We're in some interesting times as people. Something bigger than us all has ground life-as-we-knew-it to a halt. Humans, as a species, are a resilient crew, though. If we keep our wits about us and stay smart, we will come out of this in one piece. At some point, we'll get the green light to resume our normal lives again. And when that happens, you'll once again be able to stop worrying about viruses, ventilators, and empty supermarket shelves and get back to worrying about what really matters: your slice, your inability to maintain spine angle, and your lack of mobility through the hips. (After you've disinfected everything you've ever touched, of course.)
What we're learning going through all of this is that science matters. But while the world's top doctors and epidemiologists may have a pretty good feel for how things may play out, their words have in many ways been drown out by a lot of hyperbole, misinformation, and politicized rhetoric. I've been in the science field for over 30 years as a biomechanics coach and have seen how that same hype and skewed information has gotten in the way of actual science and has blocked the progress of many athletes and would-be athletes. Science matters.
When I wrote Fix Your Body, Fix Your Swing back a few years ago, I said that golf-specific fitness programs -- the things that you need to be doing to optimize your body for the game of golf -- may just be the least sexy workouts of all-time. I still stand by that. In fact, when my new book -- Hang the Banner -- written with fitness genius Kolby Tullier drops later this year, you'll once again get a lot of proven science and effective exercises, but not a lot of fluff.
The things that you need to do to become a better golfer aren't the same things you should be doing if you want to look really good in a short sleeve shirt or want everyone to watch you work out in the gym. Sorry. They just aren't. But they are the things to do to lower your scores, play pain-free, and enjoy the game more.
It's science. No misleading spins on information. No being different for the sake of being different. Just science.
That's why I like this piece Men's Journal just did on the workouts I do with Dustin Johnson. These aren't sexy workouts. He's not trying to throw a 12-pound medicine ball 150 feet. He's not doing jump squats with another PGA pro sitting on his shoulders. He's trying to figure out a way to increase stability and prevent unwanted extra movement by doing the anti-rotation drill in the article.
Very few people have ever gone to the gym with the sole purpose of strengthening the muscles of the back that prevent unnecessary rotation. And I'm guessing no one has ever fist-bumped his lifting partner and shouted, "Dude, did you see how much torque I just resisted?" But if your goal is a more stable set-up and less moving parts in your swing, it's something that you need to be doing.
And because you're not throwing around thousands of pounds of weight or looking to impress the heck out of everyone else at your local gym, all of these moves can be done at home with some pretty basic equipment. Very convenient if your local gym had to shut down temporarily or you're not supposed to leave your house.
We might be experiencing some of the stranger times in anyone's memory, but things will get better. Take care of your loved ones, check on your neighbors, wash your hands, and work on creating stability around the spine. Before you know it, you'll be launching your first drive of the year straight down the fairway.