Increasing your flexibility and your core strength with Pilates, according to Physical Therapist Deneen Carter, is a great way to lower your golf scores and stay healthy throughout the season. For golfers, in addition to stretching your back, arms and legs, it’s also important to stretch your hips, ankles, wrists, shoulders and neck. Since Pilates focuses on the core muscles, which extend from your stomach and back through your hips and buttocks area, it’s a popular option for professional golfers such as 2001 British Open Champion David Duval.
“Everything powers through your core when you play golf,” Physical Therapist Deneen Carter said. “Make sure your hips are strong. And warm up before the game. Stretch, hit a few balls. All of this is very important so you don’t go out there cold. And, of course, make sure you have the proper mechanics for your swing.”
If most golfers are proactive with their stretching and exercise program, they are much more likely to be able to continue playing the game pain free. According to recent research, most golfing injuries are the result of a lack of flexibility, and not necessarily because of poor swing mechanics.
“It’s all related to a lack of flexibility,” said Carter. “Golf does not just involve the upper body or the lower body. It’s your whole body – from your neck to your ankles. We see more golfers here with complaints about the lower back because it tends to be a more painful area than, say the hips or the ankles.”
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