Flex-Fit golf fitness Controlling Movement and Proprioception

By Katherine RobertsJune 11, 2008, 4:00 pm

Controlling Movement and Proprioception
A good friend of mine is an esteemed researcher at Arizona State University, specifically her work focuses on golf performance. Debbie Crews Ketterling, Ph.D. is the author a book entitled Golf: Energy in Motion ' Its not about the ball; Its about the possibilities! I highly recommend this book for any golfer who is interested in all the components that contribute to peak performance, mind, body, energy and intention.
In a chapter entitled Create great golf, Crews discusses movement.
Creating every shot has two primary components ' start and finish. Science tells us the importance of starting and finishing each shot that we create (Proctor & Dutta, 1995).
The more complex the task, the longer the programming time. Longer programming time takes place behind the ball. Movement is coordinated relative to space and not to joints in the body. The mind, brain, and body plan the motion; joint angles and muscle torques follow. If joint movements are used, they are only effective if all motions of all the joints involved are timed so they reach their final position at the same time and then the motion is fluid. Focusing on moving the handle of the club through space, in the desired path, can be very effective. If the swing is finished in balance facing the target, many components of the swing had to fall into place without having to focus on each one separately. Finish is the end of the swing ' not impact. If the finish is correct, it is likely that impact will be correct since it is the bottom of the path.
Errors in motion can be detected before they are physically produced. They can be altered. Self-correction at a subconscious level takes place many times during the motion.
We cannot discuss movement and self-correction of movement without discussing proprioception. The definition of proprioception:
the perception by an animal of stimuli relating to its own position, posture, equilibrium, or internal condition.
The coordination of movements requires continuous awareness of the position of each limb. The receptors in the skeletal (striated) muscles and on the surfaces of tendons of vertebrates provide constant information on the positions of limbs.

Sounds like you need good proprioception for a solid golf swing!
How does one facilitate proprioception? One of the easiest ways to generate good proprioception is to move in and out of exercise with conscious awareness. For example, lifting one leg off the floor and placing the foot back in the precise, same position helps to facilitate proprioception, the art of knowing where your body is in space.
If you are looking for more exercises on this topic practice the progressive balance section in my DVD More Power and Distance @ www.KRTotalFitness.com
Lets get started!

Standing balance series on ball ' Par Level:
Place the left foot on ball, hands on the waist. Lift the left foot slightly off the ball and place the foot back down five times. Switch sides. Lift the left leg off the floor, extend the leg and hold for one breath, returning the foot to the starting position. Repeat three times and switch sides.


Half-moon exercise balance at the wall ' Birdie Level:
Place the left foot approximately three inches off the wall and the left hip against the wall. Tip: To challenge yourself more keep your hip off the wall or practice this exercise without the assistance of the wall. Place the balance ball under your left hand and shift your weight into your left foot. Pay attention to the position and placement of your right foot. On your exhale place your right foot back to the original starting position. Repeat this action five times, moving dynamically on the inhale and exhale.
To challenge yourself more, lift your right leg off the floor, revolving your right hip as open as possible. Keep most of your weight in your left leg with a moderate amount of weight on your left hand. Now return to the starting position for five more reps!


Lunge sequence ' Eagle Level:
Begin with the ball above the head, standing tall with the core engaged. Lunge the left foot forward bringing the knee to a ninety degree angle. Press off with the right foot, leading the movement from your core until you are balanced on the left foot. Carefully, with focus, step the right foot back and return to the lunge position. Repeat this exercise three times on each side.
Tip: Perform this exercise slowly, focusing on balance and facilitation of proprioception.

See you on The Turn!

Please send me an e-mail with your thoughts at Katherine@YogaForGolfers.com
Related Links:

  • Katherine Roberts Article Archive
  • Katherine Roberts Video Archive
  • Health & Fitness Main Page

    Editor's Note: Katherine Roberts, founder of Yoga for Golfers, has over 20 years of experience in fitness training, yoga studies, professional coaching and motivation. Katherine welcomes your email questions and comments, contact her at Katherine@YogaForGolfers.com or visit www.YogaForGolfers.com.
  • Getty Images

    McIlroy 'happy to be back', can 'empathize' with Tiger

    By Associated PressJanuary 16, 2018, 3:50 pm

    ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – After a long layoff from golf, Rory McIlroy has some newfound sympathy for Tiger Woods.

    The 28-year-old Northern Irishman is making a comeback at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship after ending his season early last year. He has not played a round since the final day of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship on Oct. 8.

    McIlroy, a four-time major champion who has slipped to No. 11 in the world rankings, last won the Tour Championship on the PGA Tour in September 2016. He injured a rib in his first outing of 2017 – at the South African Open – and felt its after-effects throughout the year.

    McIlroy, who has seven top-five finishes in his last eight starts in Abu Dhabi, said Tuesday he felt mentally low because of his physical issues.

