Lady Golfer Columnist: Claire Kane – When working out doesn’t workApril, 2013
Claire takes a look at her golf fitness
ONE area of my game where a few, gentle improvements could be made is my general golf fitness.
It has been known for me to flag a little towards the end of a long day and last year came the final straw when I walked off the 18th feeling completely shattered.
There was nothing else for it – I had to do something about my lack of fitness.
Let’s face it, standing over the ball on the back nine feeling exhausted is not conducive to a decent score, let alone attempting to tackle 36 holes in a day.
Now, I’m not a big fan of gyms as I’ve always found them brimming with red-faced individuals, waiting their turn to leap on complicated, torturous looking equipment.
So I decided to try a different approach and signed up for a step class which, according to the convincing flyer posted through my letterbox, would whip my muscles into shape, increase my stamina and help me lose weight.
The fit-looking instructress was a wonderful advert for her profession, making the exercises look effortless and the class was crammed full of glamorous ‘Sweaty Bettys’ who moved together in perfect unison.
Despite oxygen deprivation, common sense finally kicked in and I came to the conclusion being out of step with the class wasn’t the end of the world even if I did look like Lance Corporal Jones in Dad’s Army. Intimated but not undaunted, I arrived in functional leggings and baggy T-shirt, set up my steps and enthusiastically hurled my body into the programme.
I must have climbed the equivalent steps in the Eiffel Tower (600, in case you’re wondering) in the challenge to keep pace with the seasoned regulars.
Despite oxygen deprivation, common sense finally kicked in and I came to the conclusion being out of step with the class wasn’t the end of the world even if I did look like Lance Corporal Jones in Dad’s Army.
I didn’t appreciate just how effective the workout was until I caught sight of my puce face in a mirror at the end of the session. By the time I climbed in my car and tried to co- ordinate the clutch and accelerator I realised my muscles had turned to jelly, making my journey home a whole new kangarooing experience.
The next day I woke up as stiff as a board, taking a good five minutes to swing my legs over the side of the bed.
Every muscle from my waist down had gone into shock and my back had come out in sympathy and had completely seized up.
Days later, I hobbled through the doors of a physiotherapist, racked with constant back pain. Instead of the usual bodily checks and manipulation the physio asked me lots of questions, finally asking me to show her how I walked up a stairs.
Now this physio had come highly recommended but I started to have serious doubts about her abilities at this point – surely, she knew how someone walked up stairs?
When I attempted the action, she pointed out my core muscles on one side were so pathetic that my hips tipped like a see-saw, putting enormous strain on my back.
Numerous physio appointments later and minus hundreds of pounds, my core muscles were truly toned and my hips back in balance – more importantly I could actually stand up straight.
So much for improving my golfing stamina.
I wasn’t able to play golf for weeks and when I finally did I was completely unfit!
Claire Kane is a freelance journalist, a keen golfer and someone who doesn’t take herself, or her golf, too seriously. Follow her tales on twitter @golfsnippets
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