If you follow me on Twitter (@CoachJoeyD), you'll see I add the hashtag #GolfBody to a lot of my tweets. My goal is to get the concept out to the golfing public. It's great that so many golfers -- both the pros on the PGA and LPGA Tours as well as recreational players -- are now adding a fitness component to their game. What I'm seeing, though, is that a lot of these workouts aren't all that focused on improving the way people play.
Sure, there are workouts you can do that'll make you look a lot better in your favorite golf shirt, but they won't necessarily be doing much to help your game. In fact, there are a lot of things about a "traditional" gym workout that can negatively impact the way you swing a club. Movements, drills, and exercises designed specifically to improve your Golf Body, on the other hand, will improve your game. You may not end up looking all that much better in your favorite shirt, but if you're now out-hitting your buddies every time you play, they're only going to be seeing the back of that shirt anyway!
Think about what your body has to be able to do to swing a golf club correctly -- and to be able to continue to swing it correctly for your entire round.
The hips have to be stable enough to hold you in place during your address and takeaway, but strong, fast, and powerful enough to be able to drive through the ball at impact. There are very few traditional gym exercises that focus on hip stability, strength, or explosion.
The larger muscles of the chest and shoulders have to be strong enough to control your 50 mph takeaway and slingshot it back into a 100 mph downswing -- while not being so tight that they limit the depth of either your backswing or follow-through. A typical chest routine at the gym would have you doing a lot of bench presses, which can tighten the muscles and prevent your backswing and follow-through from being as deep as you'd like.
The muscles of the back have to be loose enough to let your backswing and follow-through be as deep as you'd want, but still strong enough to let you maintain perfect golf posture for the entire round. Again, most gym routines tighten the muscles of the back while strengthening them.
The small muscles that make up the rotator cuff in your shoulder have to be strong and capable of going through a wide range of motion to make sure that your swing is technically correct. When was the last time you heard of anyone heading off to the gym for a rotator cuff workout?
And your entire body has to have the ability to maintain proper balance throughout that 50 mph takeaway and 100 mph downswing. (The number of folks at the gym working on their balance is just about the same as the number that are there working on their rotator cuffs!)
That's just scraping the surface of what the Golf Body is all about. If you're not focusing on golf-specific exercises or fitness training at home or at the gym, the number on your bathroom scale might start to go down, but the number on your scorecard won't.
The Golf Body is not the Tennis Body, the Basketball Body, the Yachting Body, or the Yoga Body. Every sport or hobby places certain -- and distinct -- requirements on the body. The better your body is at meeting those requirements, the better you're going to perform. My philosophy -- and that of everyone at Joey D Golf -- is that the more things you can do to specifically improve your body's ability to play golf, the better you're going to play and the more you're going to enjoy the game.
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