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7 best strength exercises for golfers

Swiss Ball Squats

Pin the ball between your tailbone and a wall. As slowly as you can, lower yourself into a squat while holding the ball in place, then press through your heels to raise back up to stand. “This move increases leg, glute, and lower-back strength for power and stability, and lower-back injury prevention,” says Emig.

Hamstring Curl

Lie face-up and place the backs of your heels on the stability ball. Press your arms flat into the floor at your sides, and dig your heels into the ball to lift your hips off the ground. With control, pull the ball in toward your glutes with your heels. Slowly extend legs back out, without allowing the hips to drop for the entire set. With this move, you’re training hamstring strength and spinal stability, which are both protective for the lower back.

Abdominal Curl

Rest the back of your shoulders on the stability ball, knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Cradle your head in your hands, and use your abs to raise your upper torso up toward the ceiling. (Don’t tug your head/neck forward.) Hold for a beat at the top, then release. Slow curls are great to improve the strength and stability of the rectus abdominis muscle, for rapid rotation and power.

A Raises

Lie face-down, arms along sides and palms down (like they’re creating an “A” frame from your head to fingertips). Engage through your upper back to raise your head, neck, and chest off the floor. Hold for two seconds, then lower. This is another great one for the core muscles, but this time from the back, for midsection stability (necessary for a solid rotation through your swing) and improved posture.

Push-Ups

Standard push-ups (done on the floor or with hands elevated in an incline) “strengthen the chest for downswing to finish,” Emig says.

Single-Arm Dumbbell Row

Grab a moderate-to-heavy dumbbell and stand aside a bench, placing one knee and the same-side hand atop it, holding the dumbbell in the other hand and planting the other foot on the floor. (Your back should form a straight line from shoulder to hip.) With control, bend your elbow to row the weight up toward the chest. Do all reps on one side, then switch and do the other side. Single-arm rows improve shoulder stability to protect the rotator cuff and straighten upper-back posture. 

Wrist Flexion/Extension

Sit on a bench holding a light-to-moderate weight dumbbell in each hand. Keeping your elbows bent and pinned to your sides, slowly flex and extend your wrists. “These improve wrist stability and gripping power on the club, and help to prevent golfers’ elbow,” says Emig.