Perfectly manicured fairways, a bright blue sky, a slight breeze that lifts your golf ball toward the green - golfing is a leisure activity enjoyed by many but for people living with arthritis, even trying to hit the ball poses a challenge.
The Arthritis Society offers a few simple tips to overcome the frustrations and limitations imposed by arthritis when you’re on the golf links. As with any activity, be sure to consult your doctor or physiotherapist for any precautions you should take.
- Use clubs with lightweight graphite shafts to help absorb the shock better.
- Build up the grip size on your clubs with tape to help you hold them more easily.
- Always stretch and warm up properly before you play.
- Always use tees to avoid striking the ground and jarring your joints.
- Use a softer ball with a higher spin rate.
- Wear comfortable walking shoes or golf shoes without spikes. You may also want to wear cushioning in your shoes.
- Take only the clubs you will use and pull your clubs, don’t carry them.
Golfing is an adaptable activity that increases your strength, mobility and range of motion. It also improves your balance and coordination and helps you maintain a healthy weight.
Each spring, The Arthritis Society holds Golfing with Arthritis workshops throughout the province to help educate people living with arthritis on how they can enjoy this popular leisure activity without putting additional stress on their joints. Topics include learning about:
- What arthritis is and some of the difficulties it presents when you are playing golf.
- What the benefits of golfing are for people living with arthritis.
- How to properly warm up and prepare for your game.
- What the common golf-related injuries are and how you can prevent them.
- How to make adaptations in your swing to make golfing safer and more comfortable for you.
- How to modify your equipment for ease of use.
To find out more about upcoming Golfing with Arthritis workshops in your community, or to get further information about arthritis, please call The Arthritis Answers Line toll free at 1.800.321.1433, or visit the society’s website at www.arthritis.ca.
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