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Golf: The fundamentals of movement

Austin's
Movement is a skill and skill is the key component to strength.  If you learn to move well, you will build functional strength.  If you spend time trying to get stronger and ignore movement, you will likely get functionally weaker and be prone to hurting yourself.

Golf is a game about finely controlled movement and cognitive management; two things that elude and frustrate people their whole lives, which is why golf can be so addictive.  How a person approaches a golf game reflects a lot about their personality and their physical body, and both factors tend to contribute to their consistency, power, form and ultimately the number on the scorecard after 18 holes.  It also has a lot to do with how sore they may be during or after a round.

Rotation is the obvious movement pattern that golfers need to master, but it is only one of three movement planes that exist in the golf swing and it is by far the most complex.  It is a mistake to try and address anything to do with rotation until you learn how to move in the forward-back and side-to-side planes first.  I tell my clients that they need to earn the right to rotate by first learning to squat properly and load their legs well.  You would be surprised just how poorly most people bend or squat down, but it is a key part of the address position in a golf swing.

Step 1: Learn where your hips actually are (see video playlist at bottom of post):
–    4 Point Neutral Spine Video
–    4 Point Rock backs Video

In order for your trunk to be able to rotate properly, you need the muscles in your back to be reasonably relaxed because they need to lengthen as your body turns.  The way most people bend or squat ends up creating way too much tension in their back and butt to allow them to freely rotate their trunk. 

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WTH Step 1: Awareness & Mobility Exercises

I have broken the exercise videos on this site into a 3-Step Program for you that will start by building awareness and mobility in your body, progress to higher level movement patterns and finally help you build functional strength and power without hurting yourself.  Most of the exercises can be done at home with very little equipment.

*The following is a suggested order to progress through the movements, but is not all encompassing.

WTH Step 1: Awareness & Mobility

You can search these videos under the Video Library tab
1.    WTH Step 1: a video summary of the exercises below (same as YouTube above)
2.    4 point neutral spine
3.    4 point rock backs
4.    Breathing as an exercise
5.    Rib shimmy
6.    Bridges
7.    Kneeling squats
8.    Vacuums: introduction to strong core
9.    Weight bearing tripod
10.  Ankle skewer + forward lean
11.  Standing squats
12.  Thirsty Birds
13.  Reaching up 11
14.  Air Bench Press
15.  Counter Top push ups
16.  How to Sit & How to Stand
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