kinds of problems.
Some patients require wrapping of the wrist in order to give more support. Wrapping is most useful in conditions where, for example, there’s been a ligament injury in the wrist.
Tendinitis of the wrist might require a shockwave therapy, cortisone injections or platelet-rich plasma injection, or in fact, bracing of the wrist. Bracing is also really useful for treating carpal tunnel syndrome, and that’s a treatment that you can do at home.
So depending on the nature of the injury, there are lots of different approaches we can take. Some which are very straightforward, others which are a bit more involved, but of course, having an appropriate assessment by a sports medicine physician is the first step.
Athletic Edge Sports Medicine has several years of experience in improving mobility, preventing injury, and ensuring you’re at your most optimum condition. Contact us for an initial diagnosis.