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How good is your balance? Take this test

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In your golf swing, maintaining your balance is often the difference between consistency or lack of it. If you are able to maintain good balance, you will have a better chance of being able to make an efficient swing where you can transfer energy more efficiently throughout your body’s different segments. That will help you to generate more speed and more distance.

The bottom line is that without good balance, golfers are relying on compensations from coordination… and a little bit of luck. So the question is, do you feel lucky (punk) or are you going to do something to improve your odds?

Balance is more than a necessary fundamental in our golf swing; it’s a necessary fundamental in life, too. We don’t usually take into consideration that balance is a gift we have earned through evolution, as well as one we have spent our whole lives mastering. What is given can be taken away, however, which means our balance can only be improved or maintained through continual development from challenging it on a regular basis. Routines that aren’t challenging us to maintain our balance will eventually cause it to diminish.

There are three things that we have acquired through evolution that allows us to maintain good balance: our vision, the vestibular system (between our ears), and proprioception. Proprioception is our sense of touch that sends a signal to our brain allowing us to know where we are in space during any given movement. During the golf swing, we use our proprioception sensory receptors located throughout our body to send impulses to our brain to help maintain balance and coordinate a stable movement. We tend to lose our ability to maintain good balance through our adult lifestyles and the aging process, however, which can leave us in a bit of a predicament when we need to rely on our ability to maintain good balance in our golf swing.

In the video below, I share with you a simple test that challenges you to look at just how good your balance is. It also give you some exercises to help you regain good balance if you are lacking the ability to maintain it.

Now that you have tested yourself, how did it go? Was your balance poor? Don’t panic if your balance stinks, because the beautiful thing is that you now have the ability to improve it.

The great thing about finding your weaknesses is that you now know what you have to do to improve, as opposed to wandering around hopelessly unaware that you have poor proprioception. This is great news, but regaining your skills to maintain good balance won’t happen right away. There is no magic snapping of the fingers that will improve your ability to maintain good balance — only good old-fashioned practice.

The two exercises in this video will challenge your balance and help you to regain it, though you have to do them regularly, which means a minimum of three times a week if you want to see any significant improvement. There are actually studies that strongly suggest that for every decade you have lived, you should be challenging your body in all ranges of movement at least once a week. That means, if you are in your 30’s, then three times a week is good. If you’re in your 60’s, though… well, I think you get the picture.

As an added bonus to regaining and training good balance again, you will be regaining improved muscle activation so that you can re-learn how to fire the correct muscles to create stability. In doing so, you will be opening up a whole new cabinet of possibilities such as improved movement and potential power, not to mention reduced chances for injury.

If you’re fighting yourself to maintain your balance, then I guarantee that you are perhaps unknowingly fighting yourself to improve your golf game. And I know that you don’t want to be doing that… I mean, who doesn’t want to improve their game, right? Improving your balance is going to help. You’ll have one less thing to try and coordinate in an already challenging sport.

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Adam is a PGA Professional and TPI Certified Fitness and Medical Coach. He enjoys working with golfers of all ages and levels of expertise, and his approach is to look at every golfer as an individual to try to help them achieve their goals as effectively and efficiently as possible. He is also the author of two books: The Golfers Handbook - Save your golf game and your life! (available on iTunes and Amazon) And his new book, My Mind Body Golf Please visit the links below to find out more about Adams books. http://mymindbodygolf.weebly.com http://www.golfers-handbook.com "The golf swing may be built from the ground up, but the game of golf is built from the head down" - My Mind Body Golf Aside being an author, Adam is also a public speaker, doing workshops and lectures introducing concepts of athletic movement for golfers of all ages and levels of expertise.

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Ken Kohl

    Apr 30, 2018 at 8:01 pm

    Good article, thanks for the drills.

  2. Bob Jones

    Apr 30, 2018 at 5:02 pm

    Especially if you’re somewhat over 50, when balance can no longer be taken for granted.

  3. N

    Apr 30, 2018 at 4:49 pm

    What defines “losing balance” in this situation? Is it wobbling on one leg with your eyes closed, or is it having to put your other leg down as you have lost all balance?

  4. ogo

    Apr 29, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    If there is 70 pounds of blubber hanging down in front of you forget balancing on one foot and then the other during the golfswing. Obese men with a pot belly should not be allowed to set foot on a golf course because it could be injurious to their decrepit health. It’s okay to buy PWG clubs, but stay home and don’t make a fool of yourself swinging like a pregnant duck.

    • Jalan

      Apr 29, 2018 at 10:31 pm

      Tell that to Craig Stadler, John Daly, even Jason Dufner. Challenge them in a round of golf, and my money is on them.

  5. S

    Apr 29, 2018 at 2:58 pm

    Smash it and fall back. No need for balance

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Improvement happens when our current skillset is challenged to adapt and expand to a new level. So, in order to improve, we need to learn to embrace the challenges that will lead us down the path of improvement.

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