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Stretching vs. Mobility... Which is BEST for GOLFERS?

Static stretching is very different than dynamic mobility.


At SCRATCH, we will make use of both within our golf fitness programming.


Very rarely in this world are things simply one or the other, as is the case here.


That being said, in my opinion, a golfers training should focus much more on the DYNAMIC MOBILITY end of this spectrum, as compared to the static stretching end.


This article is not written with the purpose of disparaging all static stretching.


I simply want to clarify what it does and does not provide for our movement abilities.


If you enjoy static stretching and think it feels good, keep at it.

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Article Summary:

  • Let's start out by debunking the notion that static stretching offers a ton of athletic significance.

  • Then we'll talk about what TRUE MOBILITY is.

  • Then we'll circle back and I'll toss ya 3 mobility exercises that are WAY better than any static stretching exercise you find on a "golf fitness" page.


Here we go...


Static Stretching, relative to other mobility drills/exercises/training methods, SUCKS


It just doesn't offer much value relative to other forms of activity.


It's not going to hurt you or negatively impact your athletic abilities... but there are better options out there in my opinion.


Proponents of static stretching will point to things such as: Muscle performance, reducing soreness, and preventing injury.


Well...


It doesn't help with muscle performance (1).

It doesn't help reduce soreness (2,3,4).

It doesn't help prevent injury (5).


Again, if you do find enjoyment and peace in static stretching, it would be more damaging to your athletic abilities if you stopped, so keep at it.


But, on the flip side, if you hate it, don't force it into training.


From a purely physical lens, there are better ways to improve your mobility/flexibility.


The value we obtain from static stretching falls well short of the value we get from actual mobility drills, strength work, or other training methods.


This is because we aren't actively creating the movement in most cases, we are passively finding it.


We need to obtain the ability to control and strengthen large ranges of motion.


TRUE MOBILITY


Mobility in its most pure and true form is active, it's usable, it contributes to our movement system in a functionable way.


We need to actively move in and out of positions.

We need to explore our end ranges of motion.


We need to strengthen the full range of movement potential.


This is why we make use of "mobility drills" that look a lot more like strength training or what I'll call holistic motor training.


A good mobility drill is usually pretty intense (sometimes even hard af).


It exposes us to positions we didn't think were possible. It forces us to explore the limits of our movement.


Check out three mobility drills below that we use here at SCRATCH.


But real quick, before that, do me a favor and SHARE this article (social icons below) if you found it beneficial.


Much appreciated!


Hips


Spine


Shoulders

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Carter Schmitz, CSCS, TPI

carter@resistancebandtraining.com









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Sources

1. Kay AD, Blazevich AJ. Effect of Acute Static Stretch on Maximal Muscle Performance: A Systematic Review. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2011 Jun 8. PubMed #21659901

2. Lund H, et al. The effect of passive stretching on delayed onset muscle soreness, and other detrimental effects following eccentric exercise. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 1998 Aug;8(4):216–21. PubMed #9764443

3. Cheung K, Hume P, Maxwell L. Delayed onset muscle soreness: treatment strategies and performance factors. Sports Med. 2003;33(2):145–64. PubMed #12617692

4. Herbert RD, de Noronha M, Kamper SJ. Stretching to prevent or reduce muscle soreness after exercise. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2011;(7):CD004577. PubMed #21735398

5. Hart L. Effect of stretching on sport injury risk: a review. Clin J Sport Med. 2005 Mar;15(2):113–113. PubMed #15782063

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