Stroke Saver: Seven Key Stretches
Get limber for better golf
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6. WARRIOR POSE A great stretch for improving your balance is the warrior pose. The goal is to keep your body in one powerful line, with no break at the waist as you move through the pose. Visualize a see-saw, one straight line, if you will. As you bring your club over your head, engage the core of your body for better balance. As you begin to lift the right leg, the upper body lowers. At the pinnacle of the pose, your body looks like the letter "T". Repeat five times, then switch sides. You'll quickly improve your balance and strengthen your lower body.
As a golf fitness professional, my goal for my clients is performance-based, but the ultimate goal is the balance of flexibility and strength so my clients can play the game for a long time. Play better, play longer, play injury-free, and enjoy the game more—that's my motto!
This series of stretches, exercises and poses targets flexibility and strength in various planes of motion.
Here are three guidelines for success:
1. Focus on your breathing. Practice long deep breaths in and out through the nose, even when working your strengthening poses. Move dynamically in each pose, inhaling and exhaling in each direction for 10 repetitions, then switch sides.
2. Pay attention to the subtle details of the pose. For example, if you slightly pull your navel toward your spine before you begin each exercise, you stabilize the torso and activate a deep power source.
3. Adherence over duration is the key. Practice this sequence every other day for four weeks. Stay with it! You'll experience change even with the simplest effort.
Katherine Roberts is the producer of seven DVDs and author of the groundbreaking book, Yoga for Golfers. To learn more about Katherine and her fitness system for better golf, visit yogaforgolfers.com.
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