Golf season is here – wait, it’s been here and it’s not going anywhere for another few months. If you’re looking for that extra edge to improve your game, you may not have to look any further than your very own body.
Before I explain, try this experiment the next time you’re on the golf course.
While assuming a swing position, round your shoulders forward and stick your head out in front of your body as far as you can. Try out your swing.
Now straighten up, pull your shoulders back, head held high, and make sure there is no curve in your upper back. Now try your swing again.
You may have noticed that you can’t turn as well in the slumped position as you can in the straightened position. That’s because your stroke power is dependent on your body’s range of motion, and a slumped posture reduces your range of motion, throws off your body’s center of gravity affecting your balance and stability. Decreased range of motion + loss of balance and stability = less stroke power, accuracy, and speed!
Unfortunately, this slumped posture, also known as forward head posture, is normal for approximately 90% of the population due to the vast amount of time spent hunched over computers, slouched on the couch watching TV, driving behind the wheel, in improper sleeping positions, carrying heavy backpacks as a child, and injuries incurred. AND it doesn’t just affect them on the golf course, but in their everyday life as well.
Forward head posture is when the head is not directly aligned over the neck and shoulders, but rather in front of the shoulders. If you were to draw a line down from your ear to your shoulder, it should be in a straight line. This is a concern because the daily pressure that gravity exerts on your head will pull it further and further downward. Your head weighs 8-10 pounds, yet feels like nothing when it’s perfectly balanced over your neck and shoulders. For every inch that your head moves forward, add 10 pounds. Over time, this added tension of holding up a 20-40 pound bowling ball on your neck can lead to chronic pain, numbness in the arms and hands, improper breathing, pinched nerves, spinal degeneration, even accelerated aging, a loss in height, and a horrible golf swing.
Correcting your posture isn’t as easy as you may think. Standing up straight to swing the club works as long as a weight loss program works that is based on holding your stomach in.
That’s why pros like Tiger Woods say that improving posture is one of the most important keys to improving your golf swing.
If you want to beat your friend on your next golf outing, swing by for a free posture evaluation, not only to see how much of your game may be compromised by slouching, but how much of your health is being affected as well.