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spentmiles

Posture and Protecting Your Back

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I've been working on proper posture and really swinging around my angled spine.  I used to be really upright and vertical in my swing.  I notice that a swing with more forward lean puts more stress on the back and I want to avoid injury and soreness as much as possible.  I'm in solid physical shape, so that's not my concern.

Before the question, a little set-up: When you lift weights, especially squats/deadlifts/upright rows/power moves, trainers recommend that you "set your core" by contracting your abdominal muscles before the lift.  You also want to keep your lower back actively arched (lower spine pushing toward your belly button) to protect the muscles there.

When you set up to take your golf swing, do you contract your abdominal muscles before you start your back swing?  Do you arch your lower back at all?

I'm learning that tension is the enemy of the golf swing in most cases, but perhaps the core should be more flexed during the swing to protect the back.  Thoughts?  How do you swing around your spine while protecting your lower back?

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Originally Posted by spentmiles

I've been working on proper posture and really swinging around my angled spine.  I used to be really upright and vertical in my swing.  I notice that a swing with more forward lean puts more stress on the back and I want to avoid injury and soreness as much as possible.  I'm in solid physical shape, so that's not my concern.

Before the question, a little set-up: When you lift weights, especially squats/deadlifts/upright rows/power moves, trainers recommend that you "set your core" by contracting your abdominal muscles before the lift.  You also want to keep your lower back actively arched (lower spine pushing toward your belly button) to protect the muscles there.

When you set up to take your golf swing, do you contract your abdominal muscles before you start your back swing?  Do you arch your lower back at all?

I'm learning that tension is the enemy of the golf swing in most cases, but perhaps the core should be more flexed during the swing to protect the back.  Thoughts?  How do you swing around your spine while protecting your lower back?

The 2nd paragraph, that advice is bull shit. That is old school methods. You wonder why heavy lifting body builders use to wear those leather braces on there back, because they put unwanted stress there.

Read up on posture in the Swing Thoughts section of this forum, great information there. But to answer your question, NO and NO, you don't arch your back in the set up and you don't contract your core muscles. All that does is restrict movements.

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Thanks for the reply.  Yeah, it makes sense that tensing your core would just restrict your movement.  Maybe keep it stable, but don't squeeze the breath out of yourself.

As for the setting your core and arching your back, Robert dos Remedios still recommends it, so I trust it.  But as any weight lifter knows, you want to lift with your neck and lower back while trying to keep your legs and core out of the picture.

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Originally Posted by spentmiles

Thanks for the reply.  Yeah, it makes sense that tensing your core would just restrict your movement.  Maybe keep it stable, but don't squeeze the breath out of yourself.

As for the setting your core and arching your back, Robert dos Remedios still recommends it, so I trust it.  But as any weight lifter knows, you want to lift with your neck and lower back while trying to keep your legs and core out of the picture.

Squeeze the breath out of yourself?

don't get that line. I say it restricts because your obliques cross over your abdominal area. When you rotate in the swing, on side is forcing the club around your body, the other side is restricting that movement.

Lift with your neck and your lower back?, you mean like this

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=71vZU13uow0

Sorry, couldn't help myself, but when you say lift with your neck and back i cringe. I have no clue what your talking about on that one. Honestly it sounds painful. I've read a ton of material on lifting weights, and never once did i hear about you lift with your neck and back

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Haha!  That Family Guy was exactly was I was thinking of when I wrote that!  Just a joke.

"Squeeze your breath out of yourself" - you know, contract your abdominals so that the air is squeezed out of your chest cavity.  Maybe do a few crunches and some planks and you'll get it.

Your description of the obliques makes a lot of sense.  Turning around my spine in the golf swing feels really foreign to me, but it's clearly what you've got to do.  Probably more of a flexibility issue than anything.

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In Tom Watson's "Lessons of a Lifetime" he talks about posture being like standing like a basketball player guarding an opponent (with no ball).  It is an athletic position with balance in a neutral position for your legs and core.  When you stand like this, you would not create muscle tension in your core by tightening your abs.  It would restrict motion and rotation.  You also would not over arch you lower back for the same reason.  There is also a thread about posture in the Swing Though section that would be worth checking out.

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Originally Posted by spentmiles

I've been working on proper posture and really swinging around my angled spine.  I used to be really upright and vertical in my swing.  I notice that a swing with more forward lean puts more stress on the back and I want to avoid injury and soreness as much as possible.  I'm in solid physical shape, so that's not my concern.

Before the question, a little set-up: When you lift weights, especially squats/deadlifts/upright rows/power moves, trainers recommend that you "set your core" by contracting your abdominal muscles before the lift.  You also want to keep your lower back actively arched (lower spine pushing toward your belly button) to protect the muscles there.

When you set up to take your golf swing, do you contract your abdominal muscles before you start your back swing?  Do you arch your lower back at all?

I'm learning that tension is the enemy of the golf swing in most cases, but perhaps the core should be more flexed during the swing to protect the back.  Thoughts?  How do you swing around your spine while protecting your lower back?

I've been told "S" posture or arching your back dis-engages the core and glutes, it stretches the hamstrings, over uses the hip-flexors and all the muscles of the lumbar spine.

Think this thread will help you out

http://thesandtrap.com/t/56069/good-golf-posture

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