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The importance of training muscle chains in golf

August 3, 2018

 

 

 

In the fundamental technical gesture called "swing", the synergistic action of a high number of muscles, allows the acceleration of the stick of over 160 km / h in a very short period of time. The modern swing exploits the greater "screwing" of the body obtained by the wide twist of the shoulders with respect to the pelvis (backswing) in order to store elastic energy to be returned during the descent of the stick. The follow throught is also characterized by the hypertension of the back, which leads to end the movement with the body in an inverted C position. Compared to the classical, more harmonious and fluent technique, the modern one allows to generate more power, but exposes those who perform it to a greater risk of injury to the musculoskeletal system. They seem simple and banal, but without a good support structure, the unexpected is inevitable. What are they and why are the CHINETIC CHAINS and the CORE important?

 

The muscles do not contract into watertight compartments, but are connected to each other as if they were many rings of a single chain. These chains are more than one and the main ones intertwine according to a spiral-like pattern from the feet to the hands, from front to back and are also called kinetic chains because through their activation, the energy produced by the contraction of the muscles is transferred along the rings of the chains increasing more and more intensity until the final completion of the gesture. In golf, this process takes the form of a complete transfer of muscle energy to the stick, which will increase its speed and during the impact, it will release all the energy to the ball. The crossed chains of the front and rear torso are fundamental for throwing gestures like the swing and are located in the center of the spiral system between the lower and upper limbs. They are particularly affected by two factors: stability of the abdominal pelvic belt and the thoraco-lumbar fascia (mobility on all the surfaces of both the pelvis and the shoulders). Without the support of these conditions, the crusader muscular system of the trunk will work ineffective way, according to compensating adaptive motor patterns that our body will take immediately when the functional equilibrium fails. This happens to re-establish a condition of homeostasis, that is a sort of equilibrium of immediate convenience, which we unconsciously seek to achieve a certain objective with the resources available in the least expensive way, even if not optimal from the point of view of the result.

 

 

Example: when loading a backswing, the right anterior crusading chain (which part of the right hip and comes to the left shoulder) and the left rear crusher chain (starting from the left buttock and coming to the right shoulder) should activate at the same time , in the acceleration phase towards the impact, the opposite action takes place. If these motor patterns are activated correctly, it is possible to stabilize the axis of rotation, thus perceiving a movement that sees the great muscles of the trunk as protagonists. At the basis of such a correct gesture, it is necessary, however, to seek stability and mobility and to perform exercises that facilitate the internal sensory-motor perception of movement through the activation of the cross-chains. It is therefore essential to strengthen the work, meaning the increase in the ability to recruit chains and their correct synchronization and not the search for the development of maximum strength, let alone the hypertrophy, in order to acquire a natural action of rotation of the trunk without lateral displacements. But how do you optimize these aspects? To find the best stability of the abdominal pelvic belt and the lumbar belt, it is essential to plan a path that has as its goal the strengthening of the CORE.

 

 

But what is the core? A few decades ago it was known as "Power House", that is the house of force, the center or the base of the force of the body. In fact it is made anteriorly by the muscles of the abdominal belt (transverse, rectus and oblique), posteriorly by the paraspinal muscles and the buttocks, superiorly by the diaphragm and finally inferiorly by the pelvic floor muscles and by the hip muscles. This area is considered as a muscular corset that works as a unit to stabilize the whole body and in particular the vertebral column, both in presence and in the absence of limb movements. It is a kind of bridge that unites the upper and lower extremities of the body, the point where all forces pass and are generated. The basic principle of core training consists in learning to voluntarily contract the abdominal muscle, the internal oblique and the muscular components of the thorax-lumbar fascia, for the purpose to reproduce this maneuver during the specific gesture, so as to generate stability in the proximal areas that ensure the basis of the production of force then used in the most distal areas.

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