How to Improve Core Fitness for Women Golfers

Guest post from Rob Green of Hitting the Green

How to Improve Core Fitness for Women Golfers

Will physical fitness improve my golf? The answer is Yes! In more ways than you might realize. Look at the tournament players on TV; they are usually slim, strong and healthy looking, more athletic. In reality, of course, most women golfers don’t look like top athletes. That’s ok but at least, improving physical fitness to some extent will help your golf.

But it needs to be the right kind fitness

Increasing muscle mass won’t help you to play better golf – remember, it’s about swinging the club, not hitting the ball. More than raw strength, you need stability and flexibility.

Core exercises are an important part of a well-rounded fitness program. Aside from occasional sit-ups and pushups, however, core exercises are often neglected. Still, it pays to get your core muscles — the muscles around your trunk and pelvis — in better shape.

Core exercises train the muscles in your pelvis, lower back, hips and abdomen to work in harmony. This leads to better balance and stability, whether on the golf course or in daily activities. In fact, most sports and other physical activities depend on stable core muscles.

Any exercise that involves your abdominal and back muscles counts as a core exercise. Strong core muscles make it easier to swing a golf club and even to bend down to pick up your golf ball from the hole following that par score!

bridge

Bridge

Here are some simple core exercises to try

You can perform core exercises on the carpet or a mat. Breathe deeply during each exercise. Focus on tightening the deepest abdominal muscle, the one you feel contracting when you cough.

The Bridge

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and tighten your abdominal muscles
  • Raise your hips until they are in a line with your knees and shoulders
  • Take 3 slow deep breaths and lower your hips and relax
  • Repeat as many times as you can without overdoing it

Segmental rotation

This is good for lower back pain as well as boosting core strength.

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and tighten your abdominal muscles
  • Keeping your shoulders on the floor, move your knees to the left, touching the floor if possible
  • Take 3 slow deep breaths
  • Return to the start position
  • Repeat the exercise, moving your knees to the right

Abdominal crunch

  • Lie on your back and put your feet on a wall so that your hips and knees are bent at 90-degree angles
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles
  • Raise your head and shoulders off the floor with your arms crossed across your chest
  • Take 3 slow deep breaths
  • Return to the start position and repeat

Superwoman

  • Lie on your stomach with a small cushion under your hips, arms outstretched in front (like flying superwoman!)
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles
  • Raise your right arm off the floor, hold 3 deep breaths, lower your arm
  • Raise your left arm off the floor, hold 3 deep breaths, lower your arm
  • Raise your right leg off the floor, hold 3 deep breaths, lower your leg
  • Raise your left leg off the floor, hold 3 deep breaths, lower your leg
  • Repeat
plank

Plank

Plank

  • Lie on your stomach
  • Raise you body, resting on your forearms
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles, take 3 deep breaths
  • Lower your body and repeat

Side plank

This exercise improves stability and core strength by working on your side muscles.

  • Lie on your left side, raising yourself onto your left forearm, keeping your shoulder, hips and knees aligned
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles, take 3 deep breaths
  • Repeat on your right side

General golf exercise   The American Council on Exercise recommends two groups of exercises. The first set is a general flexibility program that enables you to stretch your muscles and loosen up before you play. These include a standing trunk rotation, using a golf club as leverage, which loosens up your back and hips, and a yoga warrior pose to open your hip flexors. The second set of exercises focuses on improving your golf-specific strength and range of motion. The strength drills work your legs, hips, core and shoulders together, since those parts of your body need to work in synch when you swing the club.

“The energy for your golf swing comes from the muscles in your torso — not your arms,” says major championship winner Suzann Petterson in “Shape” magazine. “Your middle needs to be strong and flexible to maintain your rotational power.”

Research shows that golfers with higher core stability have a lower risk of injury and play better golf.

If you are starting out as a golfer, don’t ignore basic fitness, it will improve your game and if you’re not sure which clubs to buy here are some of the best golf clubs for women.


Author Bio: Rob Green is an avid golf enthusiast and golf tutor with over 40 years experience playing the wonderful, but frustrating game. When he isn’t on the course or teaching his students, you’ll find him blogging at HittingTheGreen.com

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