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Have you ever thought about participating in a new and exciting sport? Disc Golf is a great option! Disc Golf is a sport that involves throwing a frisbee like disc into a basket. Points are scored based on how many times one has to throw to make it into the basket, similar to counting how many strokes it takes to sink a ball in the hole during golf. Disc golf is quickly over taking regular golf in popularity.
According to an article published by the Orthopedic Journal of Sports Medicine in 2015, it was estimated that between 8-12 million people in the United States play disc golf. There are over 7,500 disc golf courses in the United States alone and that number is growing.
Completing a stretching and strengthening program is extremely important to avoid injury and improve your technique. According to the Orthopedic Journal of Sports Medicine it is noted that, “the majority of surveyed disc golfers sustained at least 1 injury while playing disc golf, with many requiring surgery” (Nelson, et. al, pg. 2). Here is a quote from one of our doctors about proper stretching and exercises:
"Stretching before and after exercise is the best way to prevent soft tissue injury. Realizing what your limits are also helps. Starting slow, working your way up, and letting pain be your guide helps to make sure you don’t overdo it.”- T. Andrew Riddle, M.D., Orthopedic Surgeon at Georgia Bone and Joint Surgeons, PC
Start With Your Core
The core is the base at which the extremities operate from. Good core stability can help improve all the motions required for the sport. Core strength also plays an important part in protecting your spine from injury. In a study performed by The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, female handball players were able to increase the velocity of their throwing after completing core exercises (Saeterbakken et. al, pg. 1).
Core stretches and strengthening exercises
Bird Dog- demonstrate
Trunk Rotation Stretch
Upper Extremity Strength and Conditioning
According to the Orthopedic Journal of Sports Medicine, the second highest injury is the shoulder. Therefore, building one’s rotator cuff strength will build stability within the shoulder joint, which reduces the risk for injury.
Shoulder stretches and strengthening exercises
Your Elbow, Wrist, and Hand
The elbow joint is actually the number one most frequently injured body part during disc golf. Therefore, it is tremendously important not to neglect stretching and strengthening the elbow, wrist, and hand. Also, wrist flick is the most important part to achieve superior drive and distance.
Elbow and wrist stretch
Grip strengthening with a hand gripper
Wrist flexion stretch
Wrist extension stretch
Lower Extremity Strength and Conditioning
Lastly, the importance of the lower body cannot be ignored. Overlooking the significance of strengthening and stretching the legs would be like building a house on a poor foundation. We have listed a few exercises and stretches that can help strengthen your legs. Being outdoors and building up walking endurance is very important to keep the lower body strong. Simply walking some each day can build and strengthen leg muscle that will help you guard against injury. Walking uphill is an excellent way to build quad and calf muscles.
Leg Stretches and Exercises
Adduction stretch (butterfly forward fold)
VMO strengthening exercise
In conclusion, disc golf is an exciting, new, and up and coming sport. We hope you can use these strengthening and stretching exercises to start your new journey into the sport of disc golf or improve the skill and technique of a more advanced player. What are you waiting for? Join the over 8-12 million United States citizens already playing. Go try out one of the new courses coming to our area.
Here are a few links you can visit to better educate you on the sport and some exercises you can do!
Disc Golf Strong
Stretches for the Disc Golf Athlete
This information is provided as an educational service and is not intended to serve as medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.