Golf isn’t just about swinging clubs and hitting balls, it also requires strength, mobility, flexibility, and stability for optimal performance. Unfortunately, most people think that golf is a relaxed sport that doesn’t require additional physical activities. Most golfers also don’t realize how crucial it is to have a healthy and strong body to make the most of every round.
You must start incorporating a workout routine into your daily lifestyle to perform well on the course. This will help you become stronger and more flexible, which allows you to make better swings, increase your swing speed for added distance, reduce the risk of injury during a round, and improve your overall performance on the course.
This blog post explores several golf workouts that can help you get fit and stay in shape for the course.
The Benefits of Working Out for Golfers
By committing to a workout routine in addition to your regular golfing schedule, you can experience various benefits on the course. Working out helps enhance your performance by boosting strength, flexibility, stamina, and endurance. This, in turn, increases speed, improves accuracy and control, reduces fatigue throughout a round, and reduces the chance of suffering an injury while playing.
Several studies on strength and conditioning training for golfers of diverse skill levels have shown improved performance on the course. In the study, golfers significantly improved their clubhead speed, ball speed, and distance measure using strength and conditioning exercises such as strength training, core exercises, plyometrics, and stretching. Considerable changes to golf swing kinematics, accuracy, and consistency were also evident in golfers with a consistent strength and conditioning workout routine.
An article in The Journal of the Canadian Chiropractic Association featured an introductory resistance training program that included several exercises to improve golf swing, minimize the risk of injury, and improve the general physical fitness of recreational golfers. The study focused on activities that enhance certain body parts and muscle groups used in playing golf. These exercises can cause substantial improvement in power and force generation, muscular endurance, motor control, spinal stability, shoulder motion, and hip movement.
Overall, a consistent workout routine designed to enhance the golf swing is essential for any golfer, regardless of skill level. Whether you’re a scratch golfer or a weekend hacker, incorporating the proper workout routine into your lifestyle can help you maximize your performance on the course.
Let’s now look at some of the best golf workouts to keep you in shape and maximize your performance on the course.
Home Golf Exercises
You don’t need to go to the gym or even have expensive weights or machines to get in an excellent golf workout. There are plenty of simple exercises that you can do at home using your body weight.
Beginner golfers should start with light exercises such as walking, jogging, or cycling to increase their stamina and endurance. Once the basics are covered, you can then move on to bodyweight exercises.
Squats and Squat Variations
Squats are relatively easy to learn and can be done with or without weights. These target the muscles of the lower body, including the glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps, and they also help with core strengthening and overall body balance.
Start by standing with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart and your toes pointing outwards. Keeping your back straight and core activated, lower your body by bending at the knees and hips until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Push back up to the starting position while squeezing your glutes, and repeat for 10 to 15 reps.
You can make variations to this exercise by adding a jump or lateral box step. You can also use a dumbbell or resistance band for added difficulty — these variations provide a different challenge and can further target your lower body muscles.
Planks may seem simple, but they are an excellent way to target the core muscles and develop better balance and stability. These also help develop golf-specific body strength, which is essential for a powerful swing.
Begin in a push-up position with your arms extended and your hands underneath your shoulders. Bend your elbows so that you rest on your forearms while keeping your body in one straight line from head to toe. Be sure to keep your body in a straight line, squeeze your core and glutes, and hold the position for at least 30 to 60 seconds.
The better you get at this exercise, the longer you can hold the position. You can also make it more difficult by doing it in sets or making variations, such as a side plank or adding a weighted vest.
Push-ups are incredible for upper body strength and stability, which can help with your accuracy when swinging a golf club. Also, if done correctly, they will target your core muscles and shoulder joints.
Start on the floor in a plank position, with your feet hip-width apart and your hands underneath your shoulders. Bend at the elbows and lower your body until your chest almost touches the floor. Push yourself back up to the starting position and repeat for 10 to 15 reps. Remember to keep your back straight and your core and glutes engaged throughout the exercise.
You can make this exercise easier by doing it on your knees. Adding weights or doing variations such as incline, decline, or diamond push-ups can also make it more difficult.
Lunges target the muscles of your lower body and are wonderful for improving balance and stability. They also improve hip mobility, coordination, and strength, which are crucial for a good golf swing.
Start standing with your feet hip-width apart with your hands on your hips. Take a big step forward with one foot while slowly lowering the other knee to the ground. Push off from the back leg and return to the starting position. Repeat on the opposite side. Do 10 to 15 reps on each side.
You can make variations to this exercise with weights or variations, such as curtsy lunges, reverse lunges, and walking lunges.
Russian twists are great for core strength and stability. They also help with posture, balance, and coordination.
Start in a seated position with your feet hovering above the ground. Lower your body and twist to one side, then the other. Make sure your core is engaged and your back is straight throughout the exercise. Do 10 to 15 reps on each side.
You can make this exercise more challenging by holding a dumbbell or medicine ball or doing variations such as Swiss ball twists.
Gym Golf Exercises
Going to the gym allows access to gym equipment and machines that will help you with your golf fitness. Exercises you can do in the gym include the following.
Cable Core Exercises
Cable exercises are great for targeting the core muscles, and they can allow you to rotate and move your body in ways that are both golf-specific and safe. You’ll need a cable machine for this exercise.
Start with a standing position and hold the cable handle. Rotate your body like swinging a golf club while keeping your core and glutes engaged. Do 10 to 15 reps on each side. You can adjust the weight and resistance to make the exercise more intense.
The bench press is a fantastic exercise for targeting the chest, shoulders, triceps, and core, but we recommend that you do this on days when your body is well-rested and you don’t have to go to the golf course.
Lie face up on a flat bench with your feet flat on the ground. You should have a small arch in your lower back with your chest open and shoulders back. Grip the barbell slightly wider than shoulder-width. Lower the barbell towards your chest while keeping your elbows close. Then, press the weight up while keeping your core engaged throughout the movement. Do 10 to 15 reps with a weight that is manageable for you. Make sure to have a spotter with you if you’re pushing yourself with a heavy weight.
Barbell deadlifts are superb for strengthening the back, shoulders, glutes, and core, but this is an advanced and intense exercise that must be done with proper form and supervision.
Start with your feet hip-width apart and the barbell in front of you. Keeping your back straight and core engaged, bend at the hips to grab the barbell with a grip just wider than your hip width. Hinging through the hips, push through your feet and lift the barbell until you’re standing upright. Slowly lower the barbell back to the starting position and repeat for 10 to 15 reps.
Golf Workouts FAQs
What exercise is best for golfers?
The best golfer exercises depend on your individual goals and needs, but generally, exercises that target the core, back, glutes, and shoulders are best for golfers. Also, do exercises focusing on mobility and balance to improve your golf performance.
What is the best cardio for golfers?
Cardio is vital for staying fit and healthy, so any cardiovascular exercise that increases your heart rate can be beneficial. However, if you’re looking for cardio tailored to golfers, walking, biking, swimming, and running can be outstanding options.
What is the best exercise to increase golf swing speed?
Exercises focusing on the core and upper body muscles can help improve swing speed. Plyometrics, Russian twists, and cable core exercises are some of the best activities to increase your swing speed.
How do I get my body in shape for golf?
Understanding your body’s needs and tailoring your workouts accordingly is crucial. Incorporate exercises that target the core, hips, back, glutes, and shoulders. Also, add cardio and strength training into your routine. Focus on mobility and balance exercises to help improve your golf performance.
Is playing golf three times a week enough exercise?
While playing golf three times a week can be an excellent source of exercise, it is not enough to get in shape. You should incorporate strength training, cardio, and mobility exercises into your routine to stay healthy and improve your golf game.