Golf Fitness 101: 4 exercises for a stronger backswing pivot

There’s arguably no more important move in your golf swing than your pivot, also known as your backswing.

This is because your ability to rotate correctly around your body largely determines how powerful your swing is, and in turn, how far you can hit the golf ball.

There are essentially four parts to your pivot — the separation between your upper and lower body, the backswing pivot, muscle activation and a stable base to rotate around. If you want to build a better backswing that will help you hit bombs, you’re going to need to put in some work at the gym.

That’s why we’ve worked with golf fitness expert Morgan Hale to create this edition of Home Fitness, which focuses on exercises that will help you power up your golf swing by strengthening your backswing pivot. Check out Week 2 of this month’s Home Fitness series above (and below for convenience) so you can impress your playing partners the next time you’re on the tee.

Week 2 workout: Build a better pivot

Beach ball rotation with pause: Take an inflated beach ball and place it between your knees. With the beach ball in place, hold a club and take your stance. From here, make a backswing and pause at the top. You should feel your trail side hip move back while keeping the beach ball in place. Your lower body should be stable so your upper body can rotate around you, which will help create more power in your swing. Perform three sets of ten reps.

Glute activation: For this exercise, take the beach ball and place it between your glutes and a wall. Assume your golf posture, placing a club across your shoulders. The goal of this drill is to rotate back into the beach ball so that the ball remains in place. If the ball drops, you know you’re not rotating correctly. Perform three sets of 5 reps. This will help activate the posterior chain muscles, like your glutes, responsible for powering up your swing.

Banded pivot: Using a light band, place one end under your front foot and hold the other end in your hands. Assume your golf posture, and make a backswing. As you pivot, you’re going to stretch the band away from your body, pause at the top and try to hold that position. This will help prevent you from getting too far on your toes or your heels, keeping you more balanced in your swing. It will also help you create the proper separation between your upper and lower body necessary for a powerful swing. Do three sets of 10 reps.

Wall open books: For the last exercise this week, you’ll need both the beach ball and the light band. Standing in a split stance, place the beach ball between your outside leg and the wall, putting pressure into the beach ball to keep it in place. Holding the band with one arm straight against the wall, you’re going to work against your lower body to stretch the band away from you. This will help keep your lower body stable as your upper body is moving, much like it should be in your actual golf swing.

Do this workout a few times per week and you’ll be on your way to stronger pivot and more powerful swing. And if you missed the Week 1 workout focused on posture, check it out below.

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