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Remodel Time!!!

After 2.5 years we are remodeling the studio! Stay tuned for more information on new classes, workshops and training!

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How do you practice?

Talking Movement and Golf Fitness

Roy Khoury speaking to the Southern California section PGA

How do you practice? Did you know that how you practice can affect how you learn? What we do can either help gain/retain skills or hinder your progress altogether. With that being said, there are a couple of different ways we can practice to acquire or improve a skill and they are:

Blocked Practice- Blocked practice is doing the same thing over and over again such as going to the driving range and hitting multiple driver shots. Blocked practice is a great way to learn a new skill since it gives the brain and body a single skill to process, but will quickly lose its effectiveness if over used.

Randomized Practice- Random practice is basically prating how you would play. SO you can either use playing a few holes as random practice or even practice different distance or direction shots with the same club. Random practice is more like actually playing golf, and actually helps you build the ability to problem solve while working on your skill.

When you are new to a sport or movement its good to challenge the left brain in repetition, logical and objective goal setting. When you are proficient with your task, random practice helps challenge the right brain and its creativity, thought and performance. That being said, both types of practice are helpful for acquiring and improving your game, they just access different parts of the brain and challenge you in different ways, so its good to understand both and how both can help you. See how it works for you!

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WE ARE MOVING!!

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Hey Everyone!

We are moving!! March 1st 2014 we will be moving to The Fit Fix Studio, located at 3700 Campus Drive, Suite 100 in Newport Beach, CA.

For more information, contact Roy Khoury at rkhoury@rfktraining.com or check out the Contact Page for a map and directions.

See you there!

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SOUTHLAND GOLF COVER (SEPTEMBER 2013)

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Roy Khoury of RFK Training was featured on the cover and interviewed by the editor of Southland Golf Magazine for the September Health and Wellness issue.

You can view the article (click here) at the Southland Golf website under the fitness section, titled Moving right along

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Roy Khoury of RFK Training showing a golf fitness movement for the cover of Southland Golf Magazine

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FUNDAMENTALS

I was fortunate enough to be apart of the 2013 Southern California section PGA Spring Teaching Summit this year along with Titleist and I learned a lot. This year Mark Blackburn (fellow TPI certified) presented on golf instruction and he brought up some great info on practice that I would like to share with you here.

I was impressed when Mark suggested the idea of practicing your swing without a ball. His reasoning was such that when we practice the golf swing we are practicing fundamentals (grip, alignment, posture, backswing pivot, and downswing pivot) . When we miss a shot its typically one of those factors that contribute to the miss hit. His goal as an instructor is to teach his students to understand where they went wrong so that the student can better self correct.

Fundamental drills such as grip, posture, backswing, etc are feel related therefore we should take the time to practice whatever cues we are given to better feel what we need to do. Mark’s suggestion is to practice these things without a ball to promote better focus on feeling what we need to. When we place a ball down on the range and hit it the distractions of ball flight, path, distance, etc over power our feel and we may or may not learn what we are trying to learn as a result. All that being said our practice sessions should include time for fundamental training (no ball practice), as well as ball striking practice. I have been using it and I am enjoying the outcome so far.

Try this the next time you go practice:

30 minutes session example

1) Fundamental Practice 1- Backswing NO Ball

2-3 min practicing backswing pivot. Feel your trail hip load every time you take your backswing.

Take a break for a couple of min to refocus, check your phone, etc

2) Fundamental Practice 2- Downswing NO Ball

2-3 min practicing downswing movement. Practice feeling a weight transfer from your trail leg into your lead leg through the downswing.

Take a break for a couple of min

3) Ball Striking- Random Shots

For the remainder of your time, pick a different club and different target for each swing.

Practicing this way is great because you take some time to develop feel with your fundamentals. Now remember what I listed above is just an example. I know my issues are in my backswing and downswing so I have been focusing on these drills. Your needs maybe different so add in what you are working on instead (grip, alignment, posture) and work with those with NO Ball to start your practice session and to develop a better feel. After your fundamental practice take random shots (varying clubs and target) rather than hitting the same shot over and over again. This is a great way to practice ball striking, after all you never take the same shot twice on the course.

