DO YOUR LATS KEEP YOU FLAT
Paul Greenwood with help for people who spend a lot of time sitting.
TO END OUR SERIES ON HOW SITTING CAN AFFECT YOUR GOLF SWING WE WILL LOOK AT ONE OF THE LARGEST MUSCLES IN THE BODY AND CERTAINLY THE BACK, THE LATISSMUS DORSI; AKA THE LATS.
In the last issue we discussed how being deskbound can round the shoulders and help decrease the mobility of the shoulder. Another ramification of this can be the on the lats which not only become weak but can also become very tight. To check if your lats have become too tight take a look at ‘The Self- Screen’.
Tight lats can have numerous implications on the golf swing; poor set up, loss of posture throughout the swing as well as difficutly getting the club overhead. For now we will focus on how tight lats can cause what is known as a ‘horizontal or flat shoulder plane’ (see Coaches Corner for a detailed explanation). Due to tightness in the lats it makes it harder for the golfer to get the club up above their shoulders. As a result a compensation the body can make is for the upper body to come out of its original spine angle at address (i.e tilted ) during the back swing and become more upright and hence the shoulders are now more parellel to the ground at the top of the swing.
A great stretch you can do in the office or at home to help lengthen the lats is the Wall Lat Stretch (See ‘The Fix’ for how to perfom). Doing this daily not only will help your body’s ability to rotate the shoulders around the spine more efficently but also will also help overall posture. However as is the theme over the past few months, the best remedy is to reduce the time you spend sitting!!