Stretching for better golf is now recognized as an important component for optimal golf performance. If you are not at least maintaining your golf specific range of motion, you will see a decline in driving distance, consistency and swing mechanics.
But stretching for better golf takes a different approach. One that takes a look at the biomechanics of the swing. The main movement in the golf swing is rotation. As golfers get older, this rotational component diminishes and performance goes with it.
With just a little effort, you will be amazed at the difference on the course. You will be making a full backswing with no tension, resulting in longer, straighter drives. Is that worth the time you’d be putting into it?
I would never discount the importance of stretching your hamstrings, or other areas that are not rotational, but the biggest bang for your buck will be rotational stretches by far.
The better you can rotate your upper body with minimal lower body activity, the longer your drives will be, and the more the will penetrate the elements like wind and even rain.
As you can see in the picture, I’m doing a backswing stretch with a wide stance. I have the wide stance for a reason. The wider the stance, the less the hips will rotate, forcing most of the emphasis on core rotational flexibility.
This is just one of many stretching for better golf movements you can do that will make a difference where it counts. On the course!
I am constantly educating golfers on the importance of strengthening exercise for golf to enhance golf swing power and consistency. Itâ€™s quite obvious your body is your limiting factor in your ability to make a mechanically sound and repeatable golf swing for 18 holes.
Strengthening exercise for golf is specific to your swing and does not entail exercise machines, nor a gym membership. If anything the complete opposite. A simple â€œin homeâ€ golf exercise gym consists of a stability ball, exercise tubing, dumbbells and a weighted medicine ball for more advanced exercisers.
The total cost of such a set up is under $100. You would pay that easy in a monthly gym membership or one session with a private trainer. What a fantastic return on your investment.
The golf swing requires a higher level of golf specific strength, especially in your core area to impart maximum impact on the ball. A weak body that is inflexible will have no chance at getting producing this kind of power.
So many times a see and hear of golfers rushing to the course, grabbing their driver and hacking a couple of swings, then rushing to the first tee. The end result is bogey, double bogey or maybe worse.
How many times has this happened to you?
All youâ€™ve got to do is a few simple golf stretches before play to get that first par or maybe even birdie. Of course swinging a club and putting is also very important. But if your body isnâ€™t warmed up, forget it!
The phrase I have used for years is, â€œprepare your BODY to performÂ©â€. Every other athlete warms their body up to perform, why wouldnâ€™t a golfer? A body that is not properly warmed up will not have a chance at the proper swing sequence without tension.
Now the question is what type of warm up to do that would be the most effective? Since you are preparing to perform a very dynamic movement (golf swing), you would want to perform dynamic (movement) golf stretches. These golf stretches will be the most effective for getting your body ready to play your best from the first hole on.
I have inserted a couple (of many) to give you an idea of what type of golf stretches before you play you should be doing.
Partial Squat w/Club
â€¢ Feet shoulder width apart.
â€¢ Place club in front of you and hold with both hands for balance.
â€¢ Lower body by bending at the knees not hips and raise club at same time.
â€¢ Raise back up and repeat 10 times.
â€¢ Keep upper body very erect.
Benefit to Golf Swing:
â€¢ Increase blood flow and circulation through out body.
â€¢ Great total body warm up to allow body to make a relaxed, comfortable first swing.
â€¢ Increase range of motion in hips encouraging a more synchronized swing from the ground up.
Standing Rotation/Twist w/Club
â€¢ Hold club chest high, with grip shoulder width apart.
â€¢ While keeping feet and hips fairly stable, rotate club to the right and then the left.
â€¢ Try to breathe out on every turn to release tension.
â€¢ Repeat each side 10 times
Benefit to Golf Swing:
â€¢ Prepare golf specific muscles of the trunk to make an aggressive move from the first tee on.
â€¢ Also prepares proper sequencing of swing, while warming muscles.
â€¢ Will improve body movements during swing from the beginning, not sacrificing strokes of the first couple of holes
These are just two simple golf stretches before play you can do that will make a huge difference in your performance (especially the first few holes).
Mike Pedersen is an internationally known golf performance expert. He is Golf Magazines Golf Performance Expert; has been featured on pga.com; also a noted expert and quoted in the top golf magazines in the world, as well as the founder of several cutting-edge online golf performance membership sites. Take a look at his just released golf training system at performbettergolf.com
Your driving distance can be improved quickly with fitness exercises for golfers. These exercises are specific to the demands of the golf swing. They are dynamic, and incorporate all the athletic elements of stability, coordination, balance, body awareness, and sport-specific strength and flexibility.
