Exercise For Golf
Article by Josh Gabbert
The optimal exercise for golf is stretching. Of course a well balanced golf fitness routine aiming to maximize a golfers physical potential will incorporate a fair amount of cardiovascular exercise as well as general strength training that should be performed with relatively light weight in an effort to build a stronger more chiseled physique. A golfer completely focused on their craft will even be disciplined to the point of practicing an exceptionally healthy diet.
Why exercise and golf are not commonly thought of together
There are a number of factors contributing to why many Americans do not associate golf with fitness. Among the most commonly mentioned reasons are (1) the rare success of obviously out of shape golfers like John Daly, (2) the fact that a popular senior tour exists where the most naturally talented golfers can physically thrive at an age when most Americans are retired, and (3) the proliferation of the notion that a sport as mentally stressful as golf can not be equally as physically taxing. Common sense dictates that the traditionally accepted level of athleticism necessary to be a dominant golfer is somewhere in the middle of the athletic spectrum that ranges from playing darts to playing in the National Football League (NFL).
Why exercise is important for golfing performance
Any golfer aiming to be as successful as they are capable of being should recognize that body styles like the obese look former tour pro John Daly had are an oddity while the more fit and strong builds of players like Tiger Woods and other young players dominating the PGA (Professional Golfers Association) are the norm and not the exception. The exercise that consistently separates average golfers from good golfers is a simple thing called stretching. Regular stretching routines done as infrequently as the first thing in the morning and the last thing at night can make a tremendous difference in the play of even a novice.
A common misconception amongst the misinformed golf community at large is that muscular, brute, physical strength is the secret to monster drives that impress galleries and shrink extremely difficult golf course down to manageable sizes. The secret to out driving the other members of a Saturday morning golf foursome is flexibility and not muscle mass. Flexibility can be increased any time of the year through simple exercises that can be performed at home or in the office.
While overall flexibility is certainly helpful in the pursuit of gaining maximum distance with every shot there are key areas of the body that are particularly worth targeting. Being notably limber in the back, hips, and shoulders is especially important for quickly adding yardage out of the tee box. Most traditional back and shoulder stretching routines are sufficiently comprehensive to provide stretchers results in as little as a couple of weeks. The degree that results will vary is dependent upon how closely the stretching routine is adhered to, the quality and execution of each stretch, and the level of flexibility the golfer begins with.
It is worth noting that if an individual has any concern about the safety of stretching then a physician should be consulted before any dramatic physical lifestyle changes are altered. The good news is that when done properly stretching can be a safe and easy way to keep muscles and joints fresh, limber, and healthy. While stretching is a completely safe exercise for almost all golfers it is always smart to discuss the subject with a doctor if there is any question whatsoever.
About the Author
While Josh’s name will never be attached to the PGA he has found a way to inadvertently get paid through golf in the form of being the financial benefactor of his daughter’s girls golf college scholarship.
Josh loves the game of golf and despite the frustration it causes him he is out on the course whacking away every chance he gets.