Healthy Tahoe: Add Yards and Years to Your Golf Swing
What makes someone stop doing the things they love? Time commitment? Money? Better options? For many golfers, it’s pain that limits or completely ruins the ability and desire to play golf.
The golf swing is a complex movement that utilizes the whole body in a coordinated fashion. Since the swing is repeated frequently throughout the game, an incorrect golf swing can result in injury.
Many amateurs golf incorrectly due to ill-fitting equipment, poor technique, lack of physical capability, or a combination of all three. A great coach can help with proper form and using the right-sized clubs can make all the difference in the world—most golfers know this.
What most golfers don’t know is that their physical limitations can seriously affect their golf swing. For example, tight upper back muscles can limit range of motion, which can pose difficulty in your back-swing, or the wind up before you make contact with the ball.
These physical attributes that affect your swing are called Swing Characteristics, a term developed by The Titleist Performance Institute (TPI). Many professional golfers know their Swing Characteristics intimately, and have developed a tailor-made swing that fits their physical attributes which results in a powerful stroke.
In an Wisconsin State Journal article, Swing Characteristics of current top-rated PGA tour player, John Rahm, were illustrated, “[John’s] right leg is a centimeter and a half shorter than his left, meaning he has reduced mobility and stability in his right ankle. Hence the short swing which he learned at a young age, a swing that has propelled him to being the world’s best golfer going into the final major of the year. ‘Don’t try to copy me,’ the golfer would say. ‘Don’t try to copy any swing out there. Just swing your swing.'”
This is what makes the TPI method different from others. Instead of copying a professional golfer and trying to swing like them, this method puts the golfer at the center of their game, and uses physical assessment to develop personalized flexibility, strength, power, and coordination.
Every person will produce different and unique results in a TPI test. With the knowledge from their test, a golfer can use a performance or fitness program to help them develop physical function to improve their swing.
Kyler Crouse is a Titleist Performance Institute Certified Performance Coach with Barton’s Center for Orthopedics & Wellness. He is offering an 8-week Performance Golf Series on Thursdays, March 17 – May 5, from 5:15-6:30 p.m. Included with Barton Performance’s Group Fitness Unlimited Membership or $20 drop-in fee each class for non-members. Space is limited. For more information on individualized training training and exercise programs, visit BartonOrthopedicsandWellness.com.
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