How to Use the Standing Balance-Sway Fitness Test
3 of 9 in Series: The Essentials of Getting Fit to Play Golf
Balance is an important physical characteristic for an optimal and consistent golf swing. The purpose of the standing balance-sway test is to help you identify muscle and connective tissue tightness that may be pulling you out of ideal standing posture and balance, thus interfering with your posture and balance at address and during your full swing:
Remove your shoes and stand on a level surface with your arms hanging relaxed by your sides.
If you’ve been prescribed customized orthotics (arch supports) for your shoes, repeat this test with your orthotics in place and your shoes on.
Close your eyes and gently relax your body so that you can attempt to feel which direction your body would tend to drift, tip, or sway if you let it.
If it helps you identify the direction, let your body actually drift that way a bit (but don't fall over!).
After 5 to 10 seconds, open your eyes.
Make sure you can identify the predominant direction of sway.
Repeat the test several times to determine whether you have a consistent direction of sway.
Much like a tent’s center pole leaning toward a support wire that has been staked into the ground too tightly, the direction that you consistently feel is the first and/or strongest direction of sway is probably caused by connective tissue and muscle tightness pulling your body in that direction.
If left uncorrected, this tightness will pull you out of posture and balance at address, as well as during your swing. Any attempts to correct your swing motion without first reducing the physical causes of your posture and balance dysfunction can lead to inconsistent performance and/or injury.