By: Jessica Lime
Body mechanics of any sport has fine detail and varies depending on the person and the sport. Our bodies are a kinetic chain, a slight misalignment, stiffness, or weakness in one location of our body can affect our entire swing, preventing optimal performance. As we age, our strength and flexibility may decrease, altering our swing mechanics.
Strength & Resistance Training:
As we age, our strength may deteriorate, even with the best diet and exercise. The loss of muscle mass is formerly known as sarcopenia, a Greek term for ‘poverty of flesh’. This can affect your golf game by not hitting the ball as far as you did in the past. Once one notices that they are losing strength they should use their wisdom and club down, swing easy to prevent potential injury while playing and hit more greens. Then focus on regaining their strength with a trainer while protecting their swing and not pushing it for the time being.
While protecting your swing, and clubbing down one can also work on several different types of exercises to aid their swing to be able to increase their strength. Resistance and strength training should be done with the help of a personal trainer to monitor form and make sure the body is in line with proper swinging mechanics.
Strength training exercises example:
- Medicine ball chop
- Medicine ball lateral shuffle slams
- Kettle bell alternating hand squat
- Ball press
Example: Medball Chop
When watching the PGA tour, you will see how flexible these golfers are throughout their spine. Being able to twist themselves at a fast and powerful rate repeatedly. As we age our joints become less mobile and lose the amount of lubricant to allow an increase in motion. Our muscles also shorten over time due to posture and potential previous injuries. It is important to spend more time warming up and to increase flexibility. A personal trainer can give you a variety of stretches that are sports specific to help with your swing.
- Hamstring walk
- IT band stretch
- Star pose touching hand to opposite foot
Example: Hamstring Walk
Another addition to flexibility/stretching to correct one’s swing is yoga. Yoga is very beneficial to increase flexibility and mobility, as well as clear one’s head and increase mental health. Focusing on mediation and mental health in yoga to rid your body of stress and unnecessary tension will put yourself more at ease in your daily tasks and hobbies/sport (golf).
For any further questions to help strengthen your swing, please reach out to your local Ageility clinic for an assessment. Our assessment can analyze any dysfunction within your swing that might be causing you pain or limiting your performance. We look forward to working with you!