Golfing …Against the Wind

Approach/2nd Shot: Golfing …Against the Wind

Golfing …Against the Wind

Approach/2nd Shot: Golfing …Against the Wind

Playing in the wind is a skill all golfers need in order to be successful.

This is especially true in the Midwest and Southwest, where the flat terrain makes for many a windswept afternoon on the links. The ability to control your golf ball in all conditions separates the good players from bad, the great players from the merely average.

Rather than letting yourself be frustrated by a day of less than ideal conditions, a player is best served by embracing the challenge the course offers, making the most of the opportunity to improve.

Tiger Woods, in his amateur days, was once found by a reporter standing on an empty driving range, hitting balls in a torrential downpour with howling winds. When asked why he was outside fighting the elements, Woods responded that working when no one else is working was the only way to get better than everyone else. Every round, every shot is an opportunity to learn, work and improve.

However, there are some basics to playing in heavy winds that will make your life a little easier. First and foremost, accept what you can and cannot do. Standing 250 yards away with a 30 mph headwind blasting you in the face? Unless you have the kind of Herculean strength most players can only dream of, you’re probably not reaching that green.

PLAY SMART, MANAGE YOUR GAME, AND ACCEPT THE REALITY OF THE COURSE BEFORE YOU AND LAY UP TO YOUR FAVORITE POSITION.

Along these same lines, it’s important to accept that bad breaks will happen. A gust of wind may kick up just as you tee off that knocks your ball down 20 yards short of the green and into the pond guarding it. Or the wind could power it 30 yards past the green and into the woods. These things will happen, and you cannot control them. All you can control is the way you react to them.

If you can keep your cool while your competitors are losing theirs, and realize that everyone will be subject to the same or similar lousy luck, you have a powerful advantage. That’s because your decision-making will not be influenced by frustration or panic, but by the course management plan established at the start of your day.

This segues nicely into my next point: have a plan.

Especially if you’re playing a course you’re familiar with, think about the general direction the wind is blowing and plot out the path you want to take through the golf course. Decide where you want each shot to end up in an ideal world and, more importantly, the places you can afford to miss and still recover. Rare is the golf hole that requires a player to hit an absolutely perfect shot, but every hole has at least one place your ball cannot go without resulting in a round-destroying number.

Especially in unfavorable conditions, it’s important to help understand your game, where your ball goes when you don’t make a perfect swing and how to make sure that when your shot isn’t perfect all is not lost.

If there is a big pond down the left side of a hole with the wind howling towards it, and you’re battling a snap-hook that seems destined to send your tee shot exploding towards a watery grave, think about how you can be smarter than the elements.

Can you hit an intentional fade to fight the wind’s will?

Do you have more confidence in your 3-wood or a long iron to hit the fairway?

Fight your ego and play to your strengths, and you’ll surprise yourself with how effectively you avoid double bogeys and worse.

Finally, play the ball a bit back in your stance, and swing with better tempo and more control. In part, this will help lower the trajectory of your ball flight, keeping it under the wind and allowing it to fly on a truer path. But more importantly, playing the ball back in your stance and swinging within yourself will result in crisper, more solid contact, which is the biggest thing you can do to play well in difficult conditions.

An off-center hit will halfheartedly drift along your general target line, wobbly and easily influenced by the whims of a buffeting wind. A center-face strike will fly with purpose and intent, much more resistant to elemental charms.

Sounds simple, right? Keep your cool, accept what you can and cannot do, and play within yourself. Master these three rules, and you’ll find success even when the elements are most against you. It’s easier said than done, but certainly not impossible — and something anyone can do with enough focus, mental toughness, calm and practice.

 

Longer golf shots without sacrificing accuracy

Off The Tee: Longer golf shots without sacrificing accuracy

UNITAS Gold

Off The Tee: Longer golf shots without sacrificing accuracy

That’s the Holy Grail.

Everyone wants to hit the ball farther. You do. I do. Arnold Palmer does. Bubba Watson does. I’m not sure if John Daly does, but no one knows what Daly wants. Not Daly. Regardless, distance is the most potent weapon in golf.

The ability to drive the ball long and hit fairways presents such an extreme advantage for those who can do it best that the U.S. Golf Association and R&A have taken steps to limit the ever-increasing lengths players are driving the ball and keep classic courses from becoming irrelevant.

Maximizing your accurate distance improves every other part of your game, allowing for shorter approach shots, more greens hit and more concise putts for birdies and pars. You need to be hitting the ball farther to take your game to the next level.

