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.
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.
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.