9 Stretches All Golfers Should Do
For any sport addressing all 16 muscle groups in the upper and lower body is optimal. However, for individual sports we can give a list of stretches that will specifically improve flexibility and strength and also prevent injury based on the movement patterns associated with that particular sport.
Stretches for the Shoulder Joint
Just a quick reminder - at Bendable Body we name stretches by the organ and meridian they impact. The 2 muscle groups that affect the shoulder joint are:
- Lung stretches for the chest and biceps (pectoralis major, anterior deltoid, and subscapularis)
- Large Intestine stretches for the neck and top of shoulders (upper trapezius, posterior deltoid and levator scapula)
When you are swinging a golf club the shoulder joint is moving more than any other joint. Resistance stretching the lung and large intestine muscle groups protects you from injury from the repetitive motion in the shoulder joint and also gives you space in the joint to consistently swing the club. It also increases your range of motion, strength, power, explosiveness and recovery time. For any movement the key getting the primary muscles responsible for that movement to work well.
Of course the body works as a whole so you ultimately want all the muscles in the body to work well, but focusing on the specific muscles primarily responsible for a specific movement is very helpful. Strength training and traditional stretching will not ultimately get your muscles to work better. Resistance stretching will.
Stretches for the Shoulder Girdle
- Appendix stretches for the chest and biceps (latissimus dorsi, biceps brachii and forearm flexors)
- Thymus stretches for the neck and top of shoulders (upper trapezius, lateral deltoid and triceps brachii)
Just like the shoulder joint is used to swing a golf club, so is the shoulder girdle which sits right above the shoulder joint.
Stretches for the IT Band and Adductors
- Liver stretches for the chest and biceps (gracilis, adductor longus, adductor brevis)
- Gall Bladder stretches for the neck and top of shoulders (anterior gluteus medius, tensor fascia latae, iliotibial band)
These stretches will help with your turn and flexibility in your hips.
Stretches for the 3 Hamstrings
- Brain stretches for central hamstring (gluteus maximus, Semitendinosus, piriformis)
- Pancreas stretches for the medial hamstring (semimembranosus, gastrocnemius, vastus medialis)
- Bladder stretches for the lateral hamstring (gluteus maximus, Biceps femoris, gastrocnemius)
These stretches will help the whole body significantly, including your spine, knees, ankles, hips and even up into your shoulders. If you only learn a few stretches to improve your golf swing, it should be stretches for your three hamstrings.