The problem, of course, is that seeking that power is an almost surefire way to lose the distance you have. In a poetically Buddhist way, the more aggressively one seeks power, the harder it becomes to find. Adding usable distance is a matter of working smarter, not harder.

First and foremost, the easiest way to add effective, useful distance to your swing has nothing to do with your swing itself. Optimizing your equipment for your unique game and investing in the latest technology and customization allows you to maximize the potential you’ve already realized. There are very real correlations between dollars spent on equipment and the distance your golf ball goes.

Obviously, there are diminishing returns the higher up the technology ladder you climb. But the simple reality is that ensuring your equipment is specifically tailored to your game is the easiest, fastest and most surefire way to add distance to your game.

Arguably just as important as technology to lengthening your drives? Stop worrying about lengthening your drives.

Most people try to add yards by swinging harder. That effort results in tension, often in your hands and arms, that spreads throughout your whole body and saps your swing of clubhead speed. Not only that, it makes your swing less repeatable and makes you less likely to hit the ball flush, further diminishing your power and sending the ball careening towards the sticks.

The key is to relax, holding the club with less grip pressure and letting your hands release freely. Let the fast-twitch muscles in your hands and wrists react reflexively and without effort, and you’ll hit the ball solidly and with more clubhead speed, driving the ball farther.

Finally, if you’re determined to make some sort of swing change in search of longer drives, work on making a fuller, more efficient turn. The key is to improve your turn while maintaining a compact, efficient arm swing, keeping your body quiet and minimizing moving parts and wasted motion throughout your swing. Your backswing should be like a coiled up spring, waiting to explode all of its potential energy through the ball.

Again, this is a difficult thing to implement on your own. The best thing to do is find a PGA teaching professional you work well with, and work hard to make your game more fundamentally sound.

There are ultimately no real shortcuts to lower scores; work hard and intelligently, with guidance from a professional, and you will see the results trickle down to every aspect of your game.

Golf Psychology 101

Stretching/Warming Up: Golf Psychology 101

Golf Psychology 101

Stretching/Warming Up: Golf Psychology 101

Eliminating Scorecard Fear; Plus the 2013 U.S. Open, Justin Rose and Yoda

One of our golf pro writers gives us a pep talk — an a healthy dose of sports psychoanalysis.

So how does fear relate to golf?  What is it about golf that makes us so scared? 

Most of us don’t even know that we are scared of something in golf. But we are. It’s happened to me. I’ve seen it in thousands of my students. We have what I call “Scorecard Fear.”

Scorecard Fear is when the fear of taking too many shots on a hole or ending up with a large overall score drives you to feel nervous, anxious, angry and frustrated.

You think too far in advance of your score. You play scared golf. You try to guide your ball instead of focusing on the target. 

In high school, I took golf a little too seriously and got mad when I didn’t do well. In college, I realized that I didn’t do well at times because I was scared. I was scared of how I played, what other people would see in me, and I didn’t want to be embarrassed. I had Scorecard Fear. 

I let a dumb number on a piece of paper control how I played. I was too concerned with the outcome. 

You can’t control outcomes, only probabilities. 

What does that mean? It means that you don’t know how things will end up.  So, no need to focus on a perfect outcome.

Instead, do something to help the outcome. Give yourself a chance. 

The reason we have scorecard fear isn’t that we are embarrassed about a high number. It goes deeper. We believe that somehow the high number is a reflection on our character.  That we are not good enough. 

You can watch the Golf Channel, read Golf Digest and take lessons that focus strictly on lowering your score. But someday that learned skill may deteriorate. Eventually, you’re just not as good as you used to be. 

But you still have character. You still have your values. 

It doesn’t matter if you win any golf tournaments. It doesn’t matter if your score goes down. It doesn’t matter if you beat everyone in your group. It doesn’t matter if you have a bunch of trophies. It doesn’t matter if your swing is flawless. 

What matters is that you really enjoy doing something. What matters is who you are. What matters is your character. 

“As he prepared last week at Lake Nona for the 113th U.S. Open, Justin Rose did more than beat balls, work out and review his game plan for Merion. He watched a YouTube download of “The Empire Strikes Back.” The scene that sport psychologist Gio Valiante wanted Rose to absorb was Yoda’s famous discussion with Luke Skywalker. “I wanted him to know he was ready,” Valiante said Sunday from his home in Orlando. “That he was finally mature enough to come into his own.” — Golf Digest, June 2013

 

Golf Swing Impact Practice

Stretching/Warming Up: Golf Swing Impact Practice

Golf Swing Impact Practice

Stretching/Warming Up: Golf Swing Impact Practice

Using the SKLZ Smash Bag

A golf pro uses a “Magic Black Bag” to teach proper impact position at the bottom of the swing.
We used this bag for about 10 swings. Then we switched back to a swing without the bag. Within a couple swings, she felt what it was like to have her hands in front — and make solid contact.

