ProRehab Physical Therapy in International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy

A Targeted Approach to Evaluating the Golfing Athlete with Low Back Pain: A Resident’s Case Report


Background and Purpose
Low back pain is one of the most common conditions occurring in the golfing population. Many approaches have been utilized throughout the years to address this condition including the concept of regional interdependence. The purpose of this case report is to describe the evaluation process and treatment approach of a golfer with low back pain using the principles of regional interdependence.

Case Description
A thirty-year-old male with right-sided low back pain was evaluated using a comprehensive approach including golf specific movement screening and a swing evaluation. The patient had mobility restrictions in his thoracic spine and hips that appeared to be contributing to a hypermobility in the lower lumbar spine. Based on the evaluation, he was placed into the treatment-based classification (TBC) of stabilization but would also benefit from mobilization/manipulation techniques.

After seven visits over a four-week span, the patient’s mobility and core stability both improved and he was able to play golf and workout pain free. His outcome measures also improved, including the revised Oswestry Disability index from 26% disabled to 10%, the Fear Avoidance Behavior Questionnaire (FABQ) Work from 10/42 to 3/42, and the FABQ Physical Activity from 19/24 to 6/24.

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