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Dr. Nick Curry is a chiropractor that is also certified through the highly esteemed Titleist Performance Institute as a medical, fitness, and junior golf wellness professional.  He is the owner of Integrative Health and Sports Performance in Bellbrook and serves at the Team Chiropractor to Wright State and Miami Universities.  To Visit their Website or call 937-848-8500
Shoulder Assessment – 90/90 Test

The 90/90 Test is one of the primary assessments we use to look at shoulder mobility, specifically external rotation.  More importantly, we test the golfer’s ability to maintain that range of motion while in a golf posture.  When we bend forward to get into a golf posture, we can lose range of motion in the shoulder if we don’t maintain a good, stable position of the shoulder blade.  Reduced range of motion in the shoulder can lead to a flat shoulder plane or loss of posture, and cause us to get out of position on the backswing.

To test your external rotation, stand tall and hold your arm out to your side with your shoulder at 90 degrees and your elbow bent at 90 degrees.  To start the test, have your forearm parallel with the ground.  Without moving your torso, start to rotate the hand up as far as possible.  Only continue rotation as far as the body will let you without moving your chest or arching your back.

Once in that position, its time to grade your position.

  • Less than spine angle – forearm doesn’t reach parallel to your spine
  • Equal to spine angle – forearm reaches parallel to your spine
  • Greater than spine angle – forearm rotates past your spine

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Repeat on the opposite side.  Your trail arm (right shoulder for a right-handed golfer) carries the most significance to your golf swing.

Now you repeat the test in a golf posture position.  Imagine you are addressing a golf ball with a mid-iron.  Raise your arm up to the same starting position and rotate up.  Again, go as far as you can without moving your torso.  Compare the two tests.

You should be able to get past your spine angle with both tests.  If you fail to reach your spine angle with both tests, you more than likely have a mobility issue in your glenohumeral joint (although further assessment would be needed).  If you have reduced range of in the golf posture compared to your upright position, you more than likely have a stability dysfunction in your scapular-thoracic junction.

Tune in next week for some correctives!

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