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Fitness and the Senior Golfer

When Jim, a 62 year-old golfer walked into my studio I saw a man who was depressed and desperate to play golf again. Ten years ago Jims physician recommended he give up the game due to the pain he experienced in his low back. Imagine if you could not play golf and the physical, social and emotional toll it would take on your life. For many years Jim was resigned to the notion that he was too old to change his body.
 
After conducting a comprehensive physical assessment, I established that most of Jims concerns were related to a lack of flexibility. One assessment I used on Jim was the cat cow pose. I asked Jim to perform the exercise expecting to see movement in his spine. Jim insisted he was moving his spine when in actuality he had no movement. Within two months we had total mobilization of Jims lumbar spine. Now in retirement, Jim plays golf three days a week, pain free!
 
Some of these poses may look familiar to you as I have suggested them as a series of warm up poses. For senior golfers I recommend you begin the poses by moving very slowly, inhaling and exhaling through the nose with each pose. Practice the poses four days a week, in the morning (right after coffee) and in the evening right before bedtime. Studies prove stretching before sleep support faster muscle integration and faster results.
 
Cat / Cow pose:

Cat / Cow pose

On all fours, inhale as you pull the navel towards the spine, pressing the spine towards the ceiling. Exhale, pressing the spine towards the floor, rolling the shoulders away from the ears and lifting the head slightly. Repeat ten to twenty times.
 
Gentle Dynamic Twist:

Gentle Dynamic Twist preparation pose

Preparation position: Bring the arms perpendicular to the body, keeping the feet on the floor (Par Level) or lifting the feet off the floor (Birdie Level).
 
Gentle Dynamic Twist pose

Pose: Inhale, pressing the navel towards the floor, engaging the core and rolling the legs to the right. Exhale brining the legs back to the starting position. Repeat to the left side, and repeat the pose ten to twenty times.
 
Seated Twisting pose:

Seated Twist

Sitting up as straight as possible with the assistance of the right arm, place the right foot on the outside of the left knee. Maintain connection of the right foot to the floor. Inhale, lengthening the spine, exhale as you twist to the right. Repeat five times and switch sides.
 
Childs pose:

Child pose

This pose stretches the back and relaxes the mind. Sit in this pose for approximately two minutes. Note: If you feel discomfort in the knees, place a rolled towel in the crease of the back of the knees. RELAX!
 
The mind is a powerful tool. Taking the leap of faith, exercising and visualizing your body as strong, flexible and full of vitality will transform your thoughts to reality.
 
On my website, www.YogaForGolfers.com we will be introducing a special section for Senior Golfers, exercises, nutrition, travel deals, etc Send me an e-mail @ info@yogaforgolfers.com to be added to our mailing list. My new book, Yoga For Golfers ' The Total Golfers Conditioning System is now available in bookstores worldwide.
 
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    Editor's Note: Katherine Roberts, founder of Yoga for Golfers, has 20 years of experience in fitness training, yoga studies, professional coaching and motivation. Katherine welcomes your email questions and comments, contact her at info@yogaforgolfers.com.