Golf Fitness Association Best Practice: Implement Basic Golf Fitness Techniques and Concepts

Stefanie Ferguson, the 2021 Colorado PGA Section Player Development Award recipient, is a PGA Teaching Professional at Experience Golf in Aurora, Colorado.

Stefanie Ferguson on the importance of implementing basic golf fitness techniques and concepts:

Golf fitness doesn’t have to mean a huge performance center with a full team of fitness professionals. Golf fitness is about raising awareness of the physicality of the golf swing, and the importance of stretching and warming up before play. It’s about sustaining a base level of physical standards that help you on the course, rather than prohibit the vital moves needed for an efficient and effective golf swing. At Experience Golf, we conduct many private lessons within an array of long-term coaching programs offered to golfers of all skill levels and experience. Golf fitness is present from the start with a 90-minute assessment of every new client. Using the TPI app, we give our students a complete picture of their results that tells us what their body can and cannot do within the golf swing. For instance, if they can’t externally rotate their shoulders, we may not be able to get them into a flatter backswing position. We’ll talk them through the impact of what we’ve determined from the initial screen, something most of these golfers have never experienced before. Some individuals just want to work within their current capabilities, but most of them want to improve upon those physical deficiencies to rectify the situation as best they can. The app develops a workout based on their assessment results, and the length of the program can be manipulated based on the student’s time availability and level of dedication. For the most part, golfers work on these programs on their own. But if they are even more serious about physical progress and golf fitness, we’ll pull in a golf fitness specialist to work with these individuals. I try not to prescribe too detailed a physical workout, as it’s not my forte, preferring instead to incorporate a specialist, especially when injuries and ailments hinder their potential even further.

Stefanie Ferguson on the business impact of implementing basic golf fitness techniques and concepts:

I always make it clear to the individual that his or her physical limitations will turn into golf performance limitations. And more often than not, they want to do what it takes to improve the results, even if they don’t have the time or physical ability to fully fix the problem. Our initial assessment and analysis really open their eyes to the physical side of the game – it’s not just a walk in the park. We promote resistance bands as a warmup, and educate golfers on the benefits gained in distance, as a result. We dabbled with the TPI app last year, but have implemented it on a full-time basis this year. It’s really user-friendly, and golfers can see all the results of our assessment.

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