Jack Nicklaus’s Long Career

Accomplished  71 official PGA tour victories and a record 20 major championship wins.

Since 1963 (as a two-year pro) he suffered debilitating hip joint pain after a mis-hit of an approach shot. The injury to his left hip was severe enough to require 23 cortisone injections in 10 weeks. He eventually had surgery to implant a Stryker ceramic-on-ceramic hip implant in 1999.

The rotation of the golf swing, requires hip rotation and a forceful transfer of body weight and ground forces that puts the brunt of this movement and force on the hips.

We hear a lot about rotator cuff injuries of the shoulder, but not as much about hip injuries, which can be similar.

The hip is a ball-and-socket joint where the femur (thigh bone) connects to the body. The thigh bone’s femoral head fits into the acetabulum (receiving socket) of the pelvis. A layer of fibrocartilage called the labrum lines the socket and helps keep (with the bursa)  the joint lubricated. Motion is created by the rotation of the ball in the socket, and the joint is stabilized by the muscles of the hip, thigh, abdomen, lower back, groin and buttocks. The hip has rotator muscles, too. Shoulder injuries tend to be caused by high velocity open-chain motion, such as throwing. Hip injuries are more often related to closed-chain pressing and rotating of  the body with the feet planted on the ground (like in a golf swing). An open-chain hip injury would be likely from the result of  kicking a football, dancing or performing a karate or roundhouse style kick.

Exercise routine for Jack Nicklaus not found yet, but here is a good hip routine to help prevent hip injuries.:

Warm up with a light cardio workout 10 to 15 minutes on the treadmill or stationary bike. Cycling is preferred because there is probably less stress on the hip joints.

Stand next to a chair or counter, using your hands for support.
Keep your head straight ahead and lower back neutral.

Slowly move your right leg out to the side about 12 inches.
Hold for 10 seconds and return to the starting position, controlling the movement with your muscles.

2-3 SETS X 10 REPS for each leg.

Lying on your back, both knees slightly bent, feet flat on floor.
Straighten your left leg on the floor, but not totally straight.
Lift and bend your right leg, hold your right ankle with your left hand. Rotate the the right knee out to the side with your right hand, while you gently bring your thigh toward your right side chest and right shoulder.
Hold for 15 to 30 seconds.
Repeat 5 REPS and switch legs.

Lie on your back and bend your knees with feet flat on the floor. Stabilize: tighten your abs and glutes and raise your pelvis until it’s in line with your knees. Don’t let the knees splay.
Hold for 15 to 20 seconds.
Do 3 SETS X 10 REPS.

This move strengthens your glutes, abs and hamstrings.

Lying on back, knees slightly bent, feet flat on floor.
Use your abdominal muscles to bring the top front of your pelvis toward head.
Use your gluteal muscles to draw the lower part of your gluteal region down toward your feet.

1-3 SETS X 10 REPS
HOLD 3 REPS for 10-30 seconds.

Lying on your back, both knees slightly bent, feet flat on floor.
Straighten your left leg on the floor, but not totally straight.
Lift and bend your right leg at the knee and hip.
Hold the right leg in both hands just behind your knee (NOT on top of your knee)
Gently pull your right knee toward your chest.
5-10 REPS each leg, hold for 10-30 seconds.
Finish with both legs to chest: Bring one leg at a time to chest. Then bring both knees to your chest, each respective arm holds the back of each thigh to pull toward chest.
1 REP hold  for 10-30 seconds.

Advance progression: bring your chin slightly to your chest carefully contracting abdominal muscles and anterior neck muscles to lift head..
This static stretch works your abs and improves hip, back and neck flexibility.

Stand with arms overhead and your back in its neutral alignment.
Slowly lower your body while you tilt your pelvis forward (like water bucket pouring out front) until your thighs are parallel to the floor or until balance is difficult or until you can’t feel that you are rotating your pelvis forward. Your upper body leans forward from the hip joints, not from flexing the low back. Decelerate at the bottom and then lift your torso (return to upright) and straighten knees while you rotate pelvis (upright bucket) and return to the starting position.

1-3 SETS X 8-12 REPS


Lying on your left side, rest your head in your left hand (keeping neck aligned straight with spine), placing your right hand in front of your abdominals on the floor for balance.
Lift your right leg slowly, as far as you comfortably can.
Hold at the top and lower it again, controlling the movement.
Repeat before your legs touch.
12 SETS X 15 REPS and repeat for left leg, lying on right side.
Advanced progression: use ankle weight wraps.
Lying on your right side, bend your left leg to place the left heel (left foot flat on floor) in front of the right knee.
Lift the right leg six to eight inches off the ground; hold for five seconds and lower.

3 SETS X 12-15 reps and erpeat for left leg.
Advanced progression:  use ankle weight wraps.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply