How to pick up your golf bag on the course

Lifting your golf bag incorrectly is setting you up for back pain.

Do you ride or walk when playing golf? Like most golfers, you probably ride in a cart while playing. If so, there’s a magnet for lower-back injuries in plain sight: your golf bag.

Several players are sure to tweak their backs this year simply by using poor form while lifting their golf bag onto or off of the golf cart, ground, or even lifting their golf bag into and out of the trunk of their car!

Often, the back injury occurs when you’re a little fatigued at the end of your round and you don’t use the proper form when lifting your bag.
According to GolfForever Founder and CEO, Dr. Jeremy James, DC, CSCS, there’s a safe, smart way to handle your golf bag that reduces the possibility of injury.

Dr. James and Justin Leonard, one of GolfForever’s co-creators, show you how to correctly lift your golf bag in the video above.

This Is How To Correctly Lift Your Golf Bag

  1. DO get your body close to your golf bag. As a general rule, be closer than one foot away.
  2. DO drop your butt down and back. That’ll get your knees over the top of your feet, not out in front of them.
  3. DO lift the bag from your hips. You’re lifting your golf bag correctly when the buttocks and leg muscles are sharing the load.

The WRONG WAY To Lift Your Golf Bag

    1. DON’T stand far from the bag.
    2. DON’T reach out to it with arms straight. It’s a tell-tale sign to move closer.
    3. DON’T lean forward from the waist with an arched back. This position puts undue stress on the back. You might feel tightness in the back muscles and the lifting motion exacerbates the situation.
    4. DON’T lift your golf bag with straight legs!

Now, let’s say you’re carrying your bag for 18 holes. You’ll pick up the bag from the ground, and put it down, using the same three-step technique. How about lifting the golf bag out of the car trunk?

Again, it’s the same method. But, stay disciplined. After all, you’re toting a significant amount of weight as the set of clubs and stand bag weigh 20 to 25 pounds. And, having a larger bag (cart or staff) adds another five to 10 pounds.

It’s so simple to protect your back. 

Here’s a rule of thumb: Get into an athletic stance, the same way you would when swinging the driver or rolling some putts. 

By using good posture, getting your chest up, knees bent, and standing a comfortable (close) distance from the bag, you should have no fear of repercussions when lifting your golf bag.

It’s the height of the season. DO the right thing, and DON’T give yourself a lasting injury that could sideline you for months! Get out there and enjoy your time on the course. But, do it safely when lifting your golf bag correctly.