Can Golf Fitness
Training Hurt Your Game?
There has been a big push toward golf fitness in the last few years and while I have always been a firm believer in the importance of strength training, flexibility, and cardiovascular fitness for general health and improved sports performance, I have some concerns about how it is being implemented with golf.
My first concern is that personal trainers are creating workout routines with the goal of improving strength, quickness, and flexibility specifically for a golf swing, but this may be ignoring an important tenet of working out, which is overall body balance. By this I mean you want to strengthen the body as a whole rather than focusing on, or over emphasizing, some muscles while neglecting others. Imbalance may set a body up for posture issues and injury. These types of workouts are fine for professional golfers who need every advantage they can get, but amateurs should be careful.
My second concern is that few trainers understand the golf swing. The big danger is that they may come up with some exercises that may strengthen muscles to move in ways they shouldn't be moving in a swing. It may be that training muscles to move improperly won't have negative effects, but I think the potential for problems should be a serious concern to anyone using these types of workouts.
I'm not saying don't use a trainer. Using a qualified fitness trainer is great, but consider increasing flexibility in addition to increasing strength. For strength training, I suggest seeking an overall balanced approach rather than risk developing injuries from specialized workouts that aren't necessary for an amateur golfer!
Remember, Tiger hit the ball further as a skinny kid than a bulked up stud! The big question is, did his workouts contribute to the injuries that have short circuited his career?
Casey Eberting Golf Instruction
Tulsa / Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
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