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Parents, get out of the way and let them play golf!

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In my work, I see a lot of games, a lot of athletes and a lot of interesting coach and parent behavior. The last one is the topic of this story, because parent behavior is a critical piece in how much young players enjoy golf … and how long they keep playing.

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The sad reality is that the majority of young athletes, including young golfers, drop out of competitive sports by the time they reach the age of 14. A study from the National Alliance of Sports tells us that more than 70 percent of young athletes leave competitive sports by that age. Why? It has nothing to do with the game. It likely isn’t the competition, the work involved or the effort required, either. Instead, it is the young people’s greatest fans, their parents — and sometimes their coaches — who take the fun away and make the experience of sports too complicated for the child to enjoy.

Instead of the pure joy of playing and achieving, young golfers get bogged down by heavy expectations, the pressure to win, and other complications introduced by the very adults who are most invested in them playing the sport. This may not be you, but for the sake of organized youth sports, please read on. And if you agree with what’s written, pass this story on.

Egos Run Amok

I’ve run a number of sessions on high performance for young golfers recently; a hot topic is always pressure and how young golfers handle it. Part of the complication is that mom and/or dad are often the biggest source of pressure. They create expectations that might be difficult to reach, and over time, that sucks the fun out of the game for their kids.

Is it really about the kids or the parents’ egos? The kids, with their $300 shoes, top-of-the-line equipment, and bag full of Pro Vs look like mini-professionals, one step from the tour. What starts out as a desire to have their kids be active and play their parent’s favorite game can sometimes shift into something else. Motives change, and often not for the better.

Do You Have a Frustration Gap?

Many parents see their child on the course or the practice tee as what they’d like their child to be, and not what their child actually is. I call this the Frustration Gap. Parents watch their kids perform and the frustration builds … and builds … and builds as the parent waits for the child to reach the performance level the parent hopes to see.

While this frustration is not much fun for the parent, it is less fun for the child, who is constantly trying to live up to the parent’s expectations. Usually, those expectations are unrealistic, and not in line with the child’s abilities or motivations. This tension is a performance crusher, and can lead a child in the wrong direction – sometimes out of the game for good.

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The Mini-Van Golf Prison

Is your vehicle a Mini-Van Golf Prison, a place your child is trapped as you express your frustration with his or her performance? While most parents have good intentions for these chats, their budding professional becomes the target for all sorts of emotions felt by the parent while watching their child and expecting more.

What happened out there today? You looked tired… was that it? I’ve seen you play so much better than you did today. What’s wrong?

These questions and comments can begin a spiral of frustration between a young golfer and parent. And unfortunately, these opening lines often lead to deeper criticisms and questions resulting from the parent’s frustration. I really wish I could measure how much confidence the mini-van prison syndrome has destroyed in young players. All I know is it’s a problem, and awareness of your own car rides after the round is something to consider.

Some Ideas to Help

To help you and your young golfer avoid the Frustration Gap and the Mini-Van Prison, and keep them enjoying the game, here are a few ideas to consider.

1. Step back emotionally. Don’t forget this is your child’s life and experience. One of the joys of being a parent is guiding your child through life and enjoying their successes, but it can be taken too far. If you become obsessed with your child’s performance, and find yourself placing unrealistic expectations on them, you need to take a step back.

2. Make car rides positive experiences. Don’t talk about the game in the car. Let the child initiate any conversation related to the game. If they want to share, they will. And make sure to let the child know you are their biggest supporter, and will be there for them whether they win or lose; play well or make mistakes.

3. Praise achievement. Don’t be critical or instructive. Learn to praise achievement and not focus on your child’s limitations. Make sure the child knows you are proud of a great shot, round and attitude.

4. Focus on process and effort. Don’t be too results-oriented. Your priority for your child needs to be that they feel good about themselves and are happy so that they are motivated to play again tomorrow.

5. Let your young golfer do what is right for them now. Don’t push the child based on your desires. Encouraging your child is great, but don’t cross the line and push your child further than he or she wants to go right now.

6. Let coaches coach! Don’t be both the parent and coach. Coaching and instruction both from parents and coaches confuses the child and has little positive impact.

7. Adjust your expectations. Don’t allow your frustration to build. Letting your Frustration Gap build is not helpful for you or the child. A parent who bottles up frustration becomes a ticking time bomb, waiting for an opportunity for the frustration to become uncorked.

8. Every child makes mistakes! Don’t hyper-focus on your child. Parents put their own children under a microscope, and live and die by each movement the child makes. This hyper-focus on your own child — watching their every move — creates a lack of perspective relative to the other kids on the course, and in the game in general.

If your child is one of the chosen few who are talented enough to play college golf, or even make their way into the professional ranks, great. But 99.9 percent of kids won’t go on to do these things. The important thing is to set the table early for these young players to enjoy what is the best game in the world … for a lifetime.

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John Haime is the President of New Edge Performance. He's a Human Performance Coach who prepares performers to be the their best by helping them tap into the elusive 10 percent of their abilities that will get them to the top. This is something that anyone with a goal craves, and John Haime knows how to get performers there. John closes the gap for performers in sports and business by taking them from where they currently are to where they want to go.  The best in the world trust John. They choose him because he doesn’t just talk about the world of high performance – he has lived it and lives in it everyday. He is a former Tournament Professional Golfer with professional wins. He has a best-selling book, “You are a Contender,” which is widely read by world-class athletes, coaches and business performers.  He has worked around the globe for some of the world’s leading companies. Athlete clients include performers who regularly rank in the Top-50 in their respective sports. John has the rare ability to work as seamlessly in the world of professional sports as he does in the world of corporate performance. His primary ambition writing for GolfWRX is to help you become the golfer you'd like to be. See www.johnhaime.com for more. Email: john@newedgeperformance.org

36 Comments

36 Comments

  1. golfraven

    Jun 3, 2016 at 4:07 pm

    I usually step away when my 2.5 years old one starts to throw his clubs in the air. Danger especially when at home. Other then that I love to see him practice just out of his own will and just enjoy watching him do it. When I try to show him something he goes bananas so I rather don’t get involved as he knows best.

  2. Armypilot84

    Jun 2, 2016 at 8:21 am

    I think this is a really interesting article. I completely agree with the idea of “getting out of the way” when it comes to a young child playing golf. Golf is an incredibly hard game that I truly believe in my heart that no one is naturally good at. You have to love the game in order to want to get better. I only take me 5 year old son to the range when he asks me to go, and while there I do not try to instruct his swing. We play games where he tries to hit targets. I have only taken him a handful of times to go play 9 with me in the evenings and when we go I have a strict “No Frown” policy. I do not focus on his game at all, but his attitude. I give him one “mulligan” when it comes to throwing a fit or getting upset after hitting a bad shot. After that we go home if he does it again. It sucks wasting the $40+ in greens fees after only 2-3 holes, but it seems to have kept him yearning to play more. I just want him to have fun putting the ball in the hole because that is what the game is all about. I don’t care how it gets there.

    • John Haime

      Jun 2, 2016 at 1:07 pm

      Thanks for sharing your experience. Nice approach you have. Some fundamental instruction combined with allowing the young player to take ownership of the experience should lead to fun and great results.

  3. Dr. Dormie

    Jun 1, 2016 at 1:26 pm

    John, your advice for dealing with the interfering, hovering parent of juniors is sound. I watch it all the time at a local range where mothers and fathers can’t let the kid practice without cleaning his/her clubs, teeing up the ball, taking videos, and playing the part of a coach in instructing. It is oppressive in its smothering of the child and makes the game way too serious at way too young an age.

    In terms of your qualifications, please be sure you do not represent or insinuate you are credentialed, educated, trained or licensed as a psychologist in your articles or website. Being inspired by Daniel Goleman and his concept of “emotional intelligence” is just one small part of the pie. I say this as a clinical and sport psychologist who has been in practice for 40 years.

    • John Haime

      Jun 1, 2016 at 2:39 pm

      Hi Dr. Dormie,

      Thanks so much for your comments on the article – much appreciated.

      And, thanks for the advice and placing me a convenient little box LOL.

      FYI – respectfully, sport psychology is a very small piece of working with athletes and high performance. I use some basic principles that are widely available to all, but getting sustainable results with athletes and performers reaches far beyond the narrow reach of traditional sport psychology. Psychology is about fixing problems, I build and develop athletes, performers and people – very different approaches.

      My client list, including some of the world’s leading athletes, suggests that I probably know what I’m doing. It probably extends beyond inspiration from Dan Goleman (:

      • Dr. Dormie

        Jun 1, 2016 at 8:46 pm

        John, I did not place you in a “box.” I simply asked you to be careful in how you represent yourself. Your comments about sport psychologists are inaccurate. You say “psychology is about fixing problems.” When it comes to sport psychology, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Clinical psychology is about fixing problems–not sport psychology. Ask any respected golf psychologist if what he’s/she’s doing is “fixing problems.” You sound a bit defensive, referring to your client list, but I guess “giving you advice” was asking for some defensiveness. So, I won’t pursue this any further.

        • John Haime

          Jun 2, 2016 at 9:22 am

          thanks Dr. Dorrie.

          I don’t feel the response is a defensive one – but when someone questions my abilities to do what I do – I like to respond and explain. The idea here is to comment on the article – not on the abilities or credentials of the writer.

          I refer to my client list and results only to point out that’s all that really counts in the real world. Credentials get your foot in the door – but then you must prove you can actually help people and get results. I hire sports psyches and many find it difficult to make the transition from the classroom to the locker room – they are night and day.

          And, my point was clinical psychology is fixing problems. Working with athletes re High performance is coaching – identifying a gap and closing it. Traditional sport psychology can be one tool in closing that gap.

          Hope you keep reading and commenting!! Would love to hear your ideas on helping athletes offline.

          Cheers!

  4. emerson boozer

    Jun 1, 2016 at 4:34 am

    Great article. I happen to practice the day of the junior close open. In the parking lot was kids and their drivers (no kidding) and/or dads getting out all their new gear and own pull carts, etc…

    Then, the bus pulled up and all the kids who used the donated gear came running off yelling and screaming. The range was a zoo.

    I compete with our junior club champ on our travelling team and he came over and said hello. I asked him wasn’t it great to be able to play with his friends? He said he had no friends and liked playing with me (i’m 35 years older). The sadness on his face. My heart broke.

    He made full ride scholarship in the states and his father moved to the states off campus. I hate to think about it.

  5. Jon

    Jun 1, 2016 at 1:59 am

    Thanks for the article. It’s very much along the lines of those I’ve read before about sports parents, and with golf in particular, falls into the “early specialization leads to burnout and hinders potential” genre. The issue I have (sorry!) is that these all start with the basic premise that kids drop out of sports by the time they are 14 because their parents were overbearing (“no fun”), or the kid is burned out from too much of one sport. But those conclusions, upon which the entire rest of the articles are built upon, are Never backed up with any evidence or data. In my experience with junior golf (going on roughly 20 years), I can’t think of Any competitive golfers (those who had some dedication to the game) who quit the sport for either of these reasons. The very few that I know of that did stop did so because they wanted to play a different sport or spend more time on their academics. As a lifelong athlete, my observation is just the opposite – the biggest reason kids, and adults, drop out of golf is because they suck at it….sucking is no fun, regardless of your age. Playing well is tons of fun, regardless of your age. Playing decent golf is hard. It’s one of those sports where parents often play a critical role in helping their kids not suck. Whether it’s through teaching them or making sure they get appropriate instruction. My take is that I’d like to see articles written from that perspective and help parents be better golf parents (and coaches if that is their chosen role in the relationship). In short, parents who dedicate the time and energy it takes to develop or support the development of a junior golfer should be celebrated, not ostracized, unless you have some actual peer reviewed data that proves otherwise. Telling parents to “Get Out of the Way” …not the best way to begin the conversation.

    • John Haime

      Jun 1, 2016 at 1:30 pm

      Thanks for the comments Jon – appreciated. Interesting experience you have with young golfers.

