In order to complete the proper golf swing, a certain amount of muscular flexibility and joint mobility is required. If a golfer is lacking joint mobility or muscular flexibility, this will lead to increased compensation. Increased compensation leads to decreased power as well as increased risk for injury.
According to a study done by TPI (Titleist Performance Institute) of over 32,000 golfers, 50% of amateur golfers will develop a chronic issue in their lifetime. As we get older our incidence for a golf injury increases.
Warming up before golfing has been shown to decrease the incidence of golf injuries. However, most amateur golfers do not warm up properly or at all before playing.
Incorporating the water into your pre round dynamic warm up has many additional benefits that are not always possible on land.
- When we are submerged in water, we move much easier. The water’s buoyancy supports your weight. When you’re submersed up to your chest the water reduces about 70 percent of your body weight, decreasing stress on your joints. Since the effects of gravity are diminished in water, you can perform mobility exercises much easier than you can on land.
- Water being a surrounding medium provides the body 360 degrees of support. This helps improve your body awareness and posture which assists in improving movement and preventing injury.
- The waters hydrostatic pressure helps to improve circulation and muscle relaxation preparing the tissues to move easier.
- The water provides drag and viscosity forces causing an increased resistance to movement. This means the harder the harder you work, the harder the workout.
- Water training will challenge your brain in a very unique way. We tend to be very patterned individuals and perform very similar movements throughout our day. When in the water both gravity and momentum are significantly reduced and your body becomes very uncoordinated. This nervous system “reset” can really help to improve your pattern on land no matter what skill level you are at.
Try getting in the water up to your chest and attempt to walk forward and backward maintaining a proper upright posture and performing an opposite arm and leg swing as in normal walking. It is going to be much tougher than you think.
Next take an old golf club in the water and try to slowly perform a few swings. How do you feel? Uncoordinated? Now go faster. Feel the difference?
By Incorporating the water into your golf training program you will be able to play longer and stronger and reduce your likelihood for injury.
Dr. Rick McAvoy, PT, DPT, CSCS has specialized in Aquatic Physical Therapy, Fitness and Sports Performance for over 30 years. Rick is the Owner Fluid Golf Training, a streaming program to help golfers reduce injury, move better and swing better.
For more information about Fluid Golf Training please visit.