Golfing Injuries to the Hand and Wrist

Golfers know that certain parts of their body are more at risk of injury than others, including the back, the elbow, and the hand. The hand and wrist area is the third most common injury to happen to a golfer, and if you know how a swing takes place, you will understand why. As a golfer swings for a drive, they will snap their wrist. In short chip shots, the wrist is often used as a hinge. As a result, wrist and had injuries are common. The leading wrist and hand will be the one most in danger. In other words, the left hand for right handed golfers and the right hand for left handed golfers.

The Injuries

There are different types of injuries that can arise in golfers, including:

  • Trauma that comes from impact and jarring injuries. If the golf club hits a rock or hard surface, this will jar the wrist and hand. This often causes sprains.
  • Tendonitis that occurs from making the same motion over and over again.
  • Fractures from a traumatic blow while using a golf club.
  • Hamate fractures often occur. The hamate is located on the palm side the wrist and it protrudes upward. It essentially forms the heel of the palm and it is especially vulnerable to golfers. This type of fracture can actually cause problems with the ulnar nerve, which is also located in the area. People with his injury may experience numbness, tingling, and pain in their pinky and ring fingers. Additionally, moving the wrist may cause a distinctive clicking feel.
  • Injuries farther up on the arm, such as tendonitis in the elbow, can occur from overuse and repetitive motions.
  • Misuse of golf carts can lead to hand damage if the golfer were to wreck the cart or fall out of it.

Essentially, golfing on a regular basis opens you up to sprains and strains throughout the hand, wrist, and arm.


Treatment for hand and wrist injuries from golfing can vary based on the injury itself. For example, tendonitis is often treated with pain medication, ice, and splinting. Ice and pain medication can also be used for strains and sprains. At times, if the injury doesnt heal on its own, then your doctor may choose to use steroid injections in the area.

If the wrist or hand is fractured, such as with a hamate fracture, then you may need to wear a cast to allow the bone to set properly. If the damage is severe, then surgery may be needed. Sometimes, bone fragments will press up against a tendon, and they will need to be removed so that pain can be relieved.

While golf is a beloved pastime to many and it doesnt seem as dangerous as other high-impact sports, it can still lead to injury. Your wrist and hand will be especially prone since they will be put under stress every time you pick up the golf club. Most of these injuries can be treated with medication and immobilization, but in the case of severe fractures, more treatments may be required.