      Give the National Sport Alliance a call and they will give you data and stats to support the numbers in the article. There are other youth sport groups that also have data.

      I understand your thoughts. My experience, working with young athletes everyday is I often hear that “mom and dad put too much pressure on me and it’s not fun.” It’s more prevalent than you might think. Often parents have a blindspot – think they are not applying pressure – but they are in the view of the child. As soon as that anxiety creeps in to the child’s experience – other options become more attractive. Wondering if you ever talked to the kids and asked them the REAL reasons why they left? In the article I am primarily referring to competitive kids who have some (or their parents have) some ambition for them to attain a level in the game.

      I completely agree that adults drop out of the game because of ability. That is an article for another day as many adults go in without a plan, have unrealistic expectations, underestimate the commitment needed to develop proficiency, get frustrated – and quit. But, in my experience, that is not the case with kids. If parents drop them off at the course and expose them to some good instruction, they typically become quite proficient at the game. As you know, kids pick up everything quicker than adults.

      As mentioned in the article. Every parent does not short circuit the experience for kids. But, the article is written to create awareness for parents who do.

      “Get out of the way” is direct, but the reality is the parents do get in the way of the experience. It’s important to ensure kids own their own sport experience and not have parental expectations and adult values hanging over them to prevent them from expressing themselves.

      The conversation re: team sports is different and much more complicated.

      • Raven

        Jun 1, 2016 at 5:22 pm

        Brilliant article – I agree that overbearing parents can make things less fun and push some kids away, but how realistic is this as being a significant reason? I recall my old Japanese karate sensei saying that most people left a sport either as a beginner, or when they reached a level where they were ready to become really good (often in their mid to late teens). Both levels required an extra step up in effort and also filtered out those who were simply not able to progress further. That sensei was also considered an authority in his field. So are these parents actually pushing their kids away, or just making it more appealing to leave at a particular time? Respectfully I completely agree that positive reinforcement will help those who do pursue a sport to a highly skilled level, and I don’t think hyper-focussed parachute parents are good for any child’s life development. I do however see kids leaving at certain competitive levels regardless of parent frustration level.

        • John Haime

          Jun 2, 2016 at 9:47 am

          Nice comments Raven.

          Yes, agree kids leave for a variety of reasons. But, sport has changed with highly competitive focuses in all sports. College scholarships and the huge opportunities have created a more hyper focus on results – by parents.

          Karate etc. may be a bit different from the traditional sports as the “end game” in activities like Karate do not normally lead to large payoffs like traditional sports softening the push and ownership from parents.

          Thanks again for the contribution to the conversation.

    • John Haime

      Jun 1, 2016 at 2:51 pm

      Hey Jon,

      Thanks for the comments – great to get different perspectives.

      A few thoughts …

      Give National Sport Alliance a call and you can gather the data. There are also other sources that the NSA can recommend.

      “Get out of the way” is direct – but exactly what parents must do to allow the kids to own their sport experience and fully express themselves. Parents do “get in the way” of the experience and take ownership themselves.

      Just wondering if you have talked to the kids and understood the REAL reasons they are leaving? Other sports and academics are convenient reasons and acceptable – but I think if you really spoke to the kids – you might find something different.

      Agree – adults quit because they find it too hard. They often don’t have a plan, expectations are too high, don’t realize the time commitment, get frustrated and may quit. But, kids pick it up easily – and if they have good coaching – I don’t see them leaving because it is too difficult.

      thanks again.

  6. Snoopy

    May 31, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    This is the most unshankable article around. Something great I’ve realized totally outside the context of competitive sports is that good performance can come with hard work, but GREAT performance comes when the work feels like fun. If you’re not having fun on the golf course, parent or player, you should probably find something more productive to do with your time.

    • John Haime

      May 31, 2016 at 4:44 pm

      Great comment Snoopy – exactly right. Enjoyment and passion are absolute requirements for great and sustainable performance.

      Thanks for contributing!