**Edit** Mark just corrected me via twitter and said he does use the ball for some of his Fundamental Drills such as down swing and alignment, but at the summit did mention the using some drills without. I am waiting to hear back from him for some more clarification, but I do like the idea of no ball practice to develop feel.

***Edit*** Mark suggested using the ball in some fundamental drills particularly downswing and alignments

I would like to thank the Southern California section PGA for having RFK Training at the 2013 Spring Teaching Summit this year and I would also like to thank Mark Blackburn of Blackburn Golf for allowing me to assist you out there. I hope I am relaying your information out well!

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GOOD, BETTER, BEST

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I think walking when playing is a great way to stay loose and focused during your round and its a great workout, especially if you are playing a tough course like Black Gold, Monarch Beach or Tijres Creek. But like anything its best to be prepared. So I wrote and article called Good, Better, Best that my buddies at California Golf Magazine put up on their website. Hopefully you find some benefit out of it too!

I highly encourage walking versus riding when you play. It’s a great way keep your mind focused while playing and it’ll burn some extra calories while having fun. That being said, I do recommend you build up yourself up off the course first to ensure you aren’t running out of gas on the back nine. You don’t want to be huffing and puffing on your way to a birdie putt. So while walking while playing might be good, being prepared for it is better, and that will ensure your best every round. Read on to what I suggest to my clients for their golf conditioning.

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Good- Walking

We all know walking is a good physical activity, and we all should walk 20-30 minutes everyday for general health and fitness. The most common complaint I hear revolves around time, my answer is, Do yourself a favor and make some time. Use half of your lunch break or skip the 2nd half of Sports Center to walk. That being said, I never suggest mindless cardio so try to disconnect from your cell phone or iPod while walking and focus on tall posture and belly breathing. Don’t worry the TV will be there when you get back.

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Better- Intervals

If you have been walking and need to step up the intensity, try some Interval training. Intervals are about taking your intensity up for a short period then dropping it down to catch your breath before doing it again.  I start all my healthy golfers with at a 3:1 (rest to work ratio) on the treadmill.  The protocol is walk at 3 mph for 1 min and 30 seconds, then run (or sprint if you can) at a speed suitable for you for 30 seconds.  You’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel on the course after just a couple of interval sessions.

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Best- Circuit Training

I will stand on my soapbox here for a minute and say this, it’s wise to make sure you are ready to train and have a good routine based on your needs and fitness level, so seeing a qualified Golf Fitness Instructor is ideal here.  Now that that’s out of the way, circuit training is great to challenge your fitness and involves doing 3 or more exercises back to back with no rest until that set is complete.  For golf conditioning, I like to group a high intensity exercise (like Medicine Ball Throws), followed a strength exercise (like Push Ups) and follow that up with a balance activity (like Single Leg Balance in Golf Posture). Set a timer for 3 minutes and do your Medicine Ball Throws for minute 1, for minute 2 do your Push Ups, then finish your last minute with Golf Posture Balance on your left leg for 30 sec, then balance on your right for 30 sec.  For that example 1 set will last 3 min straight, move and do your drills for the entire time! No rests until that last minute is done. Take a minute off then repeat another set.

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Good, Better, Best is all about progress, we are all where we are in terms of our fitness. Once we understand it and embrace it we work on it.  It will benefit your overall health and improve your fitness and ability to score when it counts.

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You Got Game?

My friends over at Southland Golf Magazine asked me to write up a piece of golf fitness.  Seeing as most of my clients coming in need help with Flexibility and Balance, I decided to write about it.  You can check out the article here and scroll down to “Better Flexibility equals Better Golf”.

In the article I spoke about how having good balance at setup, good hip mobility for a proper pivot and good trunk mobility to maintain swing plane were important, but in the online version I was not able to add photos, so I am doing so here.

Setup Balance:

Single Leg Balance in Set-up Position

Steve Soule, PGA is demonstrating single leg balance in his setup position for better golf fitness.

Hip Drops:

Hip Mobility Drill for Internal Hip Rotation

Steve Soule, PGA is demonstrating “Hip Drops” for good hip mobility.

