The Right Balance
Balancing stones

The Right Balance


In 1984, when I became senior editor of instruction at GOLF Magazine, Gary Player, Seve Ballesteros, and Chi Chi Rodriguez were the only pros who really paid attention to eating right and following an exercise regimen for staying fit. The common thread among them: While they were healthy, they were more trim than all bulked up. Therefore, they were able to employ free-flowing swings, rather than being muscle-bound and not being able to hit the ball out of their shadow.

However, in 1997, when a super-fit Tiger Woods won the Masters Tournament by twelve shots, it seems the entire PGA Tour started working out.

The thing is, eventually, some pros, like Sergio Garcia, took things to the extreme, getting so bulked up he boasted Popeye Arms and a chest like Rocky Balboa, causing him to go backwards. That’s because when your body changes, and you become much stronger, your swing- shape and swing-speed change dramatically, causing the timing and rhythm of your action to be thrown off, so you hit off line shots.

Eventually, Tiger overdid things, too, looking like he lived off protein powder and worked out so much on exercise machines he became a clone of boxer Sugar Ray Leonard when he bulked up for the mega-fight against Marvin Hagler. Consequently, Tiger’s lost his A-Game swing and seemed to tire during the round, particularly down the stretch.

All is well now, since Tiger’s injury free and gone back to basics, as far as health and fitness is concerned; something amateurs should do, as should Brooks Koepka, since he looks as if he has been overdoing things too.

Off the course, Tiger has returned to a healthy balanced diet; eating fish and chicken, some red meat, fruits and vegetables. As far as exercise goes, Tiger has returned to doing cardio, combined with light strength building exercises balanced with stretching exercises to keep his muscles supple.

On the course, fruit, energy bars, bananas, and bottled water are a must.

Hydrating during play, by drinking water, is essential for its positive influence on the muscles, employing a well-timed rhythmic swing, staying mentally focused when hitting all types of shots, and staying energized for the entire eighteen holes, especially during the final nine holes when the unfit player tends to tire and lose control of his or her swing.

Let Tiger’s example guide you, and look into calcium and magnesium supplements, since they can help your bones and muscles, for long-lasting golf; allowing you to enjoy the game early in your life, in the middle of your life, and in retirement. 

Enjoy Golf
John Andrisani

John Andrisani

Former senior instruction editor at GOLF Magazine, writer of around one-hundred articles on putting in publications worldwide, and author of 40 how-to golf books, including  The Short Game Magic of Tiger Woods and Hogan on the Green.

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