Stepping up to the first tee, there are a million things running through a golfer’s head — technique, club speed, sand traps and water hazards. And as golfers age, there might be a few other things going through their head — back pain, a restricted backswing, a shorter drive. There is one thought that isn’t likely going through a golfer’s head but should be — flexibility.
Flexibility is key to a successful golf swing and essential to keeping folks on the golf course as they age. According to PGA Golfer, Charlie Lostracco, golfers “have to maintain a rigorous golf training program to gain the required strength and flexibility to perform well. A regular golf stretching routine enables players to acquire skill, follow good technique and focus better.”
Lostracco suggests that a regular stretching routine can loosen muscles, which helps a player relax and improve accuracy. It also increases range of motion for a more fluid and faster golf swing. Finally, it helps to prevent injuries on the course from strained necks and backs.
As people age, they begin to lose their range of motion. It can show up when playing with their grandchildren, exercising or playing 18 holes.
“Range of motion is key to a successful and prolonged golf game,” says Luke McClellan, general manager at StretchLab in Greenville. “A healthy and consistent stretching routine reduces recovery time between rounds of golf and eliminates lactic acid buildup from repetitive motion.”
At StretchLab, trained flexologists provide guided stretching routines that meet the specific needs of each member — including golf-specific stretches. McClellan estimates about 1/4 of the members at StretchLab are golfers.
“These are people who want to improve their golf game and just be able to play the game for longer.”
Whether it’s reducing pain and recovery time or lowering your score, stretching should be a part of every golfer’s preparation.