Background: While the biomechanical characteristics of the golf swing are well established, the lumbopelvic kinematic characteristics of professional golfers with limited hip internal rotation warrant further investigation. Purpose: The specific aim was to ascertain mechanical differences in lumbopelvic-hip movement of asymptomatic professional golfers with and without limited hip internal rotation during the golf swing. Study Design: Controlled laboratory study. Methods: Thirty professional male golfers (aged 25-35 years and 0 handicap matched) were classified into either the limited hip internal motion (LHIM) group (range of motion<20°) or the normal hip internal motion (NHIM) group (range of motion ≥30°). All participants underwent clinical tests (muscle strength, muscle length, and range of motion) and a biomechanical assessment using 8 infrared optic cameras in a motion analysis system. Independent t tests were performed to determine potential mean differences in muscle strength, length, and range of motion and lumbopelvic kinematics at P<.05. Results: Kinematic analysis revealed that the LHIM group showed significantly greater lumbar flexion (P<.001), right and left axial rotation (P<.025), and right-side lateral bending (P = .003) than the NHIM group. A greater pelvic posterior tilt was observed in the LHIM group when compared with the NHIM group (P = .021). Clinical tests showed reduced internal rotator muscle strength and shorter muscle length in the iliopsoas (P = .017) and hamstring (P<.001) among those in the LHIM group when compared with the NHIM group. Clinical Relevance: The study data suggest that constraints to hip joint internal rotation, along with muscle strength imbalances between the agonist and antagonist muscles and muscle tightness, are associated with substantially greater lumbopelvic movement during the golf swing.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation