Tiger Woods is returning to competitive golf this week at the renamed Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland.
The event is one of three tournaments the Tiger Woods Foundation presents each year. The other 2 are Deutsche Bank Championship located in Boston Massachusetts Aug. 27 - Sept. 1, 2014 and the exclusive World Challenge held this year at Isleworth Country Club in Windermere Florida Dec. 1-7, 2014.
Tiger had been suffering from low back pain for quite some time. His playing partners for the handful of rounds Tiger played at the beginning of 2014 have mentioned Tiger reporting weakness and numbness in his leg and the symptoms became too much at the WGC event in Doral where Tiger was last seen on the PGA Tour.
Mr. Woods underwent microdisectomy surgery to repair the damaged intervertebral disc in his lower back on March 31st of this year.
Since then we have heard rumors of him slowly progressing his practice sessions from putting to chipping, pitching and now full swings.
The microdisectomy surgery that was performed on Tiger is not a unique surgery for members of the PGA Tour. Most recognizable of the players who have had this procedure and returned to golf at a high level is the Canadian Graham DeLaet.
In 2010, Graham experienced similar symptoms to those reported by Mr. Woods. DeLaet had surgery in January 2011 and made his full return to play a year later at the 2012 at the Sony Open in Hawaii. It is believed Graham's injury was worse than Mr. Woods but it is surprising that Tiger would be returning from the surgery so quickly.
It should be noted that Graham DeLaet did attempt to come back from his surgery in the summer of 2011 at the FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis but the pain returned and he was forced to shelf the remainder of the season and focus on a strong body and return to play in 2012.
Graham has reported in numerous interviews the benefit of proper physical training, manual therapy and recovery has had on allowing him to consistently play at an elite level moving forward.
Graham's trainer on the PGA Tour, Dr. Craig Davies, had the following to say when asked about Tiger's return: "Tiger is a great athlete who has put his training at the forefront of his preparation to compete throughout his career. He has single handedly changed how the present generation and those generations to follow develop their bodies to compete at the highest level. It will be interesting to see how he is able to modify his program to enable a more efficient body that minimizes the stress to the discs in his lower back. I am sure he will have a few questions for Graham the next time they see each other."
Graham DeLaet is considered one of, if not the, premier ball striker in the world and he has been able to perform at that level since returning from injury.
Tiger Woods is the greatest player of his generation and one of the most focused gym rats of all professional athletes. A healthy Tiger is one of the most exciting athletes to watch and TourCouncil.com anticipates his return to the PGA Tour.