How to Improve Breathing in Golf

By Steve Silverman

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For golfers who have recently taken up the game, there's a lot to remember. Stance, positioning, grip and swing are always foremost in a golfer's mind. As a result, a golfer may not give much thought to breathing, which is as it should be. However, most experienced golfers can walk up to the tee and spot the beginner in a second or two. That's because the beginning golfer holds his breath when he swings at the ball. That prevents a golfer from swinging normally and usually leads to a rushed swing. Breathing slowly and normally will help the golfer take his time and hit an effective shot.


Difficulty: Moderate
  1. Take your stance as you walk up to the ball. Check your feet, and make sure your shoulder is square to the target. Now take a normal breath, and then take a practice swing. Continue breathing.
  2. Check your grip. You should look down at your left hand, and you should notice that a "V" is formed between your left thumb and forefinger. If you do not see the "V," rotate your hand a few degrees to the left, and it should become prominent. Continue to breathe normally as if you were taking a walk in the park.
  3. Take one practice swing before you hit the ball. You probably want to keep your head still and your hands loose. You don't want to grip the club too tightly. It's a lot to remember, and it can be difficult when you are trying to stay comfortable. Your tendency is to hold your breath so there is no excess movement. Get that thought out of your head and breathe normally.
  4. Watch the top golfers playing on the PGA tour. As you sit in front of your television, notice that Tiger Woods is not holding his breath as he prepares to hit the ball. His chest is moving up and down as he takes in air. Woods knows that if he stops breathing, he can't take his natural swing. You need to know that as well.
  5. Line up your putt when you get on the green. Figure out which way the green will break, and decide how you want to hit the ball. Take one practice swing, and line up to hit it. Make sure you are breathing so you can put an even stroke on the ball. Now putt the ball at the hole.

Tips & Warnings

  • Watch more experienced golfers play the game. Notice how they breathe as they prepare to hit the ball.

About the Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.