I constantly have students ask what exercises they can do to gain more flexibility and mobility. What is the difference between flexibility and mobility? Flexibility is the ability of a muscle or muscle groups to lengthen without resistance during a range of motion while mobility is the ability to move actively during a range of motion. With this being said, flexibility, mobility and stability are a must to not only improve the mechanics of your swing, but also to create power and speed to gain distance. I have demonstrated several exercises below that will help create more of all three and undoubtedly improve your swing, as well as your overall game.
Get on your hands and knees, placing one hand behind your head. From here, rotate your elbow up toward the sky, letting your head follow until you feel a stretch in your armpit, inside of your arm or lat. Once you feel the stretch, hold that position for three seconds, repeating several times, then switch sides. If you struggle with a reverse spine angle at the top of your backswing, early extension in the downswing or not enough rotation on your backswing/follow through, it could be from your thoracic spine being too tight. This exercise helps gain flexibility and mobility in the thoracic spine.
Lay in the fetal position with your arms straight in front of you, holding one end of the resistance band in each hand. From here, your top arm will pull the resistance band up toward the sky and across your chest as far as you can, letting your eyes follow the hand pulling the resistance band. You should feel a stretch in your inner arms. When you feel the stretch, hold that position for three seconds, then repeat several times and switch sides. This exercise helps gain more flexibility and mobility in your backswing and follow through.
Get in your golf setup position and place a golf club across your shoulders, then rotate your shoulders back and through without letting your lower body move. The band around my legs ensures there is no lower body movement. You can place a resistance band around your legs or a ball between your legs, pressing into the ball to help ensure you are only using your upper body.
Get in your golf setup position and place your club in front of you; practice rotating your hips without moving your shoulders. It is important your shoulders stay in the same position from start to finish. This exercise teaches your body to isolate your upper and lower body, which helps gain speed and distance.
Any one of these exercises will help with your flexibility, mobility and stability. Work to incorporate all of them into your regular routine and you are really going to see a vast improvement in not only your golf game, but your overall well-being.
Kirsten Pike is the lead Teaching Professional at Las Colinas Country Club. To improve your scores follow her on Instagram at kirstenpike_golfinstruction and visit kpikegolf.wixsite.com