Create Distance Through Conditioning
By Brendon Elliott, PGA
Greg Koch hits out of the driving range at the Ocean Course on Kiawah Island.PGA of America
Golfers are obsessed with distance. Everyone wants to know how to hit the ball further. Some of the best ways to train yourself to hit the ball further is by working on and honing your primary fundamentals, such as posture, grip, and alignment, as well as creating a good understanding of what a sound golf swing should look like. This can all be accomplished by taking professional instruction from a PGA Coach.
Another component to hitting the ball further is being able to learn how to increase the speed at which you swing the club. This is much easier said than done. For this, the combination of working with a PGA Coach, as well as a golf specific fitness coach, can help you in reaching your speed goals.
To get more into the fine details of learning to create speed, and hit the ball further, I reached out to my friend, and 2-time Golf Digest Top 50 Fitness Coach, Scott Shepard. Scott is the owner of Driven Golf Fitness and Sports Performance in Lake Mary, FL.
“The first thing I need to consider when someone comes to me, looking to hit the ball further, is to see what their physical capacity is for creating increased distance. This usually requires me to do an initial screening of the individual.” Scott said.
“Most people, without proper direction of a professional, will tend to focus their training on improving speed and power with low rep and high intensity strength and power training. One thing that is often missing is the aspect of including exercises that improve one’s overall endurance and ability to swing it fast, repeatedly, without losing speed throughout your round."
"One of the easiest ways to increase endurance is to do either general fitness or swing specific fitness in circuits with higher intensity work followed by brief rest and then repeated for multiple sets. This can be done with Medicine Ball Throws, Battle Ropes, Resistance Band Exercises or more specifically with Overspeed Training Golf Clubs.”
So, what would an example workout look like?
“Here’s how you do it. After a good general warm up, with mobility prep work, you will pick an exercise such as a rotational Medicine Ball throw to a wall or partner. Perform 10-12 tosses from the right side and 10-12 tosses from the left, and then take a 10 second break…repeat this for 4-5 sets before moving on to a different exercise. Perhaps that next exercise would be lightweight speed club swings and repeating the same type of circuit. Usually, I will have a student pick 3-4 exercises and do them in this fashion for 4-5 sets each. This will equate to a lot of reps of moderate speed work in a session. This will help improve the student’s endurance and will condition their body for increased speed over the entire round of golf.”
Basically, the equation for more speed and hitting bombs is this…
Good solid golf fundamentals + an initial fitness evaluation + performing, repeatedly, a prescribed speed training regimen from a golf specific fitness coach + general endurance training = Hitting Bombs!