PLAY BETTER GOLF
The golf swing is a complex coordinated movement of muscles and joints in our body.
The spine itself is required to rotate to near maximal ranges of motion in two directions as we complete our backswing, downswing and follow through. The modern swing has seen increased emphasis on power (and distance) generated from our torso, creating larger demand on our core, obliques, middle and lower back. As it pertains to golf – spine and abdominal fitness not only improves performance and controlled motion, but decreases the risk of injury as golfers execute the repetitively hazardous action of the swing. A warm-up is also very important as we prepare our muscular engines for several hours of physical activity.
Physiotherapists are frequently involved with numerous clients experiencing stiffness, weakness, and/or pain in their spines, shoulders, elbows, knees and ankles. There are many exercises, manual techniques, and modalities that our therapists use to improve the physical health of these areas of concern. Strength and mobility in these areas is extremely important for a healthy and happy golf season.
2 Exercises to help achieve better function for golf.
We recommend that you contact a physiotherapist before commencement of these exercises to ensure you execute them properly.
#1– Turning Drill
This turning drill helps train the body to use the muscles of the trunk, not the arms.
Assume the normal set-up position and cross your arms to place hands on opposite shoulders
Keeping the elbows close to the body, turn to the top of the back swing with your head down. Concentrate on feeling the coil in your trunk
Hold this position for a few seconds, then uncoil gradually, and move into a balanced follow through position, (arms still crossed), and hold 3 seconds.
Perform 20 times
Apply this to your game:
As stated from the professionals at FITfor GOLF, “This drill is designed to help you feel the correct turn. It helps maximize trunk rotation while minimizing side bending or tilting of the spine.”
#2 Core Strength Drill
This core strengthening drill helps train the body to use your abdominals, increasing power and stability. (resistance band or tubing req’d)
Anchor one end of exercise elastic tubing or band to a doorknob or railing
Assume the normal set-up position holding the elastic in both hands
Start your backswing, progressing to a maximum of ½ backswing by moving your arms away from your body while you activate your abdominals against the resistance of the elastic.
Slowly return to the start position.
The same can be performed for the ½ follow-through with using the resistance from the elastic.
Perform 10-20 times, for each of the backswing and the follow-through.
Apply this to your game:
As stated from the professionals at FITfor GOLF, “It is important to focus on initiating motion with the abdominal muscles rather than with the legs. Power and stability come from your abdominal muscles.”
Collins, Justin – Licensed Physiotherapist – Arthritis and Sports Medicine Centre – Ancaster ON
FITforGolf; Skills & Drills Manual (http://www.fitforegolf.com/index.html)
HGCC, Tee Shots June 2015 (http://matchplaygolfmarketing.uberflip.com/i/523005-10-hgcc-june2015