In recent years we have seen a push towards golfers looking to add fitness to improve their golf game. In my time as a PGA Golf Professional, Personal Trainer, and CrossFit coach I have become a firm believer in strength training, flexibility, and cardiovascular endurance for general health as well as improved athletic performance.
There is a growing trend amongst trainers creating workout programs for golfers that focus on flexibility and strength concentrating on the golf swing movement. The downfall with this singular effort is overlooking the overall athleticism of the golfer, the WHOLE body is required for improvement. Think about how many times you’ve been told to turn your hips faster to hit the ball farther…there’s a good chance that you are turning them as fast as you can. So how do we increase the power and ability of your hips? Explosive strength training! Movements like the squat, deadlift, or Kettlebell swing can be added to your routing 3-4 times per week to increase your ability to apply a more powerful athletic movement to the golf swing.
By focusing on your athletic ability while in the gym you find that you begin to correct any muscle imbalances that you have created through the years of living. If we have imbalances, they can lead to poor setup, poor mechanics, and increased risk of injury during the golf swing.
Take these movements and add them to your routine. If you have questions on how to do any of these movements find myself or Erin in the gym and we will get you started.
Romanian Deadlift (perform 5 sets of 5-8 reps)
- Hold a bar at hip level with a pronated (palms facing down) grip. Your shoulders should be back, your back arched, and your knees slightly bent. This will be your starting position.
- Lower the bar by moving your butt back as far as you can. Keep the bar close to your body, your head looking forward, and your shoulders back. Done correctly, you should reach the maximum range of your hamstring flexibility just below the knee. Any further movement will be compensation and should be avoided for this movement.
- At the bottom of your range of motion, return the starting position by driving the hips forward to stand up tall.
Russian Kettlebell Swing (Perform 5 sets of 12-18 reps)
- Begin by holding the kettlebell with both hands just below the groin, feet hip-width apart.
- Be sure your spine is neutral, not rounded forward, and your core is engaged. Think about keeping your shoulder blades slightly pinched together to avoid rounding forward.
- Now bend your knees slightly, hinge upward, and push the kettlebell into a swing using the force of your hips and glutes.
- Swing the kettlebell to chest level, avoiding letting your shoulders “creep up” to your ears.
- Let the kettlebell swing back to your starting position by hinging again at the hips, extending the kettlebell behind you.
Air Squat (Perform 4 sets of 15-20 reps)
- Shoulder width stance, Hips descend back and down
- Hips descend lower than knees, Lumbar curve is maintained
- Heels stay on ground, knees are in line with toes
- Stand up and complete full hip and knee extension
Barry Pepper, PGA
CF Movement & Mobility