Save your Back with the Deep Longitudinal Sling
Over the past couple weeks I've been talking about the Slings of the body. These are groups of muscles and connective tissue that work together to create a certain movement in our body. The first one I walked about was the Posterior Oblique Sling and how it is the true power house of the golf swing. Next was the Anterior Oblique Sling and how it worked to stabilize your anterior (or front side) against the Posterior Oblique Sling.
This week we move on to the Deep Longitudinal Sling. The Deep Longitudinal Sling is made up of....
Anterior Tibialis Peroneus Longus Biceps Femoris Sacrotuberous Ligament Contralateral Erector Spinae
Together these muscles work as stabilizers of the hips and core. This is mainly seen as we walk, these muscles absorb energy from the ground and transfer it up the body. Where the energy being set up will dissipate before reaching the head if the core is acting properly.
The Biceps Femoris has a special value in the stabilization of the hips. As the Biceps Femoris is contracted the sacrotuberous ligament is pulled down with it. This forces closure of the Sacroiliac Joint (SI Joint).
What does all that have to do with golf?
I mentioned that the main purpose of these muscles is to stabilize the hips and core. Whereas the other slings I've talked about, the Posterior Oblique and Anterior Oblique Slings, they stabilize but really produce the power created in the golf swing. The Deep Longitudinal Sling counteracts these slings to stabilize but as mentioned before also transfer the energy created in your back swing up your body as you go into your downswing.
Watch this video for more information.
Here are some exercises to help train the Deep Longitudinal Sling.
First, we have the Bird Dog, a great exercise to teach your core and spine stabilize while moving your limbs around it. This is great as a warm up or core exercise. Just remember to maintain control and keep the spine neutral during the exercise.
Next we have the Side Plank another great exercise for teaching the body to use the Deep Longitudinal Sling as a whole to stabilize the body. The only thing I see many people do incorrectly is their hips are not completely straight. Make sure you squeeze your glutes to make sure that your body is straight from head to heel.
The last exercise is one that really involves a lot of balance. The Single Leg T-Balance will not only help with stabilization and core strength but also teach your body how to properly hinge at the hips.
Next week we will continue to look at the slings of the body with the Lateral Sling.