Tiger Woods on Return to Golf: 'I Just Don't Know'

Tiger Woods on Return to Golf: ‘I Just Don’t Know’

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods Tiger Woods at the 2014 Honda Classic. Woods has not played golf since he had surgery on March 31 to repair a pinched nerve in his back (David Walberg/SI).

Tiger Woods says that his rehab from surgery to repair a pinched nerve in his back is “coming along” and that he’s still targeting a summer return to competitive golf.
In a lengthy progress report posted on his blog on TigerWoods.com, Woods said, “I hope to be back sometime this summer, but I just don’t know when.” He added that he’s especially interested in the Quicken Loans National. That tournament, which raises money for the Tiger Woods Foundation, begins June 26 at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md.

As I’ve said several times, I hope to be back sometime this summer, but I just don’t know when. There are a lot of big tournaments coming up, and one that’s personally important to me is the Quicken Loans National. I really appreciate Quicken Loans becoming the title sponsor of my event. It means a lot to me and my foundation. Whether I’m able to play or not, I’m going to be there to support it. After Quicken, there’s Greenbrier and The Open Championship, and of the course the U.S. Open is about six weeks away. You can understand why I want to hurry up and get better. I’d also like to play in the FedExCup Playoffs and the Ryder Cup. But obviously, I’m going to have to play really well to earn points to get into the playoffs and play my way onto to the team or have to rely on a captain’s pick.

Still Woods says that his timetable for recovery remains unclear.

As for my return to golf, I really don’t know. I’m doing everything I can and listening to my doctors and working on a strength program, and then we just have to see how my back is. Some people heal up in three months, some people take four months, some people take longer. I just don’t know.

Woods has been putting and chipping, but has yet to take a full swing or use a sand wedge. He says that he’s been rehabbing with his girlfriend, Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn, and “trying to stay active” by playing with his kids, but “nothing where I’m pushing it.”

Once I begin swinging a club again, I’m not sure if I will have to make any changes to protect my back; that’s up to Sean Foley and me on what we do.

Woods wrote that his break from competitive golf has been tough but that he’s taken comfort in the knowledge that he simply cannot play the game as he watches his fellow Tour pros on television.

Missing my first Masters was tough. I actually watched quite a bit of it because Freddie [Couples] was in contention. As soon as his name went up on the leaderboard, I started watching what he was doing. Once he got off to that bad start Sunday, it wasn’t as much fun … It helps when I’m physically unable to play the game. That’s when it’s easy for me, and I don’t have a problem watching.

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