Golf, Strength And Conditioning
7 Exercises For Golf That’ll Improve Your Game
It is quite simple. All golfers want to play better and shoot lower scores.
Regardless if you’re trying to break 100 for the first time or shoot under par, you’re looking to improve. The question is, what’s your plan to improve - what are you willing to do in pursuit of better golf?
The easy answers are to invest in new golf equipment, pay for lessons, or spend more time at the driving range. The mistake many players make is they forget about the importance of physical health and the impact it can have on your scorecard.
Tiger Woods started the golf fitness revolution and now you can find exercises for golf that’ll improve your stamina and swing. Did you know that you can find trainers who are certified in teaching and building programs specifically for golfers?
The most well-known is TPI (Titleist Performance Institute), but there are plenty of options.
Below are 7 exercises for golf that will help you shoot your lower scores.
Before we dive in, some quick disclaimers. Always stretch before you start and be aware of your physical limitations. Don’t “overdo it” during your first session. A little soreness is okay, but you don’t want to be in pain. Start slow and build out your exercises for golf over several weeks.
1. Cat & Camel
Don’t worry, no animals were harmed in the making of this exercise! The Cat & Camel is a great way to start your workout. It’s designed to help you stretch and strengthen your core while also providing gentle mobilization of the spine. Once we describe how you do it, you’ll understand the name.
Start on your hands and knees. Make sure your hands are under your shoulders and your knees are under your hips. Your back should start in a neutral position.
To perform “the Cat”, slowly let your back sink towards the floor while you lift your head up and stick your tailbone out. This will curve your spine. Now it’s time for “the Camel.” Tuck your head and tailbone in and arch your spine to resemble the hump of a camel. Slowly repeat the Cat & the Camel 10 times.
2. Seated Rotations
Our second exercise for golf is seated rotations. They improve your balance, increase your core strength, and help with spine mobility. The golf swing is all about rotation and this exercise will create a more stable movement and increase the speed of your swing.
Start in a seated position with your feet flat on the floor. It’s important that your shoulders and hips are square to each other. If possible, squeeze a foam roller or small medicine ball between your legs. Engage your core and rotate in one direction without moving your feet or knees. Hold this position for 3 seconds and then rotate in the other direction. Perform 10 rotations in each direction.
3. Push Ups
Yes, we know pushups aren’t exactly a new thing, but they’re still a great exercise for golf. The push-up is a simple and effective way to improve your upper body strength.
Everyone has done a push-up, but have you done them correctly? Let’s quickly review the basics. Assume the starting position and ensure your hands are slightly wider than your shoulders. Lower your body until your chest almost touches the floor, pause for a second, and push yourself back up. If you struggle, you can start from your knees, increasing your reps over time.
4. Speed Training
All golfers could use more distance and speed training is a fun and quick way to add some yards to your shoots. This exercise for golf will require more equipment, but we think it’s worth the investment. The most popular product is SuperSpeed Golf, but you can find other options if you want to shop around.
The idea is that you swing weighted golf clubs as hard as you can a few times a week. This teaches your body how to handle more speed and will help you the next time you play. The great news is that speed training programs take less than 45 minutes a week to complete.
5. Single Leg Deadlifts
We love single-leg deadlifts because this exercise for golf serves two different purposes. First, it helps your balance and the consistency of your swing. Second, it strengthens your lower back helping you avoid future injuries.
Start in a standing position with your feet together and a small weight in each hand. Bow forward, letting one leg kick back behind you. Keeping your back straight, lower down until the weights get as close to the floor as possible. Return back to your starting position. Try to do 3 sets of 10 on both legs. You don’t need to use much weight to get benefits from this exercise.
6. Hand Walks
Hand Walks are the perfect way to stretch out your lower back and the muscles in your legs. Golfers often suffer from back injuries and this can be caused by tightness in their leg muscles.
To perform this exercise for golf, bend over so that your hands and feet are touching the ground. Walk your hands out into a push-up pose and then walk your feet towards your hands, stopping when you feel a good stretch. Don’t push it too far!
7. Lunges with Rotation
You may have noticed a couple of common themes in our exercises for golf. First, we’ve talked a lot about stretching out your back, and second, you’re probably sick of reading the word “rotation.” There’s a method to our madness. The golf swing is simply a well-balanced rotation. The Lunges With Rotation exercise will teach your body to rotate without losing balance.
Stand with your feet together, holding a small medicine ball close to your chest. Lunge your right foot forward, with your left knee bending towards the floor. Hold this position and rotate arms, ball, and torso to the right (for right-handed golfers). Come back to the center and return to the starting position. Alternate legs and perform 10 times.
Start Your Golf Exercise Routine Today
There’s no reason to delay. Use the exercises for golf above or develop your own program. You can improve your physical health and start shooting lower scores by spending only an hour per week on these activities. Keep it simple, take it slow, and before you know it, you’ll be out driving your buddies on the weekend. Good luck and play well!
Ray Dingledine has been playing golf since he was 10 years old. He played for his High School and College golf teams. Ray maintains a “plus” handicap but spends most of his time now coaching and growing the game.