The holiday season is upon us and that means time with family, some time away from work and reflecting back on the year, all while looking forward to the new one.
“This is the year I’m going to exercise every day.”
“This is the year I’m finally going to get my handicap in the single digits.”
“This is the year I’m going to be a better player.”
But why wait until the calendar hits 2017?
Let’s get started on transforming yourself and your game now with some easy to do and effective golf workouts! You’ll find plenty of ways on USGolfTV.com you can improve your swing and your scoring, but first thing is first. You need to improve yourself and the shape you’re in.
Let’s be honest. The holidays could be a little rough on your waistline. But instead of waiting until you’ve already put on the extra 20 pounds before you start trying to work it out, a little preventive maintenance on yourself will make sure that extra helping of turkey and pumpkin pie doesn’t have any lingering effects.
Dick Bartling of the Avera Sports Institute has come up with several golf related fitness tips to make sure your game is in mid-season form before the snow has melted.
1. Improve Your Forearm Strength
First, let’s talk about improving the strength in your forearm,s while maintaining your wrist cock in your golf swing.
Grab a mid-iron from your bag—a 5-iron or 6-iron will do fine—and stand with the club at your side and grip it with your dominant hand. Now pull your wrist up into the club is past parallel with the ground and hold it for several seconds. Now lower your wrist and club. Repeat several times.
It’s the same position your wrist is in during the golf swing and this simple exercise is a great way to strengthen your forearm without having to hit the gym.
Here’s a video of the drill:
2. The Chair Drill for Torso Rotation
Another great golf workout from the Avera Sports Institute is a torso rotation drill designed to stretch out your backswing. You won’t even need a golf club for this drill just a chair is all.
Have a seat. Now twist and grab the back of the chair. Hold that for about 15-20 seconds. Take a few deep breaths and then relax and face the front again. Now repeat by twisting to the other side and grab the back of the chair and simply do the same thing. Hold it about 15-20 seconds, a few deep breaths and relax.
Keep alternating sides during this drill. Twist to the right, hold it, then twist to the left. This will really help to loosen your back up while at the same time fortifying your core muscles to get you swinging longer and freer.
Dick Bartling explains:
Here’s another great article about golf workouts. Thanks Jordan!
3. Crocodile Drill for Torso Flexibility
The crocodile drill also doesn’t require a golf club or even a chair.
You probably stretch a little bit on the practice range or maybe a quick stretch on the first tee, but are you stretching properly? I’m guessing not. Most of us make a half-hearted attempt to get loose. You may have seen Miguel Angel Jimenez and his very unique stretching methods on the range. I’m not saying you need to go that route, but on the other hand, Jimenez is playing some of his best golf at the age of 52. Maybe his workouts help.
Anyway, for this golf workout lie down with your feet together and arms out to your side. Now put one foot on top of the other and put your hands together by twisting over onto your side. Now from this position keep your feet together and open up your arms until they are touching the ground on either side of you.
This is a great exercise for improving your torso flexibility as well. See if you can hold the pose with your arms on the ground for about 30 seconds and then go back to your starting position. Remember of course to work both sides of your body.
Bartling shows the crocodile drill, here:
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4. Hip Flexibility While Sitting
There is another golf workout you can do with the chair from the torso workout mentioned earlier. This will help with your hip flexibility. Who doesn’t want to be hip, right?
Odds are you spend a lot of time sitting in a chair for work and all that sitting is making you tight in your hips. This workout can combat the effects of 8 hours a day in a chair. Take a seat and cross your right leg over your left and keep your right leg parallel
Take a seat and cross your right leg over your left and keep your right leg parallel with the ground. Hold that stretch for a good 20 seconds if you can. A little bit of discomfort is OK. Of course, you don’t want to over-stretch it. This isn’t an endurance drill. Now, as always, repeat with the other leg. Putting the left one over your right leg and keeping the left leg parallel to the ground for a good 20 seconds or so. This is a great way to improve your hip flexibility. A simple, everyday drill you could probably do at work while you’re on the phone or typing at your desk.
This is a great way to improve your hip flexibility. A simple, everyday drill you could probably do at work while you’re on the phone or typing at your desk.
Watch Dick Bartling sit in a chair (while showing you this excercise) here:
5. The Side Plank Drill
The last golf workout from the Avera Sports Institute is called the side plank drill.
This is really going to work your core muscles and improve your lateral core stability. Lay on your side with your elbow underneath your shoulder and come up so your body is off the ground. Do your best to stay nice and even and straight. It’s not easy but it will really pay dividends the longer you can hold that pose.
No pain, no gain! If you can only hold the pose for about 10 seconds that’s ok. Keep working at it until you can do 15 or 20 seconds with minimal shaking or sagging.
Ideally, you’ll keep improving until you can hold the pose for a minute or longer on each side. This golf workout will really go a long way to improving your lateral core stability and have you swinging better and feeling better on the course.
There is simply no better example of how exercise and physical fitness can benefit your health and your golf game than Gary Player. The legend recently turned 81 and could shoot his age without breaking a sweat. The Black Knight knows keeping your body in shape is going to help your stamina and keep you fresh on the course.
Lazy bodies and minds equals sloppy play and mistakes.
Player could easily beat golfers half his age or more. He devoted himself to exercise from a very young age and it’s obviously paid off for him. Whatever your age, it’s not too late to firm up. Don’t wait until spring to get started. Get going now.
If you wait until spring, you’ll be playing catch up all summer. All of the above drills are easy to do and can be done indoors. Just a few minutes a day is all it takes to have you looking and feeling your best this spring.