Open Books:

Thoracic Spine Mobility

Rib Cage and Thoracic Spine mobility drill for improved golf fitness

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT AND YOUR NEXT ROUND!

 

My friends over at California Golf asked if I would like to be a featured blogger for the new website so I have started writing a series for them.  The First post I wrote about deals with on course nutrition and it titled “Eat, Drink, Score!” (click here to view).

Since the blog is a short write up, I decided to expand on some of the points I made in it here:

1) Always eat before your round!  It’s a good idea to have some food in your stomach before you go run out to play.  It’s stressful enough to get to the course with barely enough time to warm-up, so make sure you have eaten and have fuel for your round!

2) Choose water over sugary drinks.  Everyone likes a Gatorade or soda, but while your golfing (and especially in heat or humidity) water will serve you much better.  Water keeps you hydrated, that keeps your more muscles more limber which you want throughout your round.

3) Love up the good fats and protein!  I can’t stress enough, stay away from sugary foods and drinks.  Instead opt for some protein and fat (example would be some almonds and beef jerky, or a protein bar over a granola bar).  Reason being is you want good consistent blood sugar levels throughout your round.  If you eat a candy bar you will get your sugar rush, but you will crash and you don’t want that happening when your trying to sink that 4 footer for birdie.

Remember performance is about being prepared.  Eat smart, train smart and practice smart!  Your golf game will improve if you put the right work in!!

To see the other tips I wrote for California Golf click here 

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LIVESTRONG.COM

Last month I was interviewed by Livestrong.com on the topic of How to get back into Working Out Everyday

The write-up was done really well and included tips from myself as well as from 2 other trainers.  Give it a read for some great usable info.  For the rest of my tips read below!  Enjoy!

Take the time to get a physical assessment

  1. Trainers nowadays are highly skilled professionals and are great at identifying what work you need to put in. Find a credible trainer, get an assessment and if you don’t want to work with a trainer on a regular basis get a PROGRAM.  Working out should be fun, challenging and a learning experience that keeps you motivated. Let the experts help with that. After all, the idea is to create a habit that you can continue, so do the right thing once and get after it!

Warm-up

  1. Foam Rolling, aka the poor man’s massage is a great tool/technique to warm up with. If you are just getting back into exercise, I am guarantee you will have areas that are tight, knotted up and painful. Using a foam roll will help to loosen up knots and promote blood flow. It will also help to improve the quality of your muscle tissue which in the long run is the goal.
  2. Warm-up after foam rolling. Start with a good stretch routine (such as active or dynamic stretching) to open up the hips and activate your core muscles.

Core Training

  1. We have all heard of the core, but do you know what it is? I describe the Core as your hips, pelvis, spine, shoulder blades and shoulders.  That’s a lot! Learning techniques such as bracing the core (tensing your abs, obliques, and deeper ab muscles) or shoulder packing (engaging the muscles in the upper back to promote better posture and stability of the shoulder) are necessary and all Level 1 techniques that I teach on a daily basis. The core is probably one of the most overly used terms AND least understood areas of the body.
  2. I start all my Level 1 clients with the Anti-Workout a core routine that challenges you to NOT flex, extend or rotate from the spine. It’s one of those workouts that looks easy, but kicks your butt!

Train Natural Movements

  1. The one piece of equipment everyone has is their own body! Learn to use it, move through the hips, stabilize the spine, and move through the shoulders. Try working out in various positions (standing, kneeling, side stepping, rotating). Working out is more than sitting on a piece of equipment, grabbing a handle and counting reps.  I teach 7 natural movement patterns Push (vertically and horizontally), Pull (vertically and horizontally), Squat, Lunge and Twist.  Mirror muscles are cool but being fit and functional are more important in the long run.

Cardio

  1. When most people think about getting back into training, they go straight to the treadmill. Understand that your fitness is also dependant on other factors. Do not neglect your mobility, strength, coordination, power or cardio training. You need them all.

Golf Champion Magazine

Roy Khoury of RFK Training is now a contributing writer for Champion Golf Magazine and is set to write a series of articles over the next 12 months. Each article will feature a different swing instructor as a guest providing tips to help you improve your game!