Like you, I am “trapped” inside my own home and have had to explore new options for exercise. I’ve settled on living room Zumba – it’s fun and fits in a small space. Whenever I am making the transition from winter into golf season, I am conscious of the need to awaken certain body parts which may have gone into hibernation from December through March – I can feel like the tin man in The Wizard of Oz, in desperate need of an oil can. This year, my in-home Zumba is providing the oil.
To prepare for any golf season, I am always aware of the need to stretch my hamstrings, to loosen my hip joints and to gently get full range of motion in my shoulders, especially after a winter in the northeast. Usually I do this with a combination of work in the gym and some easy early season sessions on the driving range. This season, I am anticipating an abrupt beginning to the golf season – I want to play! I’ve been inside too long, and in my eagerness to return to normal, I don’t want to overdo and end my golf season before it begins. Most importantly, I don’t want my first golf activity to be a full speed, full swing with a driver on the first tee. It’s never a good first swing for a round (warm up, anyone?), let alone a first swing of the season.
I did not initially embrace Zumba to prepare for golf – I just wanted to get some exercise to keep from going crazy while self-isolating. However, I have been struck by how useful it is vis a vis golf. I’m using several tapes that I have found online, and all of them incorporate several golf-centric movements – the need to lift my knees high and rotate internally and externally, lunges to activate the big muscles in my legs, especially the hamstrings, and all sorts of arm action that requires me to stretch and rotate my shoulders. Early on, my Zumba journey included the distinct feeling of snap, crackle, pop in my shoulders and a vague sense of “I don’t know if I can even do this” in some of the dance steps. Suffice to say, with each session my dance technique gets better (I think…) and more importantly, I feel like my joints get loosened. Keeping things moving gives me a sense that whenever I get to take that first swing at Nehoiden, my body will be at least semi-awake and ready for golf.