MY BODY-SWING RELATIONSHIP
How the state of my body affects my swing
and how the nature of my swing affects me.
My golf swing and I, a close relationship
The quality of the swing builds up progressively from the ground, through the body and into the ball in a process commonly referred to as a kinematic chain. Amongst other functions, our body structures have the ability to receive, store, transform and transfer energy. This allows a golfer to utilise different kinds of energy, such as potential, chemical or electrical and transform them into other types of energy, like heat and movement. Following the First Law of Conservation of energy, a golfer cannot create movement out of nothing. The golf swing is a process involving the transformation and transfer of energy from one type to another.
For the purpose of a more efficient transformation and transfer of energy, mother nature has arranged our body structures in a succession of segments that follow a stable-mobile-stable-mobile-and-so-on configuration. From the base of our feet firmly stabilised on the ground [stable], to our ankles [mobile joint], to our knees [stable joint], to our hip joints [mobile], to our lumbar spine [stable area], to our thoracic spine [mobile], to our scapulothoracic area [stable], to our shoulder [mobile], to our elbow [stable], to our wrist [mobile], to the club tightly held by our grip [stable] to the moving ball [mobile]. Mobility on top of stability on top of mobility… the whole supported by the ground. Like trees, swings can take full advantage of their connection to the ground, since it can provide a significant portion of the stability required to initiate and support the kinematic chain.
Am I in pain because of my swing?
From the set up to the moment the ball leaves the face of the club, the physics and mechanics that explain the movement of a whip or a catapult can also help us understand the sequence of movements creating a "powerful, efficient and accurate" or a "weak, inefficient and inconsistent" swing.
A good understanding of the swing biomechanics not only can help us become better golfers but what it's even better, it can also allow us to prolong our golf-life expectancy. Its understanding is a valuable guidance for the prevention and treatment of golf-related conditions since it can help us, Health Professionals, understand how physical restrictions can create swing faults and how swing faults can at their turn create, feed and cheerlead repetitive strain injuries, golf-related disorders and other seemingly unrelated conditions.
The swing: efficiency vs inefficiency
Proper grounding helps direct and focus the golfer's resources, allowing for more efficient, precise and powerful swings.
ALL GOLFERS WELCOME
Good Segmental Stabilization:
This last fundamental is the key to generating power and speed in the golf swing. In order to pass energy from one part of your body to the next, there must be a deceleration of the previous segment so that energy can be effectively transferred to the next body part. A great analogy is the cracking of the whip. In order to create a loud snap at the end of a whip, you must rapidly accelerate the handle of the whip and then quickly stopped or decelerate the handle. It is this deceleration of the handle that allows speed to be transferred to the next part of the whip.