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9 Stretches to Benefit Your Golf Game

Playing golf is a great way to enjoy low-impact exercise. It’s a competitive, social sport that involves frequent walking around a course.

However, the repetitive motion of swinging your club can cause pain and injury. This commonly affects the arms and back, but it can involve any part of the body because golf swings are full-body movements.

In this article, we’ll explore 9 essential stretches for golfers. These stretches can help:

  • relieve golf-related pain
  • reduce your risk for injury
  • improve your overall performance

It’s recommended that you do these stretches before and after every round of golf. For optimal results, you should also do a set on your days off.

Golf stretches that can improve your swing

For a better golf swing, stretch your quadriceps. These muscles help move your knees, which help rotate your body.

You’ll need a bench or chair to do this stretch.

Quadriceps stretch

Start with your back facing the bench, feet hip-width apart. Place your hands on your hips or clasp your hands in front of your chest.
Bend your right knee. Rest the top of your right foot on the bench. Engage your right glute.
Bend the left knee, being careful to keep it aligned over the left ankle.
Straighten the left leg, returning to standing.
Repeat 2 to 5 times on each side.

Golf stretches for your back

Golfers often strain their back muscles. This stretch will help loosen tension in the area.

You’ll also need a bench or chair to do this move.

Forward fold with a chair

Start facing the back of the bench, feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the back of the chair and take a step back until your arms are extended.
Lower your upper body, keeping your back straight. Continue until you feel the stretch in your armpits. Hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat 2 to 5 times on each side.

Golf stretches for your hips

If you have tight hips, it may be difficult to squat during a golf swing. It also limits how well you can rotate your body.

To open your hips, try the following moves:

Seated hip stretch

This stretch relieves tightness in your hips, thighs, and back.

Sit up straight on a bench, a chair, or the floor. Put your left ankle on top of your right thigh. Plant your right foot on the ground.
Move your torso forward, bending at your waist. Continue until you feel the stretch in your left hip. Hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat 2 to 5 times on each side.

Kneeling hip stretch
If you can comfortably kneel on the ground, try this move. It’s great for stretching your hips, butt, and thighs.

Start on your knees, back straight. Plant your right foot on the ground, directly under your right knee. Position both knees at 90 degrees.
Lay your hands on top of your right thigh. Pull your shoulders away from your ears. Contract your core.
Slowly move the right foot forward, keeping the ankle below the knee, and lean forward until you feel a stretch in the left hip flexor. Hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat 2 to 5 times on each side.

Golf stretches for your elbows
The repetitive motion of golfing can lead to golfer’s elbow. In this condition, the muscles in your elbow and forearm become inflamed, causing pain and tenderness.

The following exercise can provide relief. It stretches the muscles in your forearm, which reduces tension in the elbow and arm.

Golfer’s elbow stretch
Extend your right arm in front of you. Face your palm down.
Use your left hand to pull your right fingers down and toward your body. Hold for 30 seconds.
Return your palm to starting position. Pull your wrist up and toward your body. Hold for 30 seconds. This completes one rep.
Repeat 2 to 5 times on each side.
You can also try this stretch with your palm facing up.

Golf stretches for your wrists
The above exercise feels great for the wrists. But you can also do the prayer stretch to further stretch your wrists. This move can help relieve carpal tunnel syndrome caused by constant gripping.

Prayer stretch
Press your palms together. Place them in front of your chest.
Move your hands toward your waist, keeping your palms against each other.
Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat 2 to 5 times.

Golf stretches for your core
A fluid golf swing relies on strong, flexible core muscles. This move stretches these muscles so you can turn with ease. It mimics a backswing and follow-through.

Core twist stretch
Stand up straight, feet shoulder-width apart. Cross your arms over your chest.
Bend your knees and lean your upper body slightly forward.
Turn your torso to mimic your backswing. Pause.
Rotate your body to mimic your follow-through. Hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat 2 to 5 times.

Golf stretches for your hamstrings
Your hamstring muscles are in the back of your thighs. They allow knee rotation and thigh extension, letting you turn during a golf swing.

To loosen them up, do this stretch. You’ll need a golf club and a step.

Hamstring stretch with golf club
Place your golf club behind your shoulders, holding one end in each hand. Stand in front of a step.
Set your right heel on top of the step, knee bent slightly. Lean forward at your waist, back straight.
Rotate your upper body to the right. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat to the left. This completes one rep.
Switch legs and repeat. Repeat 2 to 5 times.

Golf stretches for your shoulders
Golf swings are also hard on the shoulders. Try this golf stretch to manage shoulder pain.

Shoulder swing stretch
Start with your feet shoulder-width apart. Raise your right arm across your chest, placing the opposite hand on your right elbow.
Move your right wrist toward your left thumb, pointing your thumb upward.
Rotate your torso to the left. Tug on your right elbow. Hold for 30 seconds.
Hold your left elbow with your right hand. Turn your torso to the right and hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat 2 to 5 times.

Key takeaways
If you play golf, use these stretches as a warmup and cool down. You could also warm up by taking a few light swings.

In addition to regular stretching, applying ice and taking rest days can help manage pain.

Seek medical help if your pain lasts for more than 2 to 3 days or if you feel sudden, sharp pain during a game.

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