When Smashing Nine’s Guelph was happening, we had the great fortune of hooking up with Orange Theory Fitness and they gave us a great pre-game warmup routine and some strategies for getting loose. Well they are back, and Jet and Ryan have put together this 2 part series on things you can do all winter to build strength. This week is on lower body and the next blog will be on upper body. Please connect with them if you have any questions.
Part 1 – Create lower body strength for power
This winter, let’s keep your swing in check by maintaining your golf form for next season. The role of your lower body in golf is significant. Ask any long-distance driver where the power from a drive comes from, and you’ll hear the same answer, “legs!”. Strong and powerful legs will allow you to drive the ball that much closer to the hole.
Let’s start with the glutes and hips. Torque and power begin at your hips where your glutes are activated. Lying on your side with your legs stacked, hips and knees at 90 degrees, open your hips by bringing your top knee to the ceiling and back down. This abduction movement activates multiple glute muscles important for lower body strength and mobility. Having strong hips are fundamental for building torque in your golf swing. Note that although driving the ball is a quick powerful movement, we want slow and controlled movements to increase time under tension while minimizing risk of injury.
Next, is the Lateral Lunge. From a standing position, lunging to one side at a time, maintaining a tall posture where the lunging knee stays over the shoe laces. Reach far with the lunging foot to feel a stretch in the adductor of the straight leg, while activating the muscles on the lunging leg. With this exercise follow the 80:20 rule, where 80% of your weight is on your heel, and the remaining 20% in near the ball of your foot. This exercise actives the glutes, quads, inner thigh and outer thigh muscles and many stabilizer muscles.
The single leg deadlift activates many of the posterior muscles on your lower half while simultaneously working on stability. From a standing position, lift one heel to the ceiling with a slight bend in the knee of the stable leg. Your goal is to have a straight line from the lifted heel all the way to your ears, parallel with the floor. With straight arms pointed to the ground engage your glutes, and hamstrings to return to the beginning position. This exercise is fantastic for balance, hamstring strength, and flexibility. Tip: If you are having troubles balancing, stand next to a wall for assistance until your balance improves!
Jet Cruz, B.Sc. Kinesiology and Health Science
HFFC – Certified Exercise Physiologist
Orange Theory Fitness, 226.780.0822
Studio #049 – 84 Clair Rd. E
Guelph, ON N1L 0G6
Ryan Brethour BSc Honours Human Kinetics
Cell: 705 928 5454 e-mail: email@example.com