Stress-free living, protein shakes and spaghetti bolognaise.
That’s the secret formula to a bulkier physique that West Australian Jarryd Felton hopes will make his body more durable when tournament play resumes.
As Bryson DeChambeau threatens to reshape what a golfer looks like with his new polo-stretching build and the 350-plus yard drives that it was able to unleash, Felton revealed that he too has spent a good part of the COVID-19 constructing a bigger, stronger body.
Whippet-thin at just 69 kilograms when the PGA Tour of Australasia was forced to suspend its season following the New Zealand Open, the 2017 NZ PGA champion has added seven kilograms of muscle that while not designed to launch bombs should provide a boost back out on tour.
“I’ve not necessarily done a Bryson but I’ve tried to put on some weight and go to the gym as much as I can, build some strength,” revealed Felton, who was top-15 at both the Queensland Open and NZ Open in his two most recent starts prior to the coronavirus shutdown.
“Playing tournament golf, it’s impossible to maintain your strength and I’m always coming back lighter with lost weight and a bit of stress in that as well. My body has been the No.1 focus, trying to get that to a level where I can maintain it for the rest of the year.
“I’ve had a couple of hip surgeries when I was younger that I’ve had to maintain throughout my playing career.
“It’s not necessarily added any more distance but just for my body’s sake, it’s maintaining how good I’m feeling each day.
“I’m not waking up sore or in pain and able to lift heavy weights which has been really good.”
With status on the European Challenge Tour, Felton received a welcome e-mail on Tuesday morning detailing the two events in Austria from July 9 that would mark the resumption of the Challenge Tour.
Such is his status that Felton is unsure how many events he would be eligible to play on the six-week European Tour swing in the UYKL that would follow two weeks in Austria, making a return to Europe still a difficult question to answer.
“I saw that e-mail this morning. I haven’t really read through it too well but that’s got to be a positive sign,” said Felton.
“We can go over there and we’re playing for money which is great but in this time you don’t really know what the best thing to do is.
“It’s hard to commit. The money’s great but if you’re going from country to country it’s going to be pretty difficult.”
In the meantime, Felton will stoke his competitive fire with regular nine-hole matches with his girlfriend and Women’s PGA champion Hannah Green.
The pair have committed to two charity exhibition matches in the next month, the first of which is Friday’s WA Golf Guns Charity Shootout Challenge at Gosnells Golf Club that will be broadcast on Instagram Live.
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This coming Friday at @gosnellsgolfclub myself & @josiahgilbert04 will take on @hannahgreengolf and @maddytolchard_ in a 9 hole charity shootout. Proceeds will be donated to a Charity of choice by the Wright Family and the @challengecancer foundation. This event will be live streamed on Instagram for anyone wishing to follow us on social media. Hope to see heaps of GGC members & guests out there. @pgatouraus @golfwestaust @golfaust @leuktheduck @titleist_anz @srixon_aus_nz @sqdx.sports @sqdx.scottmclean
“The new pro here Scott McLean came up with an idea of having a nine-hole Instagram Live type match so we thought we should try and do something for charity at the same time,” Felton added.
“It’s been a tough road the past three or four months sitting around and doing nothing so if we can do our best to help out these families and raise some money – and stay competitive – then that’s something positive.”