START THE WEEK RIGHT: The most important piece of golf equipment is your body |  health and fitness

Every year, as new lines of drivers, irons, wedges, putters and balls are launched, golfers flock to the stores to purchase the latest and greatest pieces of equipment. While this gear can help you gain 5-10 yards on full swing shots, forget about the most important piece of gear that can help you gain 30-50 yards – your body.

Today’s tour professionals not only have a high level of skill and tact with swing and short game, but are also strong, fast and flexible athletes. This has forced golf equipment manufacturers to develop technology to keep up with the increasing skills of the world’s best golfers.

There are endless ways to swing a golf club, but based on data drawn from motion capture analysis of past and current rotary athletes, there is only one efficient sequence that anyone can swing.

This is called a “kinematic sequence”. It is the progression of energy generation from the lower body first, the chest second, the arms third, and the club last. It’s amazing that all big ball clubs have different types of golf swings, but they all generate speed throughout their body in the same way. The average golfer will have one or more of the sequenced areas out of position resulting in having to manipulate the club awkwardly to touch the ball. These mechanical inefficiencies lead to common swing characteristics that produce inconsistent, inaccurate and weaker golf swings with the possibility of painful injuries.

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Using motion capture analysis can help identify movement patterns, including deficiencies in mobility (ability to move through a range of motion) or stability (ability to secure body segments against external forces). Any deficiency leads to compensation and dysfunctions that lead to inefficiencies and injuries. Changes in movement pattern are also great predictors of common swing errors, so errors can be predicted from screening without even seeing a player’s swing. The remedy is to remove the physical limitations if possible, resulting in correction of the inefficient golf swing.

Golf professionals are wonderful at identifying mechanics and drills to correct a golf swing, but may not have enough knowledge of the body to identify or correct physical limitations. Here golf, health and fitness professionals can work together as a team. Doctors will work with the golfer to establish a good foundation of movement patterns. This allows the golf pro to be more successful in implementing efficient swing mechanics with fewer constraints to work around. The golfer’s capacity for strength and endurance can also be increased with training from a fitness professional who can help them gain speed and energy.

If you are interested in improving your golf game by improving your physique, find the right professional for you in the area of ​​your game you want to improve. A good place to start would be to find a Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) certified professional. TPI is the world leader in research and data on golf fitness, health and swing biomechanics. The certification shows the professional has reached a level of golf fitness expertise that is second to none. That’s why 18 of the last 20 great champions and 25 of the top 30 golfers in the world are advised by a TPI-certified expert.

dr Casey Buns is an Associate Physician at Palmer Chiropractic Clinics in Davenport, Iowa and has held Advanced Medical Certification from the Titleist Performance Institute since 2012.

The Palmer Chiropractic Clinics network performs more than 170,000 patient visits each year. Learn more or schedule an appointment at www.palmer.edu/clinics.

The Palmer Chiropractic Clinics network performs more than 170,000 patient visits each year. Learn more or schedule an appointment at www.palmer.edu/clinics.

Sources: O’Sullivan PB, Caneiro J, O’Sullivan K, et al Back to basics: 10 facts everyone should know about back pain British Journal of Sports Medicine 2020;54:698-699.