I hope everyone has their aluminum poles up and are preparing for the feats of strength.
I am getting ready to design for this Friday. It is usually something loosely based on the 12 days of Christmas but I prefer Festivus anyway. Its up there with Leif Erikson Day.
This year the Airing of the Grievances will be directed at golf fitness. There are a lot of misconceptions out there about good training. I want to clear some of the most common ones.
Shoulder Flexibility for Program Design
An overhead reach shows the ability to flex the shoulders. I will do this screen both on and off a wall. I am looking for the upper arm to get to the ears without the ribs flaring up.
Golfers who lack shoulder flexion are said to have a higher incidence of early extension and S posture.
I think there are factors that contribute to those things much more than shoulder flexion. Pelvic control, glute strength, and core stability come to mind. I would address those before shoulder flexion and stiffness in the lats.
Shoulder flexion is one of the best screens I have for program design though. It tells me what safe range of motion a golfer has overhead. Should they press overhead, landmine, or work on stability? What about chinups or pulldowns? This screen allows me to choose the proper exercises.
Shoulder flexion probably has less to do with the swing but a ton to do with exercise selection. Make sure the emphasis you put on something like that matches the benefits you will receive.
Single Leg Strength and Stability is Balance
I don’t like training balance by itself. There are better things we can do with our time.
Balance is improperly viewed in the swing. Golfers are taught to stay balanced and not fall out of their swing.
That’s an issue I had in the 2016 season. Was my ability to stand on one leg my problem? Nope.
When I went for my first lesson, we worked on footwork. I was spinning and lifting my feet out of control which caused me to fall off balance. With a couple of drills and a lot of practice, I stopped it.
I truly do not know the correlation between standing on one leg and golf performance. I am not saying that to be skeptical, I really don’t know.
I do know that balance is more related to strength than a lot of people believe. When we stand on one leg and fall over, it is because of instability.
Instability is mostly related to strength. More support in the joints will create stability, which will avoid too much movement. Muscular strength is the best way to build strong joints. No need to hop on BOSU balls to play better golf, hit the weights instead.
Training for single leg strength will provide tremendous results on your balance.
Don’t Do This Alone
Every time I spend a lot of time on the range practicing, something happens about 90+% of the time. There is always a golfer trying to self coach himself into a better swing.
This guy is usually in trouble. I used to try to do things alone. Its way easier and more effective to go to the expert.
The same goes for fitness. The industry is a gong show and no one can get along. This means that opinions differ dramatically.
If you can find someone with a good track record and actually commit to them, you will see great improvement. Don’t try to wing it and figure it out as you go.