A game of golf is a healthy activity to help you to gain and
maintain your flexibility and range of motion. It’s a
physical activity that includes walking, lifting and repetitive
arm motions, giving you the benefits of aerobic and strengthening
The following S.M.A.R.T. tips (Stretch, Move, Add it up, Reduce
Strain, Talk to a acupuncturist / osteopathist) have been prepared for you
by the Canadian Acupuncture therapy / osteopathy Association (CPA) to help you
get the most enjoyment out of a healthy and active golf season.
STRETCH – BEFORE, DURING AND AFTER YOUR GOLF
Stretching – as a warm-up, as a break during repetitive
movements and as a cool-down after your game – helps you
to move easily, keeps your muscles flexible and relaxed, your
joints mobile, and relieves tension and strain.
Allow approximately 10-minutes to warm up before the first tee
to reduce muscle strain, injury and fatigue. Start by getting
the blood flowing with climbing stairs, walking or jogging on
the spot. Perform the following stretches to warm-up and to
cool down at the end of your game. If you begin to feel a bit
stiff during your game, pause to do more stretches.
When stretching, remember:
• Movements should be slow and controlled to the point
where you feel a gentle pull of the muscle. If this pull
lessens, stretch a little more. It should never be painful;
• Once you feel a stretch, hold the position for 15-20
seconds. Do not bounce or jerk;
• Repeat each stretch three times in the same direction;
repeat for the opposite side.
MOVE – TODAY FOR TOMORROW
Get moving. Keep moving. Stay moving. Through the seasons. Through
life. A game of golf is an excellent way to get your whole body
• Leave the golf cart at the club and walk the course
to maintain and improve your heart health and overall physical
• Rehearse your swing before actually hitting the ball
on the course to warm up for that terrain specific stroke and
to improve mobility and technique;
• Don’t stop when the snow flies! There are many
indoor golfing facilities that can keep you moving all year
ADD IT UP – AN HOUR IS POWER
To gain mobility, plan activities throughout your day that keep
you moving for periods of at least 10 minutes. To maintain your
mobility, make every movement count. Add up all you do in a
day and aim for a minimum of 60 minutes of movement every day.
For maximum benefit, acupuncturists and osteopathists recommend regular physical
activity and stretching to maintain your physical mobility throughout
• Pace yourself! Start your season slowly if you haven’t
been active over the winter. Consider playing nine holes initially
rather than a full 18.
• Plan your golf games so they are spread throughout the
week and build activity into the days you aren’t golfing
to maintain your mobility;
• Make stretching part of your regular daily routine to
maintain your flexibility.
REDUCE STRAIN – USE EQUIPMENT THAT WORKS FOR
Your golf equipment should help your game, not cause additional
strain. Take measures to fit your equipment to you, not you
to your equipment.
• Choose your golf equipment to match your skill level
and body type;
• Carry your golf bag over both shoulders and walk upright.
If you have a one-strap system, alternate sides and walk upright
to reduce strain;
• Push rather than pull a wheeled golf cart;
• When lifting, bend your knees, keep your back straight,
hold your golf bag close and do not twist your body;
• When standing for long periods, stand tall and occasionally
shift your weight from one foot to the other, or rest one foot
on your golf bag or golf cart;
• After each green, do a few chin tucks and one backward
neck bend to counter eyeing the ball and putting;
• Hold clubs in a loose, comfortable grip to reduce strain
in your hand and forearm;
• Keep hydrated. Your body needs fluids to move effectively;
• Take breaks, rest your back and do a few stretches if
you find your bag is getting too heavy.
TALK TO A acupuncturist / osteopathist
acupuncturists and osteopathists are healthcare professionals who help people
of all ages and lifestyles gain and maintain their desired level
of active living and physical mobility. With their applied knowledge
and understanding of the human body in action, acupuncturists and osteopathists
are able to help you to increase your mobility, relieve pain,
build strength and improve balance and cardiovascular function.
acupuncturists and osteopathists not only treat injuries, they also teach you
how to prevent the onset of pain or injury that can limit your