You’re at the first tee, joking around with your friends, getting loose to enjoy a beautiful afternoon of golf. Perhaps the planets aligned and you were able to sneak out of the office early.
Not crushing it today isn’t an option.
You bend down to tee up. Ooh, that twinge. You take a couple practice swings. Uh oh, that’s even worse. You convince yourself the stiffness will work itself out. You promptly slice your first tee shot into the woods. “Hey, we’re aiming this way!” your partner quips. He reassures you there’s a lot of golf left to play.
But those who’ve struggled through golf back pain know, more often than not, it goes only downhill from there. Just like that, you’d rather be back at the office.
Easy Resistance Band Exercises to Get Back in the Swing
Golf may not look it, but it’s a physically demanding sport requiring peak conditioning, The swing is rotational, and to be done correctly (and comfortably) you must have loose muscles, free range of motion and pain-free joints throughout the body.
The spine bears the brunt of physical exertion. Experts say the lumbar region experiences a compression load up to eight times our body weight in a single swing. The spine is the linchpin for rotation, guiding the lower body, hips, trunk and arms back and through what should be a precise arc.
These resistance band exercises help to stretch and strengthen core swinging muscles.
1. Reverse Hip Extensions
Secure one end of the band to something sturdy near the floor and the other around one foot. Step back until the band becomes slightly tense. Standing on the opposite leg (use a chair for balance, if necessary), straighten the banded leg and pull it backward 10-12 inches. Return to a resting position and repeat a tolerable number of reps. Switch legs.
(Target: glutes and lumbar region.)
2. Step Outs
Secure the band to both ankles and separate your feet to shoulder width. Slightly bending your knees, step aside with your right leg while keeping your left leg still until the band reaches tension. Switch legs. Repeat.
(Target: hip flexors.)
Secure the band in a loop around your lower thighs. The band should reach tension with your feet at shoulder width. With your back straight, carefully lower yourself into a squatting position while keeping the band tense. Squat only as far as tolerable (against a wall for balance, if necessary). Stand up straight. Repeat.
(Target: glutes and lumbar region.)
4. Trunk Rotations
Secure the band to something sturdy at about shoulder height and step back until it reaches tension. Hold the opposite end of the band in both hands, and with arms extended from the center of your chest rotate your trunk to tolerance. Return to a relaxed position. Repeat.
(Target: abdominals and obliques.)
Bonus Exercise – ‘The Superman’
If you’re feeling spry, this is an excellent lower-back workout. Wrap a lengthy resistance band around the bottom of both feet and lie flat on your stomach with the opposite ends in each hand (use a floor mat for comfort). With your hands at your side at about your shoulders (like you’re ready to do a pushup), the band running along the outside of your legs and sides should already feel tense. Keeping your legs straight, extend your arms in front of you as you simultaneously lift your chest and legs off the floor.
You’ll look like Superman taking flight.
(Target: lumbar region.)
Let’s Get You Swinging the Club Freely and Pain Free
Amateur golfers are more prone to golf back pain and injuries. Most weekend warriors aren’t afforded the trainers AND swing coaches AND time to prepare for a round as if it were the U.S. Open.
Our reality? Unrefined swing mechanics can cause back discomfort and injury, and we pray to score better while playing through the pain the next time out. But taking a few minutes each day for these exercises should relieve golf back pain and make your game more enjoyable.
If you’re still feeling tight, a great chiropractor in Parrish, FL (who also happens to be an avid golfer) can supplement your fitness regimen. North River Chiropractic can help! Schedule an appointment at our new location or call us at (941) 933-1500.