Dr. Robert Arata is the Director of Golf Performance and Owner at Empower Golf Performance in Henderson, Nevada.
Empower Golf Performance has been in its current location for five years after starting with two physical therapists and a strength coach. In 2020, we made a somewhat dramatic shift towards golf, adding a golf instructor to our team and changing our facility.
We now have three indoor hitting bays with Foresight GC3 launch monitors, a practice putting green, a full gym and two medical treatment rooms. With PXG representatives often occupying one of our hitting bays for custom fittings, we strive to be a one-stop-shop for everything our clients need – technical, equipment and body.
I got into golf when my general fitness practice started attracting golfers, including an Epson Tour player. After years of having no interest in golf, this former college baseball player fell in love with the game and transformed his business as a result. I got into TPI and went full steam ahead learning about the body’s function within the golf swing.
The majority of our clients are derived through our in-house golf professional, Joe Brown. In addition, we also enjoy referrals from other local PGA Professionals, colleges and tour professionals as well. People come to us because we are golf-specific and understand the needs of the athlete more than a traditional sports performance or medical facility. They appreciate that we’ve studied the game and are tuned in to what they need to optimize their abilities.
In addition, we conduct very thorough evaluations, sometimes lasting 3-4 hours. Working closely with our golf professional Joe, we’re looking at every aspect of their game, their nutrition, hydration and sleep. Joe starts with a TPI Level I movement screen to identify any glaring limitations. He’ll then use K-Vest 3D motion capture to assess their physical makeup and gather launch monitor data on their existing swing performance.
I will then conduct all the other physical assessments – power, mobility, stability, flexibility, tissue extensibility, nervous system reaction and more. We don’t leave any stone unturned to determine how their body is limiting their performance on the golf course. We utilize a Proteus machine that gives us power and strength numbers for rotational motions, upon which we build a foundation for progress. Together, we learn their current capabilities and deficiencies and create a program that addresses them.
We’ll come together as a team to share notes on what we see with each individual client. We’ll set short-term goals to address some of the low-hanging fruit, areas that we can improve sooner than later that will help attain our long-term objectives.
Early questions we ask are, “What brought you in the door?” and “How can we help you achieve your goals?”
They might want more distance, increased flexibility or target a specific golf score, which leads us to determine what’s holding them back. We’ll work together in person, prescribe exercise programs and videos through our app and track factors through their Fitbit or Apple Watch. Our very astute clients usually know how they’re progressing simply by feel and how they’re performing.
Although we still do some rehab, most of our clients are executive golfers, elite college players and touring professionals who need to get to that next level or maintain their longevity by staying as healthy and fit as they can while trying to gain those extra yards and increase that stamina for a long day of golf.