Golf is a game of precision where fractions of degrees matter. Given this fact, what do you think would happen if somebody tried to play the game standing on one leg like a flamingo?
Let's change that mental image for a slight less ridiculous one. Let's say a player has a postural/ movement based habit of standing with twice as much weight on one leg as the other and it is such a habit that they don't even feel or know that they're doing it. How would their swing be? Hopefully you agree that it wouldn't be as erratic as the one-legged swing but could still be greatly improved with greater symmetry.
I turns out, perhaps unsurprisingly, that standing consistently more on one leg tires that leg more and puts it at greater risk of pain and injury.
A few weeks back I worked with Richie Marsden and a few of his golfers, one of whom fit the right knee pain, unpredictable swing scenario.
A quick stand on the force plate confirmed what I could see with my eyes - that they stood with twice as much weight through one leg as the other. I didn't tell the golfer this at this point. Instead, we set to work.
After 10 minutes of some specifically chosen sequences of very gentle movements, the golfer stood back on the platform. Here is what we saw.
A quick look at the the weight percentages towards the bottom of these images shows a much more even weight distribution after the 10 minutes of work we did together.
You may also notice that the work had the effect of putting the player unconsciously more on the front of their feet. Another 10 minutes or so had the player even left to right and almost even front to back.
Most importantly, at the end of our session, this golfer was free of their knee pain and hitting shots with a little more power and consistency than at the start of the session.
These results were gained without any conscious instruction of the player. I could have told them to stand more evenly on their feet and to do so consciously would have led to other compensations throughout their body. The work we did was to unravel as much of these compensations as possible in the time we had and I find that is usually best done without making clients aware of what their compensations are.
Flamingos and golf don't mix. If you're having ankle, knee or hip issues or feel unbalanced in your swing, it may be worth seeking somebody out to help you unflamingo yourself.
Arton "A leg to stand on" Baleci
Float Sting - Sports Performance and Rehab Consultant