How much impact does a proper warm up routine have on your score?Jan 13
Seeing players on professional tours spending an hour plus warming up before their round is not just a marketing ploy in order to sell more range balls worldwide, they do it because warming up properly makes a massive difference to performance. You wouldn’t see a sprinter turn up to the blocks with no warm up and try to compete, similarly you wouldn’t see a professional football team walk straight onto the pitch with no warm up before the game. So why should golf be any different?
The vast majority of people believe that because golf is not a sport in which you get out of breath and sweat whilst participating in, you therefore do not need any kind of athletic conditioning to develop, improve or even play it. To be fair if you just looked at golf, at face appearance you would be forgiven for thinking that it is only a skill sport and that it takes minimal athletic ability to play. However golf is one of the few sports that utilises the full body in order to make a full swing, every part of the body from the feet to the hands is needed, and in good working order to be able to consistently hit good golf shots.
I will not sit here and argue that golf is not predominantly a skill sport, because the fact is, it is a skill sport. The skill of the sport is to get the head of the club to make contact with the golf ball, applying correct pressure, force and velocity at the correct angle, to apply the correct amount of force and spin to the ball in order for it to finish in the intended place.
This skill is reliant on the platform from which you are swinging being consistent, or in other words your body has to be the same every time, with the same amount of mobility at each joint, the same amount of stability at each joint and the same amount of power output through each joint. If this is not consistent then how can the skill of hitting a golf ball be accurately repeated?
I am not suggesting that you become a world class athlete to play 18 holes at the weekend, but instead you should look into how you warm up in order to get the most enjoyment out of your round (which lets face it is lowering your score and smashing drivers). If you think about when you hit your best shots or your purest strikes, it will in all likelihood be after around 50 balls on the practice ground or in the last 9 holes of a round. This is no coincidence, during these times you body has had enough time to reach its maximum mobility, stability and also had chance to adapt the skill of the golf swing to the changes in bodily environment, or proprioception for those of you who are into correct terminology. (I have to clarify that this is the maximum mobility, stability and proprioception levels for the current conditioning levels of the individual concerned).
With this in mind why would you not spend time warming up before your round, this does not necessarily have to be 1.5 hours on the range, chipping green and putting green, but instead could be a well structured warm up saving time.
At GML we find that spending 15-20mins performing your individualised stretches and trigger points (identified by downloading the app and taking the ball flight test), puts your body in a massively advantageous position to go out and perform. Spending the 15-20min stretching and mobilising your body gets your body to its maximum mobility and stability levels before you even hit balls, add to this 5-10mins of hitting balls in the net or on the practice ground and you will be at your body will be at its optimal level to perform.
This method works due to the stretching and mobilising placing the joints in a more optimised position, which makes the body stronger and allows it to perform the movements of the golf swing more freely, due to this you will need to hit less balls to gain proprioception of how strike the ball well. Along with this your body will be able to make a consistent move, or in other words the base from which you perform the skill of hitting the ball will be consistent.
When you then move to the course you will be ready to hit your best shots from hole number one.