At first glance it may seem that the shoulders are not that important in your golf swing.
In fact our chart below shows the joints around the right and left shoulder aren’t responsible for creating a lot of work in the golf swing.
And definitely not as much as the hips, glutes and your core.
But some research has shown that up to 20% of total clubhead speed is generated by the shoulders in the golf swing.
Let’s examine some of the game’s best on the PGA tour.
In the image below we see some of the biggest hitters off the tee on the PGA tour.
Cameron Champ, Rory, DJ and Bubba.
The numbers in the fine print was their rank for driving distance in 2019.
I want you to notice two things on how they create extension in the swing:
- They they have high hands which we show as the position of the trail elbow relative to the head.
- Their upper back forms this “C” where the left shoulder is closer to the target than the right.
What we are showing you is their awesome range of motion and ability to create a big shoulder turn and thoracic extension at the top to really generate some clubhead speed.
Now let’s examine some of the shorter hitters on tour.
Below we show Jordan Spieth, Webb Simpson, Ryan Armour and Brian Gay.
In all these cases their elbows are below chin level.
And unlike the first group the lead shoulder is still closer to the target.
So their upper back resembles more of a “D” shape.
But I want to point out two important things points about shoulder mobility from the image below.
In this image we use data from research by McHardy and Pollard.
In their study they examined the most active muscles in the golf swing.
The percentage below show the most active muscles and display it as a percentage relative to peak contraction using an EMG.
Anyways, the list of stretches that follow will help you stretch out not only the deltoids but also those muscles in the upper back that connect.