GIH Interview: GolfGym’s Ken Pierce

Getting in better shape has been a priority for me for a few months. I recently added an occasional pilates workout my other routines in an effort to focus on my core a bit more. Everything I read tells me that I’ll get some great golf benefits with a stronger, more flexible core.

To that end, I stumbled on to a company called GolfGym (or follow on Twitter) and decided to reach out to them to learn more and do a quick interview. I was thrilled that Ken responded so quickly and played along with my interview questions. He’s partnered with PGA Coach Joey D who works with Pat Perez, Tom Pernice, Jr., Ryuji Imada and Tim Wilkinson. I wanted to learn a little more about Ken, his business and getting fit for better golf.

I enjoyed doing this interview and plan to do more… so if you run a golf business, own a golf course, are a coach or just want to chat, drop me a note!

Golf is Hard:
Let’s start with golf… How often do you play, and what’s your handicap?

Ken/GolfGym:
It is a running joke that everyone in the golf business must play golf all the time…Actually we are busy running our golf businesses. So, I play as much as I can in the summer when the light is longer after I leave the office. I get out occasionally in the winter, given that we live in California. My handicap is about 15. I haven’t posted lately. I go out as a single most times and really enjoy just walking 18 holes with different partners and hitting good shots and generally don’t think so much about the final score.

GIH:
Let’s talk favorites… ho is your favorite current PGA and/or LPGA pro? Favorite all-time golfer?

Ken/GolfGym:
Favorite PGA Player is currently Ryuji Imada (he is highlighted on our new DVD’s and is a great guy and a very hard worker). I admire Morgan Pressel on the LPGA Tour.

GIH:
I’m fascinated by entrepreneurs who are able to carve a successful golf business for themselves, briefly tell me the story behind GolfGym.

Ken/GolfGym:
I created the Original GolfGym PowerSwing Trainer in 1987. I could go on for days. Better you go to: www.golfgym.com/story. Bottom line….tenacity.

GIH:
I’m a high handicapper and in decent shape (at least good enogh shape to walk 18), what should I be focused on during the winter to get myself into shape to play better golf this spring?

Ken/GolfGym:
Cardio is always good, but resistance training is the best. Go to my blog and view the last large post from December. It focuses on exactly what you are talking about.

GIH:
What are the key differences that amateurs and hackers should focus on that is different than training pro golfers?

Ken/GolfGym:
There really are no differences in the techniques you should use in your training. The difference is that the Pros hit so many balls every day and are so “Golf Fit” that they don’t necessarily have to concentrate on what their body is doing in their swing. They concentrate more on the tiny nuances that will make the ball go exactly where they want it to. If we would work more on our bodies and become stronger, we wouldn’t have to think so much about swinging harder only smoother. A firm base and strong core would help us develop a more consistent swing which would result in more consistent ball contact and better shots.

GIH:
My daughters are both lucky enough to play a bit of golf through the Girls Scouts but they are still very young (11 and 9). Can you share any tips for young female golfers?

Ken/GolfGym:
Most women, especially young women lack the strength necessary to generate enough club head speed to hit the ball farther consistently. Women for the most part are very flexible, that’s not the issue. It is the strength in the legs and core to hold a firm stance and control their upper body in the swing. Once again, golf specific resistance training is the answer. We recommend very light resistance with more golf specific repetitions to train the neurotransmitters in the body to fire more consistently.

Ken emailed me back a day after to clarify one thing on fitness:

Ken/GolfGym:
I did say that women are generally more flexible than men, but failed to make the point that both men and women have to make stretching (properly) a part of their regular routine.

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