POWER-UP YOUR GOLF GAME

Bob Forman
Director, The Golf Fitness Academy
Certified Golf Fitness Instructor 

You want more distance?  Increase clubhead speed.  Period, end of story.  For every 1 mph increase in clubhead speed, you’ll gain approximately 1.5 mph of ball speed.  That equates to about 2 to 3 more yards down the fairway. 

There are several ways to accomplish this.  One, you can switch to a lighter club.  Manufacturers of golf equipment continue to tinker with shaft, grip, and now clubhead weights in an effort to make the golf club lighter.  The rationale is that a lighter club equates to a faster swing. 

Another is to improve your swing mechanics.  Let’s start with the backswing.  To gain more distance, you’ll need to turn your shoulders more than your hips, known in golf as the X-factor.  The larger the X-factor, the more clubhead speed you’ll be able to generate. 

Most pros will turn their shoulders in the ballpark of 90 degrees and their hips about 50, resulting in an X-factor of 40 degrees.  Most amateurs, however, will produce a smaller X-factor due to the fact that they often over rotate their hips and/or have a tough time rotating their shoulders. 

In the downswing, the un-cocking of the wrists can generate up to an additional 9% increase in clubhead velocity.  It appears the optimal time in the downswing to un-cock the wrists is when the lead arm is 30 degrees below the horizontal. 

A good wrist hinge and release can make-up for a limited backswing, a la Alan Doyle, who from his biography learned how to swing a hockey stick in a room with a low ceiling. . . limited backswing, but good wrist action.  Safe to say that many hockey players could be good golfers.  Combine a good backswing, however, with a timely wrist release and be the envy of your foursome.     

muscle chartA third factor, and probably one of the keys to distance, is the development of speed.  After all, it takes about a second or two to swing a golf club.  I’m talking fast-twitch muscle fiber.  The white meat on Thanksgiving Day.  Simply put, in order to develop clubhead speed, your body needs to develop speed.  That comes from recruitment of the white, fast-twitch muscle fibers.   

For golf, the best way to accomplish this is to perform speed/power type exercises.  Short, quick bursts repeated over a set amount of repetitions or time.  In doing so, you enhance the activation of these fast-twitch fibers and the outcome is an increase in clubhead speed. 

One such popular exercise is the side slam or toss. For this exercise you’ll need a partner.  That partner could be a rebounder (as shown in the picture), a brick wall, or another person.  Stand with your left side toward the rebounder/wall with your left foot forward and knee slightly bent.  Take a weighted medicine ball in hand, swing it back around to your right as far as comfort permits, and then rotate toward the rebounder/wall, releasing and catching the ball.  Repeat the sequence as recommended, getting controllably faster as you go, and getting more forceful on the slam/toss.  Turn around and repeat with the right foot forward.  This exercise can also be done in a ½ kneel position or while sitting on a stability ball.  Very beneficial when done with another person.     

golf exercise photogolf exercise photo

Be mindful that speed exercises will be more intense and require a fair degree of strength and flexibility.  They’ll also bring with them a cardio component.  Make sure you’re prepared to take on this phase and reap its benefits by having developed, first, an adequate degree of flexibility, range of motion, strength, and balance. 

In other words, walk before you run by focusing on your specific musculoskeletal deficiencies, as determined by the physical assessment, and then build-up a strength and balance base.  In doing so, you’ll reduce the potential for injury when the speed phase is incorporated.      

Keep in mind, too, speed exercises should be included for both the upper and lower body and should eventually be an integral part of your exercise program.  Exercises like side bounding and lateral hops and squat jumps on the BOSU are just a few.  They will absolutely make a difference in your ability to get down the fairway further.    
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By the way, in doing some research it appears that the average women golfer has a driver swing speed of about 62 mph; the average LPGA professional about 96 mph; the average male golfer about 84 mph; and the average PGA tour player about 108 mph. 

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EXERCISE OF THE MONTH

Quad-Hip Flexor Stretch

This is a progressive stretch for the quad-hip flexor area.  Be cautious as you lean back on the bench as it will challenge the knee if the quads are tight.  Avoid this stretch if you've had knee replacement.  Tight quads/hip flexors will impede hip mobility and that may rob you of power and distance.

 

 

Check with your physician before starting any type of exercise program.

