One of the most overlooked facts about golf is that most people believe it’s physically not intensive enough that you need to warm up before practicing/playing.
Actually the opposite is true, a golf swing requires proper functioning of your spine, lower body, shoulders, and the rest of the body.
I probably overlooked this fact too that I didn’t mention it so far on this golf blog but before any golf practice/play, I do a proper warm up for my body by swinging 2-clubs and stretching.
This is simple and common sense for those of you who have played golf for a long time but most amateurs do not warm up before practicing/playing golf.
Especially on cold days if you don’t warm up and stretch beforehand, you have more chances of injuring your lower back, which is critical for good golf.
So, here’s few warm up/stretching exercises you can do (that I do) before hitting any golf shots:
- Get 2 of your heaviest clubs (for me it’s my lob and sand wedge) and start swinging very very slowly about 10-20 times until you can feel your body warm a bit.
- Next, you can do a bit of stretching. First, I try touching my toes with my hands while standing up. This gets you whole body and hamstrings stretched out well.
- Then, I will do some lateral rotations to stretch my spine, do like 5-10 of these. When I do these, I usually hear some nice pops/cracks, which feels good and also prevents your muscles from hardening during practice/play.
- Also do some more leg stretching such as holding one of you foot behind you and standing with one leg.
These are just couple warm up/stretching exercises you can do but do them and I assure you, your back will thank you for it.
And one more thought, DON’T SWING THE DRIVER right away!
I usually start with small 50 to 75 yard pitch shots before moving up to full shots and the woods. If you start with the driver, I guarantee you that you are going to ruin your swing.
Of course, that’s for practice. If you are playing, just really try to get yourself warmed up on the practice tee beforehand.
P.S. Even better, if you have a practice green near where you practice shots, try hitting putts/chips before moving to the range. This will help you maintain a good, soft rhythm that will carry to your full shots.
I’ve seen a handful of great players who do this, start with short shots and gradually move up to longer shots. And they have great rhythm.