How do you adjust a big winner? Meet the man who is preparing Koepka & Johnson for US Open

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Joey Diovisalvi works with & # 39; the world's best two golfers in Brooks Koepka (right) and Dustin Johnson (left)

There will be big hammers and booming drives on Pebble Beach when the US Open starts Thursday.

Professional golfers are now finely tuned athletes, stronger and fitter than their predecessors, with great pride in the physical skills of rival counterparts to traditionally more athletic sports.

Seated top of the class are Brooks Koepka and Dustin Johnson, who finished first and second at last month's US PGA Championship and are currently ranked as the best two golfers in the world.

So what's their secret?

Both collaborate with Joey Diovisalvi, one of the pioneers in golf-specific fitness training and a biomechanics expert, who welcomes some of the best gentlemen and ladies players to his academy in Florida.

More than twenty years ago, Diovisalvi recognized the need for players to physically evolve and put the science behind the perfect swing into practice.

"It intrigued me because golfers were not so enthusiastic about the physical aspects – they were slow, late adapters and it took me a lot of time to create some acceptance and confidence in that world," Diovisalvi, who told the 15 – Simply important champion Tiger Woods as an early influencer in the field, at BBC Sport.

"Today I watch golfers like Dustin and Brooks – an Adam Scott, a Jason Day and a Rory McIlroy – players of this caliber, they are very athletic, the human body has evolved, science has evolved, the equipment has evolved.

"You look at them and the average player on tour, their body has changed in height, weight, physicality … you see this huge change in the game. Physicality can surprise a golf course.

"You must be such a great player to compete with the boys at the top of the game."

Diovisalvi uses the example of England Tommy Fleetwood, who finished second in the US Open last year and is in 18th place despite his relatively smaller stature.

"I love Tommy and his trainer because he is like a Samson and Goliath" he said. "I see the way Tommy trains, he is so often in the gym at the same time Brooks and me or Dustin and me.

" Tommy is relentless in his search for his strength, conditioning, mobility, flexibility. He and his trainer are doing such a phenomenal task and Tommy has really been able to compete with the bigger boys, but when his game is off, it is very difficult to get the ball in a position to score as they drive you with 50. 60 yards. "

Joey Diovisalvi is the head coach and founder of Joey D Golf Sports Training Center in Florida

A day in the life of DJ …

Diovisalvi went to the Canadian Open last week with world number two Johnson as the American put the finishing touches to his preparation for the third major of the year.

"Dustin is in a good place," he said. "He is doing well and is more comfortable with the putter. His body is slowly and gradually building up this big one. He loves Pebble Beach, so I am confident that he is approaching this week and using Canada as an opportunity

"Mentally it prepares these guys for enough repetitions to feel good about where their driver is, where their short game is, the approach images – what does it look like with the irons?

"It is a really good test to see how the body and the swing work." Dustin's body peaks beautifully. "

Helping players to get their" feeling "is an important part of the role of Diovisalvi.

" Because the coach and the player try to make something feel good, especially for a major, our job is to make sure that the body and nervous system understand how to swallow it without thinking too much, "he added.]

" When their feeling is out, you see that they do things that are beyond the character of the caliber they are playing on. You hear the commentators, they start to analyze and that's not really what it is … the reality is, if the feeling is good and their body reacts and they feel good with where their mental game is, it's a pretty seamless effort

"Then it comes down to whether they can score well?"

But life on the PGA Tour can be intense, with players going through long, hectic days that go far beyond what has been picked up by the cameras during their rounds.

"It is not just a sun-drenched day and they appear on the tee box or driving range and play for five hours in the sunny weather," explained Diovisalvi, who previously worked with triple-big winner Vijay Singh.

"Both Brooks and Dustin take their food very seriously, this week they had chefs with them and rented houses so that they felt more like their support team is around them, their family, the ability to to sleep better, to e better. "

A day in the life on tour, eg 07:00 tee time04: 00: Wake Up04: 40: Eat breakfast05: 00: Arrival on golf course – 10 minutes on exercise bike – 10 min. Full dynamic stretch -15 min. Stability / mobility / functional exercises05: 45-06: 55: practice range07: 00-12: 00: game round12: 00-14: 00: interviews, lunch, practice (if needed), rest16 : 00-17: 30: Full 90-minute workout in the gym

After an early wake up – 4:00 AM as on the first tee at 7:00 AM – the players warm up in the fitness trailers of the PGA Tour that are equipped with the latest technology

"Dustin will cycle on a spider bike for 10 or 12 minutes, let blood flow, his heart beat let go a little bit ", Diovisalvi added. "Then we sit down on a mat and do a very active, dynamic stretch for another 10 minutes."

Subsequently, the 2016 US Open champion plays a number of exercises using stability balls, dumbbells, resistance bands and medicine balls to grasp the muscles used during his lap

"He uses highly dynamic movement patterns who imitate the golf swing, "said Diovisalvi. "He is very prepared in about 30 minutes to go to the driving range and start his routine.

" Now his feeling or his body is very engaged. The nerves are burning, he feels the pressure of his feet.

"In 2019, we worked harder than ever before on & # 39; prehabilitation & # 39; – getting the body ready to perform, so there is little risk of injury, higher performance levels, more power to the body move well. "

Diovisalvi is immensely proud of seeing the players he and his team have worked with win tournaments and the academy in Jupiter, Florida is decorated with banners won by Johnson likes , Koepka, Justin Thomas, Lexi Thompson and Michelle Wie.

"They always say that the evidence is in the rings of the championship, or the banners hanging on our walls," he said. "The majors who have won in our team, they humiliate me every day.

" You hang up these banners and you think: "Gosh, we have been in teams that have helped win so many majors", it's really lowers you in which you have participated and how you have helped the game grow. "

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