Here I am watching the first round of the 2005 US Open
and I see a lot of great swings. I also see a lot of swings that "get
the job done." As with it seems every sport, precision doesn't always
come from spotless technique.
I thought I'd open with that concept in this article. It's an
important thing to remember when you're out there actually playing a
round with your friends. Sometimes just being aware of yourself is all
it takes to pull out the better round. This ties in with what I spoke
about in the last article where we defined what our JOB was as the
golfer. It's not about the person who has the perfect techniqe, but
rather that person who creates the nearest thing to a "swing".
Today I'd like to delve into the somewhat more nitty gritty parts of
that definition of "swing" that I gave you. In case you forgot here's
a quick reminder. Your only task as a golfer (or JOB) is to "Swing"
the golf club.
That's it. I later went on to define a swing as a "backward and
forward circular motion."
Conceptually most people think there is a lot more complication to
what we do as golfers. Our focus tends to be on the specific ways in
which our body moves. Now that's not to say there aren't better ways
than others for our body to move that allow us to make a "swing", but
sometimes we focus our attention narrowly on the most inane things. In
all honesty I think that's because the modern golf instructor likes to
point them all out. That's what you pay them for isn't it?
of nit-picky golf does have it's successes, but in the overall scheme
of things, I don't see many happy golfers who struggle through it.
Instead of narrowing on the finite, lets focus more on the big
picture. Back to our definition of a swing.
If our job is to make a backward and forward circular motion I beg of
you the question how many directions are we making the club move? A
lot of golfers today would give you anywhere from 6 to 12 directions.
Straight back from the ball, along the shaft plane, then above the
shaft plane, alone the new plane line, clubhead pointing at the
target, clubface slightly rotated, then dropped into the slot allowing
the lower body to uncoil, holding onto the wrist angle created between
the shaft of the club and the left forearm (for right handers), then
released down at the ball, and whatever happens from there is a
consequence of everything before it.
Let's look one more time at the EXACT DEFINITION of our job. BACKWARD
and FORWARD circular motion. That is two, yes count them "2"
Which of those two movements would you prefer to think about and
Which one of those philosophies would lead to longer lasting
Well lets do a little experiment. Grab a piece of paper and pen. Now
draw a circle. Good. Now right next to it draw another one, but this
time I want you to count how many directions your hand moved and which
muscles were involved in each change.
Now that you've drawn the two circles let me ask you a few questions,
which one has a smoother perimeter? Which one took more effort? Which
one was drawn with more speed? Which one came naturally? Which one is
more repeatable? Which one more closely resembles a circle?
You see, we all have an inherent ability to do what we tell ourselves
This is the famous "paralysis by analysis" line we always hear about.
The second circle was far too complicated to perform not because
drawing a circle a second time is any more difficult than the first,
but because our minds are focusing on the wrong things.
So next time you get up to the tee box I want you to simply think
"BACKWARD and FORWARD" and nothing else. Your body will know what to
do, you just gotta give up control and let your mind get to the task
of performing it's new found job.
Next article I'll go into the most important word in our job
For more Golf Tips see Stevens