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Getting in the Swing of It | How Exercise Can Help Your Golf Game

Golf is great for your health. The Titleist Performance Institute at Tidelands Health focuses on the fitness aspect of golf, strengthening and conditioning to support one's golf game.

Richard Morris, Clinical Conditioning Coordinator at Tidelands HealthPoint Center for Health and Fitness, discusses how the program works.
Getting in the Swing of It | How Exercise Can Help Your Golf Game
Featured Speaker:
Richard Morris
Richard Morris leads our Titleist Performance Institute at Tidelands HealthPoint Center for Health and Fitness. He works with golfers to develop an exercise prescription designed specifically for them.

Learn more about The Titleist Performance Institute 
Transcription:

Bill Klaproth (Host): Want to improve your golf game? Well who doesn’t really. So, keep listening because we’re going to help you out. Our guest today is Richard Morris, a clinical conditioning coordinator and the leader of the Titleist Performance Institute, or TPI, at Tidelands HealthPoint Center for Health and Fitness. Richard is here to tell us more about TPI and how regular exercise can help your golf game. Richard, thank you so much for your time. We appreciate it. So, what is the TPI program? Explain it to us.

Richard Morris (Guest): Yeah thank you so much for having me. Yeah. Probably about five years ago I got my TPI certification. TPI is Titleist Performance Institute. It’s not really related to the golf equipment or the golf ball, but it’s related to an exercise program. So, what I do is usually a screening process, looking at a lot of different things, and design a program based on each individual. So, I’ll have a lot of different people to work with. Whether it’s someone with tied hamstrings, weak glutes. Someone may have had shoulder surgery. I specify each workout for each individual. I could also work with a young college golfer that may be working with a swing coach. That would go a little more in depth where I would talk with a swing coach and we could talk back and forth. If anyone has a swing coach if they’re a better golfer, I could do that as well. The main things are just a general exercise program to begin with. Then once I do the evaluation, I can specify the workout based on this individual.

Host: And Richard, who is a good candidate them for the TPI program?

Richard: Anyone could be a candidate that’s a golfer. So, doing the golf exercises would work on things such as shoulder turn, hip turn, golf flexibility, and golf strength. The general exercise program is great, but this would specify more towards your golf game.

Host: Very good. You said you work with a variety of golfers and you talked about assessment. Tell us about that assessment program. What do you put a golfer through?

Richard: Okay. What I do is look at sometimes up to 12 different things. I can look at the hip rotation, torso rotation, which would be your shoulder turn. I look at hamstring flexibility, shoulder flexibility, balance, and glute strength. Usually I can find a problem with someone or something they can work on based on the evaluation.

Host: Well, we all know there’s a lot of physical movement in a golf swing. I imagine there’s a lot for you to assess. So, after you do your assessment, you come up with a specific plan for that person?

Richard: That’s correct, yep. I’m at HealthPoint and we’re in Pawley’s Island. So, it’s more of a retirement community. So, a lot of my people could have had various knee surgeries, back surgeries, shoulder surgeries. I’ve pretty much seen it all. Some people may be working on just playing golf with no pain or pain free. I could see what they did in physical therapy and kind of work with what they’ve got. But working with the younger athlete, which would be someone maybe playing on the high school team or the college team, that would be sort of a different time workout.

Host: I could see where that would be very beneficial. Generally, what types of exercises do you prescribe them? Do you also prescribe physical therapy too for people or stretching? Tell us about what you would generally ask people to do.

Richard: I can't do any physical therapy type things. I could refer that out if someone’s having a problem. Actually, we have physical therapy at HealthPoint because I'm not a physical therapist. I'm an exercise physiologist. Some things I would do would definitely be working on hamstring flexibility. You could do some leg kicks straight forward. You could do some bridges laying on a mat where you lift your hips up. Working on glute strength, which a lot of people don’t work on. I do a lot of rows with the band work. Working on shoulder turn.

A lot of guys tend to do a lot of weight training, but not band training and not golf specific exercises. One of my favorites is just to do a ball toss where you toss a heavy ball against a wall working on shoulder turn, core strength, glute strength. Then when they usually grab a golf club, it feels like a feather. So anyways, that’s just a few of the exercises that I do. I’ve seen people play pain free and hit the ball further. When it comes to golf swing, that’s where I refer out to the golf instructor.

Host: Gotcha. So that’s really interesting. So as a golfer, I guess you're trying to find a balance between strength and flexibility. Is that right?

Richard: A combination of both, yeah. I also recommend in doing cardio just for the endurance to have the strength to go on the golf course. A lot of people go to the golf course cold. They don’t come in and do a routine. I usually tell golfers if they’re going to go out and play golf, I can show you a 10 to 15 minute little warm up you can do in your golf outfit. That way you don’t go to the first hole cold and the muscles are cold and then you start out your round bad.

Host: So inquiring minds want to know. Golfers listening right now. Can you give us a little insight? What is that warm up and what should golfers pay attention to?

Richard: A warm up would just be maybe grabbing some bands and working on some shoulder turn. You could do some hamstring stretches, you could do some quad stretches. Just get on the bike or warm up for 10 minutes prior. There’s some things you can do on the driving range. I can show them some stretches they can do on the golf cart right before they tee off. A lot of people go to the golf course in a hurry. You can do some simple calf stretches, hamstring stretches, quad stretches. Stretch out your upper body, shoulders. Just not going to the tee cold. If a pro golfer goes to play, they're surely going to be in that exercise room with a trainer stretching before four days of golf every day.

Host: Richard, if someone is interested in the TPI golf conditioning program, what should they do?

Richard: They can contact HealthPoint. My name is Richard Morris. Telephone number is 843-237-2205. My email is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Host: Sounds good. If you could wrap this up for us Richard. Is there anything else we should know about the TPI program?

Richard: This is for everybody. This is not just for your pro golfers or people with rehab. It can work for anyone.

Host: Well it sounds like it. You said you were working with everyone from students to people that are retired and really just playing golf for leisure. So, Richard thank you so much for your time. For more information about Tidelands Health physicians’ services and facilities, you can visit tidelandshealth.org. That’s tidelandshealth.org. Once again, for more information on the TPI golf program, you can call Richard directly at 843-237-2205. That’s 843-237-2205. This is Better Health Radio. I’m Bill Klaproth. Thanks for listening.