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By: Brian Neufeld, GolfTourney.com Contributor

For years, golfers were ranked near the bottom of athletes in peak physical condition. Times are changing quickly, and today’s players spend almost as much time in gyms as they do on the range. Out of all the physical conditioning regimens, stretching is the most important to any golfer. Increasing flexibility not only improves your golf swing, but it also reduces your risk of injury, allowing you to play more holes more frequently. Let’s look at some stretches that are beneficial to the golf game.

The Skier

For your back and hips, try laying down on your back, bending your knees toward your chest, and moving both legs to one side of your body while keeping your arms extended from your side. Leave your legs on one side for several seconds, before switching to the other side. Let your back and hips follow your legs through to the side. This greatly increases flexibility in the mid-section and closely follows your hip movement through a golf swing.

The Aerobics Instructor

To stretch out your arms and core, try using one of the most widely used stretches ever. With your feet shoulder-width apart, and your left hand on your left hip, take your right arm and slowly extend it as far over the left side of your body as possible without leaning forward. Repeat the same steps for the other side of your body. You’ll see this stretch a lot on the first tee box and for good reason, as this stretch is great in loosening up most of the muscles involved in the golf swing.

The Disc Golfer

Most people only think about their golf swing from the waist up, but your legs play a crucial role in the swing as well. Before your next round, take a club and place it on your shoulders. Place one foot on a bench or tree stump, slightly bending at the knee, and lean forward until your head is directly above your knee. While in this position, slowly rotate both directions. Not only will you look like an olympian about to set the discus world record, but you should feel your hamstrings and legs stretching out as well. Repeat these steps with the other leg up as well.

Stretching should be an integral part of any serious golfer’s routine. Try doing these stretches at home before your round, or on the tee shortly before you begin. Increasing flexibility is great for your health, decreases your chance of injury, and will most likely decrease your scores as well. 

About the Author: Brian Neufeld

Brian Neufeld’s background includes more than 15 years of experience in golf course management, specializing in agronomy. Brian uses his knowledge of the game and best practices in turf sustention to create informative pieces for GolfTourney.com’s readers.

Share this!

Share this!

By: Brian Neufeld, GolfTourney.com Contributor

In 2019, the USGA implemented a moderate amount of new rules for golf with a focus on improving the pace of play. While most charity or fundraising tournaments are played in a more relaxed manner and often under special rules, it’s important to stay up to date on the latest rule changes in case you find yourself in a more serious event. Many of golf’s new rules are favorable to the golfer, and we’ll cover a few of those here, as well as one not so helpful.

The most talked about rule change in golf this year is the ability to leave the flagstick in the cup while putting. Whether putting with the pin in is beneficial or not is sure to be debated for years to come. Many of us solo golfers have been putting with the pin in forever. However you feel about it, it’s bound to speed up rounds, and can’t hurt if you really like to power your putts to the hole.

One of the most underrated rule changes is ball drops no longer occur from shoulder height and can now be dropped from the knee. While this may seem like no big deal to some, I’m sure there are many others out there who have experienced horrible bounces from those high altitude ball drops. Especially for the taller golfer, this reduced drop height is sure to come in handy.

Speaking of dropping a new ball, one rule that is sure to hurt a lot of golfers is the reduced time to search for a lost ball. The old standard of five minutes has now been reduced to three. This is a big push to increase the speed of rounds but will undoubtedly increase scores for a large portion of the golfing population. May I suggest iron off the tee?

Another infraction off the rule book is grounding your club in a penalty area. This was a rule a lot of casual golfers are unaware of and one that could be interpreted maliciously with the wrong playing partner. You are also allowed to move loose impediments and touch the ground in penalty areas, so play from those areas will be fairer to the golfer.

These rule changes in golf will promote a more relaxed, casual feel to the average round. Tournament play should be impacted positively overall, with faster round times leading to a greater interest in the sport. Next time you’re out on the course, be sure to keep these changes in mind and use them to your advantage.

About the Author: Brian Neufeld

Brian Neufeld’s background includes more than 15 years of experience in golf course management, specializing in agronomy. Brian uses his knowledge of the game and best practices in turf sustention to create informative pieces for GolfTourney.com’s readers.

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