One of 2nd Swing’s golf pro swears by swing practice by whacking with what he calls “The Magic Black Bag.”

A few years ago, I had a lesson with a woman who was having trouble making proper contact with the ball. She’d hit behind it, she’d top it, but rarely did she make a good solid strike. So, I broke out my magic trick bag.

Actually, I broke out an impact bag. An impact bag is a footstool-size bag that can be filled with any soft object (a soft object that can take a wallop because you are going to swing a golf club at it).

Since I teach adjacent to a jail, I naturally use inmate raincoats to fill my impact bag, which is a SKLZ Smash Bag. The premise behind this teaching aid is to show my students the proper impact position at the bottom of the swing. For example, when using irons, I want to make sure that my students’ hands are in front of the club head when they make contact.

By making a normal swing into the impact bag, your swing automatically stops at the bottom when you hit the bag. From this position, we can look where your hands are in relation to the clubhead.

Let’s put in simpler terms:  You swing and the bag stops you. Then, you check out where you’re at.

Or better yet, get a teacher who knows what they’re doing to help you out. Back to the woman with the not-so-good contact. We used this bag for about 10 swings. Then we switched back to a swing without the bag. Within a couple swings, she felt what it was like to have her hands in front — and make solid contact.

Within one lesson, she realized her potential because of this “Magic Black Bag.” Now, I’m not saying that this will work magic for everyone. But, it would be worth a try if you have trouble making solid contact.

 

Buying an Iron Set

How-To Guides: Buying an Iron Set

Buying an Iron Set

How-To Guides: Buying an Iron Set

Golf season is here, and everyone is thinking this will be the year for dropping the handicap. The right set of irons — and consistent practice and play — can definitely help you achieve that goal.

Now, most golfers golf bag consists of 14 clubs built for various reasons. What most people need to realize is that it takes just one decision, what iron set to buy, to influence a golfer’s entire set of clubs.

So what I recommend involves a simple three step process: Research; Consultation; Fitting.

Research

Before you even enter a store, search around a few manufacturers’ websites to learn a little about the latest and greatest iron technology on the market. Read some online reviews, such as from 2nd Swing Blog’s comprehensive and free search archives, to help you figure out what kind of iron may match your skill level, club needs as well as playing goals, such as adding loft, feel, flex and distance.

Whether you are interested in a PING, TaylorMade, Titleist or Callaway irons, first learn a little about the new iron sets each company recently released. This will give you the confidence to know some of the clubs’ general specifications (specs) as well as the technological advances certain iron sets may have made in the passing years since you last purchased clubs.

You can trust these manufacturers to give you a brief summary of features and benefits for their new irons. Then try to be ahead of the game by having a favorite model of iron after you researched what might be best for you, like the popular and well-performing new PING i25 series, and you will be far ahead of the game.

Consultation

By consultation, I mean pretty much demanding a proper education by your local golf store or club shop salesperson or pro on what type of iron will be best for you. There are so many types of irons out there that it can get overwhelming very quickly.

It’s important to be honest with yourself about your golf abilities, or it could spell disappointment or disaster on the course later for you. In reality, keep in mind that there are only a few decisions you have to make:

  • What iron head is best for you (traditional blade, midsize or game enhancement, oversize or game improvement)?
  • What type of shaft you prefer (steel or graphite)?
  • What improvements are you exactly looking for in this new iron set?
  • Do I want an iron that is more forgiving or more workable?
  • How much does the look and feel of the iron weigh in your decision?
  • What are the benefits of each iron head?

Answering these few questions can ultimately take hundreds of different irons sets down to just three or four. And you will quickly realize which iron sets could be best for you.

Fitting

This phase of the buying process is the most important.  Here we can analyze and discuss what might be an iron set that is good and what might be an iron set that is great.

First thing to keep in mind before a fitting takes place, is whether the clubfitter that I am working with is both knowledgeable and certified. You will come away from this experience so much more confident and excited about your new irons if you are paired up with the right fitter.

