This article is part of guest series to the RecruitPKB “Complete Golfer” program by Chris Finn, owner of Par4Success in Cary, North Carolina.
RecruitPKB Perform: Warm-up For Injury Free Power
With the season underway I have been getting a lot of questions in the past month about what my juniors can do to increase their distance in the short term while their strength is improving over the long term. I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to answer the loaded question with one of the many options as my response is usually, “Well, it depends.”
There was a study done recently that looked at the effects of how golfers warmed up and what effect that had on their power output, if any. The study started by having everyone go out and hit golf balls without a warm up and their performance was measured. The next day, the group was broken up into two with half just doing static stretching prior to hitting (holding stretches for 20-30 seconds and nothing more) while the other group foam rolled, then stretched and then completed a dynamic warm up prior to hitting. The results were pretty cool.
The group who just stretched actually saw a 5% decrease in power while the other group who additionally foam rolled and dynamically warmed up saw a 6% increase in power. What does this mean?
The researchers found, as many others have in other sporting realms, that if an athlete only stretches that their muscles actually lengthens beyond the ideal strength/tension relationship and they experience a power output loss along with an increase in injury likelihood during explosive activities.
This is why it is important to warm up prior to playing or practicing correctly. You can actually improve your power on the first tee in less than 5 minutes by over 6% while also reducing your injury risk! So what are the warm up steps?
- Foam Roll
- Dynamic Warmup
Below is a link to our standard 5 minute dynamic warmup that we recommend to our students.