I can’t tell you how many times I find myself rushing to get to the golf course prior to a tee time. Just when I think I leave myself enough time to get there, check in, hit some balls and putt a little bit, my name’s being called to the first tee box — where I immediately feel rushed as I hit my first shot.
As any golfer knows, this is no way to start a round.
This type of panic causes rushed shots, anxiety, and any number of bad golf habits. What’s worse, not stretching before a round means your muscles are tight, meaning you’re relying on getting loose while you’re playing to avoid an injury.
In the words of Homer Simpson, “d’oh!”
Rather than approach the first tee feeling tight and stressed, GOLF Teacher to Watch Mike Bury has 10 golf stretches that you can use from the parking lot before a round. So even if you’re running a little late, follow Bury’s advice below to approach your first shot feeling good; without any tightness or tension.
Effective golf stretches that can be done from almost anywhere
Whether you’re walking during your round or riding in a cart, stretch both calves to make sure you’re ready to roll from the first tee. You’ll be in good shape to avoid injury, and, more importantly, shouldn’t feel any unwelcome tightness as you transfer your weight during the swing.
Getting the hamstrings loose will allow you to confidently stand tall over your shots without tightness, helping you avoid dipping your shoulder — which would reduce the maximum distance your ball will travel.
Standing quad stretch
Similar to a runner stretching before a race, use your strongest muscles to your advantage. While many amateurs may (wrongly) think the golf swing is all arms or hips, the legs do so much in order to hit an effective shot. So be sure the quads are loose; along with the aforementioned hamstrings and calves.
Using the trunk in your golf swing will help you with your transition, while also providing additional power as you rotate through the hips.
The more mobility you have in your hips, the faster you’ll be able to swing the club through impact. So always be sure to get the hips loose before teeing it up!
Like other stretches on this list, Bury reminds players to loosen up their upper body, with these side bends focusing on the obliques. This will help avoid the possibility of injury, while also allowing for proper rotation.
By incorporating this golf stretch into your pre-round routine, you’ll be able to get your core loose, which enables the proper rotation as you swing the golf club. This is critical for hitting the ball straighter and longer!
Like a quarterback in football or a pitcher in baseball, warm up the shoulders prior to your next golf round to maximize your performance. As Bury points out, even just 30 seconds of this golf stretch can prove effective.
Release tension before hitting your first shot by rolling your neck. This will help improve your flexibility even through forceful golf swings — and avoid injury.
The hands obviously play a huge part in how effective your golf shot is. So Bury says emphasizing a wrist stretch before a round will help them flex properly when you swing the club.