During your personalized and custom club fitting, two main phases occur: deciding on the perfect set of irons; and fitting those irons to your ability and golf swing. When you are testing iron sets (or demo-ing them), keep in mind how they look and feel. These are the only two areas that a fitter can not analyze. The better the irons look and feel, the more confident the golf swing you will have.

These are criteria that must decisively match your needs.

Assess the assessor

Now performance is the deal breaker, of course. It does not matter how good an iron set looks or feels — if you aren’t hitting it well — you are not going to buy it.

At least I wouldn’t. So you don’t either. 

Now a proper fitting process will cover four main topics:

  • Static fitting (This determines what club length you need.).
  • Dynamic fitting (Tells you what lie angle you need.).
  • Ball-flight analysis (This will validate the decisions made to this point, such as iron head size and kind, club length, lie angle and shaft type.).
  • Course assessment (Get out and play! Make sure that the set is right for you and fit for you.)

Be aware of how the irons are performing. Do you notice any consistent ball-flight tendencies? If they are performing a certain way for you, are these good or bad tendencies?

Make your fitter aware of your progress after you leave the store. Fitting should be ongoing. Keep the lines of communication open. Don’t be afraid to keep asking questions after you’ve made your purchase.

It might take a couple of rounds or tweaks to dial them in perfectly. Remember it’s all about improving and having fun. The two usually go hand in hand but I promise if you spend the time and go through these important steps, both will occur.

 

List Yer Golf Problems; Fix ‘Em And Check ‘Em Off

Off The Tee: List Your Golf Problems; Fix Them And Check ‘Em Off That List

List Yer Golf Problems; Fix ‘Em And Check ‘Em Off

Off The Tee: List Your Golf Problems; Fix Them And Check ‘Em Off That List

IT’S OK TO PLAY THE “BLAME GAME”

One way of thinking about your golf progress is to consider a “blame list.” During a series of practice sessions, the goal should NEVER be to “hit the ball better,” but instead to whittle down the list of things you can blame for your poor shots.

If you don’t know what to blame, you can’t know what to focus on. And you can’t know what to blame until you’ve made the list. Then, cross things off this list.

The set-up is 100 percent controllable since there is no motion yet. First consider the set-up factors of grip, stance, posture, clubface aim, alignment and ball position. Those could (in theory) come off your blame list naturally or perhaps with minimal work.

Nothing in golf is ever going to be perfect, so we have to accept that and know we can get closer to personal perfection by someday crossing all these common set-up factors off the list. In other words, once you have crossed the standard golf set-up off the blame list following a poor shot, you can say to yourself with confidence: “At least it’s not that.”

Then move on to what’s next.

The backswing begins the motion, and therefore, is less controllable, but still more manageable than the downswing. You and your PGA professional instructor should get together and create the backswing checklist and select what is already in good shape. Then work to isolate those that need greater attention (still on the list).

Ask yourself if you could you envision the day when you no longer get to blame any poor ball flight on the set-up or the backswing?

Downswing/impact/finish happens the fastest and therefore has the least amount of control. So, I think we’d like to get to the point of having the downswing as the last  thing on the list.

Sure, even though the downswing is least controllable, it doesn’t mean you can’t grow to understand more about this important area of the swing from your PGA Professional.

The more things you check off the list, the “mystery” of why the ball did what it did becomes clearer. Practice sessions should be based on this goal of clarity.

With clarity, the mind can give the body more defined images and a more consistent swing.

 

2nd Swing Golf Tips Series with ’96 PGA Champ Mark Brooks: Warmup, prep and “don’t just slap it”

Stretching/Warming Up: 2nd Swing Golf Tips Series 1 with ’96 PGA Champ Mark Brooks

2nd Swing Golf Tips Series with ’96 PGA Champ Mark Brooks: Warmup, prep and “don’t just slap it”

Stretching/Warming Up: 2nd Swing Golf Tips Series 1 with ’96 PGA Champ Mark Brooks

Warmups, pre-round prep and “Don’t just slap at it”

2nd Swing is proud to partner with PGA Championship winner Mark Brooks in the first of an ongoing series that features first-hand golf advice from a true champion and gentleman PGA pro. This special collaboration will touch on everything from basic warmup techniques, lesson guides and course strategies to what life on the Tour is really like — all the way to some of the latest equipment reviews.

(See below: Brooks is still very much active on the Senior PGA Tour. In fact, on Memorial Day weekend 2014, he finished tied for fifth at the 75th Senior PGA Championship at Harbor Shores Golf Club, Benton Harbor, Mich. Brooks completed the fourth day 6-under par overall and shot a 65 on the final round. Colin Montgomery won by ending 13-under par.)

