Get ready for your best golf season with Linda Segerstam from The Intelligent Core Golf Pilates.
Golfers don’t always see the connection between Pilates exercises and their golf swing. At first glance, my Golf Pilates programme may seem like any other regular Pilates class. But with my understanding of both golf and Pilates, I am super focused on specific movements to help you golf better.
Strengthening specific muscles in your body can massively improve your swing. As golfers, we’re very lucky to be part of such a unique sport suitable for all ages. If we remain healthy, there is no expiration date for our days on the course. Golf Pilates is your portal to a long and healthy golf game!
I have many clients who are inflexible in either their hips, back or both or not using them correctly. They get away with it to a point on the course by overcompensating with the upper body. Golfers spend a lot of time and money trying to get this right. My scratch playing partner and I love spending hours discussing this, both from his PGA and my Pilates point of views. Golf Pilates can help with the improvement. Depending on your start position I add the right mix of exercises for core strength, flexibility, balance and tempo training.
So, where do we start? You might have heard of an exercise called the ‘Pelvic Tilt’ and this is one of my favourite Pilates exercises to help build an understanding of how your hips move. For me, getting this part of the body moving with strength and flexibility is fundamental for longevity on the golf course. If you understand the combination of muscles required and train them, you can adjust for a better golf swing.
Let’s get technical
The golf swing is not a continuous movement, it has a stop. Our muscles and joints, especially around the hips, need to activate correctly, be in the right position and be able to come to a complete stop. There is a difference between the potential for movement and the actual movement of your body in the golf swing. The body moves where it feels safe. If muscles are weak or tight your range of movement becomes shorter. When we add speed and weight (golf swing and golf club) the range instinctively shortens even more.
Think about your practice swing. It feels smooth and your arms, back, hips all feel like they are moving well. As soon as we get ready to actually hit the ball, this suddenly changes. The arms don’t go as high as before, the shoulders don’t turn and the hips are suddenly not moving as freely. Golf Pilates can help with this as we practice exercises that take the joints and muscles safely through their full range adding weight to make them stronger.
An emphasis on back health exercises
My online and in-person group classes offer a variety of levels within the same class. We are all different and we need different exercises and stretches. You choose which level and tempo work best for you. You are in control. Throughout the session, I offer tips and tweaks to remind you how to do the exercises correctly and how this connects to the golf swing. To improve your general fitness, try 2-3 classes per week. It is a full-body workout as we use the majority of joints and muscles in the golf swing.
I emphasise back health exercises to improve the golf swing and your posture. With strong back muscles and core, you stand properly to the ball and maintain posture when you turn, and especially when you hit your shot. Your body will feel less of an impact. Some of you feel discomfort when picking up the tee or ball. With Golf Pilates, bending your body will no longer feel like a chore. This will not just help you on the golf course but throughout the day; just think about those socks on the floor!
Many golfers choose private lessons. We start with tempo and direction and whilst engaging in movement, I analyse your current fitness level, discussing your individual goals. You are an active participant in the process. I cater to all levels, whether you want a light flowing class or prefer a more strenuous session with added challenges. Whatever level you choose, my job is to help you isolate and tone your muscles and improve joint health.
After a while, my clients start to see and feel the difference when playing golf and that’s because the muscles are working differently. I assist with taking the Pilates movements you master on the floor out on the golf range too with on course or range Golf Pilates sessions.
Golf Pilates helps your game regardless of your starting point. Some of you need help breaking 100 for the first time, and others want to ensure they can hover around 70 long into their senior years. One thing we have in common is that every single golfer is looking to improve. We never settle.
Interested to find out more?
The Women & Golf Members' Club has 10 of my Golf Pilates class videos and you can sign up here.
When you are ready you can start your Golf Pilates journey by joining me in person or online. Let’s move our hips into 2022 with a healthy golf swing!
See you on the golf course!
About The Intelligent Core
Linda Segerstam, founder of The Intelligent Core is a Pilates for golf expert. She specifically develops Pilates programmes for golfers to improve their flexibility and strength. Linda has worked with major sports and corporate brands for the last 20 years and is also a volunteer golf coach.
Recently we spoke to Linda about her life in golf and how she was at the forefront of the Pilates for golf movement - you can read the full interview here.