Generally, in terms of acquiring injury, golf may be the last sport on the list. But, there is still some risk involved when it comes to getting hand pain from golf grip. In fact, the hands are the primary body parts in which most of the injuries occur. Usually, hand injuries due to playing golf may be classified as mild to more serious injuries.
As we go along, we will discuss the most prevalent hand injuries causing pain from the golf grip. Aside from that, also detailed below are the common symptoms observed on those injuries and the proper way of dealing with them. Let’s check it one-by-one.
Hand Pain from Golf Grip: The Most Common Hand Injuries
Here are the six hand injuries causing hand pain from golf grip:
1-De Quervain’s Tendonitis
One hand pain from golf grip is due to the inflammation of the tendon that originates from the forearm up until the wrist and thumb. This condition known as De Quervain’s Tendonitis is common during the overactivity of the wrist and thumb resulting in separating away from each other. Generally, this hand pain from golf grip is more prevalent among women than men.
- Sufferers of De Quervain’s Tendonitis may wear a splint for a span of 2 to 3 weeks time
- Conduct hand exercises with the help of professionals
Actually, blisters would not be the first one to come to mind. Yet, this could be very common and can generally cause too much pain. The cause of blisters includes the extreme rubbing of the hands against the golf club or with any new golfing gear.
Basically, blisters are not a hand pain from golf grip that calls for attention as it will heal on its own. Meaning to say, seeing a doctor is not a requirement in dealing with blisters. But, immediately seek the doctor’s assistance once the skin is already infected, painful within the area, and there is the presence of green or yellow pus.
- A simple plaster or dressing on the affected area will suffice to treat this cause.
- As much as possible, avoid using those golfing gear that causes the blisters.
- Consulting the doctor may result in bursting the blister via a sterilized needle
- Doctors may also prescribe some antibiotics to deal with an infection
Technically speaking, golfer’s elbow is not actually a hand pain from golf grip. However, it generally has an effect on this body area in which the wrist can be extremely painful during bending. Moreover, the golfer’s grip may get weak.
Basically, the cause is due to movement repetition of club swinging or gripping. Golfer’s elbow is a condition that damages the tendons, the one attaching the flexor muscles and the medial epicondyle.
- Initially, you need to reduce the hand pain from golf grip
- Take appropriate medications
- Strictly follow the exercise routine
Doing the above measures, you will generally recover from this kind of hand injury for about few weeks.
4-Sprains or Ligaments Injury
In case the ligaments supporting the wrist are overstretched or torn, expect to suffer from sprains. This golf injury is actually a forceful action resulting in bending or twisting of the wrist. Mild, moderate, and severe are the three grades of sprain that also require distinct treatment from each other.
*Mild sprain – the ligaments only experience a simple stretching
- Rest or relax the affected area
- A compression bandage is highly recommended
- An ice pack may also be helpful in reducing swell, bruise, and pain
Yet, keep in mind that the above treatment should be applied immediately right after the injury for it to be more effective.
*Moderate sprain – the ligaments torn out partially
- Rest is also recommended here
- A compression bandage is also part of the recommended treatment, but some hospitals prefer to use a splint
*Severe sprain – the ligaments torn out completely or already pulled off from the bone attachment
- Use of wrist splint
- Surgery if an injury has no improvement
5-Hamate Bone Fractures
Another hand injury that you should look for is the Hamate bone fractures. This usually occurs once the golf club hits the ground and necessitates the handle to bump against the bony hook. Basically, the bony hook is a part of the small bones within the wrist that builds up the carpals.
Once the bony hooks break up, the hand pain from golf grip will then be experienced. Moreover, this is a rare type of fracture with just a rate of 2% for the bony hook. Bruising, swelling, loss of grip and pain are the most common symptoms of Hamate bone fractures.
- Basically, immobilize the bone by casting it
- Surgery, if necessary due to unreliability of bone casting; the broken Hamate hook will be removed
Generally, the full recovery for this hand pain from golf grip usually lasts for about 6 weeks to 6 weeks.
6-Hypothenar Hammer Syndrome
In simple terms, the other name for this hand condition is damaged blood vessels. The cause of this is primarily due to continuous contact of the palm into the handle of the golf club. Generally, during this condition, one of the main arteries in the palm may have weakened wall thus resulting in enlargement and clot.
Usually, hand pain from golf grip that is concentrated in the palm and the disruption of the blood flow through the fingertips are the common symptoms of damaged blood vessels in the hands.
Eventually, it will result in numbness of the fingers and changes in skin color.
- Basically, prevent doing such activities that cause havoc to the blood vessels.
