UPMC’s U.S. Open Medical Team Reminds Amateur Golfers to Warm Up Before Teeing Off

By: Madison Brunner

UPMC provides medical care for many sporting events in the region, including the 116th U.S. Open this week at Oakmont Country Club. Vonda Wright, M.D., medical director of the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex, will be at Oakmont to treat the pros, and she has some advice for the amateur golfers looking to get back on the course after a long winter and wet spring.

About 60 percent of pro golfers and about 40 percent of amateur golfers will have a golf injury during the season. It’s important to take the necessary precautions by doing a proper warm-up for about 10 minutes. Golfers should also take some easy practice swings to loosen the hips, core and shoulders before starting their day on the course.

Overuse causes most golf injuries, making moderation key.

”The terrible too’s of golf are too much, too soon, and too often with too little preparation,” Dr. Wright said. “Golfers should restrain themselves to four rounds of golf per week and 200 practice strokes to decrease overuse.”

Dr. Wright recommends staying hydrated and using ice on sore muscles, but a golfer should seek medical attention if the pain doesn’t subside within a day. If the pain is sharp, stabbing or anything more than a mild ache, it could be something more serious. Golf injuries can keep amateur golfers off the course for about 28 days, so it’s best to diagnose the injury as soon as possible.

For more information on sports-related injuries and services provided by UPMC Sports Medicine experts, visit the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex website.