Life Health

Give yourself a spring tune-up

By Donna Cotnam, Daily Observer

With golf season right around the corner, it is time to start thinking about doing exercises to get yourself in shape for the game.

With golf season right around the corner, it is time to start thinking about doing exercises to get yourself in shape for the game.

Well, despite the weather forecast, golf season is almost upon us.

Whether you are a seasoned pro or a weekend duffer, there is just something about the game that keeps bringing you back. That shot of a lifetime; the chip out of the sand that found the hole; the drive that gave you bragging rights (for a few weeks anyway).

You’ve spent the whole winter reading books on the proper grip and stance and how to improve your back swing. Now you need to clean out your golf bag and shining up your clubs. This is all well and good, but what have you done to get yourself game ready?

Watching the pros go at it every weekend is not considered getting yourself golf ready, even though you may have been up and down from the couch to the fridge multiple times. Think about the torquing and twisting you will subject your body to over the next six months. You want your back to be strong to enhance your drives and flexible for those soft chip shots.

Golf exercises do not have to be difficult or complicated. Like many sports your preparation mimics the sport itself. A good way to begin is to take your normal golf stance – a little more relaxed though, bend the knees. Lift your arms out to your side – shoulder height, keep your hips straight ahead and slowly start to turn to the right, then to the left. You want to feel a gentle pull (stretch) in your back. Once you are comfortable, keep turning side to side, but now start to lower your upper body from the hips. Eventually you want to be turning so the right hand touches the left foot and vise versa. Keep your knees bent, then slowly work your way back up.

There are all sorts of stretches that you can do to loosen up your shoulders, back, hips and legs. Ideally a good warm-up would include taking a number of practice swings, followed by a series of dynamic stretches. Because the game is sometimes held up, you may want to stretch throughout the round to keep yourself limber and then again once you are finished.

Strength training and flexibility exercises away from the course will definitely enhance your fitness level, thus enhancing your game. Try to focus on exercises that strengthen your core muscles – shoulders, back, abdominal muscles and legs. There are many books that share great golf exercises for game readiness. You can also ask your pro or check out a fitness facility and ask a personal trainer. The better shape you are in the longer your season will be. Until next time keep it straight!!

If there is any specific fitness related questions you would like addressed please email them to


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