How to train effectively during the golf season

By Rachael Tibbs | August 16, 2021

Managing your fitness and training during a busy golf season is not an easy feat. Due to play and practice there is less time to ‘hit the gym’ , as well as the ‘misapprehension’ that too much training can lead to stiffness and fatigue.

Here are my top 4 recommendations on HOW to train during a competitive golf season.

1. Reduce the overall volume of training

Playing and competing even at a club amateur level takes its toll on your energy levels and body. Then adding extra stress to it through training can overload the body a little too much, plus there is the limiting factor of time available to do everything.

Reducing the number of exercises, sets and reps for each workout can help with both these factors.

This means there is less time spent in the gym and less stress / fatigue on your body, leaving you fresh and ready to go when you walk onto the golf course.

I therefore recommend:

  • 2 workouts per week

  • No more than 5 power/strength exercises per session

  • Keep sets down to 2-3

  • Reps should not exceed 5 per set

2. Increase intensity

As the volume decreases, we should then see an increase in intensity. We still want to make changes to the body but not to our detriment. The focus of the training sessions should be to excite the nervous system NOT fatigue the muscles.

To ensure that you achieve this…

  • Work to a higher % of your 1rep max, anywhere between 70-95%.

  • Perform explosive exercises, both strength and power.

  • Rest more between sets to allow you to maintain intensity.

3. Stay mobile to prevent injury

The hips, lower back and shoulders can take a bit of hammering during the golf season. Hitting lots of balls in practice and play can tighten things up, especially around the hips and t-spine (upper back).

Maintaining mobility through regular dynamic stretches and loaded movement is important during the golf season. If movement reduces through the hips and upper back as things tighten up, golfers are susceptible to putting too much pressure on the lower back and therefore injury.

This quick mobility flow can help mobilise these specific areas.

4. Be consistent

Dipping in and out of training is not ideal and can result in injury, increased soreness and inconsistent results. Consistency is key and maintaining a level of strength, power and mobility is important if you want to perform throughout the season.

Ad-hoc training can result in increased soreness as your body is not used to the constant load it is placed under during regular training. Soreness can result in decreased movement and poor swing mechanics on the golf course.

This then creates a false sense that strength training hinders golfer performance, however when done correctly and consistently; for the majority it has a positive impact.

There is a natural residual of training effects, so with strength for example you would expect to see strength levels reduce from 4 weeks onwards of no activity. This will impact performance on the course such as distance and clubhead speed.

Tips to maintain consistency:

  • Be realistic in time available

  • Keep volume low and intensity high, this will keep duration down

  • Aim for 2 sessions per week

  • Have a plan

  • Book it in your diary each week

  • Just do it!

If you would like to find out what specific areas you need to focus on in the gym, then why not take advantage of our FREE TPI Golf Fitness Assessment. To book yours now and receive a free written report, CLICK HERE.