Archives for March, 2015

Understand Impact & Control YOUR Game!

Understand the direction of your club face and swing path to control your game. Professional golfers do this and you should too. It’s that easy.

Pros like Jack Nicklaus visualize the impact, flight and landing area before each shot. Bubba Watson has never taken a lesson. He just figured out what caused the ball to rise, sink, draw or fade. He plans this for every shot that he makes. I also noticed that Michael Breed just released video lessons which focus totally on the point of impact. You need to understand what you are doing to a ball to cause it to move left or right and up or down.

Each of the following comments are described for a person hitting with right handed clubs. [I had to describe it this way as I am a left handed person who hits with right handed clubs. If you think this is strange then you should try playing golf with this inverted mind.]

Bubba Watson is the master of ball flight and distance.  You really need to focus on club face and swing direction to get it right every time.

Bubba Watson is the master of ball flight and distance. You really need to focus on club face and swing direction to get it right every time.

Face Orientation and Swing Path: The orientation of the face of your club at the point of impact causes 80% the initial direction of your ball. An open face pushes it right and a closed face pulls it left. Your swing path only causes 20% of the initial direction. If your swing path is out to in, your ball will fade or slice away from you. If your swing path is in to out, your ball will draw or hook

Swing Thoughts: You also need to understand why your best effort to keep a ball away from water on the right will invariably cause you to tighten up your grip which shorten your arms so that the ball slices to the right and into the water. By sweeping across the face of the ball to hit the ball left we tend to open the face and allowing the ball to slice right (toward that magnetic water). The correct motion is to ensure that you are hitting a draw shot by coming from the inside to out and swinging straight up the line slightly to the right of your target.

Relaxed Grip: A tighter grip (as in “grip it and rip it”) causes 2 problems which often result in a “duck hook”: A tight left hand grip pulls the club face closed at impact. Closing the club face directs the ball to the left. Compounding this problem is an excessive inside to outside swing path. Bingo, another Duck Hook! To avoid this, lighten your grip so that your leading hand does not pull the club face closed before impact. Don’t kill the ball with a violent inside to outside swing. Swinging from the inside is the preferred path but let the club do the work to cause a gentle draw.

Fat Hits: When you rush your swing from the top on any swing (drive, iron, pitch or chip), you will not give your body time to shift forward to allow the bottom of you swing to bottom out at the right point. Rushing the downswing with your arms will kill the shot. Let your legs and hips pull your shoulders through the shot.

When you focus on the right solution in the right frame of mind you can solve each of these problems. Practice with your GOLFSTR+ to build confidence in your swing. Get the right feel and enjoy the right shot. www.golfstr.com

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Who’s Showing Up to Play TODAY ?

Have you ever played a round of golf where every hit is so clean and easy. Sure you may hit them long over the green but who cares. You don’t expect perfection in every swing but it just happens. Then your next round is a disaster. Your drives, your approach shots, your chipping and your putts are just not happening. Do you ask yourself, “Who was that person playing yesterday?  How do I get him back? ”

I am like every recreational golfer who loves this game but I publish these weekly swing tips so I tend to focus on what make golfers tick. I know that I have my good and bad days – and I often wonder WHY?

For the past 3 months I have been observing golfers as they play past our lani (screened porch for Northerners). It’s painfully obvious that at least 75% of the golfers may have taken lessons but they need to practice what they have learned. There are so many ways to watch the correct swing:  on YouTube; on the Golf Channel and by watching tournament golf on TV.   GOLFSTR+ is a great practice aid to help you correct 6 swing faults but it won’t help you just sitting in your golf bag.

The next time you play a round of golf, don't you wonder which version of YOU will show up?

The next time you play a round of golf, don’t you wonder which version of YOU will show up?

With all of this support you would think that everyone should be able to play a reasonable game of golf. So why is it that you occasionally experience an “out of body experience” where your game is shockingly great.

What causes a great round of golf for anyone, whether you are a pro or an amateur? If you have learned the skill to swing a club correctly there are only 3 other issues that you face on the golf course. You and every professional golfer need to overcome these GAME BREAKERS before you will have a good round of golf:

Flexibility: If you want to hit longer shots, your body needs to be flexible. You can’t expect to be successful in golf with brute force. An aching back is even a worse problem. Your neck, spine and hips need to be flexible. You need to work on this with proper exercise or just accept your limitations and limit your rotation to achieve an acceptable result. Bending your leading elbow might work for you but if you want consistent results, work on a straight arm swing, wrist lag and a powerful release at the point of impact.

Mental Outlook: If you are frustrated over your last shot and you try to compensate for a poor shot by swinging harder, you will not like the result. This game tends to compound anger so you need to understand that problem. Get over your last shot. Realize that you need to relax your grip and swing without trying to kill the ball. It’s that easy.

