JUNIOR GOLFERS ARE VERY MUCH AT RISK

Bob Forman, MS - Exercise Physiology
Certified Golf Fitness Instructor, Author, Speaker



You would think that having youth on their side, Junior golfers wouldn’t necessarily need a golf fitness program.  That was my impression until I started working with them.  To my astonishment, many young players lack the physical prerequisites and/or the proper swing mechanics necessary to play their best.

Indeed, some are scoring well and even winning tournaments, but that unfortunately masks the need for attention to the physical deficiencies and swing faults they’ve developed, or will develop, that will inevitably take a toll on their bodies.  The amount of play is a significant factor in the overuse injury risk that many young golfers will encounter.

So it’s safe to say then, based on my experiences, that many Junior players, regardless of age or playing ability, are in need of a golf conditioning program.  Like their older counterparts, they are demonstrating anatomical deficiencies that detract from swing efficiency and playing performance.  Unlike their older peers, however, they have much more time for these flaws and faults to wreck havoc on their bodies.

The diminished amount of daily physical activity today, I’m sure, has a lot to do with this scenario.  Technology is much to blame as computers and hand held electronic devices have become the new “activity” of choice.  Years from now we’ll have huge thumbs and nothing much else.    

When the body doesn’t move, deficiencies develop.  Lack of activity creates anatomical imbalances that present as tight, inflexible muscles and weak muscles.  This, in turn, detracts from efficiency of movement and the ability to perform tasks well.    

Case in point:  A few years back, I challenged K through 12 students to perform a basic deep squat move at their school health fair.  To my surprise, it was a challenge for many of them.  Tight calves and/or immobile upper bodies were very apparent, as was an imbalance in lower body strength between the left and right sides.  The inability to perform a squat often correlates to, in golf, unwanted forward movement of the hips in the downswing.    

Opportunities to move and play have decreased over the years.  In many schools, physical education classes and recess have been cut back.  Litigation has taken away Monkey Bars and any other creative movement apparatus.  Even getting to and from school for many, unfortunately, is no longer a physical activity. 

For those youngsters that do play sports, the trend today is to play one sport all year round.  This has become a huge concern and a topic of conversation among healthcare providers as the occurrence of overuse injuries has increased substantially over the years. 

Seasonal participation on various teams throughout the year allows for different movement patterns offering variety, if you will, to the musculoskeletal system.  This variety can provide rest and recovery to muscles and still developing bones that are essential in one sport, but not the other. 

Participation in just one activity, however, applies the same load to the same muscle groups in the same way over and over again.  This repetitive-load motion can be a ticking time bomb for the young athlete, placing them at risk for chronic conditions to erupt in later years.

Take at look at professional athletes, especially the ones who started young and note the injuries.  The 38 year old Tiger Woods is a good example.  Injuries include left knee, low back, wrist, both Achilles tendons, and left elbow so far during his career.  It’ll be interesting to see how he does, physically, as he gets older.  Will he be destined to a lifetime of aches and pains?

I go back to what the Orthopedic Surgeon told me when doing the article about joint replacement.  He said the precursor to the pain and suffering so many people experience is misalignment in the body.  Misalignment is primarily a result of muscle imbalances that develop in our bodies over time.

Participating in a one-sided, repetitive activity such as golf pretty much heightens the probability that our bodies will get out of balance.  The longer one plays, the greater the likelihood.  Being cognizant of this, golfers should take steps to continually maintain equilibrium within their musculoskeletal systems, no matter what age. 

The first critical step is to identify what deficiencies you have.  That can be done through a physical assessment by a certified golf fitness instructor.  Once identified, an exercise program can be designed to target the deficiencies so that body balance can be regained.  Once achieved, a maintenance program should be followed to reduce the potential for imbalances to reoccur. 

Junior golfers, due to the amount of play and the age at which they start, are very susceptible for repetitive-use injury.  Some of these chronic conditions, once they show up, can hamper the individual for quite some time.  A conditioning program to correct/prevent anatomical deficiencies in young golfers, regardless how well they play, is highly recommended.  Taking some time off during the year, whether to play a different sport or not, is also a good idea.             

EXERCISE OF THE MONTH

Static Hamstring Stretch

 One of the main factors for low back discomfort is tight hamstrings, which can also affect hip mobility in the golf swing.

 

 

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:
- how to identify and correct the common physical deficiencies most golfers have that are impacting their swing and injury potential
- 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

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

 

 

November 11, 2017
The top 10 fitness must haves for better golf.  Click on the pic and then "podcast."  
My segment starts at 1:10:30.

 
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 


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