Golf column: Magic bullet to shoot your age… exercise!

Well it’s nearing the end of the golf season once again. It was far too short of a summer this year with the late start and seemingly early fall, or maybe it’s my imagination. I will admit this year that I saw a fairly substantial drop in my golf game as my average score went up considerably and I started the process of trying to figure out what to do to fix it.

Larry Norland, Director of Golf at Greenhaven Golf Course
Larry Norland, Director of Golf at Greenhaven Golf Course

Now, I am approaching 50 years of age, which is not all that old in human years but in golfing years it is when the physical starts creeping into what is possible. For the first time my distance actually went down even though I have the opportunity to try all of the newest technology. I was unable to find the magic bullet to restore those 15 yards off the tee. So, I settle on the physical and what my muscles are starting to do.

I had the opportunity to look at my golf swing late in the season on a friend’s iPad and boy what I saw shocked me. Over the last few years my swing had gotten shorter and shorter and that has impacted not only my distance, but the accuracy. The urgency of finding the solution has really been put front and center. I hate to admit it, but approaching 50, my body is just not as limber as it used to be.

That brings me to the purpose of my article today. If you or anybody you know is in the same predicament I believe I have found the magic bullet. The solution to all of those problems and it too can be yours. This incredible solution that is pretty much free to the world is something that we maybe should all try. After months of contemplating and days of research I found the answer in a little known website. It, believe it or not is called exercise! And apparently there are actually people that knew about this magic, used this magic, and it seems kept it to themselves (selfish I think).

So I will be embarking on a program of exercise and probably the most important thing for golf as we age, stretching! Eeeeeeeek!

There are many places you can find programs to help with flexibility, the web, your local YMCA, your local gym, personal trainers, etc. Where you find it may not be as important as whether you do it or not. As always you need to make sure your doctor approves so you don’t get hurt, but just get out there and do it. At Green Haven we have found out how important this is, in fact so much so that we will be installing a fitness room in our lower level to make it easier for our golfers to work on their flexibility, core strength and to possibly get on a program of pre-round fitness and warm up to help them continue good and pain free golf well into not only their 50’s, but into their 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s.

My final goal in golf is to shoot my age on a championship golf course for 18 holes. With good fitness I hope to do it, maybe even in my early 60’s. Here’s to good golf and good fitness!


Larry Norland is the director of golf at Green Haven Golf Course in Anoka.