The golf swing involves a high velocity wrist release followed by sudden deceleration just after impact. This places considerable stress on the arms and leaves the wrists susceptible to injury.
De Quervain’s Tendonitis
A common injury for golfers is De Quervain’s Tendonitis. The two tendons affected by this condition (abductor pollicus longus & extensor pollicus brevis) are both located at the base of the thumb, near the wrist. The tendons may rub as they course around a natural bump of bone at the back of the wrist (radial styloid).
Technique flaws that can lead to injury are a “strong” or “weak” grip, increased hand tension and “scooping” or “flipping” the wrist through impact. An injury of this nature can be very painful and prevent you from playing golf. Immediate treatment consisting of regular icing, rest, stretching and possibly a brace will help alleviate the symptoms. Swing technique and grip should be assessed to avoid a reoccurrence.
De Quervain’s Stretch
Bend your thumb across your palm then lightly make a fist so the thumb is inside your fingers. While keeping your forearm still, VERY SLOWLY tilt your hand down towards the ground. If you do this too quickly or forcefully, a sharp pain will result! Move your wrist until a comfortable stretch is felt at the base of the thumb near the wrist. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat 2-3 times