From an afternoon round with family and friends to a networking tool among business associates, golf has the ability to bring people together for a variety of reasons. The large number of public and private courses scattered throughout Western New York is another indication that golf is a favorite pastime among people throughout the region.

Whether hitting the greens for business or pleasure, however, pain can often get in the way. Back, neck, shoulder and knee injuries are the most common types of golf injuries. Although golf is a low-impact sport, the risk of injuries is higher than one would expect. According to, the number of injuries associated with golf is greater than rugby and hockey.

“While golf is popular among a variety of people, there’s always the potential to suffer an injury. The full body motion of swinging the golf club can take a toll on the body and affect an individual’s joints and musculoskeletal system. Without proper treatment, joint pain will continue to worsen and take the fun out of the game.”

Contrary to public opinion, golfing requires a considerable amount of strength, flexibility, endurance, coordination and agility. Whether a knee or shoulder injury has disrupted your golf swing, or back and neck pain make it difficult to stand for long periods, you need relief.

“Orthopedic patients often seek treatment because of the effect various conditions have on their quality of life,” said Chris Kane, Vice President of Musculoskeletal Services at Catholic Health. “Our orthopedic and spine care specialists can help golf enthusiasts by providing surgical and non-surgical treatments for a wide range of conditions.”

Dr. Ryan Wilkins
Orthopedic Surgeon, Excelsior Orthopaedics

Catholic Health’s experienced team of board-certified orthopedic physicians and neurosurgeons, coupled with specially trained physical therapists, take a comprehensive approach to providing advanced medical care and treatment. Over the last decade, its hospitals, including Kenmore Mercy, Sisters of Charity Hospital and its St. Joseph Campus, have received numerous awards and recognitions for orthopedic excellence.

As the golf season gets into full swing, the repetitive swinging motion required during a round of golf can cause pain or even aggravate preexisting conditions such as arthritis, joint stiffness, and muscle strains. To reduce the risk of repetitive motion injuries, Dr. Wilkins recommends the following tips:

Dr. Wilkins offers tips to help golfers return to the green

  • Walking or exercising on an stationary bike keeps your joints limber, improves circulation and prevents blood clots from
  • Use warm water therapy in a Jacuzzi or bath at home or at a fitness center.
  • Gently stretch your calves, hamstrings, thighs, and core muscles before heading out for a round.
  • Wear quality shoes with good arch support (without spikes).
  • Use a brace if you feel weakness or twinges.

Taking these steps can prevent injuries and may even improve your game. Injuries left untreated will continue to worsen and impact your golf game as well as your overall lifestyle.

When choosing Catholic Health providers for orthopedic or spinal care, you can take comfort in knowing you are receiving the best care and treatment from an experienced team of physicians and therapists.

Our network of top-rated specialists provides the highest quality care, ensuring a personalized treatment plan to keep you and your golf game on course. To learn more or find a provider who is right for you, call (716) 923-7151.


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