The singlemost important golf fitness factor for your golf performance is flexibility. The less golf fitness stretching exercises you do, the less flexibility you have, the worse your game. It’s that simple. Ignorance of the proper golf stretches and lack of flexibility are responsible for keeping the games of many players from ever reaching their full potential – on all levels.
No equipment breakthroughs, no magical flying golf balls, no $300 lessons and no ‘electrically charged’ bracelets will ever take the place of what a proper golf fitness stretching exercise program can do for your game.
With the right golf stretching exercises, the easier and further your body can turn, the better, more powerful, your swing is. Period.
Moving the club head over a greater distance allows for the generation of more club head speed, hence more distance on the ball – WITH LESS EFFORT.
So, What Does The Ideal Golf Stretching Exercise Program Consist Of?
1) It must include several key compound stretches – stretches that elongate several joint areas at the same time – mimicking natural movement patterns. Allowing the golfer to be more accurate through enhanced fitness flexibility, body awareness & control.
2) It must include a series of single or double joint golf stretching exercises. The effects of these stretches increase exponentially when the specific body movement requires several of these joints to move in coordination with each other (ie – the golf swing).
3) It must follow a symetrical protocol – the true key to maintaining optimal muscle/tendon/joint balance on both sides of the body. This allows for enhanced golf swing power without a large increase in swing effort. And this is also very important to chronic and acute injury prevention – and hence fitness and playing longevity.
4) It must offer several golf fitness program variations. A long version for regular training days and a short version for Pre-Round Stretching. A few variations with the large exercise ball should also be included (extremely important for the golfer) along with a couple of club stretches to do just before tee-off & between holes if necessary.
5) It must be realistic & easy to do for golfers at any fitness level with no equipment except for a stretching floor mat (and an exercise ball for certain stretches).
6) It should be thorough – addressing the head and neck all, the way down to the feet. Remember, the golf swing is a full body movement.
7) It should feel good – especially afterward. This type of stretch routine should make you feel as if your posture is immediately better & you should feel stronger – just because your body moves so much easier & more fluidly. You should almost feel like you could rip the cover off a ball if you were to hit one right after your golf fitness stretch routine.
8) It should cause some of your golf buddies to become ‘hateful enemies’. Once you start bombing your drives & ripping your iron shots ‘the boys’ are not going to be very happy with your new-found golf fitness abilities – they will be ‘green’ with envy.
9) Multi-plane, rotational floor stretches are a must. Glute, piriformis & IT band stretches are a must. Heel (Achilles) and calve stretches are a must. Hip flexor, quad, and groin (adductor) stretches are a must and have to be included in any golf fitness flexibility program.
10) Neck, trapezius & shoulder girdle stretches must be included. Chest, arm, abdominal and oblique stretching exercises must be included. Upper, middle & lower back stretches must be included.
11) A complete golf flexibility exercise session should take you no longer than 45 minutes on a long program and no longer than 14 minutes on a ‘quick golf stretch’.
The starting point of your optimum golf fitness exercise program should place priority on the flexibility component. A carefully crafted stretching program, consisting of the right golf exercises, should be the foundation for which the rest of your golf performance conditioning program is built upon.