The Mental and Physical Benefits of Yoga for Golfers

Sunbeam on the golf courseCreative Commons License photo credit: blmurch

Today’s article is a guest post from John Bolt of Although I was once an avid golfer, it has been several years since I have seen a golf course with any regularity. Since then I have discovered my passion for yoga. Maybe it’s time to revisit the game and see what my yoga practice adds to the mix…

Golf is not only a physical game but a mind game as well; yoga for golfers helps to clear the mind allowing the player to concentrate and play in a relaxed state.

No other game is as subject to over self-analysis than golf. Golfers that have not learned to play the mental side of golf may become frustrated and often give up before learning the physical side of the game. The practice of yoga helps develop the mental discipline that the game of golf requires.

The effect of stress on one’s golf game is immediately apparent while playing. For example, say you are “in the zone” feeling like you are at the top of your game and hitting the ball well. Then the stress of self induced pressure to perform well sneaks in and your game falls apart; your over-analyzing conscious mind convinces you that your technique is lacking and there goes the game. Most of the time when a good game falls apart it is not due to improper technique, but rather to negative chatter in the mind that disturbs concentration and impairs the ability to perform.

“If you don’t clutter your conscious mind with endless pointers and tips, you make it easier for your subconscious instincts to guide you.”  ~Earl Woods, father of golfing great Tiger Woods

You cannot ignore the physical game and expect to progress. Practice is always a necessity as are learning fundamentals and focusing on technique. But, there is a time that the subconscious needs to take over to enable all those hours of practice to flow as intuitive, instinctive actions.

A free flowing subconscious requires the body to relax; only by entering a complete state of relaxation is a person capable of clearing the mind and living in the “now”. When all the mental chatter in your mind becomes quiet you can play your golf game with awareness and focus.

The mental benefit of Yoga is that it brings peace to the game of golf. Yoga teaches players how to focus by clearing the mind of chatter and as a result, be able to concentrate on the game without negative thoughts.

Yoga is a wonderful way to become physically tuned for playing golf. The very basis of Yoga is balance and symmetry; Yoga programs have long been used to eliminate body tension by returning the body to a balanced, symmetric state. Yoga guides golfers to develop equal strength on both sides of the body so that both sides perform equally well. In order to attain a truly good golf game one must develop a flexible, balanced body. A good way to measure your improvement is to invest in a golf range finder or choose from among golf gps devices to measure your drive distances as your yoga program progresses. One look at Augusta golf pictures should be enough to convince any golfer that flexibility and balance are important to playing well.

Yoga improves strength and flexibility for greater accuracy and distance off the tee; improves overall fitness to lessen the risk of injury, increases breathing awareness for better rhythm in the swing, enhances balance for more effective weight distribution and club control and lastly, it quiets the mind allowing for increased concentration.

About the Author: is the brainchild of John Bolt who sincerely wishes to make the site a valuable resource for Golf lovers everywhere. John, lives in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada. When he’s not working he loves to spend time with his family, play golf, admire his Augusta golf pictures, and read or cook. John’s goal is to use his creativity to make a difference by making things special for others.

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