The Side Plank with Hip Drop Exercise will build strength and stability in your core, the foundation of stable and efficient movement in the golf swing.
The Side Plank with Hip Drop Exercise forms part of the Golf Injury Prevention series of innovative and dynamic exercises that will help to protect you from pain and injury by building strength and stability around your most vulnerable areas, while improving mobility, balance and joint function.
Figure 1. Side Plank with Hip Drop Exercise Video.
- Start by lying on your right side with your legs straight and your left leg stacked directly on top of your right. Bend your right elbow and place is directly under your shoulder. Align your head with your spine and keep your hips and right knee in contact with the floor.
- Exhale as you slowly lift your hips and knees off the floor, keeping your abdominals engaged to brace your spine. The side of your right foot should stay on the floor. Keep your head aligned with your spine and your right elbow positioned directly under your shoulder.
- Continue to breathe, keeping your abdominals strong while dropping your hips a few inches (several centimetres), holding for one deep breath, in and out, then pressing back up again.
- After the desired number of repetitions, gently return to your starting position and repeat on the other side.
Make sure that you control the hip drop and raise movements from your hip and pelvis area, not from your shoulder. Avoid rolling your pelvis backwards.
Do not let your hips touch the floor as you drop them – you are trying to challenge your obliques, not rest them!
Keep your torso solid and your abdominal muscles engaged throughout this movement.
You should feel it working your hips, shoulders and torso.
If you find this exercise too challenging to begin with, try working on the basic Side Plank Exercise first.
How Will It Benefit Your Golf Swing?
One of the main problems that amateur golfers have is not being able to drive hard onto their target side during the downswing. They also lack sufficient hip rotation, and the ability to stabilise the pelvis at impact, without sliding towards the target. This move requires a tremendous amount of strength in the hip and pelvic stabilisers.
The Side Plank with Hip Drop Exercise will develop strength throughout your entire pelvic region, giving you more stability and control on the golf course.
This exercise not only gives you the strength and stability in your pelvis and lower back that you need for a more consistent and powerful golf swing, but it also prepares you for playing from more difficult lies – helping you to remain stable when you need to swing on sloping ground or from deep rough.
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