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Looking to Improve? PGA Coach David Ord’s TPI Golf Fitness Check-Up is the Place to Start

May 23, 2023

To play better golf and enjoy the game more, your golf swing needs to be as efficient as it can possibly be. The usual pathway from where you are to where you want to be involves making changes, ideally guided by someone who knows a thing or two about the golf swing.

Someone, say, like David Ord — Goswick’s PGA Coach in residence.


While David can certainly spot mechanical maladies and prescribe a range of treatments, for him that’s not the first step down the path to better ball striking. Instead, he strongly recommends that you start with an assessment of your body’s range of motion, balance and any limitations such as a bad back, new knee or physical discomfort. After all, what’s the point of attempting a swing change that you’re simply not physically capable of executing


And rather than guess at what that range of motion might be, David can provide a structured and proven approach to biomechanics assessment developed by the Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) — thanks to maintaining Level 1 TPI certification since 2013.


What does that mean? To quote Titleist:


‘A Level 1 instructor is qualified to evaluate a golfer for physical limitations which can inhibit swing efficiency, durability and, ultimately, enjoyment of the game. He can quickly evaluate a player’s capabilities using the TPI Level 1 screen and can understand how the results of that assessment are correlated with the technical elements of the player’s swing. This helps the coach to quickly identify the key area that can beholding a golfer back from playing their best. We call this the Body-SwingConnection.’


It makes a whole lot of sense when you stop and think about it. And it explains why most of the world’s top players have embraced this baseline approach to game improvement. According to Titleist, 18 of the last 20 major champions and 25 of the top 30 players in the world have been advised by a TPI certified expert.

Recently, I met up with David in Goswick’s new temporaryTrackman swing studio to learn more about this physical assessment first hand.Over about 30 minutes, he guided me through at least a dozen movements that aim to isolate and identify the range of motion for virtually all of the body parts that play a key role when swinging a golf club. Examples include Pelvic Tilt,Pelvic Rotation, Torso Rotation, Overhead Deep Squat, Toe Touch, Lat Test, SetupPosture, Lower Quarter Rotation, Seated Trunk Rotation, Cervical Rotation,Wrist Hinge and Wrist Flexion/Extension.


Some of the exercises are definitely more challenging than others. But none are painful. In fact, that’s the point: You push your body to its maximum point but not past it.


Together, what we discovered is that I have reasonably good flexibility and range of motion when it comes to my legs, arms and wrists.But the same cannot be said for my hips. And, sure enough, a lack of hip turn back and through — and its proper sequencing with the rest of my body — is acting as a damper on my swing. I’m not taking full advantage of my lower body strength, relying almost exclusively on my hands and arms to generate clubhead speed. And that, in turn, means I don’t hit the ball as far, or as solid as I’m able. Which means I don’t enjoy my golf as much as potentially could.

The resulting swing changes, though, are a challenge foranother day. For now, it’s very helpful to know what my body can and cannot do,and then sort out a plan going forward based on that information. In themeantime, I intend to incorporate some of the TPI exercises into my regularfitness regime, gradually stretching key body parts to improve my range ofmotion — or at least slow its decline.


All of the above could prove extremely useful to anyone,no matter your age or your handicap. And David stands ready to help.


You can book your TPI Physical Assessment and 4 CoachingSessions for only £140. To learn more about and book the TPI assessment, aswell as David’s other coaching services, click through to his website.


If you’re committed to playing better golf and understanding how your body and swing work together, this is absolutely the best place to start.