Trainers usually smirk when asked for sports-specific exercises. Truth is, most exercises are beneficial for any sport. However, Golf Digest Professional Advisor Ralph Simpson, a former trainer on the PGA Tour, says there are some exercises that especially benefit golfers. Depending on how often you work out, Simpson offers three exercises you should add to your regimen. Pick your category and get to it.
Where Do I Start?
These 'golf exercises' will get you going
(Works out once a week or less)
« 1. BRISK WALK
Thirty minutes or more a day will control weight, reduce back pain, and improve lower-body strength and hip mobility. You don't have to speed walk. Just do it with a purpose.
« 2. FORWARD PLANK
Hold this position for 10 to 15 seconds (three sets) trying for a longer duration each time. This will help strengthen core muscles and stabilize your body when you swing.
« 3. SIDE PLANK
Same regimen and benefit as the front plank. This also is a core-strengthening exercise that helps the abdomen, back, hip, thigh and glute muscles engage during your swing.
(Works out two or three times a week)
« 1. INCLINE WALK
A 15- to 30-minute uphill walk (treadmill or outside) strengthens your calves, glutes and heart. Your back-nine endurance will improve, and you'll be able to maintain correct posture throughout the round.
« 2. CABLE PULL
Move a resistance band or cable across your body from low to high, then reverse and do it from high to low (two sets, 15 reps, each arm). Rotate as you pull. This helps train your torso in a golf-swing-like movement.
« 3. OVERHEAD WALL SQUAT
For better posture, power and turning ability when swinging, hold a bar overhead and brace against a physio ball. Squat just shy of your thighs being parallel to the ground, then stand (three sets, 10 reps).
3. ADVANCED(Works out four to seven times a week)
« 1. WARRIOR PULLS
Stand in a split-squat position, abs tight. Pull a weighted cable or resistance band across your body while turning your upper torso (two sets, 15 reps, each direction). This improves your turning ability and clubhead speed.
« 2. MEDICINE-BALL ROTATIONS
Lie on a physio ball, on your side, holding a medicine ball, feet braced. Rotate your chest up and toward your feet (two sets, 15 reps, each side). This helps torso rotation and fortifies your core.
« 3. MEDICINE-BALL THROWS
Stand in your address posture holding a medicine ball. Mimic a swing and release the ball on a flat trajectory into a reinforced wall (two sets, 10 throws, each direction). This will add power to your swing.