Free Golf Workouts, Nutrition Tips and Performance Psychology Secrets From The Renegade Golf Coach

Golf Power Training for Endurance

by Coach Stephen on

Are you sweating out forty-five minutes of slow to moderate effort cardio training 3-5 times a week? If you are hoping to increase your golf power, that’s a mistake. Here’s what you should do instead.

The Tortoise and the Hare

Despite golf’s long reputation as a leisure activity, golf is actually a power sport.  Scientific studies indicate that peak muscle activation during a golf swing is equivalent to sports such as football, hockey and martial arts.  Your golf swing is a high intensity, short duration event which must be repeated many times (hopefully not too many times) over a four to five hour round.  Using traditional Long Slow Distance (LSD) cardio training will actually sedate your central nervous system, slowing you down and decreasing your power output.  There is an old adage in the sports conditioning field “Train slow, be slow”.  Put it this way, if a tortoise and a hare played golf, the tortoise would always miss the cut.

The Right Frame of Mind

How do you problem solve out on the course?  Are your thought patterns completely logical, or are you more creative and intuitive?  Research shows that traditional LSD training stimulates the logical, linear side of the brain.  Golfers face too many variables to be stuck solely in that mode of operation.  Creative problem solving is essential to playing to your full potential.

Pick Up the Pace

The optimal method of golf cardio conditioning should match the energy systems needed for our obsession… I mean sport.  Golf requires power endurance.  Slow and steady may prepare you for the local 5K, but it won’t do much to increase your drive or lower your handicap.  Instead of LSD, use High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT).  After a moderate warm up, perform short bursts of fast paced effort alternated with slower “rest/recovery” periods.

Grip It and HIIT It

HIIT can be performed on solid ground (running), on most cardio machines (treadmill, elliptical, bike, etc), or even in a pool.  Basic guidelines follow:


Warm Up: 5 minutes

Intervals:  30 sec fast/60 sec slow

Sets:  6-10

Cool Down:  3 minutes


Warm Up:  5 minutes

Intervals:  20 sec fast/30 sec slow

Sets:  8-10

Cool Down:  3 minutes


Warm Up:  5 minutes

Intervals:  20 sec fast/10 sec slow

Sets:  5-10

Cool Down:  3 minutes

Note:  As your conditioning improves

a)     your intensity should increase (work harder, move faster)

b)    the ratio of fast/slow intervals changes

c)     your overall workout time decreases – leaving more time to actually play golf!

Apply these scientific principles and experience real power.  Go ahead, be a hare.

Side Bar # 1:    F-O-R-E WARNING

This type of training is not appropriate for “golf potatoes” – those of you who are completely inactive during the week and consider weekend golf to be enough exercise. If simply walking eighteen holes is a physical challenge, then you should begin with a basic walking program.  After achieving a fundamental level of fitness, get golf specific with your training and ‘HIIT” the links.

Consult your physician before beginning any exercise program.


Look to the Far East for not-so-intense ways to elicit the creative right brain.  The following ancient practices are currently all the rage – and they can actually help you reach golfing nirvana:


Tai Chi

Qi Gong


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