Watching the tournament rounds of today’s LPGA players is more exciting than ever. Annika Sorenstam continues to dominate women’s golf and shows where finesse, strength and athleticism come together to make way for the future.
Is today’s female golfer really that different? You need only look as far as statistics from previous years in combination with current levels of play to answer that question. In 1998, only 7 short years ago, Annika drove the ball 246 yards in average driving distance. Today, her average distance is 272 yards. Since undergoing a full scale assault on fitness with the help of a personal trainer, she has gained close to 30 yards in new found distance.
Is she the lone ranger in women’s golf or the wave of the future? Back in 1998, if an LPGA player drove the ball 250 yards, she was in the top 17 players in her field. Today, a player who drives the ball 250 yards won’t even place in the top 40. What accounts for these new performance standards and how can female golfers around the country prepare for high level competition?
Build a Foundation - Learning how to properly engage the core muscles provides a platform of stability and level of protection from injury. In order to keep your body from breaking down and affecting your golf swing, exercises aimed at restoring muscular balance should be a natural part of program design. As you continue to build foundational strength, you also improve your resistance to fatigue.
Progressive Resistance - Strength should be developed in a progressive manner. In order to get stronger one needs to progressively add resistance over time relative to previous workouts. Strength gains are made slowly, but consistently and you will see the difference in your game in no time. In the absence of progress with your program, you’re limiting your potential. Progression also involves varying your speeds of movement as your body becomes more adapted to each exercise.
Today’s female golfer knows that hard work creates results and translates to a better position in the playing field. If you are looking for ways to take yourself to the top of the leader board, then place the needs of your body at the top of your priority list to make a definitive difference in your game.
Susan Hill is a CHEK Golf Biomechanic, golf fitness columnist to Golf Illustrated and President of Fitness for Golf. For exercises targeted to lower your handicap and give you a competitive edge every time you play, then visit http://www.fitnessforgolf.com