- Make it a habit to wear gloves with pads
- Keep away from the cold
- Medications restoring the damaged blood flow
- Surgery should be the last resort
Other Wrist and Hand Injuries from Golf Grip
Aside from the above-mentioned hand injuries that generally cause hand pain from golf grip, below are other hand conditions that can be experienced by the golfers:
This hand pain from golf grip is due to continuous pressure on the thumb base. As the pressure becomes repetitive, sheath inflammation will eventually occur. Generally, swelling and tenderness are the common indications of thumb tenosynovitis.
Hand bone trauma
In case the golfer poorly hit the ball or strike the ground and the movement is combined with a high amount of pressure, this will result in sending pressure to the hands and fingers. As an end result, bone deformations and hand fractures will occur.
Basically, the trigger finger is another hand pain from golf grip that golfers may experience. This is due to the repetitive gripping of the club that can cause tendon sheath inflammation. Having this, the fingers will remain in a bent position.
Carpal tunnel syndrome
This condition generally affects the wrist and it causes tingling, numbness, loss of sensation and weakness of the fingers. Once suffering from this kind of hand pain from golf grip, immediate treatment should be given such as surgery.
Most of the time, in playing golf, there would be a possibility of developing tears within the triangular fibrocartilage complex. This is basically the cartilage responsible for stabilizing the outside portion of the wrist. Having this, hand pain from golf grip is generally common together with swelling around the area.
Factors and Prevention of Hand Pain from Golf Grip
Generally, hand pain from golf grip and other golf injuries occur due to the following factors:
- Overuse of the hand muscles
- Inappropriate movement or poor technique
- Inability to warm up
- Improper physical condition
From knowing the said factors, we will able to determine the proper ways on preventing hand pain from golf grip.
How to prevent hand pain from golf grip
Below are the ways that may generally help in preventing hand pain from golf grip:
*Do not engage on excessive playing
Like what we had mentioned, overuse of the hand muscle contributes to hand pain from golf grip. So, with this, it is highly advisable to prevent playing too much to prevent the occurrence of pain or any injury. You may also consider resting for few days between each game. Moreover, put limitations on the number of practice balls that you will be hitting.
Another way that can help you in preventing hand pain from golf grip is doing the RICE therapy which stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation technique. This is generally beneficial when the golfers feel some soreness not only in the hands but also in other areas of the body.
Some medications such as the NSAIDs are helpful in ruling out the injuries. Ibuprofen and Naproxen are examples of Non-steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) that can generally reduce the pain.
Golf is basically a game of coordinated actions of joints and groups of muscles. Knowing that, you need to strictly follow proper posture and positioning as poor backswings may result to pain and injury. Learn the proper ways on hitting the ball without touching the ground. Keep in mind that this can keep you away from experiencing pain.
Study shows that warming up prior to playing allows the golfers to get lesser injuries compared to those who did not habitually do it. Generally, at least 10 minutes of warming up is a great help to cut down the risk of acquiring golf injuries or hand pain from golf grip. Good examples of warm up exercises include walking, jogging in place, or shoulder circles.
*Stretching and strengthening
In order to maintain fitness and balance, it is advisable to do some stretching and strengthening. This may also help to prevent any pain and injury related to golf. Moreover, having regular exercise in between games may generally avoid the occurrence of weekend warrior syndrome.
*Protect the wrist while on the course
Generally, one way of avoiding hand pain from golf grip or any injury from playing golf, it is always important to protect the wrist every time you are inside the golf course. Yet, for you to be able to keep your wrist healthy, check out the following tips:
- Take a break the moment you start feeling any hand pain from golf grip. Do not continue playing if the pain still persists. Better to consult a doctor if the pain doesn’t go away.
- Make sure that you are using the appropriate golfing equipment. The club must be in good condition and follows the right length and weight.
- Basically, one way to know the appropriate grip is to ask for the assistance of golf pro. This way, you can avoid experiencing any hand pain from golf grip especially if you have an existing problem with your wrist. Moreover, make sure that the club is in correct fitting beyond the palm of your hand to prevent digging of the grip end into the palm during the swing.
- Keep in mind that stronger grips have the ability to lock the wrists and to apply proper grip strength, you need to have neutral grips. On the other hand, oversized grips that are bigger and gentler reduce pressure that compresses on the wrist while holding a club.
- It is generally crucial to replace the golf grips for a period of 40 to 50 rounds. This will basically lowers the incidence of slipping. Using of gloves will also offer a big help.
- Another important thing to consider is to lower down the grip pressure and prevent to use a strong grip. This can be achieved by rotating the left hand on a counterclockwise movement.
Usually, golf is a sport that does not involve too much risk of injury. However, one can still experience hand pain from golf grip. Knowing this, it is generally important to appropriately execute proper gripping. Aside from that, you need to take some break to allow the hand or wrist muscles to rest. But, in case the pain still persists, it is better to get the help of the doctor to correctly deal with it.