The winter is right around the corner. If you’re a golf player and you live in a particularly cold region, this is the season you spend looking at the snow covered golf courses. Driving ranges are usually closed. The ones that are open usually see a very little crowd.
The problem with long winters for a golfer is that it can rust their skills. If you’re one of them and you don’t go to the gym regularly, keeping up with your fitness during the winter is going to be hard.
So, we’ve created this post where we’ve compiled the best golf exercises you can do at home to keep up with your skills. We’re not saying they’re 100% effective to keep you fit, but something is better than nothing, right?
Without further ado, let’s jump right into the workouts.
Golf Workouts to Keep You Fit this Winter
When you’re trying to keep fit at home, the sky is the limit in terms of your options. You can take refuse in plenty of exercises. In this section, we’re going to look at a few that are the most beneficial for the golf players out there. Follow this indoor golf training plan.
Get Yourself Acquainted to Yoga
If you’re already into yoga, you might know about the benefits already. But if you’re not, know that yoga is probably the best way to maintain your flexibility at home. As yoga is purely done without any equipment, you can get into it any time you like, in any way you like.
Yoga also helps you calm down and improve your mental health. Especially, the poses that require complex breathing techniques work best for golf players. You can retain your stamina, your flexibility, and your strength. Very few methods work as well as yoga to keep you fit during the winter.
If you have to name a few yoga poses that are the most beneficial, we’d say the standing shoulder stretch, side stretch, twisted lunge, chair twist, and standing thigh stretch. All of these poses target different muscle groups in your body, all important for golf fitness.
Indoor Putting and Chipping
As we’re creating an indoor workout guide for the golf players, it’s obvious that we’re going to include some indoor putting and chipping drills. However, if you don’t have enough room in your home to practice chipping, you can at least keep up with your putting.
For this exercise, you’ll need a putting mat from a reputed brand. They are relatively on the expensive side but they’re very much worth it. If you invest in a good-quality putting mat, you can use it for many winters to come.
While it’s not particularly helpful in making you more fit, it can definitely help you retain your putting skills. Any good golf player would know the importance of putting in one’s practice plan!
Heavier Clubs for Muscle Memory
It’s quite obvious that you can’t practice your tee shots or fairway shots at home, unless you have a 200-yard backyard! Putting and chipping might be relatively easy to incorporate in your indoor fitness plan but there’s no way you can use the heavier clubs seamlessly.
So, what do you do? Well, you simply use the clubs to jog up your muscle memory. The only difference is that you won’t feel the impact after your swing. But you’ll know how your drivers feel, how your irons feel, and how your woods feel!
If you keep doing this drill for the entire winter, it’ll feel like you never stopping hitting 200-yard shots from tee. The muscle memory will kick in as soon as you walk up to the tee area.
Get Your Grip Fixed
As you have some time in your hands before you return to the course, maybe it’s time to tie some loose ends. In our experience, a large portion of golf players suffers from grip issues. It’s a subconscious thing where you can’t control your arms, fingers, and wrists tensing up.
What you can do is contact a local golf instructor and take grip lessons. But if you don’t want to go that way, keep in mind that the lighter the grip, the more control you have.
So, if you tend to grip all of your clubs pretty tightly, you can practice swinging them indoors with a lighter grip. Another advantage of indoor practice is that you don’t face any peer pressure. What happens sometimes is that we fear judgment from the fellow players at the course. And it’s our body’s natural reaction to tense up when it’s in flight mode.
Don’t Skip Leg Days
If you go to the gym, don’t skip any leg days if you’re staying away from golf. Legs have one of the largest muscle groups in our body and they’re pretty crucial for a golfer. You get the power from the ground for your explosive swings through the legs. You also use them to walk around the course for the entire 18-holes!
So, it’s very important that you keep the leg muscles up to date and active. If you skip leg days during winter, there is a good chance that you’ll lose muscle mass and muscle memory at the same time.
Mimic the Backswing While Lying on the Ground
It’s a fun exercise. And it’s simple enough that you can do it on your bed! The idea is to improve your backswing. If it’s already good, you can still do that exercise during the winter months to retain your skills.
Simply lie on your side with your knees bent. Keep the bend similar to what it is at the course during your backswing. Bring your hands together and extend them all the way. It should seem like you’re clapping with your arms extended.
Now, rotate your upper body toward the ceiling to a point when your knees start to come off the floor or the bed. That’s your upper body’s natural range of motion. If your knees are coming off, it means you’re taking help from the lower body.
Your goal is to increase the range of motion. Or at least retain what you have for the upcoming cold months. As a result, when you get back to the course, you’ll swing your drivers and fairway woods better than ever!
Mimic the Downswing while Lying on the Ground
You can consider this exercise as an extension of the previous one. Backswing and downswing always go together, right?
You can use the same setup on the ground or on your bed for this one as the previous one. You’ll also need a towel for this one. Start by rolling the towel on the shorter side.
Lie flat on the ground. Bring your knees up to your waist and put the rolled up towel between your knees. Spread your hands on both sides of the body to maintain balance.
Now, twist on both sides alternatively without touching the ground with your knees, ankles, or feet. This exercise will improve your core strength for a more explosive downswing. If your downswing is already good, this exercise will keep the muscle memory and help you return to the course stronger than before.
Do Lunges Whenever You can to Maintain Hip Strength
Hips come right after the legs in terms of importance for golf players. The power is delivered from the legs to your upper body through your hips. So, it’s important that you strengthen and maintain the strength on the hips throughout the year.
Lunges are by far the simplest and most effective exercise to hone your hip strength. You can do plain old lunges or the innovative twisted lunges, whichever you feel more comfortable with.
If we have to pick one, we’d say go with the twisted lunges. It mimics the motion of a swing more than the regular lunges.
To perform twisted lunges, bend one of your legs and put in right behind the other leg. Now, do a lunge. It’s going to feel extremely hard or maybe impossible at the beginning. But as you do more them, you’ll get the hang of this exercise.
Bonus Tips for the Winter
Sure, fitness is a very important aspect for every golf player. But is it all? Of course not! So, what are the other things you should maintain during the winter? Let’s find out.
Just because it’s the lazy season doesn’t mean you should eat whatever you want. Diet is a massive part of one’s fitness. So, keep a close eye on how many calories you’re consuming.
If golf is one of your main hobbies, you might feel empty inside from time to time because you can’t hit the course or the driving range due to winter. It might not feel like much but it can be easily avoided with the simple incorporation of mindfulness in your life.
Mindfulness is a meditative practice where you connect to your mind and relax. One of the standard practices in mindfulness is to feel the surroundings. You make simple tweaks to your meditation to feel like you’re at a course, enjoying the sunset.