Off-Season Golf Training

If you want to improve your golf swing, focus on improving the ‘key’ muscle group for golf: the hip flexors.

The hip flexor group consists of 5 muscles and, as their name suggests, they are powerful flexors of the hip joint as well as key stabilizers as you bend forward over the golf ball upon addressing it. It is this muscle group’s secondary function, rotation, which makes targeting this group so important to all golfers. with direct connections between the low back, pelvis and lower extremities, length in these muscles allows the golfer to separate and coil between these ‘key’ segments of the body.

Unfortunately, the starting position of each golf swing, the address, helps to facilitate disfunction in most golfers. Firstly, the address position itself tends to shorten these muscles as we hinge and maintain our spine angle. In addition, most folks spend a lot of time sitting throughout the day, adding to limitations. With this chronic pattern of shortening and a direct link between the low back, pelvis and lower body, we need to become more effective and efficient at opening this area up and resorting its function.

To do so, I recommend the hip flexor stretch. One way to do it is the kneeling stretch:

  1. Kneel on your right knee, with your toes down, and place your left foot flat on the floor in front of you. Your knee should be bent and aligned with your ankle.
  2. Place your hand on your left thigh.
  3. Press your hips forward until you feel tension in the front of your right thigh.
  4.  Extend arms overhead with your palms facing each other and slightly arch your back while keeping your chin parallel to the ground.
  5. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides and repeat the process.

Another great hip flexor stretch involved a chair. Try this:

  1. Place your right foot on a chair about the height of your knee to waist.
  2. Next, raise your left arm overhead.
  3. Lean your hips towards the chair while keeping your back straight.
  4. Reach sideways with your arm. You should feel a stretch in the front of your hip.
  5. Hold for 2-3 seconds, and then return to the starting position. Repeat 5-10 times then switch sides and repeat the process.

Keeping your muscles in motion on a regular basis will not only help you golf better, but you’ll feel better too.