Golfing: Three Causes of Knee Pain

Kevin Freedman, MD November 6th, 2018

Rothman Orthopaedic Institute Explores Three Causes of Knee Pain While Golfing

A majority of professional golfers have experienced some sort of nagging injury at one time or another in their careers. However, you don’t have to be a professional player to experience some of the most common injuries in golf. Even casual golfers can sustain injuries. When it comes to knee pain, Rothman Orthopaedic Institute’s Sports Medicine team is here to help you understand some of the underlying causes of knee pain in golfers.

Sports Medicine is the medical specialty concerned with the prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of injuries due to athletic activity. Rothman Orthopaedic Institute offers a comprehensive team of experts that excel by providing the best in board-certified orthopaedic care. In fact, our physicians specialize in knee treatment. Our goal is to get you back to the golf course! To learn more about recovering from golf knee pain, be sure to check out our ebook: Getting Back on the Fairway without Knee Pain.

Understanding The Anatomy Of The Knee

Understand how the knee joint is formed will help with understanding why it can be injured in a game of golf.

  • The knee joint functions like a hinge at the junction of two bones, the femur, the thigh bone in the upper leg, and tibia, the shin in the lower leg.

  • It is a complex joint that involves soft tissues such as ligaments and tendons.

  • The meniscus is a disc of cartilage between the shin bone and thigh bone that serves to cushion the knee joint. It guides movement and serves as a shock-absorber.  

With so many moving parts, it is no wonder the knee is subject to injury! Knee pain diagnosis is best performed by an orthopaedic physician who specializes in the knee joint.

Three Causes Of Knee Pain in Golfers

Knee injuries are not the most common type of golf injury. In fact, they represent about ten percent of all golf-related injuries. That does not mean that knee pain in golfers is not significant or treatable.

  1. Aggravating Existing Knee Conditions.
    Knee pain can occur from the strain placed on an already weak or injured knee to stabilize the rotation of the hip axis at the beginning of the swing. Arthritis sufferers may experience more knee problems because of having pre-existing knee pain. Bending, squatting to retrieve balls, and lots of walking puts stress on the weight-bearing knee joint.

  2. Injury To Soft Tissues.
    The extreme force placed on the knee joint can result in torn ligaments, torn cartilage, or other soft tissue damage. The twisting motion of the knee while bearing weight on it during the swing can jeopardize the intricate soft tissues, resulting in pain.

  3. Overuse Injury.
    Many knee injuries are the result of overuse and poor swing mechanics. It is important to use good body mechanics and to warm up properly to avoid such injuries.

Preventing Knee Pain in Golfers

The good news is many pain-causing injuries can be prevented. Here are some tips to keep you healthy and your joints happy as you continue to golf:

  • Warm up your joints prior to hitting the golf course.

  • Stay hydrated during the game.

  • Practice good body mechanics while bending, squatting, and swinging.

Knee Pain Treatment

Treatment of knee pain depends entirely on the cause of the problem. If you are experiencing symptoms of knee injury, you must see a qualified medical professional for treatment.

When treating golfers, it is important to have a good understanding of the biomechanics and forces of the golf swing to diagnose and manage the injuries incurred in this sport. This is where the Sports Medicine team at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute can truly benefit those who are dedicated to playing golf. The explosive nature of the swing can put a tremendous amount of stress on the body and needs to be treated by those who have specialized expertise in this particular type of sports injury.

For knee pain relief, contact us today to see how we can assist you with your musculoskeletal needs. For more information, please visit Rothman Orthopaedic Institute here or contact us at 1-800-321-9999.

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