If you are a golfer over the age of 50, you can derive great benefits from the either the Orange Whip or SKLZ Gold Flex swing trainers. Although not specifically marketed to senior golfers, these training aids are just what the doctor ordered for golfers over 50 to improve rhythm, timing, distance and release.
Training aids come and go, but these two have made a huge difference with our golfers. And since we receive so many questions from golfers over 50 about the Gold Flex and Orange whip, I decided to sit down and detail why I think they are essential tools specific to golfers in your age group.
Improve Golf Swing Rhythm
If you are a golfer over 50, you will typically have a much more difficult time with golf swing rhythm because stiffness and/or pain in the body that causes random stops and jerks in the golf swing. Many golfers think of a pendulum to relate to a golf swing with rhythm. So if you continue with this analogy for a stiff golfer, think of a pendulum that keeps bumping into random obstacles. It’s not very rhythmic. It is jerky and discombobulated, and that is what you will have to overcome to have a smooth swing.
Here is how:
These training aids are not very heavy. However, if you swing them with poor rhythm, you will feel like they weigh a ton! I have experienced this MANY times when I have golfers try these for the first time. But, the more they worked with the training aid, the easier and lighter it felt to swing.
The gold flex and orange whip take a tremendous amount of energy to swing if you swing with bad rhythm. But the more you practice, and subconsciously improve your rhythm, you realize that the training aids ASSIST with the golfswing and take almost no energy at all! That’s when you know you have achieved Fred Couples like rhythm and can feel what effortless power is all about.
Master the Transition Move from the Top
The transition move is arguably the most important move in the golf swing
The first move back to the ball should come from your lower body and it should be made without your upper body moving towards the ball. In other words, your lower body twists forwards while your upper body stays back, and in the case of flexibile golfers, the lower body moves forwards while the upper body is still completing the backswing.
You can see why, being a golfer over 50, you have a hard time making a good transition move: you may have lost some of the flexibility needed to twist your body in this manner. Because of this deficit, you may struggle more with “coming over the top of the ball,” and you have probably lost distance.
The shaft of these training tools are flexible with a weight located on the very end. At the top of your backswing, the flexible shaft allows the weight part to keep moving even though your backswing has stopped. This allows you to make the transition move with your lower body while the weight and momentum of the training aid holds your upper body back for a split second.
You want to allow the training aid to complete its backswing motion before you try to swing down with your arms. If you try to start your arms early (over the top move) you will be fighting the training aid and it will feel extremely heavy. However, when you get your timing right and start your downswing with your arms naturally, after the weight bounces off its end range, the training aid will swing effortlessly.
Improve Your Wrist Release at Impact
Mid and high handicap golfers always seem to get the release into the ball all wrong.
Do you struggle with consistent contact? Do you hit the ball higher with poor distance compared to other golfers? Do you take an inconsistent divot…or no divot at all?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of those questions, you can really improve your golf game by working on your release into the golf ball. Simply put, you want your hands to be ahead of the ball at impact.
Golfers with poor release tend to have their hands slightly behind the ball at the point at impact.
As you are coming down to the impact position, the flexible shaft and weight tip will be trailing your hands. If you release early, you will have to overcome inertia and forcefully sling the weight head in front of the hands. Again, this takes a tremendous amount of strength and will make the training aid feel very heavy.
However, as you practice you will find that when you release the training aid correctly through the impact zone, it will feel effortless because you are working with inertia instead of against it. Once you translate this into your golf swing, you will add at least 5 mph to your swing speed, you will lower iron shots that travel further with more spin and stick on the greens.
Improve Your X-Factor at the Impact Position
Your X-factor is the difference between how far your hips have opened at the point of impact compared to your upper body. The bigger your X-Factor, the more power you produce.
This is why a golfer that comes over the top, does not have a lot of power. The upper body is rotating open at the same time as the lower body so there is much less torque. To have a big X-Factor at impact, you need flexibility and timing by having a well timed transition move. Both of these training aids work in dynamic ways to improve your X-Factor power!
Golf Warm Up for Performance and Injury Prevention
If you have followed Age Defying Golf for any period of time, you know that we advocate a dynamic warm up instead of static stretches before you hit any golf balls. (If not, you can read more by clicking here).
Using either the SKLZ Gold Flex or the Orange Whip are superior methods to warming up your muscles through a fuller range of motion than warming up in any other way. I personally own the Gold Flex and use it EVERY TIME before I hit balls or play golf. That should be a testament to how much I believe that they are a “must-own” for your golf game.
In summary, if you want effortless rhythm and power in your golf game, the best way to is to feel it by swinging it. The Gold flex and Orange Whip are my absolute top pics for golfers over 50. You can find these products on Amazon, E-bay, and on nearly every golf supply website.
Gold Flex Swing Trainers For An Improved Golf Swing
Orange Whip For Increasing Flexibility And Swing Power
Thanks for reading!
Dr Ryan York, DPT CGS
Doctor of Physical Therapy
Certified Golf Performance Specialist