As a Strength and Conditioning Coach my job is to design and implement the physical training programmes for professional golfers. Training programmes will always have two primary aims; reduce injury risk and improve performance.
By analysing the movements involved in the sport we can look at the key muscle groups which are used in these movements. We can then target those muscles and strengthen them with resistance training exercises. Increasing the strength in these key muscle groups allows them to become more robust at handling the repetitive nature of practice and competition.
In an average tournament week, a professional player will hit around 2,000 balls and spend approximately 42 hours on their feet. This places a great strain on the body, hence, the importance of consistently performing strength training.
A big problem with training on tour or, as we currently all find ourselves — at home away from our usual gym environments — is that we are limited to whatever facilities are available to us in our immediate surroundings. Below, however, are 2 lower body exercises we can perform anywhere, with minimal equipment. Both of these exercises target some of the key muscles involved in golf; the glutes, lower back, hamstrings and quadriceps.
Stages 1, 2 & 3 of the Dumbbell Split Squat.
Stages 4 & 5 of the Dumbbell Split Squat.
Try to do 3 – 5 sets of 8 – 12 reps, twice a week, of each exercise. Only increase the weight you are using once you can perform all reps with good form.
Stages 1 & 2 of the Dumbbell RDL.
Stages 3 & 4 of the Dumbbell RDL.
The practice and tournament requirements of professional golf are so vast that a primary aim of all strength and conditioning programmes needs to be injury prevention.
It is estimated that around 80% of injuries in the pro game are as a result of overuse, with the shoulder being one of the most injured sites. When we analyse the golf swing, we see that the shoulder is responsible for transferring the forces, initially generated by the lower body, into the club head.
We see that as we get more powerful in our lower body, and can generate greater club head speeds, that our shoulders and trunk are put under greater stress. It is, therefore, highly important that we train the muscles of the rotator cuff and those around the shoulder girdle. Improving the strength and robustness of these muscles, along with their tendons, will ensure we stay healthy as we improve our club head speed.
Above, I explain x2 lower body exercises that could be done anywhere, even with limited equipment. This time we will focus on x2 upper body exercises that target the key muscles involved with keeping the shoulder joint healthy.
Stages 1, 2 & 3 of the Single Arm Dumbbell Press.
Stages 4 & 5 of the Single Arm Dumbbell Press.
Again, try to do 3 – 5 sets of 8 – 12 reps, twice a week, of each exercise, and only increase the weight you are using once you can perform all reps with good form.
Stages 1, 2 & 3 of the Chest Supported Row.
Stages 4 & 5 of the Chest Supported Row.
If you would like to know more about strength training for Golf or would like to book an appointment with Chris McCann, or any of our S&C Coaches, please complete the form below.