As the grass begins to green up and the temperatures begin to warm up, lots of folks' thoughts begin to turn to golf.
But after the long, cold, snowy, dark winter we had, it's important to make sure your body is ready for that exercise!
We asked Greg Drab, co-owner of Advantage Personal Training in Old Mystic and Niantic, for some easy exercises you can do at home or at the gym, with minimal equipment, to make sure your transition back to golf is a smooth one.
"The golf swing is a ballistic motion," said Drab. "It's a fast motion, with a lot of force and power. You can't do nothing for five or six months and then go right to a hard swing. With any rotational sport like golf or tennis, you need to warm up and do flexibility and mobility exercises before starting."
There are five exercises demonstrated in the video (thank you to Advantage trainer Mike Tansey for being our model). Drab chose them because they help flexibility, mobility, balance, and core strength, all elements of golf.
Stonington golfers are lucky to have two great public courses in town: Elmridge Golf course, which opened on March 15; and Pequot Golf Club, which opened March 18.
They are explained here in the order they are shown on the video.
1. Seated Torso Rotation
You can do this exercise as shown in the video or, if you can't sit on the floor, seated on a table or chair (your feet need to be off the ground).
This exercise focuses on the thoracic spine (upper torso) and will improve your mobility for your golf swing.
2. Single Leg Romanian Dead Lift
The exercise improves balance, flexibility and strengthens the back and hamstring muscles.
3. Stability Ball Press Out
This exercise works the muscles in the front of the core. Drab says that during the golf swing, the more stable that the core and spine are, the more power you can bring to the swing.
4. Pallof Press
This exercise creates core 'stiffness', which allows the bosy to exert more force when rotating through the golf swing.
5. Kneeling Medicine Ball Side Toss
If you cannot kneel, this exercise can be done standing.
The rotation of this exercise and the addition of the ball prepares the spine for the golf swing and will add power to your rotation.