The Wildcat Golf Academy believes that in order for junior golfers to be successful and compete at a higher level, they must add strength and flexibility training to their rigorous practice schedule. Cory Puyear, licensed physical therapist and certified strength and conditioning specialist, directs this division of the WGA. He has dedicated his career to understanding the biomechanics, manual therapy, rehabilitation and restorative exercise as they relate to golf.
Overview of the WGA Fitness Training Program
The Wildcat Golf Academy recognizes the Long Term Athletic Development (LTAD) process that children undergo. Under this process children are acknowledged to go through various stages of development where differing needs are required. Every effort is made to gain an understanding of where your child is at in this LTAD process. Players are taken through a movement screen to help determine the athlete’s development. The movement screen is important because we have seen time and again where chronological age does not always correlate with biological age/developmental age.
Understanding of biological/developmental age is vital in truly helping the athletes develop optimally.
- Train to Play: Chronological Ages 10-15
- Learn to Compete: Chronological Age 12.5-18
Train to Play facts:
- Girls will usually enter this phase an average of two years before boys
- Kids in the phase will go through a growth spurt so coordination and skill regression is common especially early in the phase
- Physical fitness is at least 40% of their program. All aspects of conditioning should be introduced. Mobility, stability/strength, cardiovascular conditioning and recovery techniques should be covered
- Individual one-on-one personal training at least once per month should be performed
- Up to two additional sports other than golf are encouraged
- Girls can enter this phase as early as 12.5 chronological age
- Full strength development program should occur 18 months after Peak Height Velocity
- 3D motion analysis introduced
- Physical training is 40% of the overall program with a high focus on strength and power development.
- Ratio of competition to training should be around 40% competition and 60% practice/training.
- Nutrition and recovery techniques are stressed
- All other competitive sport participation other than golf should be minimized
Wildcat Golf Academy Conditioning Class Sessions vary in content for both phases and are based on the time of year for the junior golfer. They are broken down into three main periods.
Winter (November-March): Heavier focus on strength development, lifting techniques, core stabilization, and speed development. These training sessions will have specific days dedicated to lower body, upper body or core strength/power development.
Summer (May-August): Circuit based training focused on stability, cardiovascular conditioning both aerobic and anaerobic, dynamic and static mobility training, and core stabilization. These circuits usually include upper body, lower body and core alternating with cardiovascular conditioning.
Fall (September-November): Circuit based training with focus on stability, movement pattern training, dynamic and static stretching. These circuits will usually include either upper body and core or lower body and core alternated with movement pattern training/re-training.
A fitness and training component is included in the Elite group practices. All Elite strength and conditioning individual sessions take place at Fitness Defined, 3942 Church Street in Evanston, IL.
“Cory has helped me discover the physical limitations that were holding back my golf swing. With his thorough full body testing, we discovered a few areas that needed strengthening and/or more flexibility in order to make my golf swing more efficient. If you want to take your golf game to the next level, Cory is the first person you should see. His analysis has made my workouts and golf practice sessions more meaningful. You will use your time better with Cory’s program and ultimately understand your golf game like a touring professional.”
Mark Wilson, PGA Tour, 2011 Sony Open and Waste Open Champion