In the previous fitness article we introduced you to a total workout for strengthening the glues and core, which are key to swinging the club well. In this article we will discuss how to improve mobility in key areas to not only improve your game, but also prevent injury.
Technically speaking, mobility is the combination of joint range-of-motion and flexibility. Range-of-motion is the normal movement of a joint to flex, rotate, or extend, while flexibility normal elasticity of the soft tissue surround a joint. The foundation to a consistent golf swing can be found with good mobility. Good mobility helps you move more efficiently. Lack of mobility creates instability, which can lead to uncontrolled movement. Then you compensate and use other parts of the body to swing, thus leading to wayward shots and possible injury.
Most golfers are deskbound and hunched over a computer all day, which contributes to lack of mobility. Here are is a series of exercises that you can do on a daily basis to help increase your range of motion, stretch your muscles and improve mobility.
Perform the following exercises in sequence:
1. Forearm Wall Slides with Retraction
a. Stand facing the wall and place forearms against the wall
b. Keeping the forearms on the wall, slide up and out into Y
c. Pull extended arms back about 20cm, hold and
d. Return arms back down to starting position
e. Repeat for 8-10 repetitions
2. Inchworm to Spider-man
a. From standing, reach to the floor by flexing your spine
b. Place your hands on the floor and walk your hands into a plank position
c. Bring your left foot up next to your left hand and sink your hips toward the floor
d. Repeat for the right leg, then walk back up using your hands
e. Repeat for 5 repetitions up & down
3. Wall Hip-Flexor and Ankle
a. Facing the wall, take a lunge position with your left foot to the wall and right knee on the ground
b. Place your left hand on the wall and grasp your right foot with your right hand
c. Gently rock forward and backward, stretching both your hip flexors and ankle
d. Perform 6-8 repetitions, then switch sides
4. Quadruped T-Spine Rotation
a. Assume a quadruped position on the floor with your knees shoulder width apart
b. Rock back onto your heels, forearms on the ground and place one hand on the back of your head
c. Gently rotate your shoulders until your elbow points upward, pause and return to the starting position
d. Repeat 8-10 times then change sides
Do these 4 exercises every day and even as a warm-up before you play to get the most out of your swing.