If I told you that devoting 15 minutes, three times per week, to an exercise program performed from home with no equipment could significantly increase your distance and help you play better golf, would you be interested?

The five exercises provided here can be done at home with just a golf club. They work on a combination of mobility, stability, and strength, all vital for a powerful efficient golf swing. As an added bonus, they can easily done as a warm-up before practice or play.

To start working on your golfing body, perform the following circuit for:

  • 1-3 rounds
  • 5-10 reps each exercise
  • 3 times per week

1. Pelvic Rotations

Pelvic rotations are a great way to work on the ability to separate the rotation of the lower and upper body during the swing, which is important for correct sequencing and power production. They also work on hip mobility. Pressing the hands down through the golf club makes it easier to keep the upper half still while the pelvis rotates.

2. Half-Kneeling Thoracic Rotation

Half-kneeling thoracic rotations also work on separation, but in the opposite fashion. The lower half stays stable, and rotation comes from the thoracic spine (mid back). Thoracic rotation is essential for an adequate shoulder turn. The half-kneeling position will limit how much we can “cheat” with our hips, while also challenging stability of the trunk and hips.

3. Hip Hinge

The hinge is a great posture assessment tool and can teach people how to hinge from their hips, rather than rounding or flexing from their lower back. This is important for our address position in golf and many exercises in the gym, especially deadlift variations, which are an excellent addition to a more comprehensive program down the road. The golf club must remain in contact with your tailbone, between your shoulder blades, and if possible, the back of your head. Maintain a slight knee flex, and note how the movement is a hinge at the hips, not a squat.

4. Split Squat With Rotation

Split squats with rotation work on lower body strength and stability in beginner trainees, and they may also help with mobility in the hips and thoracic spine. A strong, stable lower body is commonplace in big hitters, but it’s often lacking in amateurs/physically weaker players. Lower yourself as far as you can under control, ideally hovering the knee of the rear leg just off the floor while keeping the heel of the front foot glued to the floor. Most people cannot lower all the way at first, so go to wherever is manageable for now and aim to get lower over time.

5. Plank With Shoulder Tap

These are a more difficult variation of the very popular front-plank exercise, and they also add an extra stability component for the trunk and core. It’s a great exercise to train trunk and shoulder stability.

The goal is to maintain strict alignment from your ankles to your ears and resist any rotation of the hips as you raise your hand to tap the opposite shoulder. Imagine a glass of water resting on your lower back, which you don’t want to spill. If you find this too difficult at first, try elevating your hands onto a bench or step.

If you liked what you saw in this article and want a much more in-depth, golf-specific strength-and-conditioning program, you can check out the Fit For Golf Online Training Programs. GolfWRX readers can avail of 20% off by entering golfwrx20 in the coupon bar at checkout. Please feel free to comment, get in touch with me via e-mail, and share with anyone who may be interested. 

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Mike Carroll is a Strength & Conditioning Coach specialising in the physical training of golfers. He combines his scientific background with real world experience to provide effective solutions for golfers who require improved physical function to enable better play.
Having worked with athletes from a wide variety of sports since 2011, Mike turned his attention to golfers exclusively in 2013. While playing himself, and following the professional game he noticed there was huge potential for golfers of all levels to improve their performance by getting their bodies in a state more optimal for the demands of golf. Since then he was worked with hundreds of golfers from all over the world, both in person and online.
Mike is originally from Cork, Ireland, but currently based in Irvine, California. He is available for in person and online training services and can be contacted by via his website www.fitforgolf.blog
He has a BSc in Sport & Exercise Science, UK Strength & Conditioning Association Accreditation, and TPI Level 2 Certified Golf Fitness Professional.

8 COMMENTS

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    • Hey John,

      Thanks for your input, no reason for a plank to damage your elbows if you start at the appropriate difficulty level. If your elbows hurt during them try elevating your hands onto a bench or some steps as suggested in the article. There is lots of of people 50+ doing planks without any elbow damage. If planks do bother your elbows there are lots of similar exercises you can try.

      Regards,
      Mike

    • Hi Acew7iron,

      If you have issues with your knees there are many variations of the exercises shown here which may be of benefit to you. Step-ups are often less stressful for people who have knee issues compared to lunges. Also, by doing the lunges through a partial range of motion that isn’t painful you should get benefit also. In time you may be able to increase the range of motion.

    • Hey Old Slim.

      Yes I absolutely recommend these exercises to to a “‘golfer’ who has 50# of belly hanging over their belt buckle plus mantits”.

      The exercises may need to be modified to easier variations, and a change in nutrition may also be valuable.

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