Bryson DeChambeau offers warning for golfers chasing distance in the gym

Bryson DeChambeau

Bryson DeChambeau's chase has become very popular. But he warns others: don't go taking any shortcuts.

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Since Bryson DeChambeau has found such great success with his extraordinary strength and speed gains, it’s enticing to want to follow in his footsteps. You’ve probably heard that DeChambeau started working out harder, gaining weight, and swinging faster; is that really all that’s required for more distance and better scores, though?

On a recent Q&A video chat with FlightScope, DeChambeau warned golfers against simply hitting the gym and swinging for the fences. For DeChambeau, it’s a much more complex and health-centric process.

DeChambeau credits who he calls his “muscle specialist,” Greg Roskopf of MAT (Muscle Activation Techniques), with helping him understand how to hit the ball farther, and in a way that prevents injury.

“I’ll tell you this guys, you can’t just work out and get stronger,” DeChambeau said in the FlightScope video chat. “[Gaining distance] is a very difficult process that will injure a lot of people if you do that, and you have to be careful. So what I would recommend is having someone who’s looking over you, especially someone who’s an MAT-trained individual; someone that’s trained to treat the body. Make sure you can tolerate these forces. Because it’s not just about strength levels, it’s about the neuromuscular training.”

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According to DeChambeau, muscle growth occurs through the process of neuromuscular training, and MAT trainers are able to help speed up the process.

“You have a muscular potential, and then you have a neurological potential on that muscle,” DeChambeau explained. “So when you exceed a neurological potential – because we’re pretty much a circuit in a sense – when you exceed the neurological potential that you have, your neurological threshold goes way down. It just immediately goes down…you have to retrain the neurological level back up to its previous neurological level, or maybe even higher, and that takes an MAT trained professional to do that, or it takes 6 months of training.”

DeChambeau says the body takes a lot longer to clear up unwanted inflammation than a MAT trainer. He credits this shortcut with his quick gains recently.

“You can go to an MAT trainer and get [recovery] done in a day or two, compared to the body taking a lot longer to take all the inflammation out and raise that tolerance level up to another level,” DeChambeau says. “That’s why I’ve been able to gain so much so quick because of these guys. We’ve learned how to shortchange the acute phase of inflammation, which is what I was talking about, that neurological disparity.”

bryson dechambeau masters

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By drastically reducing his physical recovery time, DeChambeau is able to gain strength and speed faster. Then, when he’s gained speed, he learns to hone in that added distance to make it playable on the golf course. DeChambeau explained this process when he was asked about his advice for junior golfers during the FlightScope chat.

“I would agree with the modality that there needs to be some level of learning how to create speed,” DeChambeau said. “Then…you have to start honing it in. Once you hone it in and learn how to control it, then you can start experimenting with speed again. So it’s an ever-developing speed, precision, speed, precision, speed, precision, sort of modality…when I get to the golf course, I’m able to hone it in. It might not be at my max top speed, but I will be faster than before. So, it’s always about the speed to precision [process].”

So, for those golfers who are interested in following in DeChambeau’s footsteps, it’s more than just working out and swinging harder. For DeChambeau, it’s a constantly revolving door of pushing his limits, honing them back in, and doing it all under the supervision of muscle specialists. You probably won’t ever hit it more than 400 yards, but you can elevate your game to new heights (and remain injury-free) if you do it the right way.

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Andrew Tursky

Golf.com Editor

Andrew Tursky is the Senior Equipment Editor at GOLF Magazine and GOLF.com.