Tiger Woods has had his fair share of injuries – here’s a timeline of the most significant issues…
Tiger Woods has had a career dominated by success but also injuries. He is still absent from the PGA Tour after undergoing more surgery on his foot.
Woods withdrew from the 2023 Masters and missed the rest of the season as he needed a subtalar fusion procedure to address post-traumatic arthritis.
Unfortunately, this was another procedure on a long list in Tiger’s life. It’s been a case of absence after absence which hasn’t helped his pursuit of the 18 major mark set by Jack Nicklaus.
Below is a rundown of the money injuries Woods has sustained since becoming an icon of the sport around the turn of the millennium.
Tiger Woods injury update
December 2002: As the year drew to a close, Woods required basic surgery to remove fluid which had gathered around his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). After a short lay-off he was back out on the course and claimed a victory at the Buick Invitational on his return to action.
September 2006: Tiger suffers a muscle injury to his left shoulder blade but despite this still wins the WGC-American Express.
July 2007: While exercising at home, the World No. 1 ruptured his ACL but chose not to have surgery and played through the pain to win five times in his next six starts
April 2008: Woods underwent the same procedure as he has had most recently – arthroscopic surgery to repair cartilage damage. In addition to this, it was soon in the open that he had two stress fractures in his left tibia.
June 2008: Until this year’s Masters win, Woods’ last major came in the 2008 US Open at Torrey Pines. Shortly after, he had to undergo reconstructive surgery on his previously damaged ACL.
December 2008 – 2009: The American’s injury woes continued from the end of the year and all the way through the next. He later stated that at the end of 2008, he had torn his right achilles tendon, and this gave him problems regularly throughout the next season.
May 2010: During the final round of the Players Championship, Woods was struggling with severe neck pain and was forced to withdraw from the event. After a diagnosis, it was revealed that he had an inflamed facet joint in his neck.
April 2011: During the Masters, Woods is said to have injured both his left knee and his left achilles tendon on his way to a tied 4th finish, at this point we didn’t know what the injury was or how serious it would be.
May 2011: A second consecutive withdrawal from the Players Championship was to follow. After playing just nine holes and shooting 42, he was in pain with he left knee and achilles tendon. Doctors diagnosed the issues stating that Woods had suffered a sprain of the MCL ligament in his knee and a strain of the achilles tendon. Three months were spent on the side lines and he was absent from the Open and US Open.
March 2012: The problems with the achilles persist and he is unable to complete his final round at the WGC-Cadillac Championship.
June 2013: A left elbow strain keeps Tiger from playing in the AT&T National and this was the third time he had missed the event through injury.
March 2014: The most troublesome era of injuries for the Masters champion had begun. Having fallen to his knees at the Barclays in 2013, Woods withdrew form the 2014 Honda Classic with lower back spasms which were said to be similar to those at the Barclays.
April 2014: Woods is absent from the Masters for the first time and undergoes a microdiscectomy to treat a pinched nerve in his back.
August 2014: The lower back problems arose again as he played from a tricky lie at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. He withdrew from the event in the final round.
February 2015: Just 11 holes into the Farmers Insurance, Woods withdraws, again with lower back issues, he believed weather delays contributed to the injury.
September 2015: It was revealed that Tiger has undergone a second microdiscectomy to again cure a pinched nerve. We would not see him on a golf course again until for more than a year.
October 2015: A follow-up surgery has taken place, carried out by the same neurosurgeon who treated him a month before. Woods said on his website that it was to “relieve discomfort”.
February 2017: Back spasms were again cited as a reason for a Woods withdrawal. The American shot 77 on the first day of the Dubai Desert Classic but withdrew ahead of his second round. He announces in the coming months that he will miss several events including the Masters.
April 2017: A statement on the players website read: “Woods’ bottom lower-back disc severely narrowed, causing sciatica and severe back and leg pain.” It also confirmed that he has undergone surgery to fix the issue. This was a lower back fusion surgery.
March 2019: 2018 was a good year for Tiger with no injury concerns, but that would not last into 2019. After three events, he withdrew from the Arnold Palmer Invitational field with a neck strain.
August 2019: Having made the FedEx Play-offs, he teed it up in the Northern Trust but withdrew after his first round with an oblique strain. Fast forward to the end of the month and he revealed that he had undergone arthroscopic surgery on is knee to repair ligament damage but hopes to return in October.
December 2020: Woods had further microdiscectomy surgery to take away a bone fragment that was attached to a nerve during his own tournament – the PNC Championship.
February 2021: This was the month of Woods’ infamous car crash in Los Angeles. He was hospitalised and the surgery he had included the insertion of a rod to support open fractures in his right tibia and fibula.
Pins and screws were also put in to support his ankle and foot in the same leg.
November 2022: Having sensationally returned to the Masters and The Open in 2022, he withdrew from the PGA Championship after visibly limping and he didn’t enter the US Open.
But he withdrew from the PNC Championship when he developed plantar fasciitis in his right foot.
April 2023: After playing in the 2023 Genesis Invitational and trudging around Augusta National, he withdrew in the third round and two weeks later, he underwent his most recent surgery at the HSS Sports Medicine Institute in New York.
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