Woods, 42, began his round with two pieces of kinesiology tape adhered to the back of his neck after it felt a little stiff when he woke up, his camp told USA Today’s Steve DiMeglio. Woods felt much better after applying the tape and went about his preparation for his round, welcome news for a player whose recent career was derailed by back injuries.
KT Tape, the brand worn by Woods, has been used by top athletes for years, and most recently was in the news when Patriots quarterback Tom Brady used it to cover up a cut suffered in practice ahead of New England’s win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in this year’s AFC championship game. According to the KT Tape website, it lifts the skin to reduce the lymphatic fluid that causes inflammation, pressure, pain and swelling after injury or overuse.
Woods certainly didn’t seem to be bothered by any neck stiffness Thursday, at least at the start of his round. He birdied Nos. 1 and 4, and was at 1 under par through 13 holes. He nearly went even lower, with birdie putts stopping just short of the hole at No. 5 — a big-breaking uphill attempt from well off the green — and No. 7.
Here’s his close miss at No. 5.
Kevin Kisner got going early and is the leader in the clubhouse after a 5-under 66. Check out the live leader board right here.
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