This month I want to address torso rotation or lack off mobility on both sides of torso rotation. More often than not with some of our golfer, a right handed golfer has a greater ability to turn to the right side. Sometimes they lack the ability to turn an equal distance to the left. Left handed golfers are the opposites. Generally, they have a greater ability to turn to the left, but when going to the right, they have a tendency to get stuck. We are going to demonstrate a test that we use to determine how well a golfer moves side to side. Is there an imbalance? Can they move great to the trail side and do they have a hard time moving to the lead side? The next part of the test, we will hold the hips to see if we can still turn or even get greater rotation with the added stability. If so, that means that our golfer has the ability to get there, just not the stability to get there on their own. Our golfer just needs to learn the pattern of how well they can rotate side to side. It can serve you very well to have an equal amount of rotation to both sides with out the hips trying to move with your shoulders. So today, I will demonstrate three drills with a voice over to provide information on how to set up and what to be looking for if you are doing this on your own. Two of the drills will help you find the torso rotation and mobility so that you can see if you can get to both sides, and the third drill is how can we use the glutes to help with that torso rotations.
1st of 3 Drills to improve Torso Rotation for our Golfers and Other Rotational Athletes (Baseball, MMA, etc). Using a TRX suspension system and 4ft StickMobility stick to begin with a simple torso rotation warmup drill. Keep stable hips and legs then engage the core by applying pressure to the stick looped thru the TRX straps. Keep the pressure constant while rotating the torso side to side. Maintain head position to add in some cervical(neck) rotation. Explore how far can you rotate while maintaining stable hips, pressure on the stick and extended arms.
2nd of 3 Drills to improve Torso Rotation for our Golfers and Other Rotational Athletes. Using a 7ft StickMobility stick to you will be able to “hack” in to the ability to rotate your torso further than before. If you follow TPI and their social media you probably saw a similar drill with Dr Rose on stability ball doing a similar drill. With this drill we are attempting to activate more musculature thru the posture and upper torso from a standing position. With hips and legs stable then engage the upper torso by attempting to “pull” apart the stick by extending the arms away from each other. Rotate to where you feel an “endpoint” to the rotation. Then keeping the extension they the arms and contract your “Lats” to bend your torso to the side. Return to an upright position and you will discover you can rotate a little further. Most athletes can do this 2-4 times per side depending on their ability. Explore how far can you rotate while maintaining stable hips. Remember to keep “pulling” the stick apart throughout the drill. This is a Great drill for our athletes who need better separation of the hips and torso.
Now it’s the 3rd of 3 Drills to improve Torso Rotation for our Golfers and Other Rotational Athletes. If you did 1-2 sets of the 2 previous drills hopefully you are feeling some greater range of the T-Spine/Torso now this last drill is to help you or your athlete access that rotation while stabilizing the lower body activating the GLUTEALS. I learned this drill years ago from my George Fox University days and is excellent to reinforce proper sequencing from the feet, thru the hips and BUTT and into torso rotation for any rotational athlete.
Placing one foot on something solid like a wall or rack with knee at about 90 degrees. Balance on the other leg in an athletic posture with a stick or club in front of that foot. Engage your body and put pressure down in to the stick, in to the rack with your foot, and in to the floor with your standing leg. Imagine the torso rotating is initiated by the foot on the rack and its GLUTES!! Squeeze your Butt!! Keep the ground force pressure HIGH! And try 5-10 reps per side. If you don’t have a stick, try a med ball, tubing, or a training partner. Remember the first 2 drills access the rotation and this drill teaches you how to ignite it with your Glutes!
Andrew Fodge is a certified Titleist Performance Institute golf fitness instructor, K-Vest Level 2 biomechanic specialist and the owner Fitness by Andrew LLC personal training in Scottsdale, Arizona. Specializing in Golf Fitness, Sport Performance training and motivational techniques. Andrew and his team are here to provide you with a comprehensive one-of-a-kind program to help you achieve real results. Call Andrew at 602-638-3000 or email Andrew@fitnessbyandrew.com for a complimentary golf performance screening in Scottsdale or Mesa.