Golf players are less susceptible to injuries than most other sports participants are, but there is still the chance that you can end up with a painful or even serious injury if you don't know what to look out for.
The most common injuries that golfers incur are to the head, elbows, wrists, shoulders, lower back, and the eyes.
Here are the Top X Tips for reducing your chances of getting a golf-related injury.
1. Warm up and Cool Down
Take the time to do some light stretching exercises before you head out to play. Your muscles appreciate the advance notice of impending activity and they respond by being less likely to tear or cramp up when the going gets tough.
Likewise, give your body a chance to dissipate the built up heat that playing golf generates. Take a short walk after the game before you climb into your car.
2. Wear the proper clothing
Not only do most courses require regulation golf shoes, but they're safer for you as well. Make sure that they fit properly to avoid blisters or twisted ankles.
Wear a hat to keep from suffering sunstroke, sunburn, or heat exhaustion. Sun glasses will protect you from eye strain.
3. Drink plenty of non-alcoholic liquids during the game.
Stay away from soft drinks as well. Your body loses a lot of moisture during a round of golf. Drink water or sports-formulated beverages to avoid dehydration.
4. Leave the course immediately if a storm threatens.
Lightning will strike the tallest object and, on the rolling hills of the golf course, that tallest object could be you. Remember, thunder does not have to be present in order for lightning to be a threat. Lightning can strike from storms that are still several miles away.
5. Stay alert for critters
Depending upon where you live, your favorite 18 holes could also be home to venomous snakes and spiders, scorpions, alligators, bears, coyotes, fire ants, and other creatures who'd rather bite now and ask questions later.
6. Play nice
While you're busy protecting yourself from injury, don't forget to look out for the other players as well. Never throw your clubs, and be sure to yell ‘fore’ before taking a shot.
7. Watch your back
Make sure that your club bag is positioned properly to avoid injuring your shoulders or back. Be especially careful when picking the bag up and setting it down.
8. Bend from the knees
Knees are much better at bending than waists are, so always bend your knees when picking up your ball.
9. Watch your heart
Heart attacks strike without warning. Take your time and don't over exert yourself. If you feel a tightness in the chest, which may or may not be accompanied by shortness of breath and pain down the left arm, get medical help immediately.
10. File a “golf plan"
Just like pilots and mariners file flight and float plans, always let someone know where you will be playing and what time you are expected home. That way, if something does happen to you, somebody will know that you're missing. Carry a cell phone with you and make sure that it's fully charged.
Richard Myers is a keen golfer and his web site http://www.thinkandreachpar.com and http://www.golfforleftys.com contains many free tips and great golfing advice plus training videos and DVDs to help you to improve your swing and lower your score using some very simple exercises.