  7. Alan

    May 31, 2016 at 1:13 am

    Great article. As a parent myself of 2 young boys who play golf I see this happening a lot. I’ve had to learn to step away and let them get on with it without them worrying what my reaction will be as a result of a bad score or shot! Let them enjoy it and let them have the freedom to keep playing and enjoy themselves on the course!

  8. Bernard

    May 30, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    I have a son who plays AAU basketball, a lot of what is written here I wholeheartedly agree with. When my son is at practice, I hit the local range to work on golf, so I am there, 5-6 hours a week. I have seen several parent/kid sessions, where at practice the “adult” is hyper coaching and even berating a young kid. In all cases the kid looks miserable. When the fun is gone, the kid will follow it off the the course. I have expectations as a parent, they are work hard and have fun, I try to maintain those twin goals without alienating my child with result based expectations. Feed their passion, do not kill it with trophy dreams. The prize is a well adjusted kid who feels loved.

    • John Haime

      May 31, 2016 at 2:56 pm

      Yes – excellent comment Bernard – the article is transferable to all sports. I work in many sports now and see the behavior in all sports. Your last line really is the goal – hoping they also learn lessons from the games that are transferable later on.

      Thanks!

  9. 8thehardway

    May 30, 2016 at 9:37 am

    Don’t tell me how to manage my 9 y/o protege, she & I hustled my friends for 350 last weekend and it woulda been double if she made that last putt, but she’s developing the yips; she has got to learn to cope with cigar smoke and swearing if she’s gonna make competitive golf her life.

    Instead of listening to this garbage I subscribed to Byung-holio Wei’s newletter – expensive, he’s got the right perspective and I’m gonna spring for a brace for her blown out knee and some Adderall; Byung thinks they don’t drug test kids under 12 so that’s 3 more years of smooth sailing until I sign her up for the men’s John Deere Classic, and if she wins the tractor-pull and the golf tournament all the time I spent as her daddy/caddy, coach and manager will be worth it.

  10. KK

    May 30, 2016 at 12:37 am

    These parents are the definition of arrogance. If the kid is trying, that’s all you can ask. If the kid isn’t, he/she shouldn’t be playing anyway.

  11. WolfWRX

    May 29, 2016 at 9:08 pm

    Great article. I need to print this off and pin it on my fridge as a reminder to myself. Thank you.

  12. Nick

    May 29, 2016 at 6:58 pm

    Good advice- interestingly the best female golfers I work with are the ones this article is written towards.
    Best for the masses might not be best for the best.
    I also have doubts that this is the reason why 70% of kids stop playing organized sport. I stopped playing hockey and my parents were great. You don’t have to hate your parents to have other interests

  13. Nick

    May 29, 2016 at 6:52 pm

    There is some good advice here- interestingly the best female golfers I work with are the ones this article is written at.
    Best for the masses might not be best for the best.
    I also have doubts that this is the reason why 70% of kids stop playing organized sport. I stopped playing hockey and my parents were great. You don’t have to hate your parents to have other interests

    • John Haime

      May 30, 2016 at 2:17 pm

      Thanks for the comment Nick – good ones. Agree many parents are great and provide a nice environment for the kids to enjoy sports. And, there are many different reasons why kids move away from competitive sports – but when they stop having fun and get tired of the adult values – they are much quicker to turn their heads in other directions. Unfortunately, today, there is a likelihood that the parents own the kids’ sport experience – and not the kids who are playing them.

  14. CD

    May 29, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    “but we want to keep them playing so it becomes a lifetime interest and passion.”

    Why do we???? And if we want them to, and not them want to; then you’ve lost ‘your’ goal before you’ve started anyway.

    If people are really doing the points you listed above, don’t be surprised when little Jimmy discovers girls and motorbikes. Or gets a career. Or simply doesn’t want to hang around with dad who is playing a deeply uncool game.

    Having to consider, or reconsider any of these points says everything about the parent than the child. This is written in a competitive context; so it’s the parent that has the ego, the insecurity they were never good enough; and is trying to live their thwarted – and unrealistic – dreams vicariously. It’s just about the most selfish thing you can do; try and restrict someone’s freedom of choice and liberty.

