There are many different wrist injuries that can happen during the golf swing. These can include conditions such as tendonitis, fractures, as well as sprains and strains. Like other joints that are relied upon during the golf swing, the wrist is susceptible to injuries simply from overuse. Also, a poor grip and/or faulty swing mechanics can also lead to injury. Women are also more likely to suffer from wrist injuries than men.
The risk of injury to the wrist is also higher in amateur golfers. This makes sense because amateurs are more likely to miss hit the ball which translates to more stress through the wrist. Professionals who have honed their swing over many years are much less likely to have poor shots, and are therefore less likely to be injured.
Other factors that could lead to injury are taking large divots and shots out of poor lies are high rough because the terrain is less forgiving.
Two key ways to help prevent these injuries are through a golf strength training program, and by developing a proper golf swing to help reduce stress on these joints and tissues.
Common wrist injuries include:
1. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome - Pinching of the median nerve as it passes through the carpal tunnel at your wrist. Primarily caused by too strong of a grip and/or repetitive grasping activity. Painful along the palmar side of the wrist and is often accompanied by numbness and/or tingling into the thumb, index, and middle fingers. Can be treated by activity modification, bracing, stretches, formal physical therapy, and surgery in chronic cases.
2. De Quervain Syndrome - Inflammation and degeneration of the tendon sheaths of two tendons that help move the thumb away from the hand. Likely caused by overuse but the exact cause is unknown. Main symptoms are pain, tenderness, and swelling over the thumb side of the wrist. Difficulty gripping is also a main symptom. Common treatment includes rest, immobilization, physical therapy, and surgery.
3. Hamate Fracture - The hamate is a small bone in your wrist located along the pinky side of the hand. On your lead hand, this bone lies directly upon the grip/shaft of the club. As you can imagine, any "fat" shot or divot will cause a force to travel back up the shaft and this could lead to a fracture. This is commonly treated by casting and surgery in the worst cases.
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