It is true to say we can save you ten shots over the next few weeks (If you are playing high handicap golf ) First we cover the average golfer, for those are just about to learn or would like to learn, scroll to the end, we have included the some very basic notes on golf. With books / written tips illustrations it is comparatively easy to teach a high handicapper or someone who is just learning to play; they can read see the illustrations and learn the correct mechanics and principles of the game, which will immediately improve their game. With a low handicap player it is not always a wise move to introduce major changes. Even the great players like Tiger Woods find it difficult to make changes to their game. Research carried out over a two year period working with some of the world’s best players, has provided some interesting facts related to the few minutes prior to playing their shot, and the changes that take place while they take the shot. Based on the known fact that we ALL have two sides to our brain one side for serous high level concentration, the other side is for happy relaxed natural no tension let your body take over thinking. With the pro player their concentration level is very high during the pre-shot routine; it peaks for approximately 10 seconds while at address. Even so they never freeze over the ball, they waggle the club which is a signal to the brain, once they start their back swing the brain switches to natural let it happen mode, they depend on muscle memory to produce the natural swing, with the perfect timing balance and club head speed. They have developed every golfer’s dream, a natural swing which they can repeat every time without even thinking.
Your pre–shot-routine must be practiced until it is second nature. Determine your optimum target area, and the correct distance from the tee. (Taking into account all these factors) Hazards: Water, bunkers, trees, heavy rough, out of bounds. Check the wind, direction, from behind, wind against, swirling. Is the fairway wide or narrow? Now select the correct club, you should know the distance with your three wood which will give the average player 200 yards, driver 220-230 yards depending on the wind and ball selection. Now select precisely where to place your tee, it needs to be positioned to give you a direct line to your target. Your tee MUST to be the correct height, so the ball is level with the sweet spot on your club.
Now step back behind the ball and line it up with the target, the logo on the ball can be adjusted like a rifle sight to point to the target. Step back behind the ball and check the target line. Maybe select an a old divot a short distance ahead which is in line with your target, aim to hit the ball over this marker. Take a relaxed practice swing. Step up to the ball. Arms and club stretched out in front of you, slowly bend fore-ward from the hips until the club touches the ground behind the ball. Take your stance the width of your shoulders. Feet aligned slightly left of the target, check your grip, do not grip the club too tight. Pressure =same as squeezing a tube of tooth paste; you are now ready to take the shot. Take one last look at the target, deep breath relax no tension in the arms, just think rhythm and timing, keep your eyes fixed on the ball. Do NOT freeze over the ball waggle the club, push back low a smooth with the left arm your upper body starting to turn, DO not sway back, only the upper body turning (SET IT LOSE MOTHER GOOSE). That is your tempo. Pull down with the left arm in control keep your head down, eyes fixed on the ball hit right through the ball with the club staying low and in line with the target. Key objective to teach your mind and body to synchronize and maintain balance, smooth transfer of weight from right to left follow though, DO NOT LOOK UP UNTIL THE BALL HAS GONE Once your swing is smooth and natural and you can repeat it every time then will be a single handicap golfer.
Looking up on the down swing:
Many feel that this is the number one mistake that golfers make.
Being to keen to see where your shot is going, you begin to look up during the downswing and before the club-face makes contact with the ball. This moves the body, which misaligns the swing path. The ball could go any where.
Golf is a mind game first you must have mind set train yourself not to look up, you will have plenty of time to see where it is going AFTER impact.
Ok here is what you do, make it a number one priority:
Complete your pre-shot routine, select your target. Place the ball on the Tee at the correct height with the logo in line with the target. Take your practice swing, and then adjust your stance. Bend forward from the hips until the club rests behind the ball. Relax those are arms NO tension, take one last look at the target, then focus your eyes on the ball, let the mind switch to happy mode, real smooth take away in line with the target, Timing -Rhythm- Balance. Head down eyes fixed on the ball, natural swing. Main objective is timing tempo, relaxed natural swing with light grip. Pull down with the left arm; do not let the strong right arm force the shot. DO NOT swing like a mad axe man, Keep left side firm with left knee bent through impact. Smooth transfer of weight from right to left, nice easy natural swing. Swing through the ball, not at it, ensure your arms are fully extended through impact, and concentrate on a low follow-through. Eyes fixed firmly on the ball. Wait until you see the ball “disappear” before you even think about looking up. Once you achieve that natural swing and extend your arms through the shot, this combined with releasing your hands through the ball correctly, will give you more distance.
