When you think about some sports and how they relate to strength training you might think of pro football players or maybe pro baseball players. When you read about a scandal involving steroids, growth hormone or other performance drugs those athletes might come to mind. People generally agree that being stronger in those sports is an advantage. But what about an almost purely finesse sport like golf? Does strength matter much?
I wanted to know so we did our own little test. Whenever we test a bunch of people we always learn more than we bargained for. It’s been one of my favorite things to do over the years. A few years ago we went to a private gold club in Idaho and asked for volunteers to do an early version of the Static Contraction workout that used slightly lighter weights and slightly longer hold times. The trainees were middle aged experienced golfers; four men and four women averaging 47 years of age. We took them to a driving range and measured how far they could hit two dozen balls. Then we trained them for six weeks and went back to the driving range to measure again.
Some of the things we learned included:
- after just 7 workouts the men increased their overall strength 73%
- the women increased their overall strength 95% (Yes, women with less testosterone made greater gains.)
- individual muscle groups broke down as follows:
- Chest strength +58%
- Shoulder strength +57%
- Quadriceps strength +86%
- Hamstring strength +78%
- Abdominal strength 170%
- Low Back strength +58%
- Triceps strength +133%
- Biceps strength +72%
- Forearm (flexors) +87%
- Forearm (extensors) +93%
- Overall Average Strength Gain +84%
- All of their drives improved – from a few yards to up to 30 yards in distance
- They also reported having more energy and stamina and even an improved short game
All of the above was done with an average of 6.6 workouts spread over six weeks. The total exercise they did in all that time was 14.5 minutes of actual lifting. That’s less than what most personal trainers would have you do in one workout! Yet, look again at those strength increases. That’s what training efficiency is about. And the older you are the more you care (or should care) about the reduced grinding and punishment to your body from longer, more frequent workouts.
Odds are you conventional workout isn’t give you strength gains like the ones above but is creating more wear and tear on your body. So why do it if there is an alternative?
Here are some of the comments from the golfers on this study:
“I am definitely hitting the ball a lot further since doing the workouts – and hitting it farther more consistently. Also during the time I was in the study my handicap went from a 14, which I was carrying pretty much all the year before, to a low this year of 9.7.”
“I like the fact that I get the strength without getting bulked up, so that my muscles are able to stay relaxed through my swing. My consistency is also much better.”
“After six weeks doing the program my drives are much stronger.”
“This has really improved my power – even in my fairway irons. I’ve noticed a lot of shape and fitness benefits as well. I have way more energy since starting this program.”
”I’m golfing much better. I played in a tournament recently and am hitting the ball really far now. I love the fact that this program is so lifestyle-friendly. I have time commitments, as most men and women do, and to have a program that is this effective that only takes two minutes a week to perform is a godsend. This is optimum!”
“My drives, particularly my 5-wood off the fairway, improved tremendously as a result of this program. I was more balanced and it didn’t seem to take near the effort for me to hit that ball properly and to hit it a lot further. I won a long ball championship recently, hitting the ball farther than all the other women who participated in the tournament.”
“I think everybody ought to try this program. And the fact that it helped me tremendously proves that you don’t have to be an advanced athlete or in really good shape to pick up on the program and get really good results.”
Golf is a sport that is viewed as almost 100% finesse rather than relying on power or strength. Yet, these very experienced golfers who did not improve their technique in any way over the six weeks were ALL able to improve their game with efficient, effective static contraction strength training. A stronger golfer is a better golfer.
You can buy the improved version of the workout these golfers used. It’s dirt cheap and it’s available right now from Amazon. If you golf you should give this a try. If you know a golfer please tell him or her about this.