We briefly mentioned in our last article about Mindset Training that we’d use a pack of cards to pick this week’s article. So, we assigned a suit to four magazines and then asked one of your favorite La Jolla Sports Club employees, Sierra, to pick three numbers, the first being the suit and the other two the page numbers. Page 28 of the September 2016 IDEA Fitness Journal just so happens to focus on golf.
Even if you are not a golfer, there are still a lot of useful exercises and ideas that can be applied to tennis, surfing, walking and essentially any sport that requires rotation (see: all).
If it’s been a while since you’ve hit a ball, let’s do a quick recap on your body and your golf swing. Starting from the ground up, your lower body (glutes) transfers energy to your core, which acts as a corkscrew, rotating and transferring energy to your upper body, through your arms through the club to the ball to the hole-in-one. It’s no surprise, then, that if any of your muscles are inhibited, your swing and distance will be limited. More important, however, your lower back or shoulders could be taking the brunt of the force.
La Jolla Sports Club Personal Trainers, Kevin Root and Carl Israelsson, are certified in Functional Movement Screening (FMS) and are available to help pinpoint instabilities, but if you’re in a crunch, here are some great mobility exercises to help open up your body:
(Note: YOGA IS YOUR FRIEND)
This is a great exercise to develop rotary stability – 5 per side
This one is great for hip internal/external rotation and adductor mobilization – 8 per side
This is great for thoracic spine mobility and hip internal/external rotation – 6 per side
Now that your body is working a little more cohesively, let’s take a look at a few exercises that’ll help put (insert rival doctor / lawyer / 401K consultant / etc here) in their place. Thanks to Stack.com for the following, click here to see them in action!
Elevated Glute Bridge
Benefits: A more challenging version of the Glute Bridge, to strengthen your glutes. Developing these muscles is critical for golfers because that’s where most of your swing power comes from.
- Lie on your back with your heels on a bench or step.
- Point your toes toward the ceiling.
- Squeeze your glutes and raise your back off of the ground until only your head and the tops of your shoulders are on the ground.
- Extend your arms with your palms down.
Side Plank with Cable Row
Benefits: Increases core and back strength, the foundation for a strong drive. Also teaches your core to stabilize when you move your upper body, a critical skill for maintaining a precise swing.
- Lie on your side facing a cable machine.
- Grab a handle at an appropriate weight and rise up into a side plank.
- Perform cable rows while staying in a full side plank position.
Stability Ball Dumbbell Twist
Benefits: By performing a twist on a physioball, you improve rotational strength and control—keys for preventing lower back injuries.
- Lie with your back on a stability ball and hold a dumbbell in both hands with your arms extended.
- Slowly twist to one side while balancing on the ball.
- Squeeze your abdominal muscles.
Sets/Reps: 3×20 each side
Power Kneeling Cable Twist
Benefits: Adds core power to help you whip the club through the ball.
- Facing a cable machine, kneel down with either leg forward.
- Grab the cable machine handle with both hands.
- Choose a lighter weight than you would use for a slow repetition.
- Quickly twist to the side of your lead leg. So, right knee forward, twist toward the right. The quick movement makes it more of a power movement, mimicking the golf swing.
- Repeat with your other leg forward.
Sets/Reps: 4×14 each side
OK, that’s it for us this post, be sure to check in next week where we’ll choose our article based on your comments (!).
Have you tried Functional Movement Screening (FMS) before? Have you tried to rehab golf injuries without any luck? What fitness-oriented article would you like to see next week (best one wins)?
Happy St Patrick’s Day, stay safe out there!
// Your La Jolla Sports Club team
A looper, you know, a caddy, a looper, a jock. So, I tell them I’m a pro jock, and who do you think they give me? The Dalai Lama, himself. Twelfth son of the Lama. The flowing robes, the grace, bald… striking. So, I’m on the first tee with him. I give him the driver. He hauls off and whacks one – big hitter, the Lama – long, into a ten-thousand foot crevasse, right at the base of this glacier. Do you know what the Lama says? Gunga galunga… gunga, gunga-lagunga. So we finish the eighteenth and he’s gonna stiff me. And I say, “Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know.” And he says, “Oh, uh, there won’t be any money, but when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness.” So I got that goin’ for me, which is nice.