FIT­NESS: THE CORE

Train your body to hit bet­ter drives and iron shots

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - Contents - – RON KASPRISKE

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Even at golf’s high­est level, rarely is a player a great driver a great iron player. It’s ei­ther one or the other, be­cause the body is re­quired to do some­thing dif­fer­ent to flush a shot with each club, says Golf Di­gest fit­ness ad­vi­sor Ben Shear. Try­ing to con­sis­tently change your swing for ei­ther type of shot can be dif­fi­cult, es­pe­cially for av­er­age am­a­teurs who of­ten strug­gle to groove even one type of swing.

“The more that golfers slide to­wards the tar­get ear­lier in the swing, the more they’re go­ing to be able to swing down and com­press an iron shot,” Shear says. “The more golfers re­sist a lat­eral shift, hang back with their trunk and just ro­tate to­wards the ball, the more they’re go­ing to be able to use their driver to sweep the ball off the tee – a key for dis­tance.”

If you hit bet­ter iron shots than drives, Shear says you can im­prove your tee shots by train­ing your body to ro­tate with­out mov­ing so much lat­er­ally. And if you drive the ball bet­ter than you hit irons, you need a bet­ter blend of lat­eral and ro­ta­tional move­ment.

Here, Shear of­fers two ex­er­cises – a push and a pull move­ment us­ing elas­tic tub­ing for re­sis­tance – that will im­prove ei­ther shot. Do two sets of 12 reps for each ex­er­cise. Then switch hand po­si­tions and do them in the op­po­site di­rec­tion for mus­cu­lar bal­ance.

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