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Good Golf Posture (How to Address the Golf Ball)


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9 hours ago, GOLFNINJA said:

My thoughts on posture are to start in what I call a universal sports stance. We have to be prepared to go up, down, left and right during a swing and thus being in a ready start stance is important.

If you are talking about how a basketball player would stand to defend another player, or maybe how a linebacker looks ready to move, then that is not a good stance for a golf swing.

Those athletes tend to have their head up, their shoulders back, and too much arch in their lower backs. They are ready to move fast in any direction in moving your feet. Golf, you are not moving fast in any direction like that. The stance has to be different.

 

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When I first started playing I was taught what "athletic" posture was in the golf set-up.  Straight back, stick the butt out and have the chin up.  Similar to what this article and video recommend.

With all due respect you could find testimonials on how successful many medicines, herbs, techniques, exercises, etc. are despite scientifically showing zero effect. Nail fungus cures, ear infections,

There are few things that are common among all these pro is - there right shoulder is lower than the left, which puts you spine at an angle slightly away from the target and they all have a flex in th

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13 hours ago, GOLFNINJA said:

Sorry I'm late to the party, but if I can help anyone in this great game - it's my passion. 

My thoughts on posture are to start in what I call a universal sports stance. We have to be prepared to go up, down, left and right during a swing and thus being in a ready start stance is important. I think if you're too rigid and stiff looking/feeling you deprive yourself of some flow and the necessary loading in transition and downswing. Relaxed and 'facing' the ball, as Harvey Penick said, is just about as good a mind visual as you get. 

DrMJG I'm glad you're back is better - where do you play out there in Goodyear?

I live about 4 blocks from Palm Valley and a few miles from the three courses at Wigwam; I go to Valley Golf Center for my practice work.

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On 7/31/2018 at 5:39 AM, DrMJG said:

I live about 4 blocks from Palm Valley and a few miles from the three courses at Wigwam; I go to Valley Golf Center for my practice work.

Ah yes, remember it well - I used to teach at Litchfield Elementary before turning pro and moving back to NZ. 

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On 7/31/2018 at 12:57 AM, saevel25 said:

If you are talking about how a basketball player would stand to defend another player, or maybe how a linebacker looks ready to move, then that is not a good stance for a golf swing.

Those athletes tend to have their head up, their shoulders back, and too much arch in their lower backs. They are ready to move fast in any direction in moving your feet. Golf, you are not moving fast in any direction like that. The stance has to be different.

 

Thank you for that. I have had much success teaching my USS. I guess with basketball the ball is up in the air a bit rather than sitting on the ground - nevertheless - a stance in readiness to make a dynamic move is required. Of course every sport will be different - just the nature of the beast, but if I can relate to people leaning the game skills they may have already used and modify them for golf then that is surely a good thing.

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i think this thread could benefit from the input of some spinal or biomechanical specialists. adopting more of a "c-posture" seems like a terrible idea for most people. palmer, who had surgery for spinal stenosis, admitted to suffering from chronic back problems starting in the '60's. and nicklaus played with back pain throughout his entire career, reportedly receiving cortisone shots as 19-year-old amateur; he even underwent stem cell therapy for his chronic back issues a few years ago. there's no denying they are two of the greats but that doesn't mean their posture was great. 

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29 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

i think this thread could benefit from the input of some spinal or biomechanical specialists. adopting more of a "c-posture" seems like a terrible idea for most people. palmer, who had surgery for spinal stenosis, admitted to suffering from chronic back problems starting in the '60's. and nicklaus played with back pain throughout his entire career, reportedly receiving cortisone shots as 19-year-old amateur; he even underwent stem cell therapy for his chronic back issues a few years ago. there's no denying they are two of the greats but that doesn't mean their posture was great. 

Father time can not be beaten.

I'll put it to you this way, everyone will have degenerative discs in their life. If you actually have back issues because if it is another question.

