Golf Series: Losing Distance on Your Swing?

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Golf Series: Losing Distance on Your Swing?

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Ever wonder why you have been losing distance on your drives or how the pros can possibly hit the ball so far? Proper thoracic (or mid-back) mobility allows for increased rotation in your swing which leads to increased distance with your drives and long irons. Thoracic mobility can decrease as we age, and this can lead to decreased distance on your shots. Improving mobility in your thoracic spine can be great way to improve your swing and add that distance you’ve been losing.
Try these exercises to improve your thoracic mobility:
  • Thread the Needle
  • Starting on your hands and knees with your rear-end rocked back onto your heels, lift your right hand and pass it behind your left hand reaching as far to the left as you can.  Allow your upper torso to turn as far as possible to the left and drop your right shoulder to the ground.  Return to the starting position, and do the same thing to the other direction using your left hand.  
  • 10 second hold, 5 repetitions on each side.
  • Chops
  • Kneel with a cord, or cable, at your side and above shoulder height.  With a tight core, pull the handle down and across your body toward your opposite hip while rotating your body with it.  Slowly and carefully return to the starting position.
  • 3 sets of 10
  • Lifts
  • Kneel with a cord, or cable, at your side and below hip height.  With a tight core, pull the handle up and across your body toward your opposite shoulder while rotating your body with it.  Slowly and carefully return to the starting position.  
  • 3 sets of 10
  • Scapular retraction with ER
  • Stand facing a band or cable column anchored at chest height, holding a handle in each hand with your arms extended.  Pull the handles straight back keeping your elbows out to the side and at shoulder height.  Once your elbow are evel with your body, pause briefly then rotate your hands straight up vertically without dropping your elbows.  Slowly return to the starting position.
  • 3 sets of 10
  • This exercise helps improve thoracic mobility by improving strength and function of the muscles that support the thoracic spine and shoulders.  
Smoother, more efficient movements help not only to decrease your risk of injury but can also improve your performance!  If you continue to experience pain, stiffness, or decreased performance while playing golf, set an appointment to come in and see one of our expertly trained Physical Therapists like Brett Hernandez whom we interviewed for this post.  Dr. Hernandez is certified in Manual Therapy, Dry Needling, and Astym as well as being an avid golfer himself.  Not sure if you need physical therapy?  You can always schedule a free screen where we will take a look at you and assess your need for PT for free!