TPI Performance Test 2

TPI performance test 2: Pelvic Rotation test

A few newsletters ago, I told you that it was possible to assess what someone’s golf strengths and weaknesses were by having them perform a couple of simple motion tests.  This week, I’m going to talk about the pelvic rotation test, which is one way that TPI fitness professionals assess a person’s golf fitness.

You might be saying to yourself, “But didn’t we do this one already?”  Nope, that was the Pelvic Tilt Test, which assesses the overall mobility of your hips and lumbar spine.  The Pelvic Rotation test tests your ability to rotate your lower body independently of the upper body.  Each test tell us different things about your strengths and weaknesses.

To do this test:

Get in a normal golf stance.
Cross your arms across your chest, with your left hand on your right shoulder and your right hand on your left shoulder.  Your hands should just be resting on the front of your shoulder, no need to pull and grab.
Now, without moving your upper body, try to rotate your lower body (belt and below) to the right and left several times.
The motion should be smooth and easy, with no motion at all above your waist, and no excessing bending of the knees (a little bit is okay.)  If you are having movement above the waistline, I can assess whether you have a mobility or stability problem by holding your upper body stable for you.  If you still can’t move your lower body independently, you have a mobility problem.  Otherwise, the problem is with stability.

If you have a mobility problem, you need corrective exercise and possibly some medical intervention.  Degenerative joint disease and spine problems can cause a lack of mobility, but so can simple tightness in the muscles in your back.  We can work together with your doctor to determine the cause.

If you have a stability problem, then you may need help un-learning bad habits you may have picked up working out on circuit machines.  You may also need to simply increase your level of coordination.  There are exercises you can do to remedy both of these things.I’ll give you a few exercises to start:
Hip Twister

  • Stand facing the mirror.
  • Keep your shoulders facing forward, and try to rotate the hips right and left without moving the upper body.
  • Reach maximum rotation but don’t force a stretch.
  • Having the feedback from the mirror should help with stability and coordination.

Step Change of Direction

  • Grab a golf club and get into golf posture.
  • Put your feet together, keep them planted, and raise your golf club (as you would in a regular swing) until it is pointing down-range toward the “target.”
  • Now, in one fluid motion, sidestep outward with the down-range foot while simultaneously performing a backswing.
  • Rapidly change directions with the club and make a full forward swing around a stable, posted left side.  Focus on maintaining a good, stable core throughout the exercise.
  • This exercise should also help with stability and coordination.

If you know anyone who could benefit from this information, please share it!

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