Quote

 About 80 percent of adults experience low back pain at some point in their lifetimes. It is the most common cause of job-related disability and a leading contributor to missed work days. In a large survey, more than a quarter of adults reported experiencing low back pain during the past 3 months.


What structures make up the back?What causes lower back pain?What are the risk factors for developing low back pain?How is low back pain...

 

There are people who never played a sport that requires a torsion motion and will have a herniated disc.

You add in the natural progression that probably everyone will have with their back. You then add in that he made an unnatural motion repeatedly. I am not shocked that golfers suffer from back issues. It's hard to say that it was caused by bad posture.

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7 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

Father time can not be beaten.

I'll put it to you this way, everyone will have degenerative discs in their life. If you actually have back issues because if it is another question.

There are people who never played a sport that requires a torsion motion and will have a herniated disc.

You add in the natural progression that probably everyone will have with their back. You then add in that he made an unnatural motion repeatedly. I am not shocked that golfers suffer from back issues. It's hard to say that it was caused by bad posture.

@saevel25, i appreciate your comments but it's not clear to me what's your point. what's the relevance to my initial comment? do you disagree this thread would benefit from spinal/biomechanical specialists? 

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2 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

@saevel25, i appreciate your comments but it's not clear to me what's your point. what's the relevance to my initial comment? do you disagree this thread would benefit from spinal/biomechanical specialists? 

The point is there really is a minimal amount that can be done to ‘prevent’ back issues that many if not most people experience simply by being humans. The golf swing is one of many, many reasons one can develop issues. And some people are more prone to problems than others. The golfers on tour who haven’t had problems don’t have a secret. They don’t have better posture. They’re simply luckier. Obviously certain movements can aggravate or accelerate back issues. But again people will progress at different time frames. Yes it’s nice to hear biomechanics/spine experts. I agree. But unless it’s a matter of extremely poor posture there isn’t a lot that can be done to make the golf swing ‘easier’ on the spine aside from an essentially ineffective swing. Just my 2 cents.

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3 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

The point is there really is a minimal amount that can be done to ‘prevent’ back issues that many if not most people experience simply by being humans. The golf swing is one of many, many reasons one can develop issues. And some people are more prone to problems than others. The golfers on tour who haven’t had problems don’t have a secret. They don’t have better posture. They’re simply luckier. Obviously certain movements can aggravate or accelerate back issues. But again people will progress at different time frames. Yes it’s nice to hear biomechanics/spine experts. I agree. But unless it’s a matter of extremely poor posture there isn’t a lot that can be done to make the golf swing ‘easier’ on the spine aside from an essentially ineffective swing. Just my 2 cents.

@Vinsk, thanks for your 2 cents. i think this is a misguided way of thinking. i've worked with specialists and have studied posture a bit and the consensus seems to be that many/most people in the developed world develop bad posture because of bad ergonomics and bad habits -- not the human condition -- which can lead to numerous preventable maladies. i'd comfortably wager that most people in our country don't sit, stand, walk, or sleep with correct posture. and all this stuff happens off of the golf course! 😅

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But unless it’s a matter of extremely poor posture there isn’t a lot that can be done to make the golf swing ‘easier’ on the spine aside from an essentially ineffective swing.

this is factually incorrect. the right stretches and exercises can help reduce spinal injury. also, even someone with just plain poor posture can put their spine at risk of injury, regardless of whether they play golf or not. poor posture is poor posture no matter how you look at it. add in a lack of core strength and flexibility -- common to a lot of us duffers -- and you're in the danger zone. 😱

not all cultures in the world suffer from back pain: 

back-pain-promo2_custom-f0b45c9971709faf

There are a few populations in the world where back pain hardly exists. One woman thinks she has figured out why, and she's sharing their secrets. Have Americans forgotten how to stand properly?

 

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2 hours ago, hoselpalooza said:

i think this thread could benefit from the input of some spinal or biomechanical specialists. adopting more of a "c-posture" seems like a terrible idea for most people.