    ''Honestly, I was excited to be done. I could have shut it down after the PGA Championship very easily and taken the rest of the year off, but I didn't. I played six events after that, played OK and had a chance to win one of them,'' McIlroy said. ''But I was just excited to take that time off and get myself just sort of a re-set.''

    Last week, McIlroy also revealed that he has a minor, non-threatening heart condition that needs regular check-ups.

    ''After that 3-plus months of a re-set, I'm very happy to be back. I felt like I needed it physically and mentally. I just felt like it was a little bit of a sabbatical. I've been out here for 10 years, and I want to get ready for the next 10.''

    McIlroy compared his situation to what Woods has been going through.

    ''I've only been through, maybe, not even 5 percent of what he's had to go through. And you can tell from where he was to where he is now mentally, because of physically where he is ... he's a totally different person,'' McIlroy said. ''Of course, I empathize with him, and I know he was in a dark place there for a while. It's just so great to see him out of that and back and excited to be playing golf again.''

    The Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship will be the first of back-to-back events for McIlroy, who is also playing next week in Dubai.

    ''I think the next two weeks will be a big learning curve, just to see where I'm at,'' McIlroy said. ''I'm obviously coming into the events trying to play as well as I can and trying to compete and trying to win, but I think there will definitely be things I'll have to work on going into that stretch in the States.''

    The tournament, which starts Thursday, has attracted some big names, including top-ranked Dustin Johnson, No. 6 Justin Rose, No. 9 Henrik Stenson, No. 14 Paul Casey and No. 15 Matt Kuchar. No. 18 Tommy Fleetwood is the defending champion.

    Getty Images

    Pre-tourney caution be damned: Stenson rides camel

    By Grill Room TeamJanuary 16, 2018, 3:29 pm

    If you were under the impression Henrik Stenson's days of engaging in pre-tournament hijinks at HSBC-sponsored events were over, then you don't know the Swedish Superman.

    Ahead of this week's HSBC Abu Dhabi Golf Championship, the 2016 champion golfer of the year decided to have some fun riding (and pretend-spanking) a camel:

    If you can't imagine any reason Stenson wouldn't get on a camel, we will point you to the WGC-HSBC Champions back in October, when Stenson, Dustin Johnson, Haotong Li and Hideki Matsuyama took place in this hire-wire act:

    Two weeks later, Stenson revealed a rib injury, and a report from the U.K.'s Telegraph stated "that not only was the Shanghai caper to blame, but that Stenson is annoyed about being persuaded to do it in the first place."

    Stenson brushed back at that report in this Instagram post, saying that his "comment about not being Superman was a sarcastic way of saying that I am susceptible to injury like any other athlete and sometimes these things happen when you least expect them. I was pleased to help promote the HSBC Champions and to continue my string of success at the event and I was never forced to do anything. HSBC is a great sponsor to golf worldwide and I am not happy to see them being made responsible for my withdrawal."

    I’m disappointed to have to pre-emptively withdraw from the Nedbank Golf Challenge Hosted by Gary Player, I was looking forward to this important year-end event on the European Tour. At this point I am back home in Orlando waiting to do a scan on my ribs and get the necessary rest. I am still hoping for a quick recovery and have not ruled out playing in Dubai next week at this point. My comment about not being Superman was a sarcastic way of saying that I am susceptible to injury like any other athlete and sometimes these things happen when you least expect them. I was pleased to help promote the HSBC Champions and to continue my string of success at the event and I was never forced to do anything. HSBC is a great sponsor to golf worldwide and I am not happy to see them being made responsible for my withdrawal. The plan as of now will be to participate in the DP World Championship if my body is back to 100%. H

    A post shared by Henrik Stenson (@henrikstenson) on

    And it would appear he genuinely meant those comments, at least enough to get on a camel.

    Getty Images

    Spieth, McIlroy to support Major Champions Invitational

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:25 pm

    Nick Faldo announced Tuesday the creation of the Major Champions Invitational.

    The event, scheduled for March 12-14, is an extension of the Faldo Series and will feature both male and female junior players at Bella Collina in Montverde, Fla.

    Jordan Spieth, Rory Mcllroy, Annika Sorenstam, Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson, Jerry Pate and John Daly have already committed to supporting the event, which is aimed at mentoring and inspiring the next generation of players.  

    “I’m incredibly excited about hosting the Major Champions Invitational, and about the players who have committed to support the event,” Faldo said. “This event will allow major champions to give something back to the game that has given them so much, and hopefully, in time, it will become one of the most elite junior golf events in the world.”

    Getty Images

    Rosaforte: Woods plays with Obama, gets rave reviews

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:15 pm

    Golf Channel insider Tim Rosaforte reports on Tiger Woods’ recent round at The Floridian in Palm City, Fla., alongside President Barack Obama.

    Check out the video, as Rosaforte says Woods received rave reviews from instructor Claude Harmon.