Here are the benefits you can receive from these training devices:
1) Strengthen the shoulder girdle for more stability at the top of your back swing
2) Strengthen the trunk which is critical in making an effective turn
3) Strengthen the forearms and wrists for better club control
4) Strengthen the upper arms for added distance off the tee
5) Ultimately increase your overall fitness level and reduce your handicap!
Now lets get started!
Start: Place one foot in the center of the tubing and place the opposite foot forward. Grip the handles with both hands and extend overhead to create a goal post position and increase tension.
Action: Leading with both elbows pull the upper arms forward across the chest.
Finish: Hold for a few seconds and slowly return to the start. Repeat.
Relation to Your Golf Game: A strong chest draws the arms closer together at address and keeps the relationship between the arms consistent throughout the swing, a fundamental that most instructors maintain is critical to generating maximum speed and consistency. The pecs also provide critical balance to the muscles in the upper back that must be strong and active in the swing. Astrong and flexible chest keeps a strong back properly balanced and allows for all the muscles in the torso to work as a coordinated unit during the swing.
Par Level: 10 reps
Birdie Level: 15 reps
Eagle Level: 20 reps
If you have questions about your current golf fitness level, take the Fitness Analyzer on KellyBlackburn.com.
Utilizing Your Golf Cart for Fitness
Even if you take the time to warm up and stretch properly before your round, you may still feel the need to stretch a little more or take a particular golf muscle a little deeper into a stretch. This idea is especially true for those days when you play in less-than-ideal weather conditions and your muscles tense up in a fight to stay warm. At those times, added stretching is a must. Riding in a cart from shot to shot also gives your back just enough time to stiffen up. Thats why I highly recommend walking for golfers of all ages, but especially for those over 40 who need to remain loose and active. But given the fact that you will probably use a golf cart if one is available, here is a simple exercise to utilize the mechanical beast in ways that may actually improve your game.
Standing to the side of the cart, reach out the arm closest to the cart and grab the canopy support bar. Now move away from the cart until your arm is fully extended and slowly rotate your torso away from the cart until you feel the stretch in your chest. After you find the stretch, hold it for 15 to 30 seconds before repeating with the other side.
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Editor's Note: Kelly Blackburn has traveled the PGA Tour and Champions Tour circuits as a fitness consultant and trainer for 11 years. Kelly welcomes your email questions and comments, contact her at BlackburnOnTour@aol.com. Visit KellyBlackburn.com to learn more about health and fitness for golf.