FORT WORTH, Texas  –  Even before you get to the clubhouse, it’s a good idea to start limbering up and getting ready with a purpose for the day.

Grab a couple clubs and swing them in a circular motion. Bend your back before and after you get in the car.

One of the things I work on is trying to be loose. As we get older, I think being stretched out becomes more important. Get your hamstring limber. Your shoulders, everything. Make sure it all works. At least it makes you feel like you’re ready to take a shot.

The first half of the warmup session is just warming up — literally — and then reiterating in my mind whatever I’ve been working on.

For instance, in that department I try to hold onto one good simple swing thought in my mind.

And then the rest is more traditional and getting ready for that particular golf course, that day.

Start with the sand wedge

I recommend warming up on the range first with what swing was working best for you last time you were out. Begin with a heavy club near the bottom of the bag. I prefer the sand wedge.

So that way, your practice plan is not so random for you when you get out. You have an idea of what you’re going to be doing before you arrive at the course. That’s important. It’s a foundation to help build your game around.

One thing I like to do is concentrate on my swing path, and take some small cut shots at first. Try to balance it out between your strike attempts. That’s key.

If your tendency is to swing inside out — as it is in my case — as the season goes on, that bad habit will be to swing even more inside out.

Use the sand wedge with a stick or club to angle your swing opposite of your negative tendencies — a bit. Don’t go overboard. If you slice, hook the ball on purpose. If you have a hook it, slice it.

Devote about 80 percent of your warmup time to counterbalancing your swing.

It sucks, but here I am been playing Tour golf for over 30 years and working on the same problem I had 30 years ago. So I try really hard to neutralize my swing path and just chunk it out there sometimes.

Don’t just slap it out there

The golf industry today is filled with club manufacturers who claim to build a club that’s more forgiving on miss-hits. Frankly, I’m tired of all that talk. (That being said, I’m not out here with wooden clubs either.)

People just need to learn to hit the ball more solidly. The quality of the strike is still better on many of these golf clubs when you hit it in the center of the face. It’s just that basic.

That’s where people should be concentrating their hits, on the center of the face. I know it sounds simple enough, but the message is getting lost somehow nowadays.

Let’s quick go back to the beginning now. An easy drill with a sand wedge, or any other iron just about, is just putting your feet as close together as possible.

Work on your center of balance and clubface aim and rhythm. Then hit up to 100 balls with that particular position and focus in mind.

If you hit 100 shots like that in one day, then it’s better than slapping the ball all over the face and maybe hitting five good shots out of 100.

Stand out here and work on your balance and your rhythm because without good balance, you’re not going to hit good shots.

And no matter how big the clubhead is, you still need to find the center of the face. Don’t let the technology and design do the work for you.

After the sand wedge, I usually hit the rest of my wedges on a consistent basis. From there I switch it up. Time permitting, I will practice every other club in bag each day, such as 6-iron, 8-iron, 4-wood and a hybrid on a Tuesday. And, then I start again on Wednesday with my wedges and move on to my 5-iron, 7-iron, and then maybe move into my 3-wood and driver. I will sometimes switch it up just a bit, depending on what needs work, but I try to maintain a routine otherwise.

Occasionally, the golf course I am playing may require more mid- to long irons, or maybe something else, so then I’ll spend time on them or another club I anticipate using a lot.

One thing I’ll do is use my rangefinder in combination with the wind to try and gauge my shots — just to get a feel for what’s going on that day on the course in front of me.

And, of course, if you’re not putting well, put in the time. Always make time to practice putting.

Let’s face it, it’s more fun hitting big shots. However, most players neglect the putting part, despite it making up between 40 percent and 60 percent of your strokes.

There’s no shortcuts in golf really. Remember that — and don’t forget to at least try to have fun.

Golfer’s Elbow

Stretching/Warming Up: Golfer’s Elbow

Golfer’s Elbow

Stretching/Warming Up: Golfer’s Elbow

Prevention, symptoms and treatment advice for one of golf’s most-common ailments

Golfer’s elbow, also known as medial epicondylitis, causes pain and inflammation in the tendons that connect the forearm muscles to the bone found on the inside of the elbow. Golfer’s elbow is often compared with tennis elbow. Although the injuries are similar, golfer’s elbow occurs on the inside of the elbow while tennis elbow affects the outside of the elbow.

What is Golfer’s Elbow?

