Accessing Untapped Power Sources Week 1

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Foot Function
 
What are the power sources in the golf swing? Other than the obvious physical components such as strength, flexibility, sound swing mechanics and mental focus, I teach my students to access the power sources which are unique to the practice of yoga. Over the next three weeks we will look at the following untapped power sources:
  • Foot function
  • The Anatomy of Breathing
  • The pelvic floor and transversus abdominis
This week we discuss foot function.
 
Why consider your feet in golf?
 
What is the first action in your golf swing? Perhaps you focus your grip, line up your target line or visualize your shot. Once you have completed this phase of your pre-shot routine you set your stance. Setting your feet in the proper position and having a sense of becoming connected to the earth facilitates a sense of balance in the address position and helps you generate power from the lower body.
 
3-D analysis provides us with the scientific proof that the transference of power in the golf swing begin in the lower body, to the hips, core and shoulders.
Additionally flexibility and strength in the feet support better balance in your finish position, in bad lies and facilitate more push-off power in your swing.
 
Here we go!
Developing a Sense of Grounding Down:

Begin in Mountain pose, standing with the feet hip width apart, arms resting by your side. Close your eyes and begin to shift your weight slightly forward into the balls of the foot, slightly backward into the heels and come to resting with your weight directly over the middle of the foot. Pull the navel into the spine, lift the ribcage up and flex your quads. Note: This pose is very physically active!
 
Flexion / Extension:

Yoga for Golfers - 3/30/2007 Yoga for Golfers - 3/30/2007

Note: Take off your shoes to practice this stretch. Seated or standing, extend your right leg. Inhale, flexing your foot towards you, spreading the toes wide and on the exhalation points your foot. Repeat five times and switch sides. For more flexibility in the ankles, revolve the foot clockwise five times, counter-clockwise five times.
 
Plantarflexion seated on the floor:
(top of the foot stretch)

Yoga for Golfers - 3/30/2007

Place rolled up towels under your gluts to increase the angle of your knee flexion. It is very important that the top of the foot be flat on the floor. Sit back on the towels. Use your hands to spread the toes wide and massage the soles of the feet. Sit for one to three minutes.
 
Flexibility and Strengthening of the Arch and Achilles in lunge:

Yoga for Golfers - 3/30/2007

Place the right foot forward into a lunge position, using a club for balance. Inhale as you press the left heel towards the floor, exhale and lift as high as possible on the toes. Repeat five times and switch sides. Note: you will experience more action in the feet if you practice this pose barefoot.
 
Golf ball foot massage:

Yoga for Golfers - 3/30/2007 Yoga for Golfers - 3/30/2007

Use a golf ball under the arch of the foot, rolling the ball towards the toes as you press down against the ball. Move slowly, breathe deeply and focus on the increased blood flow to the feet.
 
See you every Monday night on The Turn!
 
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.