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Goldy49

Weight Lifting and Golf

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In 2016 I lost about 80 pounds of fat by lifting 5x a week.  My current routine has me doing a Pull/Push/Legs/Upper/Lower split.  3 of those days my workouts begin by preforming deadlifts, squats, and bench press.  I've never been good at golf and historically my practice has pretty inconsistent.  This year I've been really neglectful of my practice and even though I've played less I feel my swing is immensely better, the ball is going further, and even though my scores have remained the same, I feel as though my game is better.  I'm not particularly muscular but, at least for me, being fit and gaining muscle has certainly not hindered my game.

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I think it is likely that weight training improves your distance.  That is true in my own experience as well.

 

But I think I have figure out what it is about lifting days that hoses my game.  It is the gripping of the bars at the gym.  My forearms get tired from it, and it reduces the amount my wrists turn over in the downswing.  That in turn causes too much fade - and I do not know how to correct it except not to lift and then golf on the same day.

 

It took me a long time to figure this one out because I do not do any labor at all for my job.  The hardest grip I have to do is a pen or a car door.  It does not even matter which body parts I work, except legs which do not involve gripping a bar in the same way.  I do not know if tired legs have any effect.

 

You have been warned.

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Deadlifts and squats are two of the best core exercises there are.  Just think about how important the core is in the golf swing. @mvmac pretty much hit it with this being a myth. All you have to do is look at the top guys on tour. I would doubt that any of them "don't" workout. It takes a real plan and a lot of effort to get too muscular to swing a golf club efficiently. I would bet that a lack of mobility work would hinder it much more than lifting weights.

Edited by TN94z

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7 hours ago, Cantankerish said:

But I think I have figure out what it is about lifting days that hoses my game.  It is the gripping of the bars at the gym.  My forearms get tired from it, and it reduces the amount my wrists turn over in the downswing.  That in turn causes too much fade - and I do not know how to correct it except not to lift and then golf on the same day.

Or, if you're lifting before a tee time, lift less weight -- you'll still benefit from what you do.  I'd hold off on this until before a less important round, in case I'm wrong about it.

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Weightlifting tears muscle fibers, then the fibers heal and grow thicker with rest.

Bad idea to play golf in between the tearing and healing phase.

Not only will the muscles take longer to heal, the torn muscle fibers will affect your golf distance and angles.

 

A combination of weightlifting and stretching and flexibility training will increase distance.

Just weightlifting alone may not increase distance because the muscles become tighter and muscle fibers interlock ("knots") until they actually prevent full range of motion. 

Tight muscles may actually reduce distance.

If you can bench a lot, all that strength does not translate to the swing without flexibility to use that muscle through the full range of motion.

Edited by GOATee

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On 9/22/2019 at 9:51 PM, GOATee said:

Weightlifting tears muscle fibers, then the fibers heal and grow thicker with rest.

Bad idea to play golf in between the tearing and healing phase.

Not only will the muscles take longer to heal, the torn muscle fibers will affect your golf distance and angles.

 

A combination of weightlifting and stretching and flexibility training will increase distance.

Just weightlifting alone may not increase distance because the muscles become tighter and muscle fibers interlock ("knots") until they actually prevent full range of motion. 

Tight muscles may actually reduce distance.

If you can bench a lot, all that strength does not translate to the swing without flexibility to use that muscle through the full range of motion.

I posted in July on this thread on how I was not seeing distance gains (and even maybe some losses) after starting weight training again in 2019. This year, I've taken 3 or 4 breaks from lifting, each 1-4 weeks long.

I "think" I've figured out what's happened to me, and am curious what you guys think/have experienced.

I looked at my 5 best rounds this year (primarily ball striking, not just 5 lowest scores). On all five of these rounds, I didn't lift for 4+ days prior to playing, sometimes even weeks. I then looked at my 5 most dismal rounds (where I couldnt' do anything right). Three of them were shortly after lifting for the first time after a week+ break.  The other two were 2 days after lifting heavy (I still get doms, so usu don't golf day after a lift).

Today was a dismal day, I worked out 2 days ago, and I just did the above analysis. I'm a lower body swinger (feels like 99% of my power comes from my legs) and I still have slight doms in my legs today.  I was missing about 50 yards from my drives!

So for me, it almost seems I need like multiple days to fully recover from lifting ( @GOATee's quote above).  Either that, or I'm just so despondent over my round today that I'm hanging on to any crazy theory I can concoct.

