'You Take Golf For Granted And Then Hit A Wall' - Former World No.1 Lilia Vu On Her Comeback After Injury

The breakout star of 2023 discusses the adjustments she's had to make ahead of her LPGA Tour comeback

Lilia Vu takes a shot at the Fir Hills Seri Pak Championship
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Former World No.1 Lilia Vu has been dealing with a back injury for most of the 2024 season, but returns to the tour this week at the Meijer LPGA Classic at Blythefield Country Club in Michigan.

Back in March the 26-year-old American was forced to withdraw midway through the HSBC Women’s World Championship and Blue Bay LPGA in successive weeks, and has since had to change her mindset and go through a strict process to aid her recovery.

At a press conference ahead of the tournament, Vu said, “I definitely look at golf in a different lens. I think I appreciate it more now than ever, just being able to play golf. I feel like - you kind of take it for granted when you’re not injured and you don’t appreciate it.

“Then you hit a wall and then you’re not able to swing and play as much as you would want to and you hit pause. Then you have to be disciplined and get your things in order, and that’s what I was trying to do the past couple of weeks.”

Vu was the breakout star in 2023, ending the year as World No1, LPGA Tour Player of the Year and top money winner, but her back injury has forced her to make adjustments to her swing. 

Lilia Vu with the AIG Women's Open trophy

Lilia Vu with the AIG Women's Open Trophy 

(Image credit: Getty Images)

“It’s not really technical - it’s being more conscious about the way I’m breathing, almost lower belly breathing. The way I sit, the way I lay, the way I stand. I escape on my right hip, so I’m trying to breathe through that hip more. It’s not too difficult, it just feels weird to me.

“I’ve been kind of living on that compensation for a while, so it adds up. Then one day I’m tight and my body is angry and it blows up. So it’s peeling the layers of the onion and getting more stable overall to help me swing with no pain.”

Vu begins the first round of the Meijer LPGA Classic alongside fellow American Alison Lee and Australian Minjee Lee. Defending champion Leona Maguire, World No 1 Nelly Korda, Brooke Henderson, Amy Yang and Allisen Corpuz amongst other big names  will be competing for the prize purse of $300,000.

Alison Root

Alison Root has over 25 years experience working in media and events, predominantly dedicated to golf, in particular the women’s game. Until 2020, for over a decade Alison edited Women & Golf magazine and website, and is now the full-time Women's Editor for Golf Monthly. Alison is a respected and leading voice in the women's game, overseeing content that communicates to active golfers from grassroots through to the professional scene, and developing collaborative relationships to widen Golf Monthly's female audience across all platforms to elevate women's golf to a new level. She is a 16-handicap golfer (should be better) and despite having had the fantastic opportunity to play some of the best golf courses around the world, Kingsbarns in Scotland is her favourite.