US Masters 2022: Bryson DeChambeau plays despite injuries
04/05/2022 by Elena Reiter
Bryson DeChambeau has been battling injuries in his left hand and hip for months. Now he is competing – against medical advice – at the US Masters 2022.
Bryson DeChambeau will compete at the US Masters 2022 despite injuries. (Photo: Getty)
In recent weeks and months, headlines have not reported Bryson DeChambeau’s strong performances, but his numerous health problems. Among them his wrist problems and hip pain. On Monday, he spoke about his health condition and how he is dealing with it at the 2022 US Masters. An important message for his fans: He will compete, but he is not yet back to 100 percent performance.
Bryson DeChambeau: “I’m at 80 percent performance”
DeChambeau is back in Augusta and training together with his coaching team. But due to his injuries, he can’t follow his usual training path. “I can give about 80 percent right now,” he answered in an interview when asked about his form. “That’s why I can’t do swing speed training and I have to train smarter in general. I have to be careful and effective in the things I practice.” But DeChambeau also sees improvement in recent weeks, just in time for the 2022 U.S. Masters. “I’m proud that I made it here in such a short time. I’m pleased with that,” he said. ““Hitting golf balls on the range today, I was able to sustain practice for a good amount of time,” he said. Despite his weaker form, he still manages a ball speed of around 190 miles per hour.
US Masters 2022: Doctors advise against participation
DeChambeau’s hip injury developed two years ago, he explained in an interview. The small tear in his hip labrum first became relevant when he slipped “Charlie Brown-like” during a table tennis match against Sergio Garcia and Joaquin Niemann in front of the Saudi International and fell on said hip, as well as his injured hand.
After that, DeChambeau underwent CTs and MRIs resulting in a hairline fracture of the hamate bone. This common injury, especially among baseball players, could also stem from his excessive workouts at the driving range, according to DeChambeau. Back in November, he was probably struggling with problems in his hand: “Last November, before I played against Brooks, I felt something. There was something on my hand that kind of popped, and I was like, ‘Ah, this isn’t normal.’ It didn’t really feel good either. It was hard to hit balls.”
The American’s injuries usually entail a four-month break, but DeChambeau was back on the golf course after just two months. This decision is not without risks and in the worst case could lead to surgery one his left hand. But for DeChambeau, one thing is certain, “the Masters is only once a year and I have to give it a go.”
For “The Hulk,” the last six weeks off were not a punishment. He himself said he used the time to give back to his viewers and to golf. “It’s really made me a different person, and – I hope – a better person who also has a different perspective on the game of golf.” He also learned to listen to his body better and give himself rest breaks, he said.
But despite that positive outlook, his comeback to the golf course was frustrating. After six weeks without playing practice, his rounds were marked by shouts of “Fore.” “It’s just not fun. It’s very difficult on your mental psyche as well.”
Bryson DeChambeau wants to take it slower
For him, the last few months have been a learning phase. He had to deal with the first major injury of his career and (at least partially) revise many attitudes toward sports. “You have to pay attention to every part of your body,” he explained in the interview. Still, he said he continues to enjoy pushing his limits and making improvements as a result. Due to his injuries, however, that approach hasn’t necessarily been possible, “i’ve taken more of a reserved approach now through this season, I’ll start ramping back up when I feel 100 percent again.” For now, he is confident of playing up front again at Augusta, despite his weaker form. “It’s been a bit of unravelling this knot that I’ve had in my game for the past four years,” he said of his search for greater consistency with his swing. “We’re finally moving in a direction that I feel is positive for me being able to win again, hopefully, regularly like I did in 2018.”
Comments & Questions