Golf is a game loved and played by people of all ages. It provides a stimulating mental challenge, a healthy walk in pleasant surroundings, stress-relief and an opportunity to socialise. If you walk 18 holes a few times a week, you’ll also be giving your heart a good endurance workout. The golf swing involves muscles and joints of the core, hamstring, shoulder and wrist; so depending on your joints affected, your game may be impacted by your rheumatoid arthritis. Weak wrists can deliver impact to your elbows and neck. Golf also requires a great deal of walking while carrying, pushing, or pulling a heavy bag of clubs. Modifications in equipment, game, swing and transportation can allow you to enjoy golf for years to come.
Specific modifications will depend on your joints affected, but you may consider the following:
- Equipment modifications may include lighter-weight clubs, low-compression balls, longer clubs, push or pull golf carts, motorised golf carts, spikeless shoes, etc.
- Game modifications may include playing 9 holes instead of 18, playing shorter yard markers, etc.
Strengthen the muscles surrounding the joints involved in golf – such as hand and forearm, shoulder, hip and low back – to improve your game and lessen the chance of injury.
- Use the driving range to work on swing modifications.
- Play shorter rounds and build up to playing a full course.