Training program a perfect Fit for All golfers

David DuPriest, owner of ALLFIT Performance Training in Wilmington, teaches his clients to work from the ground up.

“You have to learn how to do things on the ground first, then you can get to the standing exercises,” said DuPriest. “Like an infant starts on the ground and works its way up, you have to crawl before you can walk.”

This day, professional trainer DuPriest is putting Jim Lane, the retired head golf professional at Winchester Country Club, through the paces. The 70-year-old great-grandfather’s left knee and right hand are on a mat, while his right leg and left arm are s-p-r-e-a-d w-a-y o-u-t while he does a stretching, strengthening exercise called the Bird Dog. It’s mighty impressive.

“This works both sides of the body.” said DuPriest. ”In golf, that’s important because the hands come across the body.”

Interestingly, Lane never picks up a golf club during his workout. He tugs on 8-pound weights as DuPriest says, “I work on the body. I don’t work on the swing. There’s a synergistic relationship between the pro and me.”

Lane agrees. The golf pro corrects faults in the swing, while DuPriest corrects faults in the body. “If I’m working with someone who doesn’t have the ability to do what David teaches, the golfer will not reach full potential,” said Lane.

David DuPriest, fitness trainer at ALLFIT Performance Training, works with Jim Lane, on doing "The Bird Dog", which is key for working the core of the body. Lane is retired head golf pro at Winchester Country Club.

David DuPriest, fitness trainer at ALLFIT Performance Training, works with Jim Lane, on doing “The Bird Dog”, which is key for working the core of the body. Lane is retired head golf pro at Winchester Country Club.

DuPriest, a trainer for 13 years, has worked primarily with golfers since 2009, when he earned his certification from the Titleist Performance Institute. Overcoming or stabilizing weaknesses in the body is the goal. After a comprehensive 90-minute-to-2-hour evaluation, DuPriest will design a personalized mobility plan for each individual. The next step is to train the body to move that certain way.

“Changes can be dramatic,” he said. “You’ll be able to play golf more often with less pain. There will be more stability in your body, and you’ll be able to hit the ball farther.”

Lane is a big believer in DuPriest’s program. In 2009, the two started a conditioning program at Winchester CC. Twenty-three members, men and women, participated. “One woman won two tournaments at the start of the season. … Everyone said ‘What’s up with her?’ When someone works with David, you can see it in the swing. They show up on the range in the spring and, wow, you wonder where that came from.”

DuPriest said he has worked with many junior golfers, including Duke University player Steven DeLisio of Swampscott and Phillips Exeter Academy, and North Andover’s Nick Antonelli, who played on the Canadian Tour and is now on the staff at Atkinson Resort and Country Club in New Hampshire.

Somerville native DuPriest earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology from UMass-Lowell and previously owned and operated the only FitGolf center in Massachusetts at this same site. He said he’s a longtime golfer: “My mom has a picture of me in diapers, swinging a golf club. I started really young.” The 45-year-old North Reading resident tries to play at least once a week, even if it means teeing it up at 5 a.m. at Unicorn. He’s a past winner of the Winchester Father & Son Invitational and currently carries a 10 handicap.

DuPriest and Lane both observe that this reporter, while standing, puts most of his weight on his left leg. Not good, they say. “I watch people all the time, even when I’m not working,” said DuPriest, “and I think, ‘I can help him or her.’”

Lane laughed. “I do the same thing when I teach. On the range I can look at someone and say ‘He’s got a problem with his hip.’ You shouldn’t hurt when you golf or when you’re done.”

A good foundation and a good stable base is paramount,” added DuPriest. “If you can’t do that, the body can’t do what you want it to.

“The king of swing is the glutes. The queen of swing is the core. If you don’t have the king or the queen, you have a couple of jokers.”

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Photos: Mark Lorenz

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