Causes of Golfer’s Elbow
When a Golfer swings his club, the flexor muscles and tendons of the arm tighten just before the club makes contact with the ball. This repeated action stresses the muscles, causing micro- tearing of the flexor tendon, and inflammation of the soft tissues. RSI problems occur when these muscles and tendons continue to be re-injured while the small tears are still in the process of healing. These new injuries cause the body to lay down additional adhesive scar tissue between the muscle layers in an attempt to stabilize the affected soft tissues.
This scar tissue forms attachments to adjacent layers of tissue and structures, and inhibits the normal movement or translation of these soft-tissue structures. This lack of smooth movement causes friction and generates an ongoing cycle of inflammation and scar tissue formation.
The Kinetic Chain of Golfer’s Elbow
The game of golf emphasizes one-sided activity of the body; you are either a right-handed golfer or a left-handed golfer. This unilateral focus is the cause of numerous injuries as golfers tend to develop muscle imbalances which cause a wide array of myofascial restrictions.
Golf, in its ideal form, is all about efficiently storing and releasing energy from your core out into your extremities. The classic golf swing engages your entire kinetic chain from your feet – which form a solid stance – up through your hips and core, to finally release energy through your shoulders and arms right into the club head. This is much like a coiled spring, storing energy, then suddenly releasing it.
Unfortunately, for most golfers, this “coiled spring” is either broken or functions only minimally. Many golfers find that in the game of Golf, much of their energy and focus is spent on learning how to compensate for muscle imbalances, poor posture, and the multitude of myofascial restrictions that have developed over time.
Treating Golfer’s Elbow with ART
Elbow injuries such as Tennis Elbow and Golfer’s Elbow often require the practitioner to address a much larger area than just the elbow area. Symptomatically, something that initially appears to be an elbow injury, may actually be the result of poor core stability and lack of strength. This requires treatment of a much larger kinetic chain than just the elbow region.
It is important to treat the entire kinetic chain for an elbow injury. Not just the point of pain! In order to effectively balance your muscles and remove joint restrictions we conduct a biomechanical analysis to identify your unique pattern of muscle imbalances. By utilizing a series of muscle balance and motion analysis tests, we can identify the exact type, extent, and location of soft-tissue restrictions.
We then use soft-tissue treatments and follow-up exercises to release and resolve these restrictions, and then strengthen the muscles to prevent re-injury.
With this type of treatment perspective, we look beyond just the symptomatic areas, and also consider the effect that other soft-tissue structures within the elbow’s kinetic chain have upon the injury. These areas can include restrictions in structures ranging from the neck to the wrist.
We are able to achieve a very high level of success in treating these conditions simply because we identify and remove all the multiple levels of restrictions that inhibit the translation and movement of soft-tissues in these areas.
As a golf pro who is very active in competitive professional golf events, keeping my swing limber and pain-free is extremely important to me. At age 43, a life of golf and other athletic endeavours has left me with numerous small injuries, tight muscles, and chronic sore back issues. The help I received from the experts with their ART techniques have truly helped me. I find they can quickly get rid of tight and sore areas that would otherwise limit the range of motion in my golf swing as well as in my everyday life.