Well, my name’s Aaron Andrus. I’m the golf fitness specialist here at Great Moves Physical Therapy. So, I handle more of the performance aspect of the our golf program. We do, basically, a head to toe evaluation for every golfer. Now, that’s going to look at swing characteristics, previous injuries. It’s going to be a baseline muscular-skeletal assessment, and then from there, the therapists come to me and they look for the programing aspect and what can we do to get you stronger? What can we do for preventative injury strategies? Overall, maybe some goals are you want to hit it farther.
So, strength training is one of those options – conditioning – and then how we use the simulator in conjunction with the golf program is our therapists will use our video golf swing analysis function. It will image your swing in a video analysis. They can attack what aspects of the swing they want to look at for you specifically. I know for a fact that we look at three things, mostly and that’s going to be your posture. So, where you are in your set-up – here. You’re going to look at your arm control during your back swing – so, arm control. What’s happening with the arms in the back swing – here and all the way through contact.
The last component is going to be your follow through. Where are you on your follow through? So, ideally, the follow through is here. Correct? So, we look at those three things and typically what happens, what we typically see is if one of those pieces isn’t correct or it’s not as good as it could be, then there’s something hindering your golfing. Maybe you’re trying to lower your handicap or you’re just trying to become a better golfer, and those are the things that we’ll see.
So one of those is usually off. These things cause injury. For instance, the posture, your set-up can really prevent injury if it’s the correct posture. It can also add injury if it’s the incorrect posture. Arm control in your back swing is going to affect ball flight and that’s going to affect consistency in your golf game.
So, it’s going to go – is it going left? Is it going right? – based on where your arms are during impact. Finally, the follow through, which also has a lot to do with injury prevention and also, where is the ball going after contact? If you finish low – here – in your posture after you follow through or if you finish straight up. So, those are the three things, once again I’ll repeat them: posture, arm control, and follow through.
So, that would be the evaluation aspect On the performance side of our program here at Great Moves, after this evaluation, I will look at where are the areas that need to be improved? Physical areas, maybe abductor strength is a huge one.
So, muscles here, on the inner thigh, gluteus strength, really, lower extremity strength is going to be key. What strategies do we have for preventing shoulder issues in the golf swing? So, strengthening the shoulder girdle. Strengthening the wrist flexors and extensors of the arm which take a big pounding during your golf game. So, those are the most common things and so those are the ones we’re going to attack the most, but I was actually going to show three exercises and this going to go back to our three points.
So, once again posture. First one, for posture – a good one for posture is getting your body in symmetry. So, how we do that is getting the pelvis in line with the spine and in line with your head. Then, slightly bent in the knees. So, we do this one – club behind the spine. So, you’re going to take the bottom part of your club and you’re going to rest it just above the tailbone here. So that’s going to be your reference point an then the shaft’s going to go up the length of our spine here. I’ll show it where maybe you can see a little bit better. So, neutral spine, good posture. I want to be along the shaft of this club. So, ideally, this is a good posture to hit the golf ball. Bad posture would be rounded. So, say I’m rounded. So say I’m rounded in my shoulders, this is what’s going to happen. You’re going to see this. Ideally, we don’t see the shaft lining up on my spine. So, that’s bad posture.
Another posture is going to be s–posture when it’s the low back or the rear wants to stick out. You can see this gap right here in between my rear and my lumbar spine. Also, bad posture. It’s puts a lot of torque on the lower back. So, if you can do this exercise and line up the spine head to pelvis, that’s a good start. You just try to get neutral every time before you hit the ball.
The second one, so we’re going to talk about arm control. So, I like a variation of a med ball chop. So, this is a med ball. We use this a lot and so what I do with my patients is we get in a half moon position, which is a great posture, right? We’re activating our quadricep here. We’re unstable. So, stability is huge in this one. Now, what will happen is the trainer or me will be standing here. The student will work on arm control. So, think back swing here, follow through here. So, we want to have a straight arm, left arm stays straight, tuck in under the chin. When we come down, we chop right in front of this flight keeping the arm straight at impact.
So, just like in your golf swing, at impact you’re going to extend the arms and then come through with it and bend the other way. At impact, you’re extended. So, this is what this one is going to teach is arm control through that entire swing. It’ll help develop a little bit of power, depending on how much weight you use, but at the beginning, you start off with something a little lighter. We’ve tackled posture and we’ve tackled arm control.
The last is going to be follow through. So, here’s a really good one for follow through. and it’s another med ball movement. So, we’re going to pick up our ball, and I picked that up improperly. I’ve should have used my knees. So, we’re going to go golf posture med ball toss. So, what this is going to work on is getting up on our lead side, getting our body weight controlled on the lead leg and then pivoting with our hips.
So, coming through with our hips first, using that rear gluteus, trying to activate that gluteus and push it up against our front leg. So, this one is done this way. Arms extended, you’re going to find, again, posture, so neutral posture here. Come back and throw. Now, gluteus engaged. Boom. My back foot is facing the target and those are key.
So this is a really good one to work for follow through. Once again, neutral back. Notice my hips are facing the target and I lead with my hips, so I don’t lead with my arms. Lead with my hips. So those are the three areas that are very important for if you want to be a better golfer. If you want to add consistency, if you want to add power, all those things are necessary.
So, those are some just baseline exercises that we do here and the greatest things about any of these exercises is that there’s ways to progress them. There’s ways to add intensity and they’re fun. They’re fun. They’re things – some of them you can do on your own and so you’ll take those home and work on them all the time, but for the most part, they’re going to be the best exercises for you to get better in your golf game, not to mention we have this simulator available all the time.
So, you can come in check out your posture, check out your arm control, and check out the finish. So, those are basically the basic concepts.