Golf is a game of two parts

Golf is a game of two parts

Golf is a game of two parts:  Technical ability and Playing ability.

But neither of the parts will work if we do not think correctly.


Technical ability.

This is learned on the practice ground. The best way is to start is with a lesson or a course of lessons from the local professional. Read, watch videos etc. all you can and ask your professional questions. Bear in mind however that every piece of information has to be thought about, practised, analysed and stored. With the knowledge and proper application of the basics of the golf swing, it is easier to achieve a reasonable standard, enjoy playing and benefit from the exercise without causing our self any injuries. For this there is a need to discipline one’s self both mentally and physically to adopt the correct posture, movements and thoughts each time a ball is played. It is very important that when playing golf as there are so many things that we can get concerned about; the club selected is the right one, the face is set on the right line, the grip is good, the posture is correct, are we set-up the correct distance from the ball, start the swing by turning the shoulders etc.. That we can get to the stage with so much information in our mind we don’t actually know what we are trying to do. This is ‘paralysis by analysis’, with so much thinking the objective has been forgotten. We have remember that all this technical practise is to play golf therefor we have to be thinking on what we want to do, which is to play the ball to the selected target and not thinking technically how to do it The golf swing has to be practised sufficiently to enable us to make the swing in one complete Forwards movement.


A technical golf swing:


The backswing is to generate torsion in the body muscles as you turn the shoulders backwards and at the same time set the club in position for the rotation into the forward swing. It is in the forward swing that the release of the accumulated body power, is co-ordinated with the movement of the wrists accelerating the clubhead into the finish position, all controlled by the body rotating round forwards over the front foot. The forward swing controls the line on which the ball flies, and the effect that the clubface produces on contact with the ball.

The back swing is not as important as the forward swing, as it is the efficiency of the forward swing that allows the player to combine power with the necessary precision in the shot. 


Playing ability.

The best way to learn this is by taking playing lessons on the golf course with your professional, and then play on the golf course as often as possible, something can be learned playing with anyone but ideally with better players.

Golf is a game in which the better player has more ability to dominate their instincts over natural body movements, which have to be made in an un-natural order.

All technical thoughts should have been left at home or on the practice ground! You are now on the golf course ready to play each and every shot with the best of your ability.

In golf it is possible to think so much that it becomes impossible to play. Too many thoughts on the mind will inhibit the movements of the body.

Each and every shot is played with: One intention – One thought – One action.


Play a shot


The golf swing is one complete movement, from set-up to finish, backwards to forwards thinking on the shot you have decided to play.

It is the clubhead that strikes the ball as it passes forwards on its way from the extreme of the backward position to the finish of the swing. The ball is played forwards.

To play a good golf shot, you do not hit the ball, the clubhead hits the ball, You swing the clubhead!

Remember; that other golfers are playing on the same course under the same rules. It is therefore necessary to have sufficient playing ability, a sound knowledge of etiquette and capable of playing at a good rhuthm before you go on the course at the busy times.

It is not only how well you play, but the way you play.

It is important to have occasional check-ups with your professional, they will not only give relative advise on the technical aspects of your swing, but also on how to better your course management, there are many in which you can save strokes within your play, therefor improving your level.

Each player has their level of play over the course; this is referred to as their ‘handicap’. Your handicap reflects your playing ability.

The handicapping system allows the game to be played between players of different levels on the same golf course.

The challenge on the golf course for every player should be to play good golf, playing to the best of their abilities and always with the desire to play the next shot even better.


Enjoy your golf,

Tom McCowan PGA España.

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What is Golf?

What is Golf?

Golf is all that you want from a sport! From being a simple game in which a small ball is played with a club from the teeing ground along the distance of the hole with one or more strokes to finish with the ball holed below the surface of the ground in a hole cut in the green. All of which is played within the rules of the game.


To play golf without rules is not playing the golf, it is something else! The game can be and is more complicated, due to the way in which the club is moved to Play the ball. This movement of the club is called the golf ‘swing’. The difficulties of this and the obligations to comply with the rules are for another day, for now let’s just keep it simple!


Golf is good because it is a game – a sport – a challenge – and maybe even ultimately a way of life.

Images of a Golf Rules Book book dated 20th. November, 1933

Family and friends, young and old, can all play together for fun, or they can compete against each other, or simply compete against themselves by trying to do better than when they last played.

 Golf allows you to be in a healthy environment, a place where one can get away from worldly worries and enjoy mixing with others who share the same interests and respect for the traditions and values of the game. It’s also a way of taking exercise. “I don’t know why,” said one devotee when asked why golf is good. “I can only say that I haven’t played for three days and I’m really eager to have a game.”

 Golf is also beneficial for your health, if your cholesterol is a little high or you’re recovering from a heart by-pass operation your doctor may suggest walking as the best form of exercise. As golf is not a physically violent sport, it can be taken up at any age.

 Golf is a reason for walking without having to buy a dog, collecting wild flowers or picking mushrooms. Walking for the sake of walking can be a little uninteresting even though it takes us into the countryside. Golf is all these things and more.

 It is not only played at the highest possible standard by fit, dedicated professionals. But it is played by players of all abilities and ages for pleasure as well as to benefit their health and general quality of life. It is played by people who not only enjoy exercise in the fresh air but also the companionship of their playing partners or the competition for a wee dram or cup of coffee at the end of the round.

 What it should not be is a way of doing physical injury to oneself, or a good walk spoiled, either yours or anyone else’s for that matter.

 The spirit of the game makes the difference to other sports. Golf is played, for the most part, without the supervision of a referee or umpire. The game relies on the integrity of the individual, to show consideration for other players and to abide by the rules. All players should conduct themselves in a disciplined manner, demonstrating courtesy and sportsmanship at all times, irrespective of how competitive they maybe. This is the spirit of the game of golf.

A sign posted on the notice board at a local golf course:
You do not have to be a lady or gentleman to play golf, But only ladies and gentleman play golf.

There are players who simply want to play in the company of their friends for the challenge of making a better result than the last time, without having to compete against anyone except them self and the golf course. The relaxing part of playing golf is that you have to concentrate so hard to make this un-natural movement called ‘golf swing’ that you forget everything else.

 There is nothing like being in the middle of a golf course, watching your ball flying towards the middle of the fairway or on to the green, with that feeling of having made a ‘good swing’. When this experience, in this special environment, has been felt, it is easy to understand why there are more than 60 million people in the world enjoy playing golf .

 You have to try the game, to relate your experience before you decide if you will like it or become dedicated.

Happy Swinging,

Tom McCowan

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