The sun has arrived and that means it’s time to grab those clubs and hit the green! Aside from solid practice at the driving range, adding a structured workout routine can greatly improve your golf game by making you stronger and more efficient with your power. Here we have 5 great exercises to try that can really add some more range to those drives!
#1. Perpendicular Medicine Ball Tosses
Stand sideways, with your shoulder facing the wall. Using a medicine ball of moderate weight, not too heavy, bring it across your body and toss it against the wall, repeating for 8-10 reps, then perform on the other side as well. Med Ball Tosses are a great way to activate your abdominals, as well as your obliques and hip flexors, and are great at developing rotational power and speed with your swing. Ensure to drive your outside hip towards the wall, to avoid using your arms and shoulders as the prime movers in this exercise. After each toss, your hips should be parallel to the wall, rotating off the front of the feet, exhaling through the toss with a braced core. (remember to perform dynamic stretching before doing this exercise).
#2. Barbell Hip Thrusts
Using a bench, and barbell, lie back with your shoulders and upper back across the bench, with your hips towards the floor, allowing the bar to rest across your hips. Place a padding across your hips if needed, and use a moderate amount of weight for 8-10 reps. Keeping your core braced, squeeze your glutes to extend the hips upward, thrusting the bar with explosiveness but maintaining control through the lift. Ensure to always keep your feet grounded, driving from the heels to activate your glutes, hamstrings and keeping your core braced for support. The Hip Thrust is a great exercise for focussing on hip power and explosiveness, and for keeping our glutes working hard!
#3. Anti-Rotation Banded Walk Out
Hook a resistance band on an anchor and create tension by walking away from the anchor, extending the arms in front of you, keeping your hands directly in line with your midline. Staying in this position, walk farther and farther, resisting the urge to rotate toward the anchor, then slowly walk back. Perform this movement for 8-10 reps per side, for 3-4 sets. The banded walk out is a great exercise for training the core to remain stable under tension, adding some endurance to the abdominal muscles and helping to maintain hip control during those big swings.
#4. BOSU Ball Goblet Squat
Using a device, such as a bosuball, is a great way to challenge your balance and to improve your efficiency in sport and exercise. Use a moderate weight and carefully stand on the flat side of the bosuball. Maintain the weight to your sternum, just below your chin and keep your chest up, and back straight. Maintain a braced core and descend slowly into your squat, focussing on balance and making mental note of any points of instability. Descend to your comfort level and work towards greater depth with time and practice. Exhale through standing and create external rotation in the legs, through the feet, feeling your glutes and hamstrings push you through extension. This is a great exercise for developing not only explosive power but great balance and coordination through both legs individually.
#5. Single Leg Deadlift
Hold a dumbbell in one arm and keep the opposing leg fixed to the ground, hinging from the hips and extending the opposite leg into the air, forming a “T” with the body. Keep the shoulders and spine neutral, as that is a major focus of the movement is resisting the urge for the weighted shoulder to drop. Use your core stability to keep your body straight and use the glute and hamstring of the down leg to extend you upright. Perform 9-10 reps per leg, 3-4 sets per leg. The single leg dumbbell deadlift is a great exercise for developing single leg balance and strength, helping to keep you more grounded in your golf swing, and allowing the energy transfer in your body to be more efficient.
Sergio Pedemonte is the CEO and principal of Your House Fitness, and personal trainer in Toronto, Canada. Sergio has been featured in a number of news outlets including Global News and CBC as a fitness and wellness expert.