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Contrast Training Methods for Golfers

Contrast training is an extremely popular, novel method of training to become better athletes, and I think golfers can benefit massively from it!


Summary of the article:

  • What is contrast training?

  • Why contrast training works?

  • How can golfers benefit from contrast training?

  • 4 Examples you can use in your training!

 
 

What is Contrast Training?


Contrast training is a fairly simple concept.


Complete a heavy strength exercise, then immediately (less than 2 minutes of rest) complete a light power exercise of that same general motor pattern.


For example...


Heavy squats -> Squat jumps.


Heavy bench -> Plyo push ups.


Hexbar Deads -> Seated box jumps.


By structuring training in this way, we can tap into physiological benefits that promote higher performance and adaptation!


Why Contrast Training Works?


[1.] Train both ends of the force-velocity curve.


As force increases, velocity decreases.


As velocity increases, force decreases.


By utilizing a training method like contrast training, we get the benefits of diversifying our location on this spectrum.


[2.] Post-Activation Potentiation (PAP)


PAP is the idea that immediately following a heavy strength exercise (like squats) we can achieve slightly heightened velocity/power based performance (like squat jumps).


This increase in performance is due to an acute excitation of the neuromuscular system.


If you are a nerd, and want further detail, their appear to be two theoretical mechanisms of the enhanced performance experienced:

  1. Sensitization of myosin-actin interactions within the muscle, increasing cross-bridge cycling rate.

  2. Potentiated H-reflex response, leading to greater muscle activity.

Basically, we are firing up the system, prepping it via a strength based exercise, and then subsequently performing at a higher level via a power exercise.


[3.] Increased Workout Effeciency


Us golfers want to spend time on the course... not in the gym.


By pairing exercises together in a manner like contrast training provides, we reap the benefits of increased effeciency and less time spent in the gym.

 
 

HOW CAN GOLFERS BENEFIT FROM THIS TRAINING METHOD?


Golf is a POWER (force * velocity) based sport.


It requires high levels of both FORCE PRODUCTION and VELOCITY.


A contrast training method allows us to efficiently train both of these characteristics of a highly functioning golfer.


Although this next part may be a little hippie-ish of me, I really like it for the tension-flow relationship it creates.


Completing a heavy strength exercise is very tension driven.


It requires spinal rigidity and a highly tense core.


Completing a power based exercise like jumping or slamming a medicine ball requires fluidity and high velocity coordination.


Contrast training creates a yin-yang relationship between tension and fluidity.


And being able work between phases of high tension and high fluidity is critical in sports, especially golf!


I talked about this idea in an Instagram post awhile back, check it out below!


And shoot me a follow once you get there ;)

CONTRAST TRAINING EXAMPLES


Lower Body


4x5e Barbell Split Squats -> 4x3 Bodyweight Squat Jumps


Barbell Split Squats

Squat Jump


Upper Body


4x6 DB Bench Press -> 4x2e Lateral Plyo Push Ups


DB Bench Press


Lateral Plyo Push Ups


ANOTHER UPPER BODY FOR FUN!


4x8 Cable Lat Pulldowns -> 4x5 MB Slams


Cable Lat Pulldowns


MB Spinal Slams


Rotational


4x3e Pallof Eccentric Rotation -> 4x3e PVC Swing


Pallof Eccentric Rotation


PVC SWINGS


Add some contrast training to your golf training.


Let's go low!


Carter Schmitz

Founder: SCRATCHGolfTraining.com