During my time on the Senior PGA Tour, I noticed that the most successful golfers were those who possessed remarkable upper back flexibility (shoulder turn). Golfers who were not as fortunate, suffering from back pain or stiffness, compensated by overturning or excessively sliding their hips during the back swing.
Pain and stiffness between the shoulder blades is a common complaint among golfers. Consequently, the majority of questions I receive pertain to techniques to prevent or help alleviate back problems.
The following stretches should be performed before, during, and after your round. Each stretch should be maintained for 30 seconds while breathing normally.
Place the top of a golf club against the center of your chest so that it is perpendicular to your torso. Then extend both arms down the shaft, holding the club in place. Next, slowly rotate at the waist to one side, keeping your knees and hip still. Hold each turn for 30 seconds. Remember to maintain your arm extension and try not to rotate your hip unnecessarily.
Use your golf bag or other stable object that will allow you to bend at the waist so your torso is parallel to the ground. Contract your abdominal muscles as if you were pulling your bellybutton toward your spine. While maintaining this contraction, slowly push your chest toward the ground, feeling the stretch between your shoulder blades. Hold this position for 30 seconds, then slowly return to the start position, relaxing your abdominals.
Stand in front of and slightly to the left side of a ball washer. Hold on to the washer with an overhand grip, using your left arm. While maintaining a firm hold, bend your knees slightly and shift your weight to the left and back as if you were sitting. Maintain this postion for 30 seconds, feeling the stretch between your shoulder blades. Do the opposite for the right arm.
Stand at address with your arms crossed in front of your chest. Next, slowly rotate at the waist, keeping your knees and hip still, as if you were performing your back swing. Once you cannot rotate further, hold the position for 30 seconds and slowly return to the start position. Rotate in the opposite direction to develop balanced flexibility.
Performing these stretches consistently and properly should help alleviate back stiffness and pain. Any improvement in your game is strictly not coincidental.
WARNING! Please consult your physician before undertaking any stretching or exercise program. GolfProductNews.com disclaims any liability or loss in connection with the exercises and advice herein connected since not all exercises and advice are suitable for everyone.