Golfer’s elbow is less common than tennis elbow, however, both are a form of tendonitis. Similar to many golf injuries, golfer’s elbow is typically the result of overuse. However, anyone who creates a repetitive motion with their wrists or clench their fingers is susceptible to developing golfer’s elbow.

Examples of everyday activities include: writing, typing, hammering, painting and wrist curls at the gym. The pain associated from golfer’s elbow can last anywhere from a week, month or even a year depending on the severity of the injury. Healing time is compromised without the proper amount of rest. In addition to overuse, golfer’s elbow is also stems from poor strength and flexibility. Limited flexibility often prohibits the wrist from moving in a 90-degree motion, increasing the likelihood of injury.

Symptoms

Several symptoms are common with golfers elbow. Pain, tenderness and weakness occur on the inside of the elbow and extend down the forearm. Stiffness is generally common and pain extends into the wrist, hand and inability to clench a fist. Pain is worse through gripping activities. Swelling often occurs with a numbness and tingling sensation that extends down the forearm, hands and fingers.

Treatment

Swelling is a common reaction to golfer’s elbow. Therefore, anti-inflammatory medications are used to control pain and inflammation. Regularly applying ice is recommended to help control pain and inflammation. In some cases, cortisone injections are used to alleviate pain. Stretching and exercise are beneficial to help control symptoms of golfer’s elbow. However, make sure the injury is healed, if you are still experiencing pain there is a chance to aggravate the injury and prolong recovery time. Applying pressure and deep massage to the specific area will help improve circulation.

Although golfer’s elbow is relatively easy to diagnose, people should seek medical attention. Rest and ice help give the injury time to heal. Many opt to use a brace to help alleviate pain surrounding their elbow. The brace will apply pressure on the muscles below the elbow and help relieve the pain caused by golfer’s elbow. There are several different brace that will help reduce the pain and not affect range of motion.

Prevention

Strengthening the forearm muscles is a common method used to help prevent golfer’s elbow. The repetitive motion of gripping the club too tight or the club striking ground can aggravate the injury. Two simple exercises such as squeezing a ball or wrist curls can help strengthen the forearm muscles and prevent injury. Squeezing a ball will help build forearm strength and can be done from the comfort of your home with nearly any kind of ball that will easily fit in your hand. Switch hands after a few minutes. Wrist curls will also strengthen the forearm muscles. Use lightweight dumbbells to avoid creating an injury.

 

Add Power to Your Swing

Off The Tee: Add Power to Your Swing

Add Power to Your Swing

Off The Tee: Add Power to Your Swing, Sans a Golf Ball

Practice Your Swing Instead by Hitting an Immovable Object — Repeatedly

BECAUSE IT’S THE BALL’S FAULT!!!  

Or at least it’s the ball’s weight and small, myriad club-hitting options — and our brains keep getting in the way of a good, hard hit.

So instead of getting stuck on contemplating how easy it should be to move a small round, bouncy-yet-firm plastic object very far, here’s another way of looking at it.

Improve your swing to a powerful strike needed by focusing on moving a heavy object first then duplicate the action through muscle memory against the light golf ball.

The thing is that the golf ball reacts to the position of the club and supporting positions of the body at the moment of impact… period, a non-negotiable end to the story.

The good news is that regardless of your perceived “skill level,” you can create great impact; and it’s more natural than you may think. That’s the good news. The bad news is that golf contains many mental “blocks,” which interfere with your natural abilities if you allow yourself  to fall into these traps.

One of the largest challenges for you to understand and accept is that because the ball is so light (less than 2 ounces), there are literally thousands of ways to get the ball to move somewhere; there are literally too many options available to each golfer’s mind. It’s like trying to find a needle in the haystack.

Now imagine using your golf club to get a 20-pound bean bag to fly high into the sky and 100 yards. How many options do you have now?

When the object you’re trying to move has a great deal of resistance, your brain will put all its energy into relaying the most efficient instructions to the body. I have videotaped dozens of players striking a bean bag-type training device. At the moment of impact with the bag, it is difficult to distinguish an accomplished player from a beginner.

It’s true! Unfortunately, view these same two players striking a golf ball and wow, that same moment of impact looks very different. Why does this happen?

The poorer players at some point became content with “better” ball flights. But these shots are not their ultimate best, which is fine if just being okay is their goal.

However, be warned: You have stopped short of the most efficient swing you could create.

Accomplished players have pushed on, and did not settle for mediocrity, they are on a mission to keep improving their swing so that the powerful strike needed to move the heavy object is duplicated against the light golf ball.

So, it’s the balls fault. But making bridging the difference is up to you!