The golf swing requires flexibility and mobility of multiple areas but at the same time stability and control of movement through these ranges. Making sure you have warmed up properly and prepared your body for the effort and forces required to swing a club is important to both maximize performance and reduce injury risk.
There is clearly a trend over the last 30 years whereby the world’s best golfers have become more powerful, more explosive and are hitting the ball harder, with more force and further. These golfers are now seen as athletes and their training reflects that. Elite golfers work hard to increase their strength and power, which can transfer into greater club head speed and driving distance. They spend nearly as much time becoming a better golfer without a club in their hands as they do on the golf course and practice range. The use of strength and conditioning in golf is now widely accepted and has benefits and importance to golfers of all levels.
Recovery in sport is an important process that can help to maximize adaptation following training or sustain level of performance during competition. The main areas of focus are to replace lost fluids & nutrients, rest & recuperate both mentally and physically and allow the body to rebuild in response to training stresses. This can be summarized by what are known as the 4 “R’s”:
Nutrition and Hydration are two huge components of both health and performance. Ensuring we consume the correct types and amount of nutrients and hydration at the right time is something often overlooked and undervalued. The human body is made up of about 75% water and water is a vital component of multiple crucial processes that go on in our bodies. It goes without saying then that people who are carrying out extra physical and mental demands on their bodies need more hydration and that having the correct amount of hydration is a key component of performance. There have been many studies that have shown even mild dehydration (1-2% of body mass) significantly impairs cognitive-motor task performance.
Golf requires a robust and repetitive technique since all the body’s moving parts must deliver the club face accurately to the ball, with the two remaining in contact for just 400 microseconds. As a technically and mentally demanding sport, players are constantly seeking to improve the efficiency and repeatability of their swings. In addition to hours of practice this can be enhanced through coaching, which can take many forms in professional golf:
• technical & training advice
• development of new skills
• biomechanics analysis
• personal and mental development
• support and mentoring