Lets get those hips moving
In this section we look at the posterior sling pattern which connects the rotation in our hips to the lats on the other side.
This is not only important for the rotating of the hip, but also allowing you to pull the elbow down.
When this pattern is not functioning correctly the body finds a way to bring your arm down, it substitutes what is not working in the arm with one of the biceps muscle (long head of biceps) and one of the elbow muscles (brachioradialis). This means we can't pull our elbow in and we hit over the ball to try to get our swing through. We are hitting over, because the hips have not rotated so there is no space to bring the elbow in, so we can only got over.
The US PGA says that of all the golfers who have elbow problems, 80% of them have tennis elbow - this is because the elbow is trying to do the job of the arm. And 80% of golfers hit over the ball... I wonder if there is a correlation?
I used to run 2 day PGA training programs for gold professionals in South Africa, and the question would always come up....So what about the other 20% of golfers with elbow pain?
Well they have golfers elbow! But the mechanism is what is so interesting. They are forcing their bodies to pull their elbow down and in, but because the sling is not working and the hip has not opened up enough (or too late), as the elbow gets straight, it should rotate (pronate), but because the hips are not open, the is a jamming or forcing in the elbow to get his pronation. So instead of a flowing movement, it sticks an d we force our way though it, giving pain on the inside of the elbow. Interestingly most of these golfers have had a lot of lesson or are following instructions. They are forcing the body to to the "right things" in the swing, and the elbow is feeling the brunt of this.
Ever noticed how when your golf pro corrects one part of your swing, your stance, how you address the ball, your hand position.... A different fault now seems to pop up somewhere else. This is because the body does not have the space to move effectively and so we cannot have a smooth, beautiful, powerful swing.
So we have done 2 tests with Robert. The first one is done standing and we are testing his lats. Most people can only do this with the elbow slightly bent, but this is not the lats, this is the compensation pattern in the biceps and elbow, and is definitely not what we want.
You can check your hip rotation in standing with a table as in the video, but if you find this too difficult right now, you can do it in sitting, as i have show you in the pictures below.
This is a potent activation. It is a little more complicated to find, so we have used many different ways of describing how to find it. The way we use now seems to be the simplest and most effective. Draw a line from the belly button 45° up to the edge of the ribs. We keep going. We find the first rib space and then the second rib space. It is where we want to activate the lats. What is always surprising is how differently people’s ribs orientate, so sometimes we have to feel around the area to find the right spot. Another clue that you have found the right area, is there will be a dip in the ribs that you fall into. We work here in the ribs space.
Like everything else, we do a before, activation, after.
See how your swing feels too, it is always great to feel how each activation we do influences and changes your body, either in huge ways, or in subtle ways, but it does change the way we swing.