PGA Tour Star Dustin Johnson on His Training Philosophy, Hydrating Right, and His Dream Golf Matchup

Genesis Invitational Golf, Los Angeles, USA - 16 Feb 2020 Dustin Johnson tees off on the 11th hole during the final round of the Genesis Invitational golf tournament at Riviera Country Club, in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles 16 Feb 2020
Ryan Kang/AP/Shutterstock

Since breaking into the PGA Tour, Dustin Johnson has been one of the top golfers in the world. From winning the U.S. Open, to numerous events on the tour, and making an incredible run as the top golfer in the world, Johnson’s rise to the top of golf has been due in part to his great raw talent, along with his focus on training and hydration.

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Part of Johnson’s success has been fueled by his work with golf trainer Joey Diovisalvi, a.k.a. Joey D. Johnson has worked with Diovisalvi for a number of years, and his workout programs, training techniques, and golf training philosophies have fueled some of Johnson’s best performances during his career.

“Joey D’s golf-specific training has absolutely helped throughout my game—it’s easy to transfer the training from gym to the golf course,” Johnson tells Men’s Journal. “I feel like this training was a part of my game that I was missing four or five years ago. I always trained, but I’d never trained as much or how I am now.”

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Diovisalvi has helped numerous golfers in the gym with his golf-specific training, and part of his program is focusing on the “four pillars” for his athletes: balance, stability, mobility and power. With those pillars in mind, Diovisalvi shapes his training to what Johnson needs on a given day—and if any courses have unique features they need to prepare for.

“We work a lot on balance in his training because balance is a key opportunity to extract power and create velocity,“ Diovisalvi tells Men’s Journal. “We like to stick to basics, but fundamentally, some of the Olympic lifts like deadlifts and squats, are important. And then we like to incorporate things on a stability ball so we can add the balance functionality into that workout, so the core activation on a ball is an important part of incorporating, power, balance and stability and tying it all together.”

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Genesis Invitational Golf, Los Angeles, USA - 13 Feb 2020 Dustin Johnson hits his second shot on the 12th hole during the first round of the Genesis Invitational golf tournament at Riviera Country Club, in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles 13 Feb 2020
Ryan Kang/AP/Shutterstock

Johnson now has his sights set on taking another major championship, and part of that process is all the hard work he’s done over the years with Diovisalvi. For Johnson, that golf-specific training with Diovisalvi has helped him feel his best when he tees up for a tournament on the PGA Tour.

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“I’ve been working Joey D for a long time now and the work is something I’ve become very disciplined with,” Johnson says. “Now no matter what, I go, five days a week, sometimes seven. Especially if I’m on the road, I’ll train every day. Maybe I won’t lift heavy, but a lot of mobility stuff and core work. I’m definitely training every day.”

Johnson spoke with Men’s Journal about his training routine, how he gets ready for tournaments, why hydration is important, and more.

What’s your overall training philosophy?

I put a big emphasis on training. I feel like it’s a big help for the mental part of the game for me. I feel the same when I start the round as I do when I finish, so I’ve got the same amount of strength, I’m able to focus all the way through the rounds and there’s more of a peace of mind.

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If you could go head-to-head with any historical golfer, who would it be and what course would you want to play on for it?

Good question. I think there’s a handful of guys that you would love to. I do get to spend some time with Jack Nicklaus, but you know, Jack in his prime was obviously arguably the best golfer ever. To go head to head against him would have been fun. I don’t know if I would come out on top, but it would’ve been fun.

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What’s your mindset when you train for the course?

I approach my training, just like I do golf, I’m in there to get better every day. My I’ve got a trainer, Joey D., who helps put together our program, and everyday I’m in there, I’m trying to get better, stronger and more flexible—working on the things that are going to help my golf swing.

What’s your hydration routine like?

Hydration is such a huge part of the game. We’re outside, for anywhere between six, seven hours a day. sweating, walking, we’re burning tons of calories. You want to feel just as strong towards the end of the round as you did in the beginning, so I pretty much always have BODYARMOR LYTE and SportWater with me for hydration. I definitely feel better in my game when I’m hydrated. Being dehydrated can feel awful and affect your performance, so I always have a BODYARMOR LYTE; it’s made with coconut water and packed the electrolytes that I need to stay on my game.

If you could use only one type of workout and one type of exercise to train for golf, what would it be and why?

If I had to choose one, it would probably be some kind of leg workout – it’s such a huge part of golf. Probably my least favorite to do, but definitely the most beneficial for golf.

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