You're standing on the tee-box, driver in hand, ready to hit the best shot of your life, all while hoping to find your ball again afterwards. Sound familiar?
For most golfers, being ready to execute the perfect shot doesn't always mean they're actually able to. But I know for a fact that all golfers, no matter what level they're at, are ready to improve their golf swing and overall game.
The Missing Link
When trying to improve their swing, players usually lean on things like buying new clubs, spending hours at the driving range, and taking innumerable lessons from an instructor. One major thing you aren't addressing will put an end to all that. Focusing on this one thing will not only banish your pre-swing worries, it will eliminate the need for new clubs and cut down on your driving range time. If it sounds too good to be true, it isn't. That missing link, that one thing, is your posture.
You've probably heard about golf posture before, but that's not necessarily what I'm talking about. When I talk about "posture," I mean alignment and function and their direct impact on performance.
My belief is that the majority of limitations are posture-based. Your posture is off, and either your skills and abilities have diminished or you're in pain—or both.
Think about this: If you look in the mirror and notice that your right hip is higher than your left hip, we can assume that your right and left hips aren't doing things equally on both sides. With a golf club in your hands, you are probably unable to load your right hip properly in your backswing. As a result, you compensate.
You're wasting valuable time, energy and money if you just try to adjust your swing, hit more balls or buy the latest and greatest set of clubs. You need to stop ignoring your right hip elevation.
The following exercises will bring your body back into balance, erasing your physical limitations. Not only will you be able to do the things that you couldn't physically do before, but golf will become fun again when your body realizes that it can give you the golf-swing motion efficiently without hurting. (Once you have "used up" these exercises, email firstname.lastname@example.org to discover the next step in your journey to living without limitations! It's time to start living and golfing pain-free!)
Static Extension Position
Sets/ Duration: 1x3 minutes
- Start on hands and knees with hands shoulder-width apart, palms flat, fingers pointed straight ahead
- Keep arms straight, elbows locked
- Walk hands about six inches forward
- Shift upper body forward so that shoulders are above hands and hips are ahead of knees
- Arch low back, collapse shoulder blades together and drop head down (keep shoulders directly above hands)
Upper Spinal Floor Twist
Sets/Duration:1x two minutes each side
- Lie on one side in fetal position with arms straight out in front of shoulders
- Stack knees one directly atop the other, and keep them there throughout exercise
- Open top arm, lifting it up and over body and letting it rest on floor, or as close to floor as possible
- Move head to look in same direction as lifted arm
- Do not let knees come apart while moving arm to other side; if necessary, use bottom hand to hold knees together
- Remember to breathe; allow your body to open; hold as indicated
- Switch sides and repeat
Cats & Dogs
- Start on hands and knees
- Make sure hips are directly above knees and shoulders directly above hands, with fingers pointed forward
- Cat position: pull hips under, pull head under and push upper back to ceiling, rounding it high
- Dog position: roll hips forward to put arch in back, collapse shoulder blades together and look up
- Slowly move back and forth between the Cat and Dog positions
Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock