Improving Your Golf Swing Through Pilates
Dust off the bag of clubs from the garage and unearth those spiked sneakers from the closet: golf season has finally returned.
Every golfer on the green, regardless of their level, is looking to up their game. And the number one way to further your distance and accuracy is to increase your body core strength and flexibility.
This is the reason why, every year, more professional and amateur golfers are turning to Pilates for the explicit purpose of enhancing their golf performance.
Since Pilates works to strengthen the core of your body—your deep abs, shoulders, and pelvis—it increases your range and your mobility. To a golfer, these benefits translate into more powerful and more accurate golf swings. When your core is strong, you are able to keep your lower body stable during your backswing. When your trunk and shoulders start to falter, you’re likely to overcompensate with your arms, which is the number one route to that frustrating slice. Pilates can help ensure that your rotation will be balanced and aligned, and with a greater power in your hip turn, even at the 18th hole.
If you’re still unconvinced of how Pilates can help your golf swing, try this experiment right now: hold your arms out in front of you, as if you’re holding a golf club on either end. Slowly turn to the right, and then to the left, and then back to center.
Now, SIT UP AS STRAIGHT AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN. Try the exercise again. The average person is likely to have increased their rotation range at least 8-10 degrees. Pilates helps to build the muscles you need to maintain that straight-as-a-tree-trunk posture (without having to think about it). And with greater strength and flexibility, comes greater stamina. (Ever wonder why your slice might return at the end of the course? The strength that you had at the beginning of a round might wane, thus affecting your rotation and, consequently, your swing.)
Plus, since Pilates workouts are low-impact (read: easy on the joints), its strengthening benefits not only boost your stamina, but also decrease your risk of injury, particularly in the injury-prone lower back. While millions of golfers likely agree there are few things in life better than a great golf game, surely among them is the gloriousness of the pain-free golf game.