Warm up for your golf round the right way
Special to the Bonanza
How often do you show up for a round of golf in just enough time to make your actual tee time, only to find that it takes the first three or four holes to get your body warmed up enough to make a full swing?
Alternately, how often do you play 18 holes, and then feel too stiff and overworked to play again the next day?
If you’re tired of wasting those first few holes and risking injury, try these dynamic pre-golf exercises, which are designed to address flexibility, strength, and spinal stability — all of which contribute to an enjoyable, pain-free and productive round.
Leg swings: Use a golf club as a cane and swing the leg that is closest to the club in a forward and back motion, keeping your leg straight and core engaged. Do both legs for 10 swings. Then do the same thing swinging your leg left to right on both sides. This exercise is an effective hip flexor and hamstring stretch.
The stork turn: Use a golf club as a cane and place the foot of the leg that is closest to the club behind the opposite knee. Rotate back and forth from left and right in a swinging motion.
Hip rotation with a pivot: Hold a club with both hands extended straight out in front of you. Rotate and pivot on your back leg from side to side.
Torso rotation: Get in a golf posture with a club across the front of your shoulders with your arms crossed over the club to hold it in place. Keep your lower body still and rotate your torso in a back swing and follow through motion.
Back swing hold with a follow through: Get in the same position as the previous exercise. Hold in the backswing position for three seconds, and then do a follow through swing motion pivoting on your back leg.
All of these moves will work equally well as cool-down exercises to help with recovery time after your round, so you can play again the next day at a high level without pain. Try them out the next time you’re scheduled for a round, and remember to arrive early enough for a proper warm up.
Denise Jezycki is a certified personal trainer at the Incline Village Recreation Center who has received her Titleist Performance Institute Level 1 certification and her Golf Fitness certification from the National Academy of Sports Medicine. To make an appointment with Denise to work on your golf fitness, please call 916-616-4772.
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