Golf is a sport that many people keep playing even late in life. Although some non-golfers argue that the game is not that difficult and shouldn’t be considered exercise, golf does require a great deal of athleticism. All types of golfers, from weekend players to professionals, must possess a certain degree of strength, balance, power, endurance and flexibility. Golf fitness training is comprised of many types of exercises to build these core attributes.
No matter what type of driver or ball a golfer uses, the strength and power behind the swing are what determines how successful the beginning drive will be. There are many golf fitness training exercises that help increase and build that strength. Some common examples include weightlifting and strength training exercises designed to increase the golfer’s upper body strength and arm muscles. Many expert trainers even incorporate medicine ball exercises that mimic the golf swing to build acceleration in the swing.
Golfers must possess a sense of balance and body awareness in their swings. Golf swings encompass a wide variety of movements that require the golfer to shift his or her balance from side to side and from upper to lower muscle groups. Some golf fitness training includes specific balance exercises such as yoga and Pilates. These exercises also help the golfer increase his or her range of motion, which can help improve swing techniques.
Many golf courses do not allow motorized golf carts, and golfers must walk the 18 holes carrying their golf clubs or towing them on a pull-cart. Even if the course does allow motorized carts or caddies, a typical 18-hole round takes about three hours. Many golfers play in the heat as well. These factors are why many golf fitness training programs include endurance exercises. They include running, jogging and walking as well as swimming exercises. The key is to increase the respiratory and heart rate, so a golfer’s baseline stamina is stronger.
Flexibility exercises in golf fitness training are designed to prevent shoulder and back injuries. They also can decrease the risk of ankle, wrist and leg ailments. The golf swing can be very hard on the body, especially an aging one, and it’s very important to include stretches before and after a round of golf. Most sports fitness experts advise a golfer to warm up with dynamic stretches, such as arm circles and walking lunges. They advise the golfer to do static stretches, such as hamstring and lying down stretches, on day when he or she is not doing other exercises.