    • John Haime

      May 30, 2016 at 2:01 pm

      Hey CD – thanks for the comments …

      Understand what you are saying.

      I think, simply, the goal is to give the kids the opportunity to fall in love with the game – and continue to pursue it. We all know the benefits of the game – and introducing adult values too early in the process can discourage kids away from the game. Agree, kids will leave the game for a variety of reasons, but there’s a much better chance they’ll keep playing if they own it themselves, they have fun and we allow them to discover the many benefits.

  15. M smizzy

    May 28, 2016 at 5:08 pm

    Italian sparkeling water with lime twist, Truffle fries cooked in duck fat, and a Kobe burger medium?

  16. Forsbrand

    May 28, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    I have watched some quite disgusting parents at junior coaching “Come on Caleb show them your Tiger stinger”. Yeh he’s 8 years old can barely swing the club!! Absolute mug of a parent and often a high handicapper trying to relive his youth through his child. T
    HE sort of guy you just wanna grab and shake!!

    Also you’ve got the father that always plays golf with his son in competitions, you know marks his card and low and behold the teenager shoots a super low score, 4 shots lower than the club champion could possibly shoot, yes folks the Magic Marker Brigade! They’ll do anything to get there son noticed / handicap down so they get in that college team.

    Leave kids alone, let them develop naturally, don’t force the issue, they might just be happy playing to a 28 handicap casually having fun!

  17. bart

    May 28, 2016 at 12:00 pm

    You’ve missed one big reason when diagnosing the “problem” of why kids leave sports in their teens: some kids would rather do something else. Music, art, culture, reading, work, being with friends, enjoying nature- there is so much else to do other than chase a ball around.

    So maybe the problem is that you think there is a problem with kids not playing sports?

    • John Haime

      May 28, 2016 at 1:01 pm

      Thanks Bart – agreed.

      But, I think you’ve missed part of the point of the article.

      If the kids are playing – there’s no reason why we can’t keep them playing with the right motivations. Kids want to have fun and they turn to the things you mention because often they are frustrated with golf/sport – it’s not fun anymore.

      Agree there are lots of things to do – but to keep kids playing – we have to provide the great environment. I think it’s great to encourage other interests – but we want to keep them playing so it becomes a lifetime interest and passion.

      Thanks for the comment!!

      • Rb

        May 29, 2016 at 10:34 am

        How about this: if the kids are good at it, they’ll play anyway. If they feel they’re good at something else and want to do that other thing – then the Parent is a douche for pushing it on the kid in all the wrong ways.

  18. M smizzy

    May 28, 2016 at 11:57 am

    Excellent article. Focusing on the positives and building a long term appreciation of the game and its ability to build
    Character and etiquette should be first priority for the youngsters. My best experiences have been whacking it around with friends and just enjoying the game and fellowship. These have also been some of my best rounds. Respect the challenges of
    The game.

    • John Haime

      May 28, 2016 at 1:05 pm

      Great comments smizzy – your point about the challenges of the game is a great one. So much to learn from golf – so we want to keep kids in the game and learn those lessons.

      I am all for encouraging kids to do other things and be well rounded – but pushing them out of the game at an early age really subtracts something that can bring them joy and value over a lifetime.

    • Bert

      May 29, 2016 at 8:18 am

      Great comments – I enjoy seeing kids playing golf with other kids.

      Just recently watched the NCAA Women’s National Championship and all I could think about was the coaches interfering with play. I kept thinking, “get the heck out of there and let the girl putt.” Coaches and parents are good for the sport as teachers, motivators and hopefully mentors, but when it comes time to play, let them play.

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Opinion & Analysis

5 most common golf injuries (and how to deal with them)

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You might not think about golf as a physically intensive game, but that doesn’t change the fact it is still a sport. And as with every sport, there’s a possibility you’ll sustain an injury while playing golf. Here’s a list of the five most common injuries you might sustain when playing the game, along with tips on how to deal with them in the best way possible so you heal quickly.