:sigh:

It's a sport. If we were concerned only with health, particularly long-term, we wouldn't play the sport at all.

Biomechanists have looked at the golf swing, and I've worked with and talked with and studied the results of many of them. They have no problem with the more "relaxed" or "slumped" posture. It's very similar to what you see across other sports of players in a "ready" position.

2 hours ago, hoselpalooza said:

palmer, who had surgery for spinal stenosis, admitted to suffering from chronic back problems starting in the '60's. 

Golf isn't the best thing for your back.

54 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

@Vinsk, thanks for your 2 cents.

So you know, @Vinsk is a doctor.

51 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

I think this is a misguided way of thinking. i've worked with specialists and have studied posture a bit and the consensus seems to be that many/most people in the developed world develop bad posture because of bad ergonomics and bad habits -- not the human condition -- which can lead to numerous preventable maladies.

We're not talking about posture from sitting at a computer or staring down at a cell phone. We're talking about the world's best golfers/athletes, almost all of whom have personal trainers, etc.

51 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

this is factually incorrect.

No, it's a matter of degrees. The golf swing requires tremendous forces occurring over a very short span of time, thousands of times per week (for many good players). There are limits to how much you can minimize that while maintaining enough "ability" to play at a high level.

P.S. An acupuncturist? I'm not dismissing it out of hand, but that's not a great start.

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1 hour ago, hoselpalooza said:

@Vinsk, thanks for your 2 cents. i think this is a misguided way of thinking. i've worked with specialists and have studied posture a bit and the consensus seems to be that many/most people in the developed world develop bad posture because of bad ergonomics and bad habits -- not the human condition -- which can lead to numerous preventable maladies. i'd comfortably wager that most people in our country don't sit, stand, walk, or sleep with correct posture. and all this stuff happens off of the golf course! 😅

this is factually incorrect. the right stretches and exercises can help reduce spinal injury. also, even someone with just plain poor posture can put their spine at risk of injury, regardless of whether they play golf or not. poor posture is poor posture no matter how you look at it. add in a lack of core strength and flexibility -- common to a lot of us duffers -- and you're in the danger zone. 😱

not all cultures in the world suffer from back pain: 

back-pain-promo2_custom-f0b45c9971709faf

There are a few populations in the world where back pain hardly exists. One woman thinks she has figured out why, and she's sharing their secrets. Have Americans forgotten how to stand properly?

 

Yeah, what @iacas said. As far as back issues outside of golf, don’t forget Americans complain more than most other populations. We get 20 something year olds  swamping urgent cares, and sadly ER’s, for congestion of 2 days. They too will claim to have ‘back issues’ when they feel the slightest bit of discomfort that in most other populations would go unnoticed. No question Americans probably have some ergonomic issues, but I was referring to the golf swing.

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21 minutes ago, iacas said:

It's a sport. If we were concerned only with health, particularly long-term, we wouldn't play the sport at all.

this is a false dichotomy. who says long-term health and golf are mutually exclusive?

22 minutes ago, iacas said:

Biomechanists have looked at the golf swing, and I've worked with and talked with and studied the results of many of them. They have no problem with the more "relaxed" or "slumped" posture. It's very similar to what you see across other sports of players in a "ready" position.

could you share some of these results? have they been published and peer reviewed? i think it would add to the value of this thread for anyone who wants to be sure they're not putting themselves at risk for unnecessary injury.

additionally, what other sports' athletes assume a "slumped" ready position?

26 minutes ago, iacas said:

We're not talking about posture from sitting at a computer or staring down at a cell phone. We're talking about the world's best golfers/athletes, almost all of whom have personal trainers, etc.

unless i'm mistaken, many/most of the examples in OP did not have personal trainers. and the modern golfers in OP (those who presumably have PTs) are significantly less slumped than the classic golfers. 

additionally, i thought the point of OP was to help the amateur golfer. i think it's important to consider postural problems from (e.g.) sitting for 8 hours a day at a desk with a bad ergonomic setup and how that might impact the golf swing. if someone suffers from too much posterior pelvic tilt because of bad posture it could be dangerous for them to consciously create anterior pelvic tilt in a golf swing without first addressing the underlying problem. 

