Golf is a great form of relatively low impact exercise for seniors. However, a wrong type of swing technique can be both dangerous and ineffective. Today we will look at golf swing tips for seniors.
If you are a senior golfer, you might have noticed that either the range of your swing has reduced substantially or that you feel discomfort or pain while you swing.
Or if you are just starting golf as a retirement activity, you might have noticed that the typical golf swing tips don’t seem to work for you.
If you are in a hurry, here are my tips for improving your swing:
- Improve your strength
- Learn a swing technique designed for seniors
- Go over your golf equipment (clubs and balls)
Fortunately, there is a lot you can do to improve your golf swing and overall performance in golf. In this guide, I’ll show you three simple tips to improve your golf swing to another level.
Before we begin with the tips, let’s see how aging affects your athletic performance and golf swing.
How aging affects your swing
Golf depends highly on skill. While golf is mostly a very low impact sport which makes it suitable for seniors, the swing can be problematic.
As we get older our strength, muscle mass, and bone mass reduce. Our joints become stiffer and our spinal column loses flexibility.
All this can affect how effectively you can perform a swing. Three things happen in a successful swing:
- At the start of the swing, you will need to accelerate the club very fast in a rotating movement pattern.
- When performed correctly, the club will hit the ball with great force.
- The second the club hits the ball, you will have to follow through and decelerate the club.
All these phases can be disturbed by the effects of aging. To accelerate the club at the beginning of the swing, you require quite a bit of strength and mobility.
The swing requires a surprising amount of rotation on the spine, so spinal mobility issues can prevent you from getting a full range of motion for a good swing.
The acceleration requires a lot of core and lower body strength and control. Age-related loss of strength and muscle mass can reduce the amount of force you can transfer to the club as well as make you more susceptible to injuries like pulling an oblique.
The impact of the club on the ball is transferred through the club into your body. On a healthy adult, this is not a problem but the reduced bone and lean tissue mass can make you more susceptible to injuries.
This same goes for the deceleration part of the swing movement. You need good strength and mobility to safely stop the club from moving.
Finally, aging affects your fine motor skills. This means that as you age your accuracy and dexterity tend to decrease. This can affect your swing performance.
Tip 1: Improve your strength
Golf, like any other sport, is dependent on your ability to move effectively and efficiently. This is called athletic performance and it has several categories.
These categories include things like speed, strength, flexibility, endurance, stamina, balance, coordination and of course sport-specific fine motor skills.
While the fine motor skills to perform any sport take years to master, they are all built on your physical fitness. So, your fitness level is the base you build your skill over and in many cases, it can be the limiting factor.
The number one reason your athletic performance goes down as you age is the natural loss of strength and muscle mass. This is a normal effect of aging but you can actually do a lot to counter it. Seriously.
Strength training is the single most effective way to improve your strength levels, explosiveness, mobility, and balance. They form the base for your fine motor skills that you require to perform a good swing.
The bad news is that you lose strength and muscle mass at an increasing rate as you age. The good news is that strength training is just as effective for seniors as it is for younger people.
Besides improving your sports performance, strength training provides a ton of positive health effects. This is why my first tip for improving your golf swing or any other sport skill as a senior is to improve your strength.
A strong swing requires good mobility and strength, especially in the core muscles and hips. A simple strength training program can help you improve the strength and mobility of these muscle groups in a matter of weeks.
If you want a simple strength training program that is suitable for seniors and can be performed at home, you can download my free weight training program for seniors.
Just give it a go for four weeks. I promise you will love the results!
Tip 2: Learn a technique designed specifically for seniors
So as we established there are certain limitations that aging puts on your swing technique. But the good news is that there are ways around these limitations.
As you surely know, golf is almost purely about technique. You do need a certain amount of strength to have proper control but if you have ever tried to increase your swing by giving it all the power you have, you know that simply won’t work.
You need to have a fluid motion with perfect timing in your technique to have a strong swing. If you have issues with mobility and strength, this can be very hard to achieve.
That’s why my first tip was to get strong again. This is the base you will build your technique upon. But it’s a fact of life that aging will affect your range of motion, coordination, and explosiveness.
To counter these effects you need to learn a new swing technique that is adapted to these limitations. My recommendation is to either get a golf instructor that is very experienced with senior golfers to teach you a better technique or to get a proven program.
My recommended program for seniors for improving your swing is Simple Senior Swing (affiliate link) created by The Art of Simple Golf with golfing genius Shawn Clement.
Alex Fortey is the founder of Art Of Simple Golf and he is renowned for his powerful swings of up to 320+ yards, so he really knows what he is talking about.
The program is specially designed for seniors and they have an incredible track record of teaching seniors powerful, accurate and consistent swings.
The training doesn’t even require you to relearn your whole swing technique. It’s designed to build over your existing swing technique in a simple step-by-step manner.
The program consists of a video-based self-paced home study course that can be used on all devices including your laptop, tablet or iPhone.
So if you think your technique might require a bit of an upgrade, this course is definitely recommended. It’s one of the best value golf courses you can find and it even has a 60-day money-back guarantee in case you don’t like it.
Tip 3: Go through your golf gear
While this might seem self-explanatory, you’d be surprised how many senior golfers are set in their ways when it comes to their golf equipment.
They have found the favorite clubs and balls in their heyday and haven’t even considered changing them as they age. The fact is that the same equipment that is optimal for younger golfers might not be optimal for seniors golfers.
Your clubs can affect your swing radically, as can your ball. That’s why it’s important to try out options that might give you an edge over your current gear.
If you want recommendations, you can start by checking out the article The Longest Golf Ball for Seniors (Best Distance).
I hope you found these tips for improving your golf swing useful. If you have questions about them, don’t hesitate to contact me in the comments section below.
Golf is a great form of exercise for seniors. While aging can and likely will affect your golfing performance, it shouldn’t be a reason to give up on the activity.
While it might feel depressing to notice your swing range and accuracy go down to aging, you should find comfort in the fact that there is much you can do to improve it.
Getting a bit stronger, learning a better technique suitable for seniors and upgrading your golf equipment can make a huge difference in your performance.
If you’ve been golfing your whole life, you should know how much the little things can affect your whole game. So give my tips a chance and tell me how it went!
I would also love to hear your best tips! If you have a tip that improved your swing, please share them in the comments sections below so other people looking for this information can find them as well!
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All the best and see you next time!
10 thoughts on “Golf swing tips for seniors (Simple guide)”
Hello! Thanks for the advice! My dad and me go golfing and I let him read this and he loved it! He actually liked the video a lot because he said he does not see much of these types of videos around. Thank you!
Glad you and your dad like liked it Jessie!
What a fantastic blog! My father in law is looking to take up golf as a retirement hobby and he will just love this blog! Great to have the video to watch too! Thanks
Thanks you Laura! Glad you liked it. Golf is definitely a great hobby for seniors so I hope your father in law found it useful as well.
Thanks for sharing your golfing tips and advice. I could use some of those swing techniques myself. I’m looking forward to your recommendations about the gear.
Not a problem Ivan! I’ll do my best to publish the piece soon.
Prepping my retirement hobby. I am a disabled airborne vet with a plate in my neck replacing 4 discs, bad shoulders, lower back, and knees. I think your tips are amazing. Thank you!
Way to go Jason! The trick is to work around your injuries and not let them prevent you from exercising. I’m sure as a vet you’ve got the grit and the right attitude already and don’t need some Internet stranger to tell you this 🙂
Outstanding ! Well thought out process !
Glad you liked it!