Winter 2019

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44 WINTER 2019 | NCGA.ORG A day crouched in front of a desktop screen and spreadsheets aren't a recipe for a limber frame. Golf is a rotational game, but's it's also a stability game. The more stability you can generate, the more consistent a player will be, Small explains. "Many people who sit in a chair all day, their hip flexors get tight," he says, "and these are the strongest muscles in your body." To keep your golf body flexible during a long work day, find a few minutes to stretch key golf muscles, which are subject to atrophy due to prolonged time in a chair. "To maintain flexibility for your golf turn, a great stretch at home is a chair stretch, working the spine with rotation or extension," Small says. "If somebody is slouched in the shoulders – which happens a lot in the golf swing – they're not going to be able to make a very good turn." Too much time away from the range can really start to affect consistency of contact. To ensure continued control of clubface at impact, Small is a big proponent of The Divot Mat training device. "It's a great at-home tool, which has nine images of golf balls printed on a sheet of reusable (and replaceable) paper that serves as a focal point for your swing," Small says. "When your club hits the mat, it leaves a trail and produces the image of where the club bottomed-out on the Divot Mat." The feedback is instantaneous and easy to understand. The mark on the board highlights where the club first hit the mat, the length of the divot, and its direction. Armed with this information, you can tell whether you are hitting the ball thin, fat or flush, and whether you have an inside-out swing, outside-in, or straight swing path. "This training aid helps with understanding your impact characteristics, and can really sharpen your game," Small says. The Divot Mat Stretching Back and Hip Flexors

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