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Human Kinetics

Golf Anatomy 2nd Edition

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The second edition of Golf Anatomy provides updated and improved exercises, more artwork, and a more complete way to build a golf fitness program. This one-of-a-kind guide, developed over 15 years of working with professional golfers, will show you how to lower your score by increasing strength, power, and range of motion for longer drives and more accurate shots.

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Book Description

See what it takes to improve consistency and performance in your golf game as you never have before. The second edition of Golf Anatomy provides updated and improved exercises, more artwork, and a more complete way to build a golf fitness program. This one-of-a-kind guide, developed over 15 years of working with professional golfers, will show you how to lower your score by increasing strength, power, and range of motion for longer drives and more accurate shots.

Golf Anatomy, Second Edition, includes 72 exercises, each with step-by-step descriptions and full-color anatomy illustrations highlighting the muscles in action. You will see how to improve mobility, stability, balance and body awareness, and muscle strength and power to add distance to drives, consistency to your short game, and accuracy to your putts.

From sand traps to awkward lies, Golf Anatomy will prepare you for even the most challenging shots. You’ll learn the keys to an effective warm-up, train for the full golf swing, and see sample programming used by PGA and LPGA professionals themselves.

Combining expert instruction with beautiful, full-color illustrations, Golf Anatomy is truly an inside look into the game. Whether you’re a scratch golfer or simply a fan of the game, this book is a hole in one.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. The Golfer in Motion

Chapter 2. Preworkout Warm-Up

Chapter 3. Mobility for Optimal Swing Angles

Chapter 4. Balance and Proprioception Training for Efficient Energy Transfer

Chapter 5. Rotational Resistance and Deceleration for Injury-Free Swings

Chapter 6. Strength for Increased Distance

Chapter 7. Explosive Power for Longer Drives

Chapter 8. Program Planning


Craig Davies, DC, is a movement, body mechanics, and strength and conditioning coach on the PGA Tour. He has been a consultant to numerous international golf associations and international PGAs. From 2006 to 2009 he was the director of fitness and nutrition for one of the most successful junior golf academies in the United States.

Davies has had the opportunity to be the keynote speaker at a number of seminars and summits, including the Canadian Golf Performance Summit, the Ontario PGA Professional Development Seminar, and the World Golf Fitness Summit. He has extensive experience and involvement working with international team events, including the Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup. He has a long list of international golfer clients, and his professional golf client list has been a who’s who of the tour elite, including such tremendous ball strikers as Kevin Chappell, Justin Rose, Y.E. Yang, Si Woo Kim, Lydia Ko, Gary Woodland, Graham DeLaet, Anthony Kim, Henrik Stenson, Sean O’Hair, Hunter Mahan, and Stephen Ames.

Davies is the president of the DEPTH Systems Institute at the Foley Performance Academy in Orlando, Florida. He provides online education courses for trainers, coaches, and manual therapists at and travels around the world to teach movement enhancement seminars to trainers. His online golf technique and movement instruction can be found at

Vince DiSaia, DC, is the founder and clinic director at Momentum Functional Health. His goal is to provide all clients with the most comprehensive health strategies to ensure that they optimize health while also performing at their highest level of competitive skill.

DiSaia has been involved in the health and fitness field for more than 15 years. He has continuously studied the most cutting-edge philosophies in health, fitness, and performance. His current postgraduate focus in functional medicine was preceded by his training as a strength trainer, chiropractor, and sports medicine expert. His approach combines optimizing both the physical capabilities of the athlete and the internal health that drives human performance. During his career DiSaia has had the opportunity to work with professional athletes from many different sports and has worked on the PGA and LPGA Tours. He enjoys sharing his knowledge with his colleagues and has previously lectured for doctors, therapists, and strength coaches on topics such as lower back pain, running injuries, golf swing biomechanics, golf fitness, and performance through health optimization. His online golf technique and movement instruction can be found at DiSaia works with clients both in person and online, creating customized programs to help people achieve a life filled with supreme health and vitality.


Every great ball striker has the ability to control each body segment but must also consider the ground from which he or she is hitting. This last component is perhaps the least appreciated aspect of balance and proprioception. One of the differences of golf when compared to most other athletic activities is the unpredictability of the slope, firmness, or type of surface on which you play. In soccer, American football, rugby, cricket, baseball, squash, tennis, and hockey, the athlete expects to play on the same type and firmness of surface with the same slope (flat) throughout the match.

The only time a golfer can be confident the lie will be flat during a round of golf is when the ball is placed on a tee to start each hole. After the ball leaves the tee, the golfer is at the mercy of how the ball bounces and interacts with the environment to determine what body position and set up will be required for the next shot. The golfer may find the ball on an upslope or downslope in a bunker or on the side of a hill. When playing a course such as Augusta, there won't be a flat lie anywhere on the golf course, including the putting surfaces. Mountain biking and trail running may be two sports that are comparable in this regard.

Players who succeed in major championships, where the courses often have significant changes in elevation and slopes throughout the 18 holes, usually place a significant emphasis on fitness and movement training, specifically on the function of their feet. While this may not be as important when playing on a course such as St Andrews or Hilton Head, where the course is unusually flat, it is extremely important on almost every other course. When the course slopes, the golfer must set up with varying degrees of dorsiflexion and plantar flexion at the ankle. Sometimes you will need a level of dorsiflexion in one ankle and plantar flexion in the other. This is significant because a change in the angle at the ankle will change the alignment and joint positions all the way up the body's kinetic web.

To appreciate these differences, place a two-by-four under your heels and address the ball. Then place that same two-by-four under your toes and do the same. You will notice the angle of your knees, hips, lower back, and thoracic spine all change. Now place the toes of one foot on the two-by-four and the heel of the other foot on a two-by-four and address the ball. Each of these stances challenges the body and its ability to move.

The athlete's feet and ankles must be able to move into position easily and with control while providing accurate information to the rest of the body so that the appropriate posture can be attained and maintained throughout the swing. This requires a high level of motor control, and motor control does not develop by accident. It is a deliberate part of a training program that should be considered in any program design. We need components in the training program that permit deliberate activation and movement at the ankles and feet, plus program modules that require our feet and ankles to function while our focus is on other areas of the body or external influences (such as a moving ball, another athlete, or another component of the environment).

We must prepare the connective tissue, muscles, and joints of the feet and ankles to perform as needed, and the other areas of the body must be able to adjust to what the feet are doing (figure 4.1). When the feet and ankles communicate with other body parts and function optimally, it results in a level of grace and efficiency of movement that makes the activity appear much easier than it is. Gymnasts, dancers, and figure skaters all exhibit a fluidity and control that is easy to identify.