Ask any of my clients and they will tell you I am a big fan of CARs! CARs stand for controlled articular rotations and are the brainchild of Dr Andreo Spina (founder of functional range conditioning, functional range release, functional range assessment and Kinstretch – check them out!). But why are they so good and why should you be doing them every day not just to improve your golf but your life as well?
As human’s we are designed to move! We are designed to move a lot, in multiple directions and through full ranges of motion! Yet think about our modern life. We sleep, we sit down for breakfast, lunch and dinner, we sit in our car and drive to and from work, we sit in the office for hours upon hours and at the end of the day we sit down to relax and watch tv. You can see my point! As we never take our joints through their full range of motion we gradually lose our ranges. As the saying goes, if you don’t use it you lose it! CARs are a way to get each of our joints moving and rotating through their full range of motion and help bridge the gap between what we are doing and what we are designed to do. In one simple routine, you can take each joint through its full active range of motion, with intent (CARs are challenging!), every single day!
“Exercise is a human intervention designed to allow us to compensate for the fact that we are not living the way we are supposed to” Dr Andreo Spina
Maintain and more than likely increase range of motion
Develop increased control of each joint (CARs are active not passive!)
Maintain joint health and promote joint longevity
Use as a self-assessment tool to identify how you are moving and where needs improving
Improve gym performance (just think about how many exercises require good active shoulder, hip mobility etc!)
Time efficient (15 minutes a day isn’t much to ask!)
Improve golf performance! (details below)
Boost golf performance
Make no mistake, golfer or not, athlete or not, I believe everyone should be doing CARs! Benefits of increased ROM, improved joint health and better active control are simply great for everyday life! But for golfers in particular, the benefits are clear to see. Think about the golf swing. It’s a rotational move! If your joints (think shoulders, hips etc) have reduced range, that’s going to have a huge effect on your ability to swing the club and create speed! In my initial assessment, I look at how much a client can actively rotate their shoulders, hips and thoracic spine and I can count on one hand the amount of people that have had good range in all three of these assessments. Reduced range in one or more of these areas can lead to all kinds of compensations in the swing itself. If you can’t rotate your hips, shoulders and t-spine, how can you turn and load to the top of the backswing properly for example? The answer is you can’t and compensations such as swaying, loss of posture or reverse spine angle are some examples of what you might do instead. These moves make consistent ball striking much harder and are speed killers! CARs are a great place to start improving range in these areas! That can only be good news for your golf game!
“When I started doing exercises to improve my hip mobility, I noticed that not only has it helped with the pain (back), but gotten me more flexible and hitting it further.” 2017 PGA Championship Winner and current world number 4 Justin Thomas
I believe a 15-minute CARs routine done everyday should be a staple part of every golfer’s fitness routine (alongside multi plane strength and power work and other mobility and movement based work). The benefits are clear to see! For more information on how CARs can help your golf game please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Thanks for reading.