Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Top 5 Fixable Problems with Golfers (Part 1)

When it comes down to sports, golf actually fits in a category all to itself.  Think about it: You can drink alcohol while playing this sport (and still drive a golf cart), eat between shots, play without practicing or warming up much, and basically start your golfing 'career' without many prerequisites other sports demand. 

Except for owning golf clubs, shoes and balls, becoming a golfer doesn't take much extraordinary athletic talent (ex: strength, speed, agility etc), but rather, the mental desire to participate in a mostly sedentary sport.  This allows many to participate, but also many MORE to get hurt because they are not physically prepared for the demands (not to mention how difficult the actual game is) and end up with elbow, wrist, back, neck or knee issues (see Tiger Woods).  The other problems golfers face are simple, yet most don't take the time off the course, to prepare for the physical demands of a rather violent movement. 

In this article series, I outline the 5 most common problems golfers face, and in a future article (and product) I will detail the solutions to each.  

1) You do not need to be in 'golfing shape' in order to golf
Golfers come in all shapes and sizes, and this puts MUCH more pressure on the ankles, knees, hips and lower back.  Thankfully, most courses now have alleviated the strain on the body by adding carts and cart paths, but golfers STILL need to understand that being overweight adds tremendous stress to the body while participating in golf. 
SOLUTION: Fat Loss Program, specifically for those golfers with already pre-existing health conditions (high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, etc).  Learning to manage your weight will help you manage your game. 
2) Acceleration and deceleration do not happen equally on both sides of the body (Left to right or vice versa)
The large rotational forces and torque that the golf swing place upon the body create a tremendous amount of imbalances that can lead to injury if not dealt with.  Dr. Greg Rose of Titleist Performance Institute is one of the leading researchers on preventing and fixing golfing injuries, and his presentations routinely stress the ability to prevent such injuries if only an ounce of prevention is taken. 
SOLUTION:  Unilateral (one-side) exercises and movement patterns to strengthen the opposite side of the body (without disrupting or re-creating the golf swing)

Stay tuned tomorrow for problems 3-5. 

--Coach Kev

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