Golf is played professionally and recreationally by a wide range of ages. The most common injuries in golf are the lower back, wrist, elbow and knee.
In golf, during swing of the golf club, the back leg internally rotates and foot pronates, the front leg externally rotates and foot supinates. Any lower limb malignment or dysfunction has the potential to interfere with this process and create problems with the golf club swing. To compensate for some foot/leg biomechanical dysfunction golfers may widen their stance to improve balance poor technique and increased risk for injury. An excessive supination problem of the foot can result in too much weight being placed on the outside of the back foot. An excessively pronated foot may make it difficult to transfer weight from the back foot to the front foot.
Strategies for injury prevention include – proper swing mechanics, adherence to a conditioning programs, adequate warm-ups, adherence to safety rules and etiquette, the use of proper fitting equipment, proper sun protection, and the replenishment of food and drink .
The same principles of the fit of street shoes apply to the fit of golf shoes. The shoes needs to have the features of good fit and control, but at the same time facilitate the motions that the foot goes through during the golf swing – the design features for this may be at conflict with the requirement that the golf shoe also needs to be used for substantial amounts of walking. Most shoes have spikes or cleats for traction, but this gives less flexibility of the shoe in the forefoot ?increased risk for problems. Most commercial custom footwear manufacturers have a ‘golf’ range of custom made footwear.
Use of orthoses in golfers:
Need to be able to control foot (if indicated) and allow normal motion
Flexible/semirigid so as not to inhibit pronatory and supinatory motion of foot during golf swing.
Use of flexible orthotic device by experienced golfers resulted in a 7% improvement in velocity of golf club head .
But, may need a more rigid device to control foot during walking around course (especially if carrying clubs by self) orthoses prescription compromise.