Golfers Can Improve Core Strength With 'Russian Twist on Swiss Ball'

Exercise Targets Golfers' Core Rotational Fitness

Russian Twist on Swiss Ball positions
The start and finish positions of the Russian Twist on Swiss Ball exercise for golfers. Mike Pedersen

Swiss ball exercise for golf stimulates the core very effectively. (The Swiss ball is also referred to as a stability ball, fitness ball or exercise ball. So if you hear any of these terms, you'll know it's the same piece of fitness equipment.) And the exercise we're using it for here, the Russian Twist, can help golfers improve their core rotational fitness, a key target for golf fitness programs.

General Benefits of the Swiss Ball

This ball can be used extensively for all your ab (core) work as well as many different aspects and phases of your golf swing. You can lay on it (e.g., crunches, back hyperextensions); sit on it (e.g., rotational movements); put your feet on it while your upper body is on the ground (e.g., bridges); and put your hands and arms on it while your feet are on the ground (e.g., planks).

By implementing Swiss ball exercises into your golf routine you will be enhancing not only your core strength, but your core stabilizers, balance, coordination and body awareness, which are all very important components for optimal golf performance.

Another great benefit is affordability and portability. Swiss balls can be found in most fitness equipment stores and even department stores, and don't cost that much. They are inflatable, making them easily portable to take on the road when you travel - just deflate and pack in your suitcase.

How to Do the 'Russian Twist on Swiss Ball' Golf Exercise

There are literally dozens of simple and effective Swiss ball exercises for golf that can have a direct and immediate impact on your game. One of them is called the Russian Twist. Because it incorporates a rotation, it is a very golf-specific exercise.

Go slow with any new exercise you have not performed in the past. Check with your physician before undertaking any new physical training program.

Here's how to do the Russian Twist on Swiss Ball for golf benefit:

Step 1: Lay on ball, with shoulder blades on ball and hips pushed up high off ground.

Step 2: Place hands together, as in  the first photo (or hold a single dumbbell if you are advanced in Swiss ball workouts).

Step 3: Keeping your hips up, turn your shoulders to the right so they are perpendicular to the ground (as in the second photo).

Step 4: Twist back to the starting position, then twist to the other side.

Reps: You can do 10 twists to each side for a couple of sets.

Benefits to the Golf Swing of 'Russian Twist on Swiss Ball' Exercise

  • Improves rotational strength and speed, which can lead to improved clubhead speed.
  • Strengthens and protects the spine from injury.
  • Utilizes the arms and the core as one, similar to your golf swing.

After doing the Russian Twist on Swiss Ball for just a short period of time, you will notice an increase in your ability to make a full and tension-free backswing. You will also feel like you have more power coming into impact during your downswing.

This is just one simple Swiss ball exercise for golf you can do to effectively improve your golf swing power.

See the Seated Russian Twist for a similar take on golfers' core fitness.

Related: How to choose the right exercise ball