As a remarkable year in golf comes to a close, we’ve been combing through the numbers, story section by story section, reviewing which stories drew your attention during a year unlike any other.
This got us thinking — why not share the findings with you, our loyal and wonderful readers, so we can reminisce together?
For the final 10 days of 2021, we’ll offer up a snapshot of the top 10 stories from each of Golfweek’s most popular sections, including the likes of travel, the PGA and LPGA tours, instruction and equipment.
Let’s start with fitness, which is headed up by our guru, Averee Dovsek. Wondering what kind of results good fitness and flexibility can produce? Take into consideration what Averee accomplished just a few months ago.
Averee Dovsek and Tyler Hosking paced the field in the inaugural MGA @Lexus Long Drive Championship at the Bethpage Polo Fields! Read all about the MGA's first long drive event.
— Metropolitan Golf Association (@MGA1897) September 30, 2021
Without further ado, here are the top 10 fitness posts of the year, as clicked on by you, our readers:
10. Lateral plank walk
A strong core is essential for a good golf swing.
Averee demonstrates the lateral plank walk: a move that will target your core muscles so you can hit pure shots down the fairway.
9. 'Threading the needle' for a stronger core
A stronger abdominal area not only allows for a faster swing, but it also adds a significant amount of stability throughout your action.
“You want your hips, your feet, your shoulders all in a straight line,” Dovsek said. “This is great for core strength.”
8. Leg extensions to get the lower body activated
Activating the lower body during the golf swing is critical, and all you need this week is a fitness band — this simple move will help to get your hamstrings ready.
“It’s a great movement to get those hamstrings firing, great for overall leg strength,” Averee said.
7. Squat press with dumbbells
Squats are great for building strength in the quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.
Squat and add a dumbbell overhead press, and you will increase strength not only in your legs, but in your shoulders, triceps, core and more.
6. Butterfly stretch for better flexibility
Flexibility helps many things in your golf swing, but most importantly, it helps you make a full backswing. This will help increase speed, and in turn, help produces more distance.
“Whatever you do, I really want you to breathe through it,” Averee says in the video above. “Really exhale, really feel that stretch.”
5. Chicken on the golf course? We don't think it's crazy.
Staying hydrated and fueled up on the golf course usually goes overlooked by most amateur golfers. Then by the middle of the back nine, they wonder why they’re running out of energy.
In this lesson with Averee, our fitness guru reviews what you should and shouldn’t eat out on the golf course to make sure you’re getting everything out of your body that you need during the course of 18 holes.
And what should you bring? That’s your preference, but even chicken makes sense.
4. Strengthen your core for speed and balance
(Photo by Gabe Gudgel/Golfweek)
Many amateur golfers aren’t fully aware of how important getting in the gym on a consistent basis is to their game. Building critical muscle groups can be the difference between reaching goals within golf, and falling short of them.
A stronger abdominal area not only allows for a faster swing, it also adds a significant amount of stability throughout your action.
3. Band bicep curls for bombs (and you can do them anywhere)
Hitting bombs isn’t just about working at the range. It’s putting in some time on your biceps, too. But a gym isn’t always available or feasible.
How do you handle that?
All it takes is a simple band. It’s easy enough to do anywhere but will net tremendous results.
2. Baseball swings for distance
Do you struggle with a steep golf swing? What about slow wrist release or your follow-through?
Averee demonstrates how taking a few baseball swings prior to your shot can help your golf swing. This drill helps loosen and warm the body up so you can rotate easily.
Having too many different swing-throughs can become overwhelming. Swinging the club horizontally is a great tool to use when you get out of sorts.
1. A drill for better mobility in your golf swing
Have you ever felt tight on the first tee? Feel like you can’t complete a full backswing? Reach for the lower back after topping one in front of your buddies?
Of course you have — we’ve all done it!
Averee offers up a great drill for those who need a little more mobility.
“I don’t want you leaning forward. I don’t want you leaning back. Keep a good strong core, bring it down for a mobile, and stable golf swing.”