Ten Week Challenge - Week 8

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More Hamstrings
 
For the past fifteen years I have worked with thousands of golfers who all have one thing in common - tight hamstrings. Here is the good news ' your hamstrings will become more flexible regardless of your current level of inflexibility.
 
Tight hamstrings affect the low back as well as freedom of movement in the pelvis and hips. Lack of flexibility make it more challenging to maintain solid knee flexion ' a necessary component for balance in your stance off the tee or in the bunker.
 
Think of the last time your body tightened up on the golf course. Chances are it was either your low back or hamstrings. These poses should be done at least three days a week and can be applied to the golf course.
 
Guidelines for increasing flexibility in the hamstrings:
  • Once you are properly aligned in the pose, engage or flex the quadriceps and feet. The feet should be moving towards you as you press the heel away form you.

  • Before you fold forward, draw the navel towards the spine and sit up as tall as possible. This will increase the intensity of the stretch.

  • When folding forward attempt to hinge forwards from the hips, keeping the back as straight as possible. When you allow the back to round as you fold forward it will work the muscles of the back more than the hamstrings.

  • Remember to focus the eyes just past the feet so you dont hyper extend the neck.

  • Do not go to pain ' go half the distance in the stretch and hold for a longer duration.

Ok, now on to this week's poses.....
Standing Forward Fold ' Elbows Clasped
PAR Level

Yoga for Golfers - Standing forward fold  pose

Place feet wider than hip width apart, slightly pigeon toed. Clasp opposite hands to elbows and fold forward. Allow the head to hang, releasing the low back. Hold for five breaths, draw the navel inward and SLOWLY come back to standing.
 
Standing Forward Fold ' Elbows Clasped
BIRDIE / EAGLE Level

Yoga for Golfers - Standing forward fold  pose

Same pose as above but begin to straighten the legs. Keep your weight evenly distributed over the feet. Do not hyperextend your knees. Hold for five breaths.
 
Head to Knee pose with strap
PAR / BIRDIE / EAGLE Levels

Yoga for Golfers - Head to Knee pose with strap

Sitting up with a straight spine extend the left foot out, bringing the right foot to the inner thigh. Place the strap on the left foot. Square the hips so you are facing your knee. Hinge at the hips and fold forward over the left leg. Remember to flex the quad and feet. Hold for ten deep breaths and switch sides.
 
Head to Knee pose with strap
PAR / BIRDIE / EAGLE Levels

Yoga for Golfers - Head to Knee pose with strap

Extend both legs out, flex the quads. TIP: Feel free to sit with your back against the wall for additional support. Place the strap around the feet and fold forward. Hold for ten breaths.
 
Supine Hand to Foot pose with strap
PAR / BIRDIE / EAGLE Levels

Yoga for Golfers - Supine hand to foot pose

Place the strap around the right foot, flexing the foot towards you. Keep the left leg bent. TIP: Keep the leg completely straight like an arrow. There is a greater value in keeping the leg close to the floor and straight than lifting the leg higher. Hold for ten breaths and switch sides.
 
Related Links:
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 1
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 2
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 3
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 4
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 5
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 6
  • Ten Week Challenge - Week 7
  • Health & Fitness Main Page
     
    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.