fitness friday

Elbow or wrist bothering you? Check your golf glove (this might be the issue)

September 29, 2023
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If you're experiencing pain, soreness or inflammation in any of the joints of your arms (wrists, elbows, shoulders), check your golf glove. Is the padding around the heel pad heavily worn or even ripped? If so, you might have found the reason for your issues.

Not only is it important to hold a golf club correctly if you want to generate power and allow it to "release" through the impact zone, it also reduces the stress placed on the joints of the arm. Those joints experience all sorts of different forces as you swing (flexion, extension, rotation, pronation, supination, etc.). Even stopping a swing can lead to straining the soft tissue around the joints.

A common amateur mistake, says Hall of Fame instructor David Leadbetter, is to hold the shaft of the club in the palm of the lead hand (below, right) and then imbed the thumb of that gloved hand into the palm of the trail hand. The proper way to hold the club is diagonally across the fingers of the lead hand (below, left), and also more in the fingers of the trail hand. When you do this and swing a club, you should immediately sense less restriction. It might feel weird at first, but getting used to holding the club this way should do wonders for your swing and go a long way to avoiding any joint issues.

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To complement your new-and-improved grip,Golf Digest Certified Fitness Trainer Dan Swinscoe has a few exercises to bolster the joints of your arms. Swinscoe, who trains golfers at Train2Win Physical Therapy in Scottsdale, says to do these exercises a few times a week and remember to do them with both arms, not just the lead arm.

Watch Dan demonstrate them below. And if you're interested in learning more about Golf Digest's Certified Fitness Trainer program or know someone who would, click on this link. A list of certified trainers can be found here.