When you look at the specific motion of the golf swing, itâ€™s rotational, and very quick, so training your muscles in this manner will give you the best results.
The key to improving your driving distance is your power unleashed at impact. If your body has wound up (backswing) fully, and released all that torque into impact, while youâ€™re staying behind the ball, youâ€™ll hit your drives the maximum distance for your leverage type, swing speed and solidness of contact.
To create these positions entails fitness exercises specific to golfers. These exercises do not have to be rocket science, nor do they have to be done in a gym. They have to simulate your golf swing positions with resistance. Thatâ€™s the definition of fitness exercises for golfers. Simulating key phases of the golf swing with resistance.
You do not need a gym membership to participate in a very effective fitness exercise for golfers program! I say this strongly to remove any reasons (excuses) for not starting right away.
You can pick and choose your golf exercises to suit your golf swing limitations and needs, or you can incorporate a â€œtotal bodyâ€ golf exercise program of strengthening, stretching, nutrition and cardio (fat-burning).
For example, if you have a weak backswing, that doesnâ€™t get all the way to the to consistently, you can do my Post Impact Single Arm With Tubing:
Attach tubing to lower door jam.
Turn sideways to the door and create some distance for added tension.
Place right hand and handle on right hip as left hand pulls through impact.
Let handle come back up, but donâ€™t lose tension on tubing and repeat.
Benefits to Golf Swing:
Improves strength and power specific to the follow through.
Grooves proper swing path and sequence of motion with resistance.
Strengthens all the muscles used in the golf swing, but much quicker with repeat pulls.
This is just on example of a simple, fitness exercise for golfers that can really add some umph to your drives for maximum distance.
Do this 2-3 times a week for 2-3 sets of 15 repetitions. Youâ€™ll soon feel the improved strength on the course.
About The Author: Mike Pedersen is the CEO of Perform Better Golf as well as an Internationally recognized golf performance expert and author. Perform Better Golf’s goal is to improve the golfers driving distance and overall performance by addressing the physical issues. For more information on his best-selling Golf Fitness System, visit Perform Better Golf.
A golf stretching dvd can and would be a very effective way to improve your golf swing technique, power and overall performanceâ€¦but you canâ€™t forget one very important factor to make these results lasting!
The main reason you canâ€™t just look for a golf stretching dvd is the critical component of strength specific to your golf swing. You seeâ€¦improving your flexibility with a golf stretching program, without the implementation of golf strength exercises will not warrant long-term flexibility gains.
Golf Stretching Without Strength Will Create Brittle Muscles
Picture a rubber band for a second. Keep stretching it and stretching it. What happens? It breaks down and eventually snaps in two.
Your muscles are like that rubber band. You can keep stretching your muscles, but unless you improve your strength in those newfound ranges of motion, it wonâ€™t be permanent results. In fact, just doing a golf stretching dvd could be detrimental to your performance by exposing your muscles to injury.
A Golf Exercise DVD With Both Golf Strength And Golf Stretching
The wisest purchase would be a golf exercise dvd that incorporates both stretching AND strengthening exercises. Now you will see permanent results! You wonâ€™t be wasting your time in hopes of a better golf swing.
Youâ€™ll see a much higher level of power, accuracy and overall consistency. I am always surprised when a senior golfer says he/she needs to work on their flexibility, and the term strength is not put in there.
Golf Stretch and Strength Exercise Example
For example, take a look at the pictures above. The one is a golf strength exercise, and the second one is a golf stretching exercise for the same muscle group. This combination will give you the best results to enhance your golf swing power, efficiency and mechanics.
Golf Flexibility Is Lost As The Years Go By
We know from statistics the human body loses range of motion AND strength every year that you donâ€™t maintain it. The â€œuse-it-or-lose-itâ€ phrase comes to mind and itâ€™s a true one. Your muscles were meant to be used, not just lay dormant and inactive throughout your later years.
When you start to really understand how the human body works, youâ€™ll have a different outlook on your golf performance program. You will no longer think that the answer is a golf stretching dvd.
Take this approach to your golf improvement and get a maximum return from your golf practice.
About The Author: Mike Pedersen is the CEO of Perform Better Golf as well as an Internationally recognized golf performance expert and author. Perform Better Golf’s goal is to improve the golfers driving distance and overall performance by addressing physical issues and limitations. For more information, and to check out his best-selling Golf Fitness System visit performbettergolf.com.