One of my patients, Norm, originally came to me with a health problem that affected his ability to enjoy a recreational sport and that also affected his relationship with his wife. Norm had a lower back problem that was limiting his ability to golf. You might ask: “I can see why this would affect his ability to enjoy a recreational sport but why was it affecting his relationship with his wife?” I wondered about this also. Norm told me: “When I can’t golf I just sit around the house all day and drive my wife crazy!”
For Norm’s sake and for the sanity of his wife I was motivated to help eliminate his back pain and get him golfing again. I am a chiropractor and treating lower back pain is one of my specialties. This article will explain why many golfers have back pain and how it can be helped.
Recently a study noted in the South African Journal of Physical Therapy, March 2018 stated that almost half of golfers have back pain. The research showed that among a group of 271 recreational golfers, 45% suffered from mechanical lower back pain and 23% had sacroiliac joint dysfunction. Further analysis showed that nearly 96% of the golfers with sacroiliac joint dysfunction had mechanical lower back pain.
Mechanical lower back pain simply means that there is a movement and/or an alignment problem. The sacroiliac joint is a pelvic joint, in the hip pocket area. There is a sacroiliac joint on both sides our pelvis. Dysfunction of the sacroiliac joint means that it is misaligned and/or isn’t moving properly.
As a chiropractor, I am trained to evaluate the sacroiliac joints in golfers with lower back pain. Through a simple physical examination, it can be determined if one or both of the sacroiliac joints may be misaligned or moving improperly.
If this is the case it is a problem that can be treated with chiropractic care. Usually, a series of “chiropractic adjustments” are given to the patient with misalignments and/or improperly moving sacroiliac joints to correct the cause of the problem. Once corrected, 90% of these back conditions are improved and most golfers can resume the sport.
Many professional golfers undergo regular chiropractic care. I encourage any recreational golfer who is being limited by his lower back pain to explore chiropractic care for their condition. If it’s good enough for the pros it certainly is good enough for the rest of us.