Sunburn

While not directly an injury, it’s paramount to talk about sunburns when talking about golf. A typical golf game is played outside in the open field, and it lasts for around four hours. This makes it extremely likely you’ll get sunburnt, especially if your skin is susceptible to it.

That’s why you should be quite careful when you play golf

Apply sunscreen every hour – since you’re moving around quite a lot on a golf course, sunscreen won’t last as long as it normally does.

Wear a golf hat – aside from making you look like a professional, the hat will provide additional protection for your face.

If you’re extra sensitive to the sun, you should check the weather and plan games when the weather is overcast.

Rotator Cuff Injury

A rotator cuff is a group of four muscles that surround the shoulder joint. This group are the main muscles responsible for swing movements in your arms. It’s no surprise then that in golf, where the main activity consists of swinging your arms, there’s a real chance this muscle group might sustain an injury.

To avoid injuries to this group, it’s imperative you practice the correct form of swinging the club. Before playing, you should also consider some stretching.

If you get an injury, however, you can recover faster by following RICE:

Rest: resting is extremely important for recovery. After an injury, the muscles are extremely vulnerable to further injury, and that’s why you should immediately stop playing and try to get some rest.

Ice: applying ice to the injured area during the first day or two can help. It reduces inflammation and relaxes the muscles.

Compress: bandage the rotator cuff group muscle and compress the muscles. This speeds up the muscle healing process.

Elevate: elevate the muscles above your heart to help achieve better circulation of blood and minimize fluids from gathering.

Wrist Injuries

Wrist tendons can sustain injuries when playing golf. Especially if you enjoy playing with a heavy club, it can put some strain on the wrist and cause wrist tendonitis, which is characterized by inflammation and irritation.

You should start by putting your wrist in a splint or a cast – it is necessary to immobilize your wrist to facilitate healing.

Anti-inflammatory medicine can relieve some of the pain and swelling you’ll have to deal with during the healing process. While it might not help your wrist heal much quicker, it’ll increase your comfort.

A professional hand therapist knows about the complexities of the wrist and the hand and can help you heal quicker by inspecting and treating your hands.

Back Pain

A golf game is long, sometimes taking up to 6 hours. This long a period of standing upright, walking, swinging clubs, etc. can put stress on your back, especially in people who aren’t used to a lot of physical activities:

If you feel like you’re not up for it, you should take a break mid-game and then continue after a decent rest. A golf game doesn’t have any particular time constraints, so it should be simple to agree to a short break.

If you don’t, consider renting a golf cart, it makes movement much easier. If that’s not possible, you can always buy a pushcart, which you can easily store all the equipment in. Take a look at golf push cart reviews to know which of them best suits your needs.

Better posture – a good posture distributes physical strain throughout your body and not only on your back, which means a good posture will prevent back pain and help you deal with it better during a game.

Golfer’s Elbow

Medically known as medial epicondylitis, golfer’s elbow occurs due to strain on the tendons connecting the elbow and forearm. It can also occur if you overuse and over-exhaust the muscles in your forearm that allow you to grip and rotate your arm:

A nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug is the way to go to alleviate the most severe symptoms of the injury at the beginning.

Lift the club properly, and if you think there’s a mismatch between your wrist and the weight of the club, you should get a lighter one.

Learn when you’ve reached your limit. Don’t overexert yourself – when you know your elbow is starting to cause you problems, take a short break!

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Podcasts

TG2: Our PGA picks were spot on…and Rob hit a school bus with a golf ball

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Rob picked Brooks to win the PGA and hit the nail on the head, while Knudson’s DJ pick was pretty close. Rob hit a school bus with a golf ball and we talk about some new clubs that are going to be tested in the next couple days.

Check out the full podcast on SoundCloud below, or click here to listen on iTunes or here to listen on Spotify.

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The Gear Dive: Vokey Wedge expert Aaron Dill

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In this episode of The Gear Dive, Johnny chats with Titleist Tour Rep Aaron Dill on working under Bob Vokey, How he got the gig and working with names like JT, Jordan and Brooks.

Check out the full podcast on SoundCloud below, or click here to listen on iTunes or here to listen on Spotify.

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