A strained or pulled muscle in the back is a common golf injury. Occasionally, a golf swing can stretch a back muscle too far or too quickly, resulting in a small tear. Although pulled muscles are rarely dangerous, they are always extremely uncomfortable, especially in the back. Don't try to play through the pain; take the rest of the day off and start to treat the muscle immediately. The sooner you treat it, the less pain and discomfort you will experience while it heals.
Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Put ice on the muscle. A good way to do this is to wrap an ice pack in an elastic bandage and wrap the bandage around the affected area. This will hold the ice against your body and the compression from the bandage will help protect the muscle from further injury.
Take anti-inflammatory painkillers such as ibuprofen or aspirin. They will help dull the pain and they will minimize swelling in the muscle. Keep taking them for at least the first 24 hours, since that is when the worst swelling occurs.
Rest your back. Don't do any exercises or activities that might put stress on the pulled muscle. The less you your stress the injury, the more quickly it will heal and the less uncomfortable it will feel.
Get a back massage. One of the things that makes pulled muscle in the back so uncomfortable is that they tend to cause muscle spasms. A gentle or moderate rub can help ease any spasms and keep your back as limber as possible.
Try to keep the muscle at or above the level of your heart to stop blood from pooling in it for at least the first 24 hours. In the strain is in your lower or mid back, you should lie down. If the strain is in your upper back, however, you might want to sit up or prop yourself up on pillows.
After 24 hours, start putting heat on it. Heat will soothe and relax the muscle and stimulate circulation and healing. Hot showers, baths and heating pads will all help.
Try arnica or another rub for muscle pain. It may help to relieve discomfort.
Tips & Warnings
To reduce the risk of pulled muscles, exercise regularly and stretch before every golf game or other physical activity.
Be patient. A minor strain should heal within a week or two, but a bad one could take up to eight weeks to fully subside. If you're worried you might have injured yourself more seriously, it doesn't hurt to go to the doctor to make sure everything is okay.