Junior Golf: Finishing Strong

In this Friday Flop Shot we will look at finishing strong. In every competitive event it is vitally important for your son to finish the event as strong or stronger than he started. (offcoursegolf.com)image

What does finish strong mean? There are 3 different components of finishing strong in golf. Your son must be physically strong, mentally strong and strong in his golf skills. In this post we will discuss physical strength and it’s importance.

Let’s begin by looking at your son’s scores on the last 3 holes of his most recent golf tournaments. How do those scores compare to the first 3 holes and the holes in the middle of his round? If his final 3 holes are not as good as or better than his best other 3 hole stretches during the round, he needs to improve his strength of finishing.

For today’s purpose it doesn’t matter so much what his scores are as how they compare to the other 3-hole stretches. Your son will go through stretches where he is not in good enough physical shape to finish his round physically fit. Stages that you see depending on your son’s age are: he has trouble walking his tournament when you are carrying his bag, he has trouble walking his tournament when he’s carrying his bag, he has trouble when his tournament increases from 6-holes to 9-holes, then from 9-holes to 18-holes, then from 18 to 36 holes in the same day. Parents, this inadequate physical conditioning is much more common than you think among all ages of both boys and girls.

It is common for us Moms and Dads to assume that because our kiddo is involved in a sport, or just looks fit, that they are in physical shape to compete at a high level, kind of by osmosis. Not true! Some of the skinniest junior golfers I have ever seen are in the poorest shape physically. Frankly, until they get to college, their physical training in junior high or high school, in golf, is not enough to get them in proper shape.

Yes, walking 9-holes 4 or more times a week is good, but it’s not the same as walking 18-holes 4 times a week, and nothing is the same as walking 36-holes in a day and then walking another 18-holes the next day. Being in excellent physical shape for golf requires extra training. Walking himself into golf shape is helpful, but not enough for your son.IMG_0089

So what are the choices for getting your son into proper physical shape? An easy and inexpensive approach is to add weight, more than the normal weight, to his golf bag and have him carry it during practice. Or put weight in a backpack so it weighs more than his golf bag and have him walk, jog or sprint a little bit around the neighborhood. Get him accustomed to carrying more weight than usual. Ask around your local golf community. You’ll get some solid suggestions. Look at the Golf Academy and Golf Channel apps. They have a wealth of information. You could hire a personal trainer, but that can be expensive and you would only want 1 who has credentials for training golfers. Get on the web, ask around, help your son get in shape so he’s still looking strong at the end of his round.

See you on #1 tee, ready to walk… Sam

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