Lower Body Stability Exercises for the Golf Player
by Jacqueline Birdsall, DPT, TPI and Chelsea Ortega, DPT, SCS, CSCS
Stability allows you to maintain a position of the body while another force (external or internal) is being applied to the body. It is a combination of balance, strength and endurance. This is important for the golf swing because certain parts of the body must maintain a specific position while other parts of the body are going through large ranges of motion. Lower body stability is important for the golf swing specifically because much of the power of your swing generates from the lower body. Foxworth in 2013 found that “hip torques are positively associated with club-head velocity in all planes.” Further balance of the lower quarter is essential to maintain your position over the ball. The following exercises will help improve the stability of your lower extremities, hips and core.
Single Leg Bridge (2 sets x 12 reps each side)
Begin by lying on your back with knees bent, both feet flat on the floor and arms straight above you with hands clasped. Lift one foot off the floor and straighten the knee. With one leg, raise your hips off the ground by squeezing your gluteal muscles. Attempt to bring the hips up to where they are in line between the knees and shoulders. Keep your pelvis level.
Side Lying to Side Plank Clam (2 sets x 12 reps each)
Begin lying on your side with your knees bent and your hips and feet stacked. Push through your elbow and knees to lift your hips off the floor and try to maintain a neutral spine. Lift your upper knee towards the ceiling while keeping your feet together. Slowly lower back to starting position. Do not let your hips rock backward.
Single Leg Dynamic Balance w/ Torso Rotation (2 sets x 30”)
Start in 5 iron posture. Lift one leg by bending your knee. With a golf club across the back of your shoulders rotate your torso through your back swing and your down swing.
Reverse Lunge Rotational Plate Press (2 sets x 12 reps each side)
Begin by standing with a plate in your hands. Step back into a reverse lunge, rotate your trunk toward the side of the forward leg and press the plate out with elbows extended. Return to starting position by bringing the plate in, rotating your torso back to neutral and stepping back to standing. Repeat on opposite side.
Please let us know if you have questions or would like to schedule an appointment with a physical therapist to discuss any pain or inconsistency performing stability exercises.