Many recreational players attempt to generate power with their arms. However, the majority of your strength comes from your body. Therefore, focus on generating a strong core to avoid injury and hit farther and more consistent golf shots. The following exercises are convenient to build a solid core in your own home. The only equipment needed is a stability ball that costs around $15.00.
Core Muscle Group
Many people consider the abs as the only core muscle. In fact, it takes more than just abdominal crunches to improve your core. The core muscle group actually consists of different muscles that help stabilize the spine and pelvis. The core muscle group will stretch the entire length of the torso. The core creates a solid base of support and protects the back from injury. A strong core reduces back pain, improves athletic performance and improves postural imbalances.
Crunches are probably the most widely recognized abdominal exercise. Performing the Abdominal Crunch incorrectly can create an ineffective exercise and back problems. Begin by lying on your back and bend your knees. Keep your feet flat on the ground. Place your hands behind your head or across your chest. Pull your belly button toward your spine while you keep your lower back flat on the floor. Contract your abdominal muscles while your shoulders raise approximately two inches off the ground. Hold the movement for a few seconds and return back to the original position.
There are many additional movements that make the Abdominal Crunch into a more advanced exercise. For example, a Full Body Crunch involves bringing your knees up while your shoulders lift off the ground.
Begin by lying face down on the floor with your arms stretched above your head. Raise your arms and feet approximately 6 inches off the ground and hold the stretch. The Superman stretch will strengthen muscles in the back, shoulders, hips, glutes and hamstring.
Seated Medicine Ball Rotation
The Seated Medicine Ball Rotation focuses on the arms and abs. Sit on a chair with your feet shoulder width apart. Hold a weighted medicine ball close to your with both of your elbows bent. Rotate the ball from side to side while you keep your lower body still.
Side Lunge with Rotation
The Side Lunge Rotation focuses on the abs, butt, legs, arms and chest. Stand with your feet spread apart and hold a dumbbell in each hand. The dumbbell should be at chest level with your palms facing each other. Your elbows should remain bent and pointing behind you. Bend your right knee and lower into a side lunge while you reach your left hand toward the right foot. Return back up, turn to the left and extend your right arm across your body while your left arm returns to your side with your palm facing up. Repeat the exercise with the other arm.
Stability Ball Rotation
The Stability Ball Rotation specifically targets the abs. Begin by sitting on a stability ball and hold a dumbbell vertically in both hands. Position your feet far enough out so your back is supported on the ball. Your feet should be flat on the floor with both knees bent over your ankles. Your shoulders and butt should be resting on the ball. Hold the dumbbell over your chest with your arms extended and elbows slightly bent. Align your head and neck straight with your spine. Contract your abs bringing your spine to a neutral position. Keep your shoulders and hips square and rotate your torso as you move the dumbbell to your left. Return to your start position and rotate to the right.
Matt Keller, PGA