Today we have a guest post from my friend Rob of Signum Training and Nutrition discussing some of his favorite back exercises for our you golf junkies here in Cleveland. Looking at you, Weaver!
His original post on back exercises for golfers is extensive to say the least.
But one of the things I love about this list is that not only does it include some of the functional compound movements we use here at Strong Tower in our group classes.
He also lists many back exercises you can do at home with very little equipment
In this post he will highlight a few of his favorite at home back exercises for golfers like you.
After you conquer those, and want to conquer some more you may feel like you dont know where to start.
Now, let’s strengthen those backs!
1) Bird Dogs
Bird dogs are a great place to start because these strengthen the spinal erectors, glutes, hamstrings and lower back muscles. Many of these are vital in the golf swing. I have used these as part of my warm up or cool down. These can be done not only as a main exercise but also as a warm up or cool down.
- To set up you will be on the ground with your knees and hands on the floor.
- Then you will extend the opposite arm and opposite leg holding for a 1-2 second count. ie) extend your right arm and left leg.
- Alternate sides.
2) Single Leg Glute Bridges
Now for some great single leg work. I love this one because the glutes are a primer mover in the golf swing. Plus it has a balancing component which is important as well.
- To set up lay on your back on the floor.
- Extended on leg while keeping the other leg planted on the floor.
- Really focus on squeezing the glutes.
- Focus on pushing through the floor with the heel that is on the ground
- Your shoulders, hips, knee and toes should form one straight line.
- Hold for a 1-2 second count per rep.
The cobra requires no equipment and is great if you are just starting out at home.
- To set up, lay face down on the floor.
- Your arms will be out to the side.
- The legs will be straight and together.
- To begin the movement, contract the lower back and squeeze the glutes so your torso raises off the floor.
- Your shoulders, chest and arms will come off the floor as well.
- The head will be in a neutral position.
- Hold the top of the rep for 1-2 seconds
The superman is performed very similar to the cobra but we will get our arms involved.
- Again, start by laying face down on the floor.
- Your arms will be extended overhead.
- The legs will be straight and together.
- To begin the movement, squeeze the lower back and glutes.
- Your chest, shoulders, arms and legs will come off the floor.
- The head remains in a neutral position.
- Hold the top of each rep for 1-2 seconds before lowering back down.
OK now let’s get Mr. Aquaman involved. Were you a DC or Marvel comic guy? Me personally I like Marvel. (Oops I digress).
- Setup as you would the previous two movements by laying face down on the floor.
- But now you will begin by lifting one arm and the opposite leg off the floor. For example, if you lift the left arm up, raise your right leg.
- Try to keep your arms and legs straight at all times
- Hold for a 1-2 second count before switching sides.
6) Laying Reverse Fly
OK now let’s move into an exercise that is going to strengthen your upper back and shoulders.
- You will set up by laying face down on the floor.
- Your arms will be straight out to the side.
- Try to have your thumbs face up. But if you don’t quite possess the flexibility palms down is ok.
- Engage the upper back by pulling your arms off the ground as far as possible.
- Maintain a nice neutral head position.
- Hold the top of the rep for a 1 second count.
7) Reverse Snow Angels
The reverse snow angel is just like it sounds but you will be facing down again. P.S. dont try this in the actual snow because your face will get cold really quick.
- Lay face down on the floor.
- Begin the movement by squeezing the lower back and glutes.
- Your torso arms, shoulders and legs will come off the floor.
- Don’t hyper-extend the neck and keep your head in a neutral position.
- But keep the tips of your toes on the ground.
- Then begin to make snow angel movements with your arms.
- A full rep is moving your arms from overhead, down to your side, back to the overhead position.
8) Posterior Plank
This back exercise for your golf game will hit the back but also the glutes which are vital in creating club head speed. .
- Set up by sitting on the ground with your legs straight out.
- Keep your arms off to the side but slightly behind your shoulder line.
- To begin the rep, squeeze your glutes and raise your hips off the floor.
- Strive to form a straight line with your legs and torso.
- Hold the contraction for a 1 second count.
9) Side Plank Rotation with the Knee
OK time to get into some more dynamic back exercises. This one is great because of the rotational and balance component involved in the swing.
- The setup will have you place opposite hand and opposite foot on the ground ie. if the right hand is on the ground, the left foot is as well.
- Place the hand that is not on the ground on your hip.(left hand in our example) The foot that is not on the ground will be out straight behind you (right foot in our example).
- Now rotate your torso and bring the foot that is off the ground (right foot), underneath your torso.
- Bend the knee at the same time raising it closer to the chest.
- This one is complicated so check out the video tutorial.
10) Single Arm Downward Dog with Reach Out
The Single Arm Downward Dog with reach out is another dynamic and compound back exercise for you golf game.
- To set up, start in a plank position but your feet will be set out wide.
- Then perform a downward dog by raising your hips to the sky while lowering the chest and shoulders to the ground.
- Reach one arm through your legs.
- From here lower your hips back to the plank position.
- But instead of putting your hand back on the ground, raise it overhead.
- After you do a few reps on one side, switch hands.