2 Things Science Tells us About Improving Your Golf
1. Warm-ups can increase your club head speed
It is possible to improve club head speed through a simple warm-up. That is the finding of a study conducted recently by a group of scientists.
The authors showed how engaging in a vigorous warm-up 5 times a week for 5 weeks before golfing will improve club head speed.
The golfers in this study were relatively inexperienced with a mean handicap of 19.8. The improvements in club head speed went from approximately 140 k/hr to an astonishing 178 k/hr. While they did not measure driving distance, it can be assumed that this also increased dramatically.
It is also likely that the exercises contributed to a better X-factor and sequential rotation during the down swing.
Thus, the muscles that were required to complete the swing were literally warmed-up or activated in a better sequence. Start with a good warm-up, that is the clear message from this study.
The results of this study reinforce what we have known for some time, a thorough warm-up is essential and should form part of all golfers pre-practice and pre-match routines.
2. Strength training can increase club head speed and driving distances in quality golfers
Recent studies confirm what we have known for decades – strength training improves golf performance. Another study showed how good club golfers with a mean handicap of 5.5 could improve their club head velocity from 180 k/hr to 182.6 k/hr through a programme of strength training.
The programme involved 2 units of training each week for 8 weeks. While the change in club head velocity was only 1.5%, this resulted in a 4.3% driving distance improvement.
Yes these golfers were considered good but were not physically trained.
The results of these two studies indicate that if you have not undertaken a physical training programme then you can increase your club head speed dramatically by doing some simple conditioning exercises. The exercises can be as simple as warm-up type exercises that activate the key muscles of the body.
Scientists have shown that you can increase strength and power after just one training session. The reason – you become better instantly at recruiting and organising the firing and sequencing of your muscles.
This explains why a warm-up can be an effective method of instantly improving.