I know pro's all workout. But maybe they don't lift to failure or lift heavy prior to a tourney?  I'm trying to gain muscle mass, so I lift heavy whenever I can. 

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12 hours ago, bones75 said:

I posted in July on this thread on how I was not seeing distance gains (and even maybe some losses) after starting weight training again in 2019. This year, I've taken 3 or 4 breaks from lifting, each 1-4 weeks long.

I "think" I've figured out what's happened to me, and am curious what you guys think/have experienced.

I looked at my 5 best rounds this year (primarily ball striking, not just 5 lowest scores). On all five of these rounds, I didn't lift for 4+ days prior to playing, sometimes even weeks. I then looked at my 5 most dismal rounds (where I couldnt' do anything right). Three of them were shortly after lifting for the first time after a week+ break.  The other two were 2 days after lifting heavy (I still get doms, so usu don't golf day after a lift).

Today was a dismal day, I worked out 2 days ago, and I just did the above analysis. I'm a lower body swinger (feels like 99% of my power comes from my legs) and I still have slight doms in my legs today.  I was missing about 50 yards from my drives!

So for me, it almost seems I need like multiple days to fully recover from lifting ( @GOATee's quote above).  Either that, or I'm just so despondent over my round today that I'm hanging on to any crazy theory I can concoct.

I know pro's all workout. But maybe they don't lift to failure or lift heavy prior to a tourney?  I'm trying to gain muscle mass, so I lift heavy whenever I can. 

I think Brooks lifts right before he plays. I know one tournament he said something about benching 225 that morning.

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53 minutes ago, TN94z said:

I think Brooks lifts right before he plays. I know one tournament he said something about benching 225 that morning.

That could be just what he does to get his muscles warmed up. If he's at a certain level of strength then that weight might not be what he does to gain strength. 

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4 hours ago, saevel25 said:

That could be just what he does to get his muscles warmed up. If he's at a certain level of strength then that weight might not be what he does to gain strength. 

I bet you are right. I'm sure Brooks can bench a good bit more than 225.  That is my work out weight and he is much bigger than I am.

17 hours ago, bones75 said:

I posted in July on this thread on how I was not seeing distance gains (and even maybe some losses) after starting weight training again in 2019. This year, I've taken 3 or 4 breaks from lifting, each 1-4 weeks long.

I "think" I've figured out what's happened to me, and am curious what you guys think/have experienced.

I looked at my 5 best rounds this year (primarily ball striking, not just 5 lowest scores). On all five of these rounds, I didn't lift for 4+ days prior to playing, sometimes even weeks. I then looked at my 5 most dismal rounds (where I couldnt' do anything right). Three of them were shortly after lifting for the first time after a week+ break.  The other two were 2 days after lifting heavy (I still get doms, so usu don't golf day after a lift).

Today was a dismal day, I worked out 2 days ago, and I just did the above analysis. I'm a lower body swinger (feels like 99% of my power comes from my legs) and I still have slight doms in my legs today.  I was missing about 50 yards from my drives!

So for me, it almost seems I need like multiple days to fully recover from lifting ( @GOATee's quote above).  Either that, or I'm just so despondent over my round today that I'm hanging on to any crazy theory I can concoct.

I know pro's all workout. But maybe they don't lift to failure or lift heavy prior to a tourney?  I'm trying to gain muscle mass, so I lift heavy whenever I can. 

Bones, I have a lot of experience with this.  I am near certain that breaking down the fibers (lifting) on THE DAY you are golfing is a mistake. (For me, anyway. I assume this is true for most people but I have only myself to test here - it would be amazing if we could get something scientificish with more people reporting on this to bolster or contradict my conclusions.)

I experience considerable and predictable issues when I lift on THE SAME DAY.

When I build legs and lower body, my weight transfer is rubbish and I can not get power.  There are all kinds of unintentional compensations going on that I can not entirely understand.  I can feel myself struggling to keep my typical form. I get armsy. I end up with pull fade drives and fat irons.

Upper body movement days are different, and kinda worse.  The biggest issue by a large margin is tired forearms.  Most guys never have to do any forearm exercises, but all lifters tend to get muscular forearms anyway because virtually all upper body lifting uses them to power grip the bars.  I have a slender frame so it may be more acute in my case than most.  Not sure about that. The right grip on the club (rigth-handed) uses the same power grip.  Mine suffers and I get nasty banana slices on the drives.  My irons at their best are a gentle draw, but on these days I get a fade and maybe 10-15% less yardage.

