Does your back ever hurt after a round of golf? Ever think it could be the way you are swinging the club? Reverse Spine Angle is the number one cause of low back pain in amateur golfers. “What is Reverse Spine Angle?” you say. Reverse Spine Angle is when you excessively perform spinal extension at the top of your backswing. Below is an example of Reverse Spine Angle 

Not only does Reverse Spine Angle cause decreased power in your swing and creates club path problems, but it will cause chronic low back pain which can limit your ability to get out on the course and enjoy a round of golf with family and friends. Who wants to be at home with back pain when your buddies are enjoying the sun and the 19th hole?

When a golfer performs this golf move, it puts an increased tension through the lower back secondary to forced inhibition, the shutting off of the abdominal musculature during the backswing. This causes a chain reaction of excessive compressive loads through the right side of the lumbar spine during impact of a right-handed golfer. These excessive loads through the lumbar spine will cause debilitating back pain.

There are several physical characteristics one may possess that can lead to performing Reverse Spine Angle. The first physical characteristic I’d like to touch on is the ability to separate your upper body from your lower body which allows the shoulders to rotate around the spine without going into excessive spinal extension. When someone has difficulty in separation of the upper body to lower body, there are two main culprits, decreased thorax spine mobility and decreased latissimus doris flexibility.  So, what does this mean? You have “tight” lats and your t-spine or mid-back is “stiff” 

The second physical characteristic I’d like to talk about is Hip Internal rotation, more specifically Right hip internal rotation for a right-handed golfer. To be able to get into full hip rotation during the backswing without any lateral sway is vital. Once you begin to laterally sway in the backswing, you will begin to force your spine into excessive spinal extension, resulting in Reverse Spine Angle. Muscular or joint restrictions may restrict somebody to get into desired Hip internal rotation.

Lastly, a person’s ability to stabilize the spine angle during the backswing is directly correlated to the strength and stability of your core muscles, abdominals, and glutes. When it comes to spinal stabilization, it starts and ends with the core. Having a weak core will decrease your ability to maintain your upper body in a forward flexed position during the golf swing. What will happen when you cannot maintain a forward flexed posture in the golf swing? You will perform Reverse Spine Angle.

If you are suffering from any back pain before, during, or after your golf round, contact us at Movement Physiotherapy & Performance, we specialize in golf injuries and screening to prevent golf injuries. We focus on identifying any physical characteristics that will lead to injuries and a decrease in sports performance. Once we perform the Titleist Performance Institute Physical Assessment and Kmotion 3D analysis of your golf swing, we will devise and train you one on one with your personalized workout plan to improve your golf game. 

You can sign up for a Titleist Performance Institute Physical Assessment and Kmotion 3D analysis of your golf swing here! 

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *