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Yoga Stretches To Improve Your Golf Swing
Yoga Can Improve Your Golf Performance

Yoga Can Improve Your Golf Performance

Yoga not only helps you eliminate strokes from your golf game, it can also reduce the risk of injuries by allowing you to enjoy more skillful golfing for many years. A consistent yoga routine improves functional flexibility to maximize your golf swing and overall performance while improving balance, strength, and flexibility. Additionally, it's been shown that yoga can enhance athletic performance in activities that require flexibility and balance, as golf does.

The following yoga postures are quick and efficient stretches that will improve functional flexibility in the major muscle groups and joints related to your golf performance.


Standing Shoulder Stretch with Hands Clasped Behind Back
The stretch: Stand with feet a bit wider than hip-width apart and interlace your fingers behind your back. Inhale while bringing the shoulder blades together and opening your chest. Exhale as you fold forward over your legs and stretch clasped hands away from your back. Hold for 30 seconds or to comfort level.

The benefits: Improves internal shoulder rotation and stretches the chest, shoulders, and hamstrings.

Variation: If back is sore and hamstrings tight, keep the knees bent. You can also hold onto your golf club or towel if your hands don't easily reach behind your back.

Overhead Shoulder Stretch with Golf Club
The stretch: Stand with feet a bit wider than hip-width apart and grasp a golf club or towel overhead. Bring hands as far apart as possible while holding the club. Squeeze your shoulder blades together while flexing the upper back muscles, bringing your club as far back as possible. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds for three to five repetitions.

The benefits: Stretches the shoulders and chest, improves shoulder mobility, and strengthens the upper back muscles.


Seated or Reclining Twist
The stretch: Sit up tall and cross the right leg over the left while keeping the right sole flat on the floor. The left leg can be bent or straight. Hold on to the right knee with your left hand, place the right hand just behind you on the floor. Twist to the right. Hold for 30 seconds or longer. Repeat the other direction with the left leg on top.

The benefits: Twists improve flexibility and mobility in the lower back and abdomen essential for a healthy golf swing. It also stretches the outer hips.

Variation: The same benefits can be achieved lying down on your back for a supine spinal twist.

Pigeon Posture
The stretch: Start on all fours on the floor and place your right knee forward behind your right wrist. Flex your right foot and bring it forward to your comfort level. Extend left leg is straight back. Walk hands forward and lay down over the right leg to deepen the stretch. Hold one minute or longer. Repeat on the other side.

The benefits: It's a deep stretch for the outer hip and gluteus muscles. You should feel the stretch entirely in the hips without pain in the knees.

Variation: The same stretch can be achieved by squatting and crossing one ankle over the opposite, standing thigh. Keep the top foot flexed for the maximum stretch and to protect the knee.

To receive the maximum benefits in your golf performance, these stretches should be practiced with regularity under the guidance of a knowledgeable yoga instructor.

Learn more about golf at Bella Collina.

Sources:
Impact of 10-weeks of yoga practice on flexibility and balance of college athletes

Further reading:
How Yoga Can Improve Your Golf Game


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