Ashley Drummonds, owner and founder of ABS Wellness LLC provides bay area individuals with personal training, nutrition counselling, supplement plans and motivational blogs. She has been in the fitness industry for five years and studied various fields of training including weight lifting, circuit training, TRX, cross fit, kettle bell training, body weight training, sports performance, rehabilitation, weight loss, and the Tabatha method.
Examiner: What is the biggest fitness issue you see with golfers?
Ashley: Most golfers lack proper training in flexibility and core work to give them optimum power and movement in every swings. So many golfers have stopped strength training to keep from putting on size thinking it will inhibit their range of motion when the only way to enhance your swing properly is through resistance training with specific exercises that help utilize your core twisting motions.
Examiner: Many golfers walk 18 holes, what’s a good way to keep their energy levels consistent and how to avoid the peaks and valleys?
Ashley: The best way to build endurance and stamina in any game is in the way you train. For athletes like golfers and tennis players who participate in short burst of power and long durations of a game the best way to train is with HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) and strength training circuits like the one I recently put in my blog page. Aside from their training regimen, a golfers nutrition is going to help keep energy levels stabilized throughout a game. It is important to eat every 2.5-3 hours with lean protein, veggies and carbs that will keep insulin levels stable. White carbs elevate the blood sugar creating a huge spike and a huge drop in energy. Stick with whole grains, whole oats, starchy veggies (zucchini, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, squash) on game days. Try to eliminate too much caffeine to keep from experiencing an energy crash. Best form of supplement energy is a multivitamin in powder form that is packed full of B Vitamins and plant sources.
Examiner:With courses becoming longer from the tee, what is the most effective way for golfers to add power to their swing and start hitting the ball longer?
Ashley: As with any sport involving short bursts of power movements, the most power always comes from rotating the hips and engaging the core. Exercises such as cable twists, Russian twists, Wood Chop, Kettle Bell Swings, Hamstring Curls on the Stability Ball, Side Lateral Raises for Shoulder Strength, Alternating Lunge Twists, Sumo Squats, Supermans, Planks. The lists is endless for strengthening the core muscles with swings.
Examiner: The golf swing is an unnatural movement on the body, causing many areas of ligament and muscle tension. What are some key ways that golfers can avoid injury or long-term damage?
Ashley: The best way to not only prevent injury, but also improve flexibility is to focus on functional movement patterns which would be any movements your body uses on a daily basis. For example, body weight squats, twisting movements so the knees and hamstrings are used to this type of strain on the muscle. A great twisting exercise for knees, hamstrings and core is the wood chop. Another thing to incorporate is stretching at least 5 days a week for as little as ten minutes. I highly recommend using a foam roller to work areas such as the IT band and the hamstrings which are vital in a golfer’s swing. If you are not used to using a foam roller it can be a little painful the first time so be sure to ease into it just like any exercise regimen.
Examiner: What are some good warm-up techniques related to the golf swing?
Ashley: Shoulder rotations (forward and backwards) and alternating toe touch which involves standing feet shoulder width apart, arms straight out and twisting from the waist touching opposite hand to opposite fit then back to start position. Hip Flexor warm ups of alternating lunges are great to warm up the legs, hamstrings and groin area.
Examiner:How long should a golfer stretch and warm-up prior to swinging the club?
Ashley: With any workout or activity, I always recommend my clients to participate in a 5-10 minute warm up. I never recommend stretching before warming up since your muscles are cold and you can actually strain a muscle by stretching before loosening your joins. Start with a five minute warm-up of the movements discussed earlier then perform a few light stretches and warm up swings with the club.
Examiner:Are there any post-activities actions a golfer should take?
Ashley: After any endurance activity that involves a long duration on your muscles you want to be sure to stretch and nourish your muscles. Your body has been depleted of water, carbs, and obviously rest throughout the game so you want to make sure following the game you hydrate yourself as well as re-fuel with a healthy meal that has the proper break down of lean proteins, complex carbs and veggies.
Examiner: When would you recommend golfer’s to workout in the gym in relation to their practice on the course?
Ashley: Workout time really depends on the individual. Everyone has a high energy time throughout the day where they have the most energy and perform the best. For some that time is first thing in the morning and for others that may be at lunch or after dinner. Whatever is your usual time where you find you are most energized and focused is when you want to be in the gym because you will gain the most from your workouts. If a golfer plans to practice and workout on the same day, I would suggest allowing as much time in between the two for recovery as possible along with making sure you are fuelling your body properly so you do not exert more energy than your body has been fuelled for that day. For example, if a golfer plans to practice in the evening around 6:00pm the best time for a workout may be on the lunch break followed by a healthy meal to repair muscles and prepare for a practice.
Examiner: What are the best exercises a golfer can perform to enhance his game?
Ashley: Great exercises are anything that focuses on functional movement patterns, core strength and flexibility. High intensity intervals in your workout will give a golfer then endurance needed. Incorporate property strength training into this with core movements and you will have a perfect workout. Here is a great workout for golfers to work on all of these areas.
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