Tiger Woods has TMS?

Apr 06, 2022

I’ve never met Tiger Woods. And I’m positive he has no idea who I am. That being said, as I’ve watched his life from a distance, he appears to be the poster child for Tension Myositis Syndrome. He’s got the background. He’s got the personality. And he’s got the pain. With the Masters currently in progress, I’d like to explain why I think Tiger is suffering from Tension Myositis Syndrome - because it might help you in your effort to cure yourself.

Tiger’s father - Earl Woods - was a Green Beret Special Forces officer in the US Army. Earl Woods loved golf and got Tiger into it before the age of two. Like all Green Berets, he was intense and demanded his son be the best. Earl quit his job at McDonnell Douglas when Tiger was 13 years old to become Tiger’s full-time coach and manager. So, Tiger was, in effect, supporting his entire family at age 13. Having a highly demanding parent is the most common characteristic I’ve seen for people with TMS. Supporting your entire family at the age of 13 is a lot of pressure.

But Tiger also loved the game. There’s no doubt about it. He would sneak into public courses and practice (even after dark) until his hands were bleeding… while he was still in grammar school! He was driven, maybe like no one else has ever been driven, to be the best golfer in the world.

When Tiger was newly wed to Elin Nordegren (who is also good with a golf club!) he won a major tournament. Elin threw him a party to celebrate the big win. He was surprised and very angry about the party and told her, “We don’t throw parties when I win because I’m always supposed to win.” Wow. If that isn’t a perfectionist, I don’t know what is.

A Life of Chronic Pain:
Despite looking like the most physically fit golfer of all time, Tiger’s career has been mired in chronic pain. Here’s some, but not all, of his long list of constant health problems:

May 2010: Drops out of the Player’s Championship because of “bulging disc in his neck” in the final round.

June 2013: Due to tennis elbow, he drops out of the AT&T National.

March 2014: Withdraws from the Honda Classic because of lower back spasms.

April 2014: Tiger misses the Masters for the first time because of back surgery.

August 2014: Woods injures his back during the Bridgestone Invitational and is driven off the course in the final round.

February 2015: Woods withdraws from the Phoenix Open in the final round with lower back pain.

September 2015: Woods has his second back surgery.

October 2015: Woods has a follow up surgery to correct the previous month’s surgery.

March 2016: Woods announces that he will sit out the Masters because of a serious setback with his back problems.

September 2016: Woods cancels appearances in both the Safeway Open and the Turkish Airlines Open to work on his rehabilitation.

February 2017: Woods Withdraws from the Dubai Desert Classic because of back spasms.

April 2017: Woods tells the press that surgery to repair damaged discs was successful, but he needs to rehab and will miss the rest of the season.

March 2019: Woods skips the Arnold Palmer Invitational because of bulging discs in his neck. However, he won the Masters the following month.

March 2020: Woods sites back pain and skips both the Arnold Palmer Invitational and the Player’s Championship.

December 2020: Woods experiences nerve pain while playing the PNC Championship with his son. He undergoes back surgery to relieve pressure on his discs.

I searched Google for a list of Jack Nicklaus’ injuries but could find nothing. I’m sure there were some. However, when you look at the two best golfers of all time, there’s no comparison.

Tiger has all characteristics that are common in people who suffer from TMS. He was raised by a highly demanding parent. He is definitely a perfectionist. He is an ultra-high achiever. And starting at a very young age, he has been plagued with back and neck problems that don’t seem common in the world of professional golf.

And even with a billion dollars in the bank, Tiger has yet to figure out what’s really going on. I think he has a bad case of TMS. He (reportedly) will not attend the Masters this year because of leg injuries sustained during his 2021 car accident. Maybe I should send Mr. Woods a copy of Healing Back Pain. It’s never too late.

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Get back in the swing of things!
John Thornton


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