14 Sep Staying powerful over 40: Golf
Just because you’re 40 years of age or older, doesn’t mean “Junior” should necessarily be able to beat you off the tee. Or with longer iron shots.
A good exercise program can maintain your style of golf game, or even improve your current performance. Plus, it’s a well-known fact that exercise leads to a better experience in the second half of one’s life.
The first key to playing good golf is stretching. When stretching, it’s always better if you’ve warmed up with some walking, a bike ride or some light jogging before you stretch.
Special areas to focus on for golfers are their shoulders, lower back, abs and legs.
After a good stretch, here are some key fitness training tips to help you be THAT GUY, who people at work or at the club are raving about. Usually two or three sets are recommended; with between 12-20 reps. You’re going more for strong, lean muscle than pure bulk like a power lifter.
As golfers get older, a common problem is shoulder strains, especially on the lead side of your swing. You need to stretch your shoulders well and do the following lifts to ensure strength.
* Start with light weights to stretch rotator cuff and other shoulder muscles by doing alternate front dumbbell raises and lateral dumbbell raises.
* To add power, heavier weights may be used for seated dumbbell presses and bent-over lateral raises.
Nothing will bring your game down quicker than a bad back. Your back is involved in nearly every part of the swing
* Seated row is one of my favorite lifts there is and great for golfers. Sit upright, keep your shoulders back and pull the cable handle toward you.
* Lat pull downs are another great exercise. While seated upright, I prefer to do them by pulling the machine bar in front down to my chest.
You’re not going to do much in any sport without a solid base.
As we get older, stretching is extremely important to avoid pulled muscles, especially in the legs. Jogging or bike riding is great, or swim laps in the pool to also work the legs.
* In the weight room, leg extensions and leg curls combined with calf raises will hit all the basics.
* Many experts say if you do just one weight exercise, squats are the best. Don’t do them, though, unless you know exactly what you’re doing or have a to trainer offer tips. Also, while squats really take energy, don’t do them if they’re hurting your knees or back.
* A few years ago I started doing sit-ups on an exercise ball and I’ve gotten better results than ever that way. A good core makes the whole body feel better.
I also enjoy them, which wasn’t the case doing old methods such as lying on the floor — Mr. Hanlon gym class style — or with my feet up on a chair or bench. Exercise balls are really great to incorporate into your workout for other lifts, too.
Follow these tips and you just might be shooting 40 or under scores for nine holes, instead of lamenting that your game went south at age 40.