Get into “Golf Shape” with Franklin Rehab
As you return to golf course, it is important to get your body into “golf shape”. Your body has proprioceptors which tell you where your body is in space and they are in every part of your body. This information tells the body what muscles to turn on/off in a coordinated fashion to complete the golf swing. In golf, you need to coil or load the muscles and then use that stored energy to explode to hit the ball. At the finish of the swing, your body must absorb and control all that energy otherwise you will get hurt. Since the golf swing needs multiple areas of the body (feet, knees, hips, trunk, neck and shoulders) to work together in a coordinated fashion, isolated training has limited usefulness in improving your golf game. When you swing the golf club you are aware of what you want to do: hit the ball, but the execution of hitting the ball is subconscious. In other words, you do not think about each and every joint or muscle you need to activate to complete the swing. You just swing.
Controlling Your Swing
The body will not use motion that it cannot control. You need to have motion and stability together to control the swing. First you need to make sure that your body has the motion available to get into the backswing and finish swing. To get into both positions your body to needs a lot of motion in the hips, shoulders, neck and trunk. The motion of golf puts your joints in positions that they normally do not do with other sports or daily life. Many times, it takes golf specific stretches/motions to get your body able to get into the needed positions to maximize your swing. Thus, it is very important to have golf specific warm up and exercises that gets your body ready to take these additional stresses. Also, if you do not get full motion out of your body, it will affect the direction and distance you can drive the ball.
Golf Movement Training
Next, your body needs to be able to control itself and the golf club during the swing. You must generate enough explosion from the backswing position to power through the ball and then stop the motion without hurting anything. That takes a lot of power and endurance to golf for 18 holes. Many of the exercises that are out there say they are to build strength and power, but they are very general exercises and could be used for any activity. For example, Golf Digest gives exercises for golf which are squats, bridges, rows and jumps. These are good conditioning exercises but are not golf specific. Golf requires a lot of rotation through the rib cage, rotation and ext at the hips, motion through the front and back of shoulders as well as knee and ankle motion. Conditioning exercises should reproduce the motions needed for the golf swing which are very specific motions needed from the body.
If you want to safely get back in the game while improving your skill, golf specific movement training is essential. A swing coach or golf pro can help you refine your swing, but if you do not have the available motion and strength in your body even the best swing coach or golf pro cannot correct your form. The expert physical therapists at Franklin Rehab have the training and skill to get your body “golf ready” so you can get the most out of your golf game.
If you are feeling like you lost your touch, are experiencing pain, or cannot drive the ball as far or as straight as you want, your body may benefit from golf specific movement training. We would love to assist you reach your goal of being a better golfer. Please contact us at 414-425-9700 for a free golf flexibility assessment.