33 minutes ago, iacas said:

P.S. An acupuncturist? I'm not dismissing it out of hand, but that's not a great start.

unless you're saying she lied about cultures without back pain i don't see how this is relevant. 

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26 minutes ago, Vinsk said:

Yeah, what @iacas said. As far as back issues outside of golf, don’t forget Americans complain more than most other populations. We get 20 something year olds  swamping urgent cares, and sadly ER’s, for congestion of 2 days. They too will claim to have ‘back issues’ when they feel the slightest bit of discomfort that in most other populations would go unnoticed. No question Americans probably have some ergonomic issues, but I was referring to the golf swing.

with all due respect i feel this is a bit myopic.  it's not just the good ol' USA.

Quote

Low back pain (LBP) is the most prevalent musculoskeletal condition and one the most common causes of disability in the developed nations. [1]

additionally, i just don't think it makes sense to leave out how someone's non-golf posture can impact the golf swing. this just seems unwise to me. 🤷‍♂️

[1]

pmc-logo-share.png

Low back pain (LBP) is the most prevalent musculoskeletal condition and one the most common causes of disability in the developed nations. Anecdotally, there is a general assumption that LBP prevalence in Africa is...

 

 

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20 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

this is a false dichotomy. who says long-term health and golf are mutually exclusive?

No. It's not a false dichotomy. If we wanted to have the best chance of a healthy back, we wouldn't play golf.

Golf isn't "great" for the back. It's a lot of force, repeated hundreds or thousands of times, over very short bursts.

20 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

could you share some of these results? have they been published and peer reviewed? i think it would add to the value of this thread for anyone who wants to be sure they're not putting themselves at risk for unnecessary injury.

The guys have Ph.D.'s. In my experience they know what they're talking about.

20 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

unless i'm mistaken, many/most of the examples in OP did not have personal trainers. and the modern golfers in OP (those who presumably have PTs) are significantly less slumped than the classic golfers.

I disagree that they're "significantly" less slumped.

20 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

additionally, i thought the point of OP was to help the amateur golfer.

The amateur golfer should be closer toward the "relaxed, comfortable" end of the spectrum than the "straight back, chin up, butt sticking out" end of the spectrum.

20 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

i think it's important to consider postural problems from (e.g.) sitting for 8 hours a day at a desk with a bad ergonomic setup and how that might impact the golf swing. if someone suffers from too much posterior pelvic tilt

I've not written it down but I find myself, I believe, adding more posterior tilt to golfers than anterior tilt. I think too many golfers have too much anterior tilt. Too much "butt out."

20 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

unless you're saying she lied about cultures without back pain i don't see how this is relevant. 

Hey, you wanna believe an acupuncturist, go for it. I have higher standards.

And like @Vinsk said…

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11 minutes ago, iacas said:
42 minutes ago, hoselpalooza said:

could you share some of these results? have they been published and peer reviewed? i think it would add to the value of this thread for anyone who wants to be sure they're not putting themselves at risk for unnecessary injury.

The guys have Ph.D.'s. In my experience they know what they're talking about.

i have standards, too. 2nd- or 3rd-hand information isn't going to cut it for me. i think it can be unwise to trust information that isn't or can't be substantiated. if you have proof, please share it.


23 minutes ago, iacas said:

Hey, you wanna believe an acupuncturist, go for it. I have higher standards.

if she's good enough for former olympians and NFL players, the CEO of youtube, about a half-a-dozen medical doctors from hospitals such as mayo clinic, stanford university, etc.... might have something worth looking into. but hey, you do you.


From Happy Customers“The Gokhale Method opens up a new level of health even to those of us who spend most of our week at a desk. It takes no time to implement, yet it works for you 24/7.”Susan Wojcicki, CEO of Youtube...

 

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