Golfing with Spinal Stenosis
You’re probably reading this because you’re wondering if it’s OK to golf with spinal stenosis. A lot of patients wonder that.
We need to be straight up: many people with your condition can golf. But there are some precautions and considerations you should keep in mind.
Tough On the Lower Back
There’s no getting around the fact that golfing with spinal stenosis demands realism. And the reality is that golf involves twisting motions when swinging the club.
That represents a very real risk to those already living with a spinal condition, so let’s keep that in mind, as we continue.
Here are some adaptations you can make to render golf a safer sport to play.
Adaptations for Golfing With Spinal Stenosis
- Reduce the force with which you strike the ball to between 50 and 75% of your normal swing.
- Wear a back brace. The act of wearing it will continually remind you of your condition, so you don’t overdo it. Wearing the brace also limits movement in the low back, protecting it. Most pharmacies carry braces for the lower back.
- Check with your doctor first, but about a half hour before playing, you may be able to take an over the counter anti-inflammatory.
- Before starting play, treat your back to a gentle, deliberate stretch. This will warm up your muscles and get the blood (and all the oxygen and nutrients it carries) to your back muscles.
- If you experience leg pain or other symptoms flaring up after a game of golf, consult your doctor. It’s most likely you’ll be asked to cease playing golf for a matter of weeks, until your pain subsides. In the meantime, stretching and strengthening exercises will most likely be prescribed.
There are multiple factors to consider if you’re thinking about golfing with spinal stenosis.
You overall health is one. Then, there’s the extent of your spinal stenosis and how it manifests in your instance.
If you’d had surgery to ease spinal stenosis, the type of surgical intervention used is also factored into a decision advising patients on activities like golf. When you had surgery in relation to when you’re going to start golfing also counts.
Exercise Is Your Friend
If golf is beyond your reach for now, we recommend that apply yourself to improving your overall health and strength.
Golf can be a demanding sport (especially if you’re not rolling in a golf cart), so building your endurance, flexibility and strength are key to your success. Ready your body for golfing with spinal stenosis, then apply these tips for making it less of a risk.
We hope you find your way to the links and that you enjoy them safely.
Spine Consult NJ
Spinal stenosis is just one of the many conditions of the spine we treat here at SCNJ. And surgery is not the only answer to back pain.
Starting with conservative treatments, out team’s goal is to restore your wellbeing and be a catalyst for your healing.
Patient-centered treatment is our care model. Contact us.