Column: Age doesn’t need to diminish your golf course drives

Members of the Chilliwack Golf Academy instructor team write a bi-weekly column in the Progress.

Filling in this week for regular columnist Jennifer Greggain is a guest author Cody Stewart, the Director of Athletics at the Chilliwack Golf Academy.

The Senior Open Championship just concluded this past weekend and you may have noticed, if you tuned in, that there was no shortage of distance by much of the field.

You may wonder, ‘Why can these guys still hit it past the best of my drives?’

While these senior golfers age like the rest of us, there are still ways of maintaining clubhead speed necessary to get the distance you’re looking for.

I may be 22 years old and have a lack of experience with these aging factors, but one of the best parts of my job is helping clients fight against these factors and improving performance.

The term ‘old’ should be forgotten when looking at age. A person’s physical capabilities and health are a far better measure.

Yes, I’m saying age is just a number.

Nobody is ‘too old’ to start working on improving their physical function. If you enjoy golf and want to keep playing for years to come, this is a great article to enjoy and share with others.

First things first, let’s discuss some of the factors that play into the loss of clubhead speed related to aging.

The central nervous system (CNS) sends signals to recruit our motor units to carry out the desired movement. These motor units are made up of a motor neuron and the muscle fibers it innervates. With age, the amount of motor units decrease, making generating forceful, fast movements more difficult.

Another major contributor to decreasing clubhead speed is sarcopenia.

Sarcopenia is the term for the loss of muscle size and strength due to the aging process. Muscle power is also lost too, but at twice the rate of muscle strength. Seniors tend to have lower levels of power output along with decreased muscle mass and strength.

The solution is training.

Training is different than recreational exercise and general exercise, and the central nervous system and your muscles are very responsive to appropriate training.

Two types of training that are very beneficial to the aging population are strength training and power training.

Try strength training using exercises involving variations of squats, hip hinges and deadlifts, upper body pushes and pulls work well at 3-6 repetitions moving a load with perfect form.

Power training using variations of medicine ball throws and slams are great for regaining power.

If the thought of training seems a bit scary that is okay, but consider this quote from Bret Contreras; ‘If you think lifting weights is scary, try being weak, being weak is dangerous.’

Lack of education, uninformed media comments, a fear of hurting one’s self and feeling too out of shape often cause people to shy away from training.

Exercise programs should always be scaled to suit the individual. Before beginning a training program it is always important to seek advice from a medical professional, get assessed and consult a well-qualified fitness instructor.

Maintaining fitness, mobility, strength and power are very important parts of not only being able to hit the ball farther but will help you to prevent injury throughout future years.

Reach Cody by email at

Just Posted

Seven Days in Chilliwack for the week of Dec. 17

A list of community events happening in Chilliwack from Dec. 17 to 23

Excel Martial Arts raises more than $5,000 for family of Chilliwack man killed in workplace accident

By-donation fundraiser event helps wife, three children of 28-year-old Nathan Appleton of Chilliwack

Chilliwack Lions Club has a new place to call home

After more than five years without a headquarters, Chilliwack Lions Club moves into new hall

Sardis Falcons top Heritage Woods in field lacrosse opener

The Falcons rallied from a halftime hole to take a big win on the road in Port Moody.

Chilliwack prolific offender charged in four alleged incidents in 12 days

Branden Tanner busted for alleged smash-and-grab Nov. 30, then incidents Dec. 3, Dec. 8 and Dec. 11

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Boeser has 2 points as Canucks ground Flyers 5-1

WATCH: Vancouver has little trouble with slumping Philly side

Man dies after falling from B.C. bridge

Intoxicated man climbed railing, lost his balance and fell into the water below

Hundreds attend Hells Angels funeral in Maple Ridge

Body of Chad John Wilson found last month face-down under the Golden Ears Bridge.

B.C. animation team the ‘heart’ of new ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’

The animators, largely based in Vancouver, ultimately came up with a creative technique that is drawing praise

Light at the end of the tunnel for UN climate talks

Meeting in Katowice was meant to finalize how countries report their emissions of greenhouses gases

Gas prices to climb 11 cents overnight in Lower Mainland

Hike of 17 cents in less than 48 hours due to unexpected shutdown of Washington state pipeline

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in at the 34th induction ceremony

Supreme Court affirms privacy rights for Canadians who share a computer

Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects Canadians against unreasonable search and seizure

Most Read