The Cold Rubber Band
 

The Cold Rubber Band
Insight into the world of warming up.  

By Tyler Ferrell
Titleist Performance Institute

I want you to indulge in the cravings of your inner "Dennis The Menace" for a moment. Imagine that you are going to engage in a routine rubber band war with your childhood buddy.  But what is this?!  It looks like your mom put your bag of rubber bands in the freezer last night.  Being the young scientist that you are, you take a rubber band and try to fire it as normal.  You attach it to your thumb, but when you pull it back. SNAP!  The natural reaction is to pull it back a little slower next time.  Unfortunately, the rubber is still cold, and the band breaks again.  The third time, you take the rubber band and rub it vigorously between your hands.  After the rubber band is heated, it functions perfectly.

Rubber Bands

The cold rubber band is the classic example of what a muscle is like prior to activity.  We need to heat the rubber band, or muscle, prior to activity.  As a golf fitness instructor, I see countless instances of golfers trying to fire the cold rubber band.  Let me clear up a common misconception.  There is a BIG difference between “warming up” and improving one’s flexibility. (1)  Warming up means heating the rubber band.  Improving one’s flexibility means increasing the range of motion that the rubber band can go through.  Improving one’s flexibility is NOT appropriate before a round of golf.  It should be done after the round or as part of your exercise program.  Before the round of golf we need to warm up. Let’s look at how to, and how not to warm up.

The things that scare me when I see them as a form of warm up are:

Improper stretching techniques – trying to touch toes and holding for longer than a few seconds or even bouncing.  We do NOT want to force ourselves farther than our body will go comfortably.  In the short term, this method will DECREASE the muscles’ ability to respond.  A method of stretching that is a better form of warm up is Dynamic Stretching.  Examples of dynamic stretching are shown below.

Swinging Heavy Clubs or Multiple clubs – Professional baseball has done studies and found that increasing the weight of the ball by more than 20% will change the muscle pattern and increase your risk of injury. (2) Secondly, swinging a heavy object will condition your body to respond SLOWER.  If your top clubhead speed is 100 MPH and you swing a heavy implement when you return to swinging a golf club, you will swing a few MPH SLOWER. When it comes to the golf swing, we want our muscles to respond quicker, not slower.

Starting with putting and working up to full swings – good way of preparing for a round, but putting is not a WARM UP.  According to Dr. Peter McKay at the world golf fitness summit, a large percentage of back injuries occur in the first 15% of motion.  Getting into your putting posture will cross that threshold.  I would prefer to see you warm up prior to any golf related activity.

So how can we heat up the rubber band?  At Clubgolf we advocate a complete warm up, but here is what I consider a bare minimum.  In its entirety, it should take less than 5 minutes.

Helicopter Lunge

Helicopter Lunge – Do this to warm up the warm muscles of the core first.  Start slowly at first and pick up speed after a few reps. Starting in a good “lunge stance position.”  (Place 1 foot in front of the other. Bend the knees around 90º but keep the front knee over the center of the front foot.)  Extend your arms out and rotate your torso while keeping your gaze forward.  Rotate back and forth about 5 times.  Switch legs.  Repeat 5 times.

Figure 4 Walks – Now that the core is warmed up, lets move on to the hips and lower extremities. Stand on one foot and grab your opposite foot/ankle with both hands.  Raise your foot up belt line height and hold for a second.  Switch legs.  Repeat 5 times.

Leg swing – Continue to warm up the lower extremities with a focus on the hamstrings. Use a golf club like a crutch so that one leg may hang freely.  WITHOUT arching your back swing your leg forward at a controlled speed.  Place the emphasis on stabilizing your core and controlling the leg swing.  Swing the leg back and forth 5 times.  Switch legs and repeat

Saws – Begin to warm up the smaller muscles in the chest and rotator cuff. With your core engaged and your knees flexed (golf posture is a good model) and your elbows bent 90º saw your arms back and forth.  When you pull your elbows back toward you, keep your abs engaged to prevent from arching your lower back.  Focus on squeezing your shoulder blades to help warm up the shoulders.  Saw quickly back and forth 10 times.

