Play like a pro: Why you should warm up before hitting the golf course

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Want to improve your golf game?

Warming up properly might just be the key.

A recent study showed that during a two-year period, 60 percent of golf professionals and 40 percent of amateurs suffered either a traumatic or overuse injury while golfing, according to

Dr. Manny Alvarez, senior managing health editor of, recently met up with pro-golfer Brian Dobbie at the Montgomery Golf Club in New Jersey. Dobbie gave him a quick fitness lesson before they hit the course.

“The first thing is your rotator cuff and shoulder socket here,” Dobbie said.  “I think golfers need to understand  that their arms hit three different position in the swing – thumbs up, thumbs out thumbs in. So I'll start with some circles forward with the thumbs up, then circle back and you can change the range of motion. You can go big or same, change your thumb position.”

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(See video above for demonstrations).

Dobbie told Alvarez a good warm-up should take at least five to 10 minutes.

According to, one survey showed that more than 80 percent of golfers spent less than 10 minutes warming up before a round – and those who did suffered less from injuries than those who did not.

Next, they worked on the lower end of the body, in order to prevent injuries in the back and knees.

“I’ll just take a driver, and do some slow kicks forward, and try to stretch out my hamstrings, my hip flexor and get my hips going,” Dobbie said.

Dobbie said if you really want to get your legs moving before you even swing the golf club, there’s a lot of movement in the hips that are related to back injuries and lower back pain. Most people don’t stretch out properly or warm up their body before hitting a golf ball.

Remember - good posture and technique will help keep you injury-free and out on the course longer. And, if you feel soreness or pain, it’s time to put down the golf clubs and rest for a while.

You can always take lessons from a pro, which is a good way to reduce the risk of golf injuries.