 

However, 24 hours rest has always been sufficient to remove all of these issues.  And muscles rebuild almost all of their fibers in 48 hours.  Both my personal experience and conventional wisdom would seem to contradict your assessment.

You may have just been off your game.

Good luck

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4 hours ago, saevel25 said:

That could be just what he does to get his muscles warmed up. If he's at a certain level of strength then that weight might not be what he does to gain strength. 

He states that it is just part of his daily workouts and that he pushes just as hard then as he does in his normal workouts. So, it's not just warming up the muscles.

 

https://www.golf.com/travel/2018/08/12/brooks-koepka-pga-championship-lifting-workout/

 

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@Cantankerish I do trust your experience but maybe my body just recovers slower than yours? I'm also a slim dude. I used to be a serious long distance runner and never got past "pretty damned skinny" til my 30's and I feel my "natural" body state is skinny. So what happens to you the day of lifting may be happening to me for several more days. Your description of what happens to you on days you lift is familiar to me.

But perhaps everybody just has different muscle recovery schedules?  Similarly for @TN94z, perhaps Koepka just recovers faster than Cantankerish who recovers faster than me?

That said, I just can't imagine any pro intentionally going into a tournament w/ doms. And I know doms hits everybody differently. I know some gym rats that squat 8 plates who still get doms hard every leg day, while I know others who have trained just as long who don't.

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1 hour ago, bones75 said:
 

But perhaps everybody just has different muscle recovery schedules?  Similarly for @TN94z, perhaps Koepka just recovers faster than Cantankerish who recovers faster than me?

That was pretty much the point I was making. You can't narrow it down to "you should or shouldn't lift" because i think every person and their recovery times are different. I was using Brooks as an example

Edited by TN94z

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On 10/18/2019 at 7:55 AM, bones75 said:

.......

@GOATee

I know pro's all workout. But maybe they don't lift to failure or lift heavy prior to a tourney?  I'm trying to gain muscle mass, so I lift heavy whenever I can. 

I would think that's true. Rory and Tiger lift or workout on weights.  Perhaps higher reps, less maximum heavy weights. 

Most days I lift light with high reps and a few hours later go to the driving range. On golf playing days I just do warmup reps. 

I'm a 65 years old retiree, but in my younger days when I lifted heavy, I couldn't hit the golf ball or it'd be nothing but giant slices. 

Find what works for you including stretching for flexibility if you want to maintain your swing. 

Enjoy the journey 🙂

 

Edited by Wm94109

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On 8/6/2019 at 12:54 PM, Cantankerish said:

I think it is likely that weight training improves your distance.  That is true in my own experience as well.

 

But I think I have figure out what it is about lifting days that hoses my game.  It is the gripping of the bars at the gym.  My forearms get tired from it, and it reduces the amount my wrists turn over in the downswing.  That in turn causes too much fade - and I do not know how to correct it except not to lift and then golf on the same day.

 

It took me a long time to figure this one out because I do not do any labor at all for my job.  The hardest grip I have to do is a pen or a car door.  It does not even matter which body parts I work, except legs which do not involve gripping a bar in the same way.  I do not know if tired legs have any effect.

 

You have been warned.

That's interesting.  I have been powerlifting for years and, like you expressed, it has only benefitted my strength and my golf game.  I will do a full blown Wendler 531 before I go play.  I guess my forearms don't tire out because I've done it for so long that my body is used to it.  I'd have to be on my "max-out week" and deadlift around my max, going to failure on pull-ups, or going for broke on barbell curls before my forearms are toast.  For a normal session, I don't get sore; that's not the point with powerlifting.

For me, other than getting a good warm up through powerlifting and hitting some balls, really warming up the hips is key.  My trail hip can get tight and it makes it easy to stall and flip.

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I don't know.

I have no issues with my golf swing on days that I lift.  My bad days are when I forget the basics and don't pay attention to my swing.  In general, it means not turning my shoulder fully or slightly opening my stance without recognizing it. 

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Yeah I agree with Bones theory that people just have different muscle recovery schedules.

And that some people can mix weights and golf better than others because they heal faster after their weights sessions.

