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Pain in Thumb

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I just started golfing again( I haven't golfed for 5+ years and even then I hardly ever went.) So the past couple of days I've been hitting alot of balls in the back yard(at least 2 hours a day). And last night I played 9 holes.

When I woke up today I noticed that my left thumb was sore. Like if i were to grip the rail on a stairway I can feel it. On the inside of my left thumb kinda near the joint(facing my other fingers).

So I'm wondering if this is something normal, like I just haven't golfed much before so I am just using muscles that I don't normally use that way. Or is it something I'm doing wrong with the club/grip that's causing the pain. Also should I just let it rest for a few days, or just keep at it?
post #2 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

It won't let me edit again so I'll make a another post:

I went and picked up a club again, and it turns out that it's not so much my thumb as my wrist and hand. It mostly hurts on the backswing though.

I bend my wrists alot on the back swing. Is that proper, or are you supposed to have straight wrists?
post #3 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

You are supposed to hinge your wrists on the backswing. The soreness is probably just from overuse, especially if you're not used to it. Take a few days off and let it heal, the tendons will strengthen and you will be able to play without pain.
post #4 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

What if it is mostly in the thumb joint(the main joint or "knuckle"....the one farthest from the fingernail). Would that be the same thing, or something different.

Anyone else ever have this(the thumb part)?
post #5 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

Had the same problem (or lets same, i´m very prone to sore wrists).
Went to the doc, who sent me hand through some expansive machinery just to find out that my wrists (including left thumb since he is heavily involved in absorbing vibrations from hitting balls/ground) where bruised - which can take quite some time to heal - but doesnt mean you cant golf during that time. At one point it was so bad, when i swung back the pain just got unbearable (very sudden stingy pain).

The reasons for that in my case is either overuse - too much ball striking (i´m not hitting 300 balls a day anymore, but take more time for my pre shot routine) or if i have days where i just come too steep at the ball and though taking too much divot.

I found that reasonable pain killers help quite well, also icepacks and stabilizing your wrists with special bandages.

Probably 90 % of these injuries are just bruises - for the other 10 % you better go see a doc since then you might have some serious problems in your hand.
post #6 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

Well the reason I'm concerned is because I have tendonitis in my right wrist from computer use. The golfing doesn't bother it though.

But my concern is I don't want to do permanent damage to my left wrist from golfing. I would like to have one good wrist.

I'm really enjoying golfing, but not enough to do permanent damage to my wrist/hand because of it. Is this something I should be concerned about, or is it more than likely sore because of the execessive amount I played lately and will heal in a few days?
post #7 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

Only way to know for sure is to go to a doctor.
post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

I know, but I'm not going to go to a doctor right away. I was just looking for some advice because I'm sure people here have had the same thing.
post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

Anyone else have any input?

It's still sore today(going on 3 days). I don't know if thats normal or not.
post #10 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

hemlock, I think you just overdid it too soon, but if your really concerned about it, you should probably see a doctor.

This is also my first season back after not playing hardly any golf over the last 5 years or so. I really over did it the Sunday following my first round this season and could hardly walk for almost a week. I had some major stabbing pain in my right foot after swinging my driver for almost 3 hours straight.

"Your body just has to get used to swinging a club again" is the advice that one kind person gave me on this forum. You can try to play through it, but go easy. Hold off on the marathon training sessions and 36 hole days until you work your way up to it.

Last month it seemed like everyday after playing or practice something new hurt or ached, but now I can easily play 18 then practice for 5+ hours the next day and still be ready to play or practice the following day. Not to mention, overall I feel better then I have in years.

Good luck, hope it feels better soon.
post #11 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

I got tendonitis in my arm and it took over a month to heal.
post #12 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

Originally Posted by hemlock View Post
It won't let me edit again so I'll make a another post:

I went and picked up a club again, and it turns out that it's not so much my thumb as my wrist and hand. It mostly hurts on the backswing though.

I bend my wrists alot on the back swing. Is that proper, or are you supposed to have straight wrists?
In what way are you bending your wrist? Are you bending it like you would when you hammer a nail (cocking), or are you hinging it backward toward your arm like a door swinging open or closed (hinging). If you're cocking the wrists that may be promoting a more steep decent to impact, and be creating (or adding to) your pain.

Many years ago I was playing after a frost delay (on a up slope with frozen ground) I hit down too steeply, and that stayed with me for months afterward. Like others have advised it might be a good idea to consult a doctor, and to take a break from golf for a short time (a full week might be a good idea).
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

First of all I'd like to thanks everyone for the replies so far.

The bend is more of a hinge.

I swung the club a few times yesterday(didn't hit any balls because it still hurts). I think I may have figured out what caused my thumb to start hurting. I'll try to explain and see if you guys can make sense of it and tell me how to fix it.

First of all I use a locking grip if that matters. I lock my pinky and pointer finger together. The problem comes when transitioning from the backswing to the downswing(I think that's what you call it). After I bring the club all the to start bringing the club forward I push the club down with my left thumb and then my arms follow afterward.

I'm not sure, but I probably continue to push the club on the downswing with my thumb until I hit the ball.

So if anyone can make sense of that, I would love to hear a remedy.
post #14 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

hey im in about the same situation as you. just started recently after about a 6 year hiatus and im getting pretty heavy into golfing now. a couple weeks ago i went to the driving range for the first time in a while and hit 2 large buckets of balls. my arms, forearms, elbow, wrists, hands were SORE! they stayed sore for almost 5 days, but i def could tell it was just soreness. if it feels like something other than that then id say go get a doc to look at it. good luck
post #15 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

Originally Posted by hemlock View Post
Anyone else have any input?

It's still sore today(going on 3 days). I don't know if thats normal or not.
Depends where it hurts. It it on the padding of the thumb, or the first or second knuckle?

Hitting for 2 hrs a day several days in a row can easily make bones and muscles sore. You probably gripped too hard and hit too many balls.

After the first round of golf i play every year, the next day my forearms are sore and my neck is a bit stiff.

You should apply warming packs to your thumb in the morning to promote circulation and healing, and ice at night to reduce the swelling from the daily use. Advil is always good.

Also a thumb/hand wrap would be in order to reduce stress on your thumb during the day. It can take a week to go away.. depending on your age of course.
post #16 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

Is the pain right in the middle of your thumb where there is the hard spot?

I have the exact same thing after every round. Its a matter of gripping there too tight. I always grip so hard in that spot I get almost a bone bruise on the inside of my thumb.
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 

Re: Pain in Thumb

More near the hard spot. It is finally starting to go away though.

It might have been a combination of gripping too tight, and using my thumb to transition from my backswing to downswing.
post #18 of 21

Re: Pain in Thumb

I have had the thumb fusion surgery and it did not work out very well. The thumb is very weak and cannot stand much pressure but I refuse to quit playing golf. I have read and maybe you could rind the Golf Digest article about long thumb and short thumb.

I recommend that you slow down your swing.

I use HX tours or other soft golf balls only because the shock of a Topflight type ball will cause pain.

Eddie Merrins " Swing the Handle " was a big help to me. Grip the club more with your fingers and do not brace against the wrist and thumb.

I was once a very handsy player but that is history. Now I swing the handle and let everything flow.

Good luck with your wrist and thumb. I wear an elastic brace around the wrist and thumb. When it is really bad I use the putter grip on all shots.

I hope you are a good healer
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