With tournament season winding down for most competitive disc golfers, it’s time to start transitioning into the off-season. The body has taken a beating from long tournament days, league rounds, casual rounds, and field practice. Consistency is key. Consistency is key for everything. You will hear it a lot. Putting practice, workout program, stretching, all requires consistency. For those looking to improve their game during the off-season and start next year’s season strong, keep reading.
The first goal is to allow the body to recover from the season. After the body is repaired, you can work on strengthening it. Overuse of repetitive moments will cause damage and tightness in muscles and joints. Massage, self-massage, yoga, and stretching are great tools for recovery.
Tight and damaged muscles reduce range of motion, force production, and blood flow. Massage will reverse these. This takes time and consistency. It needs to be worked on daily or at least a few times a week. You can’t expect to work on it for an hour and be fixed over night.
Going to a professional massage therapist is the most effective type of massage. They are able to find tightness, trigger points, and trouble areas. They are able to adjust the pressure applied for the best results. A professional massage is not a one stop fix. It takes multiple visits to make a lasting difference in muscle quality. The pros of a massage therapist is they will give you the best results. The con is they are expensive.
Foam rolling and other mobility tools are a great alternative to massage therapists. They won’t be as effective but will still produce good results. Consistency is vital when it comes to making significant changes in muscle quality with foam rollers. 10-30 minutes daily is recommended. If possible, foam roll before and/or after a disc golf round. On days you’re not playing, still try to foam roll.
To see more about foam rolling, check out the foam rolling page. On there you will see exercises to do and different types of foam rollers that I recommend. To see more about other types of mobility tools and how to use them, check out that section here.
Stretching and yoga
The second half of healing the body from a long season of tournaments is stretching. Everyone body is different and what needs to be stretched strongly varies from individual to individual. A yoga class is good for a general stretching program. I included a few stretches that are good for the throwing arm in the stretching section. But these are only a few. Glutes, groin, and back muscles also seem to be trouble areas for disc golfers. Find your issues and research stretches to help. Seeking professional help is also a good idea. A consultation with personal trainer, physical therapist, or massage therapist can help point you in the right direction and give you a personalized program what you need fixed.
Stretching also takes time before you start to see changes in muscle tightness and range of motion. Stretch daily for 5-30 minutes. You will see improvement if you consistency stretch. There will be little improvement if you stretch once a week or less.
For best results, make sure to get a massage or foam roll before stretching. Think of a muscle as a rubber band. If there is a knot in the rubber band and you stretch the band, you will only stretch the shorter side and potentially make the knot worse. If you massage out the knot, you'll be able to stretch the whole muscle and gain better results.
This can be done in the morning, night, before rounds, or after rounds.