Warming up for Golf: Why your golf warm-up should be more than sprinting to the first tee!
Updated: Mar 11
Trust me, I am as guilty as anyone for grabbing my bag and sprinting out of my car to the first tee with little to zero warm-up. I’ve been a physical therapist for LONG time, I should know better! But it’s easy to have the warmup be the first thing to go when you’re short on time. So let’s talk about why a warm-up is not only good for your body but also great for your round of golf or trip to the driving range.
First and foremost, a golf warm-up doesn’t just involve getting your heart rate up. That’s important for warming up your body but we need to do more than that. It is important to engage your muscles, take them through some of the movements that you are expecting of them. This is the same for all sports and activities. Just like a runner shouldn’t step outside and start sprinting, golfers shouldn’t walk up to that first tee and crack that golf ball. Taking your body through the different movements of the swing makes the full swing that much easier and more efficient.
Thinking about what golfers use most during their swing, your golf arm-up or pre-round routine should include movements that are really specific to your golf swing. We want to focus on the hips, ankles, spine, and shoulder. Not only do the muscles and joints need the “warm-up” but let’s engage your proprioception (body awareness) and balance too!
Check out the video below of my 5-minute golf warmup. You’ll never need another golf warm-up again and you’ll see a difference as soon as you step up for that first drive.
Starting with a dynamic stretch of your hips for both the hip flexors and rotators is a great way to start. Even better to include some balance and upper body movement with the dynamic hip movements to make you more time-efficient.
Rotation of the body from hips to mid-back and shoulders is another key movement to include in your warm-up and prepare to crush the ball. You can keep the balance component in the exercise and get a two for one! (nope didn’t guarantee a hole in one…). Once you have everything awake and ready to perform, take your golf stance and rotate into your backswing with a pause and then follow through!
Running through this golf warm-up is great for the driving range and a round of golf alike. Even better to get in a few practice balls before your round. Actively and dynamically preparing the body for what you expect of it is essential in getting the most out of your swing and your round of golf. Tons of birdies ahead!