Prayer Presses – Finish the upper extremities by warming up the elbows and wrists. Place your palms together in front of your chest.  Keep as much of your fingers and palms contacted as you raise your elbows up to chest height as well.  Keep your shoulder blades pinched and press your palms together as hard as you can.  Repeat 5 times.

NOW, proceed with your normal preparation for your round at the driving range. 

Always remember, no exercise should be performed to the point of discomfort or pain and always consult your physician prior to beginning any exercise program.

For more information about Titleist Performance Institute, please visit www.mytpi.com.

1) Michael Boyle, “Functional Training for Sports” Copyright 2004.
2) Dr. Coop DeRenne Sport Science University of Hawaii

 

 
Sponsors
Premier Partners
Official Partners
Media Partners
Association Partner
Twitter Facebook AJGA Blog AJGA on YouTube
Member Logins
 
Player, Coach and Alumni Login
Center:
Member ID:
Password:
 
Forgot your password?
Don't have a password?
Forgot your Member ID?
 
Not A Member or Need to Renew?
 
What every member should know
Learn the basics
Performance Based Entry
Leadership Links
ACE Grant financial aid
Polo Golf Rankings
Boys
1. Sam Burns
Shreveport, LA
2. Andy Zhang
Reunion, FL
3. Austin Connelly
Irving, TX
4. Jorge Garcia
Miami, FL
5. KK Limbhasut
Loma Linda, CA
Girls
1. Andrea Lee
Hermosa Beach, CA
2. Bethany Wu
Diamond Bar, CA
3. Kristen Gillman
Austin, TX
4. Maddie Szeryk
Allen, TX
5. Megan Khang
Rockland, MA
Complete Rankings
Foundation

The Foundation

The American Junior Golf Foundation is the primary recipient of all charitable giving to the AJGA and as such administers a variety of programs designed to compliment the AJGA and the members and families who make up our community. Learn more about these important programs and how your contributions to the Foundation secure the AJGA’s financial future for future generations to come.
   
Donate Now
Planned Giving Program
Endow an ACE Grant
Annual Fund
ACE Grant

ACE

The Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant program provides financial assistance to junior golfers who wish to play in AJGA events. Its goal is to give top-flight golf opportunities to young golfers regardless of financial resources. This program helps to fulfill the AJGA’s mission of developing young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf.

Leadership Links

What is Leadership Links?

Leadership Links is a new program whereby the AJGA is able to further its mission to help develop young men and women by teaching charitable giving skills and service-oriented practices at an early age. This program gives juniors all the tools necessary to donate their time, talent and resources to local charities and the AJGA youth development programs. Please click here to learn more about the program and the different opportunities available.

Weekly Results
The Junior PLAYERS Championship presented by TaylorMade-adidas Golf
Boys
Total
T
1
Austin Connelly
69
T
1
Maxwell Miller
69
T
3
Joshua Martin
70
T
3
Andreas Halvorsen
70
Sunriver Junior Open
Boys
Total
1
Norman Xiong
203
T
2
Aaron Whalen
205
T
2
Cole Madey
205
Girls
Total
1
Janet Zhang
218
2
Amanjoty Sangha
219
3
Sarah Rhee
220
Sunriver Junior All-Star
Boys
Total
1
Joseph Chun
201
2
John Sand
207
3
Sean Yi
209
Girls
Total
1
*Hayeon Yun
212
2
Briana Chacon
212
3
Euna Han
215
CorseMax / Philadelphia Runner Junior
Boys
Total
1
John Lazor
215
2
Paul Lei
218
3
Ambrose Abbracciamento
219
Girls
Total
1
Brynn Walker
215
2
Jackie Rogowicz
220
3
Kelly Sim
221
* Won via sudden-death playoff
FJ Live Scoring
AJGA U
The American Junior Golf Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the overall growth and
development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf.