We’re all looking for an edge.
The best clubs. The best gear. Lessons.
One avenue to improvement doesn’t cost a thing but can be costly to your score — and your health. Stretching not only boosts your game but can also help you prevent long- and short-term injury. We recommend you do them before and after a round.
Note: This post is not medical advice. For persistent problems or questions, consult your physician.
Why Is It Important to Stretch Before and After Playing Golf?
Loosened muscles and improved flexibility are the top benefits of stretching. You’re more likely to pull a muscle if it’s tight. A solid stretching routine promotes a fluid, full golf swing — and who couldn’t use that in their game? Try these 5 stretches before you tee off next time. See how it affects not only your score but also how you feel after you play.
- Position your feet wider than your hips. Place your right hand on your lower back, with your palm facing away from you. Inhale.
- Exhale. Bend your right knee. Reach your left hand outside your right foot as you inhale.
- Exhale. Lift your torso. Switch hands. Place your left hand on your lower back. Twist left, reaching your right hand around the corner. Follow your hand with your gaze to emphasize the twist.
- Repeat six times and switch sides.
- Place your right foot forward in a short lunge, with both heels on the ground. Put your hands on your hips or hold a club with one hand for balance. Tuck your pelvis in.
- Flex your left glute, feeling the stretch in your left hip flexor and quadriceps. Inhale. As you exhale, bend your back leg and extend your front leg into a hamstring stretch.
- Lower your torso and keep back straight. Arch your lower back to deepen the stretch. Inhale and return to the lunge. Repeat six times, breathing through it.
- Begin with your back facing a bench, feet hip-width apart. Put hands on your hips or clasp them in front of your chest. Bend your right knee.
- Place the top of your right foot on the bench. Flex your right glute. Bend the left knee, keeping it lined up over your left ankle.
- Straighten your left leg. Return to standing. Repeat two to five times on each side.
- Begin with your feet just wider than your shoulders. Put your golf club behind your neck and on your shoulders, with both arms over the club in a scarecrow position. Bend your knees slightly. Inhale.
- Exhale. Twist to the right. Pivot your left foot.
- Look around the corner to deepen the stretch. Inhale. Return to center. Repeat on the other side.
- Repeat six times on each side.
Forward Fold With a Chair or Bench
- Begin facing a bench, feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the back of the bench and step back until your arms are extended. Lower your upper body, keeping your back straight.
- Keep on until you feel the stretch in your armpits. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat 2 to 5 times on each side.
You can play more comfortable rounds, get better drives, and feel fine after you play with these tips. Adjust the stretches you do and the intensity to fit your situation. You’ll be set to boost your game with a little pregame (and postgame) attention to your muscles!