Edited by GOATee

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On 11/22/2015 at 10:36 AM, Goldy49 said:

This is my first letter on this forum.  I am 66 years old and a retired physical education teacher.  I was fortunate enough to be able to play football in college and also golf - to be honest, golf got me out of spring football.  Anyway, I started lifting weights as a freshman in 1968 and I still lift.  I was taught that to be successful athletically, one must do three things:  1)Lift weights with the idea of increasing strength, 2) stretch and continually stretch and work on flexibility, and 3) your lifting and stretching must emulate what you need for your activity.  I have lived and died with those ideas for 47 years.  I have read for years that golfers should stay away from the weight room and/or stay away from heavy weights.  OK, I know people say that, but I have found that if you follow the the three tenets I mentioned, weight training is a great help for golf.  I have lost some distance over the years, but at 5'6 and 165 pounds, I still hit my drives about 260 and my five iron about 180.  I think my lifting and flexibility work has helped maintain both my distance and as full a swing as possible.  I just anted to know what others have to say about lifting weights and golf.  Just curious..

 

Great question. as a former power lifter and longtime Yoga teacher, I can offer my 2 cents. The body changes over time and at about 50 we start to feel the effects of muscle loss and a decrease  in balance. Science proves this. In 1985 I was playing with some slow movement bench presses and it felt pretty good. I shared that and got laughed out of the gym. Fast forward to the early two thousands and I came a cross a guy who had trademarked a style of weight training called Super Slow

I have  not really seen people use it. I did power Yoga for about 8 years and found it started to feel too fast, so I started  to slow it  down. After about 6 months I felt stronger. I had not thought about these things until about three weeks ago when I looked at a  video Thomas Delauer made. Thomas is the top health and fitness yourtube instructor in the country with over a million subscribers. 

Thomas put out a video called " Building muscle over the age 40 " Everything Thomas talks about is backed by science. In this video he talks about a methodology called "Time under Tension " . Instead of trying to lift heavy weights and increase reps, he recommends focusing on how long you can keep the muscle under tension. It forces the muscles fibers to fire. This is huge because at last  this method will be introduced  into the mainstream. 

I just turned 70 and use this training on the weight machines and in my Yoga practice and I  am more balanced, stronger, and more mobile  than I was at 50. 

I will say that golf is a dynamic sport that requires muscle groups to work together and if we just do standard weight training we are training the muscles to isolate and work independently of each other I have observed people who train that way in my classes and have seen them struggle when I put them through dynamic  movement exercises. 

 

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11 hours ago, JCrane said:

Great question. as a former power lifter and longtime Yoga teacher, I can offer my 2 cents. The body changes over time and at about 50 we start to feel the effects of muscle loss and a decrease  in balance. Science proves this. In 1985 I was playing with some slow movement bench presses and it felt pretty good. I shared that and got laughed out of the gym. Fast forward to the early two thousands and I came a cross a guy who had trademarked a style of weight training called Super Slow

I have  not really seen people use it. I did power Yoga for about 8 years and found it started to feel too fast, so I started  to slow it  down. After about 6 months I felt stronger. I had not thought about these things until about three weeks ago when I looked at a  video Thomas Delauer made. Thomas is the top health and fitness yourtube instructor in the country with over a million subscribers. 

Thomas put out a video called " Building muscle over the age 40 " Everything Thomas talks about is backed by science. In this video he talks about a methodology called "Time under Tension " . Instead of trying to lift heavy weights and increase reps, he recommends focusing on how long you can keep the muscle under tension. It forces the muscles fibers to fire. This is huge because at last  this method will be introduced  into the mainstream. 

I just turned 70 and use this training on the weight machines and in my Yoga practice and I  am more balanced, stronger, and more mobile  than I was at 50. 

I will say that golf is a dynamic sport that requires muscle groups to work together and if we just do standard weight training we are training the muscles to isolate and work independently of each other I have observed people who train that way in my classes and have seen them struggle when I put them through dynamic  movement exercises. 

 

This sounds a lot like working negative reps (eccentric phase training) which was around a lot earlier than 1985. I have incorporated negatives into my training no matter what I'm doing. I feel it adds another dimension to the training. We even use them in Crossfit.

Editing this to say that I am not trying to call you out on anything, I'm just wondering if that's what you're talking about when you say "slow movement bench pressing."

Edited by TN94z

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