Tiger Woods: Running Workouts for 5-6 Years 'Destroyed My Body and My Knees'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMay 4, 2020

Tiger Woods looks on from the 11th hole during the third round of the Genesis Invitational golf tournament at Riviera Country Club, Saturday, Feb. 15, 2020, in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ryan Kang)
Ryan Kang/Associated Press

Working smarter and not harder apparently may have helped Tiger Woods avoid some of the health issues that have limited his availability on the PGA Tour in recent years. 

In a video for GOLFTV, Woods revealed he would tell his younger self not to run so much while training:


Tiger Woods answers your questions 🤳 #AskTiger https://t.co/ydVskFoNoT

"Running over 30 miles a week for probably my first five, six years on Tour pretty much destroyed my body and my knees," he said.

Woods first underwent knee surgery in December 2002, which coincided with a slight downturn in his performance. After winning the Masters and U.S. Open and finishing runner-up at the PGA Championship in 2002, he had just two top-10 finishes at major tournaments in 2003 and 2004.

The 44-year-old resumed his reign of dominance in 2005, only to have knee problems become a recurring theme starting in 2007. Here's a list of ailments over the next few years, per ESPN.com:

  • ruptured ACL (2007)
  • arthroscopic knee surgery (2008)
  • ACL repair (2008)
  • torn right Achilles tendon (2008-09)
  • left MCL sprain, strained left Achilles tendon (April 26, 2011)
  • knee, Achilles act up (May 12, 2011)
  • injury to left Achilles tendon (March 11, 2012)

That's to say nothing of the multiple surgeries Woods has had on back injuries.

The 15-time major champion made 18 PGA Tour appearances between 2014 and 2015 before missing the 2016 season altogether and playing in one tournament in 2017. Even now, at a time when he can compete a little more frequently, Woods has to carefully manage his workload.

Now it appears running might have played a role in denting Woods' quest to surpass Jack Nicklaus' 18 major tournament victories.