To paraphrase, “Weight training is dandy, but kettlebell training is quicker.” Well, not necessarily quicker, but “dandier” – or is it “quicker?” – as using basic kettlebell training will improve physical fitness and driving distance more than any other method of training.
Recently golfers have realized that weight training has its benefits, as guys and gals who hit the weights are able to hit the golf ball farther. However, only a select, lucky few – both men and women – have discovered the secret “long drive” power that is unleashed by kettlebell training.
Now you might chalk up my endorsement to hype and hyperbole, but I am here to tell you from first-hand experience that kettlebell training is THE best thing that a golfer can do to improve distance with every club in their bag. The unique demands that the kettlebell places on the body are beneficial for all athletes, but particularly for golfers.
The two-handed swing is the basic movement that all kettlebell training is built around, and is one of the best total-body exercises that there is. Performed properly the two-handed swing strengthens every muscle group in your body from your fingers to your toes and all points in between.
There is no better exercise for the muscles of the hands and forearms than kettlebell swings. The demands put on these muscles are intense and provide the best possible way for a golfer – or anyone – to strengthen the grip.
Of particular importance to golfers is the fact that the muscles of the hips, lower back, and buttocks – the buttocks are our species’ largest muscle group – are the primary movers both with the golf swing and the kettlebell swing. The kettlebell swing requires that these muscle groups work together in order to produce movement, which is exactly what the body does during the golf swing.
The golf swing also includes a rotational movement component, and there are a few very effective kettlebell exercises that develop rotational range of motion and strength. Incorporating these exercises into your training will improve your level of physical fitness while strengthening the specific muscle groups responsible for producing the golf swing. Keep in mind that when in the gym you NEVER want to replicate any movement that you use during competition. The worst thing that a golfer can do is to swing a weighted golf club, as the weighted club alters the physiological, biomechanical, and neurological demands of the swing. Using a weighted golf club will hurt a golfer’s swing.
Kettlebells strengthen the muscles needed to swing a golf club in a complementary manner and don’t adversely impact the technique of the golf swing. Save the golf swings for the golf course. Add the kettlebell swing to your workout.