Been playing for years and never improve 90+ every round When you are playing a lot of golf yet never seem to improve then you need to go back to basics / fundamentals. Most of us in our minds eye believe we have the text book swing and that all our basics are correct, Grip, Stance, Posture, Address, take away, top of back swing, follow through, balance.
Top pro golfers have experienced coaches who tell them when some thing is not quite right. We need to check, this can be with specialist 3D swing analyzers that some of the large golf stores have, or a lesson with the local Pro at your club.
Simple visual checks that we can ALL make; some are best done in front of a large mirror. or video your set up and swing. Start with grip and stance, then each element of your swing, from the start of your back swing through each stage. Then time to work on your swing: Do NOT swing hard only 80% of your power. The main elements of your swing must be Balance and Tempo. The number one problem with ALL high handicap players they look up on the down swing KEEN to see where the ball is going, IF you look up for sure it will NOT go where you want it to. Why because if you look up before the ball has gone it always changes your swing path, the ball could go any where. READ on. Pre-shot routine, off the tee, select your target on the fairway, which will determine your club selection and where you place your tee, having selected your club will determine the height of your tee (Ball needs to be level with the sweet spot on club) Place the ball on the tee, step back and line the logo on the ball up with the spot you are aiming for, visualize the shot in your mind, take a nice easy practice swing which needs to be the precisely the way that you intend to play the actual shot, with that swing in mind both tempo and balance step up to address, ball in line with your left foot, stance the width of your shoulders, correct grip V pointing to your right shoulder, knees flexed weight on the balls of your feet, bend fore from the waist your club should come to rest directly behind the ball ( 32″ from your toes) Take the club back with your left arm pushing low smooth and slow as it pasts your right foot you should have start your upper body turn, make a full turn, KEEP the left arm straight, when the at the top of your back swing the club must not drop it now should be pointing towards the target, start to turn back with your right hip moving upper body and arms turning, pull down with the straight left arm (Left arm in control DO not allow the strength the your right arm to take over) Club returns on the same path as your take away, KEEP your head down eyes firmly fixed on the back of the ball until it disappears, hit through the ball keep your arms fully extended right through impact concentrate on a low follow through in line with the target. With timing tempo perfect balance your weight should have transferred from right to left, your upper body fully turned weight on the left foot, buckle on your belt facing to the target. Now you can watch the ball fly straight to your target.
YES you are right to much to think of and change overnight, there is NO magic formal that will transform your game over night, get the basics / mechanics right . Only correct one fault at a time, first you need identify the fault then focus on correcting that element of your swing or game. But club head speed is NOT the answer. Left arm in control with perfect Tempo then you will develop the perfect swing natural and smooth. Also course management plays a major part in your game. Why go for the green if you know in your mind you have little or no chance of getting the distance, use your head lay up to your best distance from the green, stay 100 yards out leaving a simple shot to the green.
While stood over your shot always be positive, visualize the shot be confident, NO negative thoughts. ONLY Positive thoughts NO tension, once you have gone through your pre-shot routine and are at address ready to play the shot take one last look at the target waggle the club to shake the tension out of your arms, switch to nice easy relax mode and make your natural switch. You need to concentrate on hitting through the ball NOT at it: Follow through with full release. Important your divots should be in front of where the ball was if they are behind then you are hitting the ground too early. When you take a practice swing mark the spot where you intend to place or address the ball in your stance, take the practice swing and see where the divot is it should be just ahead of where the ball was placed. If you are hitting behind the ball you can move it back in your stance. You have a handicap for a reason that is to make all players standing on the tee even, each has a chance of winning on the day if they play to their handicap or better. So if you are playing with players who have much lower handicaps than yours, DO NOT try to match their game, play your game continue to play to your strengths, use course management layup play percentage shot, not crazy risky shots. Do not rush your shot take your time go through your pre-shot routine.