Each season, every golfer has high hopes of playing better golf from the previous year. Golfers spend their hard earned money on the newest drivers, balls and training aids with the notion of “this will be the year”. New technology brings many golfer new hope with the arrival of adjustable drivers to fix the slice, softer balls that promise more distance and new training aids that fix the old problems. But to many of our dismays it is still just the same old result, mediocre and inconsistent golf.
Sadly what the average golfer fails to realize is that the best tool that they need to play good golf cannot be bought in a sporting goods store nor found in their bag. No matter how hard you try on the golf course, how many lessons you take, or how much equipment you purchase, you still may have issues with your swing that have nothing to do with those things. This is where a TPI (Titleist Performance Institute) Golf Fitness Assessment comes in handy.
What TPI has created is a 16 point screening process to identify body restrictions from your neck to your ankles that can adversely affect the golf swing. There are many factors that can influence our body’s function ranging from exercise history and past injuries, to the type of job we do and current lifestyle. A complete TPI screening identifies the areas of concern so the fitness professional can lay out a corrective exercise plan of attack to address and correct the problems.
Pelvic Tilt Test- We start off out assessment process by screening the pelvis and its ability to tilt to the anterior and the posterior. The pelvic tilt test is a great way to check hip and lumbar spine mobility.
Pelvis Rotation Test- Our second assessment is the pelvic rotation test which checks the lower body’s ability to rotate. This test identifies the lower body’s ability to separate from the upper body.
Torso Rotation Test- This is how we check the torso’s ability to rotate. This test identifies the torso’s ability to rotate independently of the lower body.
Single Leg Balance Test- This test measures the golfers overall ability to maintain balance.
Lat Length Test- This test is used to determine lat length and range of motion as well as shoulder joint range of motion.
Lower Quarter Rotation Test- This screen tests the hips ability to internally and externally rotate efficiently. It is performed on both the backswing and the downswing.
Forearm Rotation Test- This assessment gives us a look into the golfer’s ability to rotate the forearms effectively.
Wrist Hinge Test- This test helps us determine if the golfer’s wrist is able to perform the proper hinge and release of the golf club.
Overhead Squat Test- We next screen the hips, knees, ankles, thoracic spine and the shoulders. The evidence found during this test gives great insight to what can happen during the golf swing due to the inability to perform the test.
Toe Touch Test-The next assessment is a simple but effective screen to tell us about the mobility of the lower back and hamstrings. This test can also be done with 1 leg to identify problems in the core or lower back.
90-90 Test- This assessment is used to screen the shoulders ability to externally rotate and maintain scapular stability.
Seated Trunk Rotation Test- This is designed to test the mobility of the thoracic spine in relation to the lumbar spine. In other words it tells us about our separation ability.
Bridge With leg Extension- This screen is designed to test the strength as well as the activation of the gluteals. The glutes play a major role in the creation of an effective and powerful golf swing.
Cervical Rotation Test- This assessment gives us a look into the golfer’s ability to rotate and flex the cervical spine. Mobility of the cervical spine is very important in allowing fluent range of motion in thoracic rotation.
Wrist Flexion/Extension Test- This assessment lets us determine if the wrist has enough mobility to flex and extend properly for an effective and powerful golf swing.
Reach/Roll and Lift- This assessment tests scapular stability and mobility in the shoulder as well as flexibility is the lats.
So with all of that being said, a golfer should work on fixing the most important piece of equipment that they possess, their body. By reaching out to a Golf Fitness Professional to get a screening, having a plan designed and then implementing that plan, is the best way to playing better golf. The golfer can find qualified fitness professionals near his home or office by visiting the “Find an Expert” tab atwww.mytpi.com.
For any additional questions or comments please feel free to contact me via email at James@Coregolfperformance.com