If you find yourself opting for a golf cart instead of walking because you have pain in your feet or ankles, don’t just play through and hope for the best! Golf foot and ankle injuries are common, but that doesn’t mean they should be accepted as par for the course. Without treatment, not only will you be suffering – so will your golf game! Here are common golf injuries that afflict the feet and ankles. If you notice symptoms, get the help you need!
Ankle sprains – maybe you stepped in a divot awkwardly or you twisted your ankle climbing out of a sand trap, either way, when ligaments stretch beyond their limits, they can no longer provide adequate support. Pain and swelling and difficulty bearing weight ensue.
Tendinitis – this is typically the result of overuse and repetitive stress causing tendons – most often the Achilles -- to become irritated and inflamed. Surrounding muscles may feel tight and range of motion reduced.
Neuromas – mostly due to ill-fitting golf shoes that don’t give your forefoot enough room, constant pressure placed on the balls of your feet can pinch nerves. It may feel like a pebble in your shoe or like your sock is bunched up, and cause burning and pain.
Black toenails – also mostly due to poor choice in footwear, toes that consistently bang against the front of shoes – like when walking a hilly course – can develop a blood blister beneath the nail, making it appear black. Pressure from the pool of blood can build and cause pain.
Heel or arch pain – a faulty foot structure can negatively affect your biomechanics and gait, forcing your foot out of proper alignment, distributing weight unevenly, and placing excessive pressure and stress on certain areas like the heel and arch. Not to pick on your shoes again, but if they don’t provide enough cushion and support, they can aggravate the problem.
Stress fractures – these are cracks in the bone that develop due to repetitive stress, signified by pain and tenderness at the site of the crack and often occurring on the top of the foot.
Blisters – although they may seem like simply a small annoyance, if not properly cared for, these bubbles that arise due to pressure and irritation can become a big problem, making it uncomfortable to wear shoes and leaving you at risk for infection.
Don’t let any of these golf foot and ankle injuries keep you from getting out there and swinging those clubs! Prompt treatment-- like a switch in shoes, rest, ice, wrapping the injury, and using orthotics – will stop problems from getting worse and keep you on your feet and out of the cart (unless you’d rather ride, of course!)
Call us for an appointment at 407-339-7759 or 352-589-9550 (if calling from Lake County).