I recently attended the SOPGA Teaching and Coaching Summit. The summit was put together by my local PGA section to educate local instructors on how to become better teachers and coaches. The entire experience was quite rewarding. One of the speakers was Brian Adkins, a physical therapist from the Cincinnati area. You may be wondering why a physical therapist would be invited to speak to a group of golf professionals. Brian discussed a program developed by Titleist, called the Titleist Performance Institute or TPI. TPI was developed to combine both the instruction side and the fitness side of golf improvement.
Brian delivered an excellent presentation that got me very intrigued by TPI. Entering the presentation, I only had some basic knowledge of TPI. The presentation really opened my eyes to how TPI could benefit my own golf game as well as the games of my students. As a teacher, I show, move, and assign drills that help students obtain and get into positions that improve their performance. On many occasions, students are unable to fully reach their potential because of a physical limitation that prohibits them from reaching these directed positions. This is where TPI comes in to play. They have studied the biomechanics of the golf swing and developed a variety of golf-specific exercises and stretches to help individuals perform at their maximum potential.
After attending the seminar, I looked for a TPI certified physical therapist in my area. I was lucky enough to be referred to Justin Weisbrod of Cornerstone Physical Therapy. Justin has offices in Gahanna, Canal Winchester, and Newark. I felt it was very important to experience a TPI screening before referring any of my students. Wow, am I glad I did! Justin put me through the 11 part TPI screening. The TPI screening involves different exercises or actions that red flag physical limitations that contribute to the most common flaws in the golf swing. Click here to view the results of my TPI screen. My screen revealed limited pelvic movement, lack of balance and stability, and a glute weakness. I know it sounds really bad, but it made total sense. If you look at my golf swing, I have a slightly rounded back during my set up and I slightly stand up through the impact zone. This is directly related to my limited pelvic movement and glute weakness. Secondly, I have a tendency to sway forward during my down-swing. This could be related to my glute weakness and lack of balance and stability. You may be wondering, what happens from here? Justin assigned me some simple exercises that I could do at home to help strengthen these areas and eliminate the limitations. He also recommended that I visit him a few more times to rehab a knee injury that may be causing my poor balance and stability. My hope is that by performing my exercises and visiting Justin, I will be able to strengthen these areas and improve my golf swing. I will continue to update on my progress.
I am sure that you are aware of the focus tour professionals have put on golf fitness in the last 15 years. If you are truly serious about becoming a better golfer, why wouldn’t you look at the fitness side of golf? As important as I think golf instruction is, you may not be able to reach your potential if physical limitations prevent you from performing a proper golf swing. I highly recommend that you take the time to check out the Titleist Performance Institute’s website to learn more. While you’re there find a TPI Certified Professional in your area and go through your own TPI screen. You may be quite surprised at what you discover. As always, thanks for reading and leave your comments below. See you on the lesson tee!!!