Examine the Core of Your Golf Swing
How many times have you asked yourself, "Why can't I be more consistent with my ball striking?". One key to ball striking consistency is maintaining a constant spine angle (the forward tilt of the spine) throughout the golf swing with your postural muscles. How does one maintain a constant spine angle? The answer is related to a recent buzz phrase in the golf fitness industry called "Core Conditioning". "Core" is defined as the innermost part of an object. Strengthening the deep muscles in your torso will improve your body's ability to maintain the correct spine angle or posture, and improve your ball striking consistency.
Do you build the walls and roof of a structure before you lay the foundation? The core is the body's source of strength much like the foundation of a house. The core is also the connection between the upper and lower body. A weak core can disrupt purposeful movement of the extremities and increases the risk of injury and strain throughout any part of the body. Simply put, to improve the accuracy of the club head's delivery to the ball and to prevent injuries you must have strength and stability in your torso.
Stability in the torso comes only from sufficient core strength. This starts by strengthening the deep abdominal wall. The abdominal wall is made up of four muscle groups from innermost to outermost: the transverse abdominis, the internal obliques, the external obliques, and the rectus abdominis. The innermost muscles, the transverse abdominis and the obliques, provide most of the stability for the torso with the rotational movements that occur during the golf swing. Ironically, when most people exercise the abdominals, they perform some form of sit-up or curl. This form of exercise concentrates on the outermost muscle, the rectus abdominis, which provides the least amount of golf-specific torso stability.
Margaret Bowers is the Director of Body Balance for Performance Petoskey.
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