By Cole Golden, WGTF Master Golf Teaching Professional More than 20 years ago when I became a certified golf teaching professional, golf was a different game. Multi-layer golf balls weren’t around, launch monitors didn’t exist and high-tech video systems weren’t available. Many players weren’t focused on being a well-rounded player who focused on fitness for one reason or another. The college or mini-tour level golfers I knew could be described as the “partiers.”
Tiger Woods altered the trajectory of the game by making an impact on advertising, the purse of golf tournaments, clothing and the cool-factor – especially with attracting athletes form other sports. But the most noticeable change was emphasizing the importance of a golfer being a well-rounded athlete through nutrition, strength and conditioning.
If you look at the top players in the world, most have a swing coach, a short-game coach, or even a mental coach, too. But all players have a strength and conditioning coach. This has become a big business; you can even buy workouts from the top strength coaches online. Golfers have evolved into world-class athletes.
A few weeks ago, Brooks Koepka’s strength coach said he could bench over 300 lbs.; that’s crazy! He looks like a defensive back in the NFL but has built his body to help improve his golf game. He’s not the only one: DJ, Tiger, Rory, Adam Scott and Justin Thomas all have personal trainers on staff.
As golf teaching professionals, it is recommended that we incorporate this type of training into our programs for our students. I am not saying you need to be become a certified personal trainer, but you could research and recommend local trainers. This is especially important if your student wants to pursue golf as a career. Gaining strength and flexibility will help any golfer – including ourselves! I challenge you to become familiar with what the top personal trainers are doing to help their clients to help you improve yours.