First Hole Pre-Shot Stretches

By Steve Silverman

Getting in shape and staying in shape has been a mantra for staying healthy and living a longer and happier life. That philosophy has trickled down to the golf world, where it is now accepted that a golfer who keeps himself in better shape has a chance to improve more and play consistently. In addition to working out in the gym and running, golfers can stretch prior to their 18-hole round to avoid muscle pulls and get the most out of their round.

Lower back stretch

Get down on all fours. Raise your lower back up as high as it will go and hold it for a count of four. Lower the back and hold it for four more seconds. Repeat this four times. Don't worry how it looks, because what may look amusing to your playing partners will help you in the long run.

Side stretches

You want maximum flexibility when you swing, so stretching out your muscles on the side of your core will help your game. Take your 5-iron and hold it with one hand at each end over your head. With your feet spread shoulder-width apart, stretch to your right as far as you can go and hold it for a count of four. Do the same on your left side; repeat the stretch four times on each side.

Improve your balance

Place your golf club at belt level and take your hands off of it, with the blade of the club on the ground. Make sure it remains in place by pressing your stomach against the top of the club. Begin the swing motion by moving your arms back and then forward. Don't let the club slip. Gradually increase the pace of your swing while not losing control of the club. This will improve your swing and help you with power and accuracy.

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.

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