IMPROVE YOUR GAME

GOLF FITNESS
ASSESSMENT & TRAINING


A quality, customized golf fitness program will. . .
  • Enhance swing efficiency
  • Increase distance
  • Improve playing performance and satisfaction
  • Identify and correct golf-specific injury triggers

    All for much less than what another brand new driver that's going to "fix my game" would cost
     
click here for details

  


The golf exercises are going great.  I am hitting the ball the best I have ever hit it.  My back pain has gone away also. 
 
David R. 

more testimonials

HOST A WORKSHOP

If your Club or organization would like to host an informative golf fitness workshop, contact Bob at bob@golfitcarolina.com or 336-509-4610.

Bob came to my club and did a hour long session on the basics of his teaching and philosophy of fitness and how it relates to the golf swing and its performance.  My members thoroughly enjoyed the hour and wanted more.  I was impressed with his content and explanation.  My members were floored with his Q&A and his personal adaptation to their issues.  I was impressed with his interaction with attendants of the seminar.  If you are looking for someone to integrate your fitness program with the golf program, Bob is the guy to do it!  We will be booking Bob to come back to our club next spring.
Shannon Howell, PGA Head Golf Professional
Country Club of Sapphire Valley, Sapphire Valley, NC


"Bob Forman was fabulous!  He is a great presenter who shared some extremely valuable information related to how anatomical deficiencies such as: poor posture, flexibility, and balance impact our golf swing.  He not only shared what they are and how they impact the swing, but also demonstrated exercises to help correct them."
Ellen Gregory
EWGA-Wilmington, NC chapter

“Westchester is one of the Country’s largest private clubs with a membership that has high expectations for service and performance.  Bob Forman’s seminar on golf specific fitness and flexibility was extremely well received and motivated many of my members to begin a program of evaluation, exercise and follow-ups.  I highly recommend Bob for his knowledge, energy , and ability to connect with amateurs concerning golf fitness.” 
John Kennedy, Director of Golf
Westchester CC, 
Harrison, NY

Bob has a fantastic ability to understand and combine his expertise of the physical complexities of the human body with the PGA Professional’s trained eye with respect to the complexities of the golf swing.  Bob offers a refreshing angle that most amateur and professional golfers can understand and embrace.  Many times, a golfer will have physical limitations that prevents him or her from moving the way the PGA Professional is trying to instruct.  Bob can take the golfer’s weakest physical traits and focus a training program to better overcome those obstacles and allow the golfers to ultimately improve their swing. 
Dennis Nicholl, PGA Head Golf Professional
The Dunes Golf & Beach Club, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

IMPROVE YOUR GAME

Functional Golf Fitness Training is a comprehensive player improvement resource for golfers of all ages and levels, teaching professionals and coaches.  
A great manual for golf teams as well.  

Dedicated chapters on:
- the common physical deficiencies most golfers have, how to detect and correct with over 40 golf-specific exercises and drills
- preventing/alleviating the #1 injury in golf, low back injury
- how to fix the more common swing faults 
- how to put together an inexpensive home gym

Amazon reviews:

"Very clear explanations of causes and fixes for main physical deficiencies affecting golfers. Easy to follow instructions. While other books may give a whole laundry list of exercises that end up not being used, Forman has selected a few for each issue and puts together a program that doesn't take long to do"

"This book not only tells you what to do but also why you need to do and what results you can expect.
I have every book in print about golf fitness and this book is by far the best."


Available in print at TheBookPatch

TheBookPatch.com Buy Now style 1 button
or as an ebook on Amazon

Go to
http://www.amazon.com/Functional-Golf-Fitness-Training-ebook/dp/B00FH88Q0Q

SWING FAULT PHYSIOLOGY

Swing mechanics are often influenced by physical deficiencies in the golfer's body.  Below are some of the more common swing faults, their physical causes and how to correct.

GOLF POSTURE

S-POSTURE AND LOW BACK PAIN

EARLY EXTENSION

SWAY & SLIDE

REVERSE SPINE

While correcting the deficiencies, you also need to rewire the brain-body connection in order to break out of the inefficient swing pattern.  

REWIRE THE BAD SWING HABIT

RADIO / PODCASTS

 

 
June 22, 2017
(go to 1:10:00 into the show)
golf posture, muscle imbalance, improving distance, stretching, hydration, Tiger and specialization, Rory and weight lifting



March 14, 2015
(go to 1:08:00 into the show)
fitness vs. golf fitness, strength training and slowing down the aging process, C and S-postures,  


August 28, 2014
We talk about Shan's golf fitness assessment results

 


June 26, 2014


scroll down to 9/9/2013
(go to 23:15 into the show)
back injury