BAD NEWS: Working Out Is Not Going To Make You A Great Golfer

I hate to be the one to break it to you, but working out with the greatest golf fitness professional in the world is not going to make you a great golfer. And if any trainer tries to tell you different, he or she is a liar.

Here is why: Working out does not . . .

  • Teach you how to putt.
  • Teach you how to cut/draw a ball.
  • Help you decided what club to choose.
  • Help you decide whether to “bump and run” or hit a flop.
  • Show you how to get out of a green-side bunker.
  • Teach you whether to attack the green or layup.

Let’s face it, there is a lot more to the game of golf than just working out and trying to increase your club head speed. That is why I stress to all of my clients that in order to really get better at this game, there has to be a balance of several disciplines.

There is just too much to this game that goes above and beyond fitness level and athleticism. Actually, in my opinion, that’s one of the things that make it such a great and unique sport.

The balance of touch, feel, power, strength, and mental fortitude, all combine to create ever changing circumstances that account for one player’s dominant success one week and the same player’s disappointment the next.

What Will Make You a Great Golfer?

There is only one real way to become a great golfer, and that is practice. I’m sure this comes as no surprise. But when I say practice, I am referring to an all-encompassing term that includes every aspect of the game.

The kind of practice that I am talking about is not just the standard hitting balls at the range for hours, or having a playing lesson with the club pro. It’s even more than that. It’s a combination of a lot of different aspects of the game. It’s putting, it’s chipping, it’s hitting the range; it’s intentional and specific, not haphazard and mindless.

If you’ve read Malcom Gladwell’s book “Outliers,” you know that popular belief says it takes over 10,000 hours of focused, intentional practice to become great at anything. I don’t know about you but that is a lot of time.  I don’t know many guys that can squeeze that kind of practice in between their duties at the office, kids soccer games, house projects, and oh yeah, actual rounds of golf.

There is Good News Though; Fitness is More Bang for your Buck

While your workout program will not turn you into Rory or Adam Scott, there is some good news. A solid fitness program, especially one geared toward your golf game and your specific needs may be the quickest and most effective way to make you a MUCH BETTER golfer.

Think of it like this. If you are not in great shape, or even if you’re in decent shape, what will happen if you get in better shape for your game? Odds are you will . . .

  • Move better
  • Swing faster
  • Have better stamina
  • Hit the ball farther
  • Get injured less often
  • Strike the ball more consistently

All of these sound pretty good to me. And even if you gain just one of these, I would venture to say it would improve your game to some degree. Not to mention that it is usually much easier to squeeze in some time at the gym or in the basement for a quick workout a few times a week than actually get to a course or range to hit balls or putt.


I like to put it like this. Who is going to play better? A fat and out of shape Adam Scott or a slim, fit and explosive Adam Scott? I would bet the farm that the in shape one wins at least 7 out of 10 times (it’s a crazy game, so higher than 7 may be risky, and I’m kind of a wuss when it comes to betting).

So again, I’m not going to claim that having a great fitness routine will guarantee you a spot on the PGA or even the “D flight” of the club championship, but I absolutely believe that the right fitness program will make you a BETTER player.

With proper instruction and focus on the strength training, power development, and flexibility specific for your game, drastic improvements can be made.

My suggestion is to make sure you are covering all the pieces in the puzzle when it comes to preparing yourself to play. That “focused practice” is what creates champions out there on the links.

So if you are not yet on the band wagon of a fitness routine, my action step for you today is to make a commitment that you will begin your fitness program by the end of the week. If you don’t know what to do, don’t let that be an excuse that holds you up. At the very least, get your butt moving by going for a walk, a jog, a bike ride, whatever.

If you have any questions as to what kind of fitness program would be right for you or need some direction, feel free to ask in the comments below and we’ll help get you on the right track. #NoExcuses!

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