Exercises for racquet sports and golf

pt HealthSports Physiotherapy

A great way to improve in-game performance is to strengthen your body. When it comes to racquet sports or golf, strengthening exercises can be a great tool to improve your game while preventing overuse injuries.

Developing upper body strength

Racquet sports and golf usually demand upper body strength, with some power and speed to get the ball where it needs to go. These sports add repetitive stress on your shoulders, elbows, forearms, wrists and hands. Racquet sports and golf also require rotational force to increase power and distance by using your abdominal muscles.

Below are a few exercises that can help improve your racquet sport or golf game:

Banded chest flies with elbow bent

Tie an elastic behind you at waist level. Hold the elastic tightly, with the palm facing forward. Your arm is horizontal beside you, with your elbow slightly bent. With your shoulders down and back, pull the elastic in front of you while keeping your elbow slightly bent and without moving the torso. Slowly return to the initial position and repeat.

Complete 2-3 sets of 8-10 repetitions each side.

Elevated shoulder external rotation

Stand and tie an elastic in front of you at shoulder level. Hold the end of the elastic, bend your elbow to 90 degrees, and lift your arm out to the side to 90 degrees. Pull the tip of your shoulder backwards while you rotate your forearm upwards, keeping your elbow bent. Slowly return to the initial position and repeat.

Complete 2 sets of 8-10 repetitions each side.

Shoulder diagonals

Stand up straight with an elastic strap beneath your foot and hold the ends of it in the opposite hand.

With your palm facing the floor and your elbow straight, lift and turn your hand up and across your body in a diagonal motion so as to end up with your upper arm next to your ear. Lower your hand slowly back down to its original position.

Complete 2-3 sets of 8-10 repetitions each side.

Wood choppers

Stand next to a pulley station or affix a band to your side above shoulder height. The pulley should be set to start from the highest point. Hold the handle/end of band with both hands at face height. Pull the cable down and sideways across your body, rotating the shoulders and hips.

Complete 2-3 sets of 8-10 repetitions each direction.

Pallof press

Hold an elastic band in your hands and attach it on the side at chest height. With tension in the elastic, extend your arms forward and then slowly bring your hands back toward your body. Your body must not rotate as you resist the pull of the elastic.

Complete 2-3 sets of 8-10 repetitions each side.

Wrist flexion

Place your forearm on an armrest or table, with your wrist hanging over the edge and your palm facing up. With a weight in your hand, lift the hand towards the ceiling. Lower slowly and repeat.

Complete 2 sets of 8-10 repetitions each side.

Wrist extension

Place your forearm on an armrest or table, with your wrist hanging over the edge and your palm facing down. With a weight in your hand, lift the hand towards the ceiling. Lower slowly and repeat.

Complete 2 sets of 8-10 repetitions each side.

If you require more instructions or if you’re dealing with an overuse injury, find a clinic near you or book online. Our clinicians are here to help you get well and stay well so you can enjoy your favourite activities.

This blog post originally appeared on lifemark.ca and was written by Joanna Taets Von Amerongen, Kinesiologist at Lifemark Meadowlark Centre.

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