If you usually get off to a slow start, hitting shots that aren't even close to your best, it might be because your body isn't properly warmed up. I see amateurs go to the range ahead of their tee times to hit a few shots, but that's all they do. Before I make one swing at an LPGA tournament, I have a routine of stretches and exercises to get my body ready. You should create one, too. Start with one of my favorite pre-round moves: I extend my arms to my sides, bend at the waist, and turn my upper body so my right hand nearly touches my left foot. Then I turn so my left hand nearly touches my right. I turn 10 times in each direction. This warms up several muscles in the back, core and legs. Give it a try, as well as the others I'm demonstrating on the following page.
— with Keely Levins Mexico native Gaby Lopez, 24, is in her third season on the LPGA Tour.
Hold a choked-down iron and swing it in vertical circles with one arm fully extended. Do 10 swings with each arm forward and backward. The shoulders and shoulder blades are super important to swing a club correctly and accelerate and decelerate it safely.
Using an iron for balance, stand on one foot and sweep the other side to side in front of your body. Do 10 swings, then switch legs. This is a great warm-up for the muscles of your thighs and hips to improve the role of the pelvis throughout the swing.
Hold an iron in each hand with the handles about five inches apart. Make six slow golf swings maintaining that space between the handles. This takes some strength and will activate many of the muscles you use to control the club when you make a real swing.
Balancing with an iron at your side, stand on one leg while swinging the other backward and forward as if you were kicking a ball. Keep both as straight as possible and do 10 kicks, each leg. This warms the key muscles in the legs, improving stability and power.
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