OVER my 18 years as a golf professional I have come across individual players of all shapes and sizes with varying degrees of technical ability, mental focus and physical profiling. Each requiring a unique coaching structure specific to the individual. What has become more apparent is that when we are trying to ascertain a correct position, if the body is unable to create this our bodies are very adept at making compensations else wherein the body in order to achieve what the professional is looking for.
Unfortunately this fantastic ability that the human body has, actually creates serious imbalances for the golf swing and can lead to serious injury if we do not correctly diagnose where the specific area of weakness is, equally as important is how we correct the imbalance and restore balance in the body.
Let’s look at a few very simple facts. It is unquestionable that technology over the last ten decades has advanced at an unparalleled rate, new hi tech materials, lighter and stronger golf clubs, the understanding of aerodynamics and the billion dollar manufacturing processes to develop these products is, on the rampage..
It is also without question there are a myriad of books on golf technique, how to hit the ball further, hole more putts and be the best bunker player in the world. There are also thousands of words written on physical conditioning. Unfortunately mostly based on the principles of body building, here people seem to think that bigger muscles will give more strength to help them generate 10 extra yards. Golf, is not like this, it requires very precise timing, accuracy and control.
Has this improved us?……….. Quite simply NO! In 1942 with a score of 280, Byron Nelson won the US Masters, yet sixty six years later in 2008, Trevor Immelman won with the exact same score of 280.
In 1966, the Doral Open was won with a score of 278 by Phil Rogers. Forty one years on in 2007, Tiger Woods won the WGC-CA Championship at the same course with the very same 278.
The best is, the amateur game is exactly the same, and according to Dr. Bob Rotella, in the book, The Golf Of Your Dreams, Fifteen years ago the average American male golfers handicap was 16.2. The average female golfers handicap was 29. TODAY, the average American male golfers handicap is 16.2, and the average female golfers handicap .29.
A very clear and interesting conclusion can be drawn from this: Golfers have not improved despite technology, advances in golf technique and building big muscles. This is why specific conditioning for golf is vital.
When golfers come to me, often suffering from an injury, it is paramount that we diagnose the exact cause of the injury. Doctors can sometimes focus on remedying the pain rather than the actual root cause of the problem, unfortunately when pain is not apparent we assume the problem is fixed and this is not necessarily the case only leading to further injury.
These small injuries with correct diagnosis should only be minor setbacks in our golfing careers, but without this root cause being treated leads to reoccurring problems and in extreme cases the end of a career.
In golf the No1 injury is lower back pain and is suffered from by as many as 53% of golfers, closely followed by elbow pain with as many as 27% of golfers sustaining reoccurring problems.
This is not just a problem in the amateur game, with the probability that 30% of all touring professionals are playing injured with as many as 60% of those elite athletes still being troubled with the same problem one year later.
Every golfer I see wants to play better golf; why else would they come to me? This again is not isolated to the amateur game but is consistent from beginner to touring professional. Some are here to relax, some are in the business world and others, itÕs their living. All without exception have at some point tried the combination of lessons from the local pro, with a defined practise method.
This seems like the logical stage of progression, but is also the very same reason a lot of these players sustain injury and never reach their true potential. Most golfers are completely unaware of the demands that this beloved sport of ours has. It is a, Óhighly athletic and explosive movementÓ, so much so that the forces imparted in a good golfers swing, generate ample pressure to actually fracture vertebra and amateur golfers achieve 90% of their peak muscle activity when driving a ball.
Over the coming months I will show you simple tests that you can try. These will highlight if you have the correct range of movement in specific joints, and for myself as CHEK Golf Performance Specialist it identifies to me, where we need to stretch and where we need to strengthen to allow you to create the correct golf swing positioning. Some of the tests have very simple stretches that can be applied, so keep your eye on this column or contact myself directly.
Spending thousands on equipment is not the way to generate those extra yards, look at the one thing that you can improve easily and will never leave you. You are your best investment.
Contact Alan at The Golf Sanctuary at Pryors Hayes.
www.thegolfsanctuary.co.uk www.pryorshayes.co.uk É..Tel: 01829741250 Mob: 07725832733
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com