Golf Fitness and Flexibility Drill

Published 23/07/2012 11:49:00



Flexibility is key to keeping your score and injuries to a minimum. Here's a test to determine yours.

For golfers, good flexibility ensures proper posture and balance and reduces the chance of injuries due to overuse. But perhaps more importantly it also means a swing that is smoother and uses less energy to execute.

Flexibility is the body's ability to adapt to changes in position or alignment and has three grades: normal, limited and excessive. The most common areas of poor flexibility are the hamstrings, calves and lower back. However, most golfers don't realize the importance of keeping these hot spots in shape until an injury occurs. There are many ways to determine whether you're flexible enough in these areas. One test you can do yourself is called the Long Sitting Forward Bending Test, which measures the combined flexibility of all three body parts.

  1. Sit with your legs extended and feet at a right angle.
  2. With your knees straight, reach forward as far as the muscles allow, and try to touch the base of the big toe with your fingertips.
  3. Measure the distance between your fingers and toes.

stretching to touch toes

If the distance between the end of the fingers and toes is three inches or more your flexibility is limited. If the fingers go beyond the toes three inches or more you have excessive flexibility. Normal flexibility is anything in between those two measurements.




toe touch stretch

Stretching is one of the best ways to improve flexibility, which is why many Tour players receive almost daily one-on-one stretching routines at the on-site HealthSouth fitness trailers. These exercises promote elasticity to various muscle groups with almost immediate results. A golfer will often notice increased flexibility after only one or two sessions.


If you have limited flexibility, consult a local physiotherapist for advice on how to improve.





1.  Great info. Tight hamstrings, by themselves, are a major factor for low back discomfort/injury. They also play a role in hip range of motion. Tight hamstrings and/or calves can be a factor in the early extension (hips moving toward the ball) swing fault.

comment by bob forman - 26/07/2012 00:37

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