The scene. It’s 9.20am Sunday the 14th April, 2019 and the final group of The Masters are about to tee off. Four and a half hours earlier a big cat rises and starts his disciplined preparation of mind and body in order to pounce on that elusive 5th Major title…and the rest is history.
Now I’m not saying that we all have to be waking up at 4am for our 9.30am tee times in order for our bodies to be in prime condition, I mean that’s another round of golf right there! But there has to be something to this warm up thing right? The answer is 100% unequivocally yes. The reality is though that a lot of amateur golfers don’t do any form of body prep before taking the big stick out of the bag for the first tee. The most common reason I hear for why people don’t warm up is that they don’t know what to do or more importantly they don’t know why they should be doing it. So let’s break it down.
Firstly, why do it at all? Think of it as essentially preparing the body for the activity that is about to take place. We do this by raising our cardiovascular output which then provides more blood flow to your muscles and joints. This extra blood flow increases the ability of our muscles to activate efficiently, important if you like hitting bombs!
Secondly, what do I do? Rather than give a bunch of exercises that you may or may not do properly, I want to give you a better understanding of what to do. A give/teach a man to fish scenario.
- Starting, you want to be warm. This means doing some form of activity that actually gets your heart rate up and your muscles working. Just standing there pulling your arm across your body doesn’t count. Exercises like this can include, a brisk walk, jogging, body weight squats and lunges.
- The next step is to do some movements functional to the exercise that you’re doing. This means targeting the key body parts and muscle groups you will be using. For golf you want to be working on your hip and spinal rotation at a minimum.
- Lastly once the body is warm and your muscle and joints are feeling good it’s always a good idea to ease into the activity you’re doing before getting fully stuck in. So before you get onto the first tee, hit some short to mid irons to get the body ready for the round.
So the next time you have a round, get to the course 15-20mins earlier and put these principles into practice and feel the benefit of a prepped body. And if you’re keen to find out more about looking after your body when playing golf, feel free to come into the Golf HQ Takapuna store for a chat.