When someone talks about core strength, they're referring to the strength of the muscles that go deep within the abs and back attaching to the spine or pelvis. A few of these muscles are the tranversus abdominis(TVA), the muscles of the pelvic floor, the lats and the obliques. The core muscles are the origination point for stability and movement on the golf swing. Stronger core muscles convert to better balance and a more powerful swing. Strength in the core muscles can also prevent injuries to the hips and back.
The relationship between core strength and speed and power capabilities is very important. Golfers must have the core strength to handle the power they are capable of generating peripherally. Therefore, an increase in speed or power requires an increase in core strength. Exercises to strengthen these muscles should be a continuous portion of your fitness regimen.
In recent years, there has been more implementation of functional fitness exercises. The same holds true for golf fitness. Rather than focusing strictly on separate muscle groups, the training is targeted to strengthen the overall movement pattern in an integrated fashion. More of the body is involved. Many of these types of exercises mimic movements required in the golf swing. The body becomes better conditioned for the anticipated movement and strength improves as well.
Core strength is important to the golfer because the core is where all movement begins. It is the body's center of gravity. Core muscles act to produce power, stabilization and transference of energy.
Many people have weak core muscles. A weaker core leaves the golfer much more susceptible to injuries. As time progresses, this continued weakness goes from spinal stress to injury to more permanent damage.
For more power and stability, as well as overall continued health, core strengthening exercises are among the best activities you can pursue. For stronger golf, strengthen the core!
Susan Hill is a nationally recognized fitness trainer, CHEK golf biomechanic and sports nutrition specialist. For more information on golf specific nutrition, exercises or stretches, visit fitnessforgolf.com.