Yoga Ball Fitness - Week 1 - Upper Body Flexibility

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Yoga Ball Fitness for Golfers is a new hybrid golf fitness program incorporating yoga, core conditioning, strength training and balance. I utilize the use of a Thera-Ball which you will need for the series. Visit our Pro Shop to find the appropriate size ball for your height.
 
The Yoga Ball fitness program is all about core stabilization. When you are practicing any of the exercises you must pull your navel towards your spine, stabilize your core and focus before you begin the exercise. Working from the core is the key to this series!
 
Over the upcoming weeks you will build strength by utilizing your body weight against gravity as resistance as well as strength tubing and weights all while stabilizing the core. As always when practicing yoga, stretching, weight training AND on the golf course, breathing is essential. Pay attention to your breathing and remember to breathe deeply, from the diaphragm.
 
During the Yoga Ball Fitness program (YBF) you have an opportunity to develop a baseline for your progress. On our website @ www.KRTotalFitness.com, I offer a self-assessment tool for your upper body flexibility. Each week you can go to the site and find the appropriate assessment for the weeks YBF series.
 
Lets get rolling!
 
Passive or Static Chest opening pose:

Passive or Static Chest Opening pose

Begin by sitting on the ball, engage your core and walk the feet away from the body as you lower the upper body onto the ball. Your head is always supported when working with the Yoga Ball. With the palms facing the ceiling, allow the shoulders, arms and chest to stretch. You should not feel any discomfort in your neck.
 
Relax as you hold here for ten slow breaths. Come back to the starting position and repeat three times.
 
Active or Dynamic Chest opening pose:

Active or Dynamic Chest Opening pose

Place your body in the same position as the passive chest opening pose but interlace your fingers behind your head supporting your neck. Inhale, pull your navel towards your spine and squeeze the gluts so you maintain a supported core and flat back. Allow your arms to rest in their natural position, exhale as you press your elbows back, and squeeze the shoulder blades together. Repeat ten times.
 
Dolphin pose on the ball:

Dolphin pose

This pose is great for stretching as well as strengthening the shoulders and lats. Begin on all fours, facing the ball. Place your forearms on the ball, close to your body. Inhale, pull the navel towards the spine (do not let the low back arch) and press your arms into the ball, exhale and roll the ball away from you. Allow the neck to relax. Repeat five to ten times.
 
Practice these exercises three to four days a week and you will see a dramatic increase in your upper body flexibility!
 
Katherine Roberts - Total FitnessCheck out Katherines new web site @ www.KRTotalFitness.com.
 

Tune in Monday evenings for The Golf Channel's Your Game Night for more fitness tips from Katherine. Contact her with any questions or comments @ info@yogaforgolfers.com and she may answer your questions on air.
 
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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.