Are you golf conditioned? Find out at Scottsdale's Boulders Resort
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Are you golf conditioned?
“Sure, I can put back six beers and still drill a five-footer to win the match,” you reply.
No, that’s not what I mean. Golf conditioning is about getting your body in shape to perform through a full 18 holes, and it’s harder than it sounds.
At the Boulders Resort in north Scottsdale, I took part in the Golden Door Spa’s Golf Conditioning class. It’s free to resort guests and led by LPGA professional and teaching instructor at the Boulders, Judy Roer.
Her session consists of 50 minutes of stretching and conditioning, mostly to the core and lower body. There’s no weights or cardio, just a variety of stretches and repetitions on an exercise ball or floor mat, intended to help flexibility and stabilization.
“Activate” is Judy’s word of the class: activating your core muscles so that your body is fully engaged throughout, or in her words “all the bulbs on the Christmas tree (your body’s muscles) light up.” Your core is the foundation for triggering the rest of your muscles to perform at their peak.
“When you look at professional athletes,” she said. Their cores are fully engaged and it makes their motion look effortless.”
During the session, much attention is paid to the hamstrings and gluteus muscles, which she believes to be the cause of up to 85 percent of people’s lower back pain, and is also the reason why golfers so often raise up out of a swing prematurely.
If you find yourself trying to balance on the ball in a position and your body starts shaking like a dog at a firework’s show, your core isn’t activated - and your body can’t perform at its peak.
Roer says her students who come to the class regularly increase their flexibility and have stable, activated cores, even when the average age for a member at Boulders is about 74.
What’s unique about Roer’s position is that she’s both a teaching instructor at the golf club as well as in the gym. She points out that usually she can tell what’s going to go wrong on the golf course by looking at how well someone is performing in her fitness class. Feasibly, you could participate in her conditioning class, then see her later for a golf lesson - and how often does your teacher know just how golf conditioned you are?
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