Focus: When your mind is at ease and your muscles are relaxed you can now focus on the right swing to get the result that you want. Focus only on the draw or fade or height of the shot based on your stance and the wind condition. Great pro golfers take their minds into the moment of each swing. There is nothing else on their mind. Your lessons and practice can all result in perfect shots every time you swing a club.

Next Week’s Swing Tip is about Understanding the point of Impact to Control Every Shot.

Buy your GOLFSTR+ today on our website:  www.golfstr.com

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Pros do it! You should too!

Should your head be moving during your swing? Mark Richmond who writes the Consistent Golf blog studied 23 of the most recognized golfers. He found exactly the same tip that we published by one of our GOLFSTR+ users. Terry Scanlon (St Andrews, Scotland) said: “keep you left ear (leading ear) behind the ball until impact when driving the ball“.

 

Mark Richmond wanted to verify the statement: “the average PGA Tour player moves his head only one inch during the swing”.

 

Adam Scott is shown here keeping his head in the same line-up with the ball during the backswing until impact.  This seems to be the ideal swing thought.

Adam Scott is shown here keeping his head in the same line-up with the ball during the backswing until impact. This seems to be the ideal swing thought.

Of the 23 golfers that he studied, when swinging the driver, all of them drop their head lower at impact but only 3 barely moved their head out of the original alignment during the swing:
• Adam Scott
• Phil Mickelson
• Jack Nicklaus

Most of the golfers shifted their heads 1 to 4 inches back during their backswing.

 

Only 3 of the 23 golfers in the study had their head forward before impact:
• Moe Norman
• Gary Player
• Arnold Palmer

Your forward hip press should start the transition of your club at the top of your swing but your head should remain relatively still until impact. Test your swing by standing with the sun behind you and watching your shadow.

Don’t get the wrong idea! Your whole body is in motion during your golf swing. Freezing your body and swinging with your arms will guarantee that you will dig your club into the ground well before the ball. Making the perfect practice swing and then duplicating that swing is the key for success in this sport. I’m not sure why a little white ball causes the mind to freeze-up but when you solve that problem, I guarantee success.

Relax your mind & body, focus on duplicating your practice swing, start you downswing motion with your hip and keep your head behind the ball. Of course you should practice with GOLFSTR+ FOR EVERY SWING IN YOUR GAME.

ENJOY

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Make the Perfect Shot Every Time

Recreational golfers who purchase GOLFSTR+ Training Aids are committed to improving their golf game. They are on the right track. Golf is a game of skill and mind control. If you put your effort into the right swing, the right practice and the right state of mind: you WILL improve your game. This week’s Swing Tip is intended to help you understand that YOUR MENTAL FOCUS can improve your game every time you play.

Most golfers start playing this game well after they learn to swing a baseball bat, cricket bat or hockey stick. You need new skills. The golf swing for each club must be changed to account for the angle of the lie, the target landing surface and wind conditions. You need a constant mental focus to compensate for each of these conditions and to improve your game.

Golf appears to be an easy game if you live, eat and breathe it every day. This is not possible for the recreational golfer so where should you focus your effort?

1/ Starting at a young age is ideal. Learning the right golf swing at an early age and as your primary sport can be a real asset. Lydia Ko, now 17, has won 10 worldwide professional victories. At 6, her family moved across the street from Pupuke Golf Club in Auckland. Her mother wanted her youngest daughter to have four one-hour lessons per week. Practices often involved three locations over an 11-hour span. Her first coach, Guy Wilson, said she took off Christmas and New Year’s Day two years ago only because courses were closed. Her family obviously invested a lot of time and money to develop Lydia.

Tiger started swinging clubs when he was 2 and his father was also his early mentor and motivator.  It paid off!

Don’t expect to achieve their success. Work on anything that will improve your flexibility. Learn the right swing for each club and practice to BUILD MUSCLE MEMORY in your swing. GOLFSTR+ gives you 6 swing solutions to break down your old habits and learn the correct motion for every swing.

2/ Size and strength help (as illustrated by JB Holmes’ 10 under par opening round at Trump Doral, March 5, 2015) but they will not guarantee low scores in your game of golf. Lydia Ko is only 5 foot 5 inches tall. Her size is certainly not giving her any advantage but she sure does outscore her competition.

Luke Donald is 5 foot 9 and 160 pounds. He had an outstanding year in 2011. He became the first player to win both money lists on the PGA and European Tours in the same year. So why is he not repeating his past success?

Focus on the perfect swing to make the perfect shot every time.

Focus on the perfect swing to make the perfect shot every time.

3/ Without the right MENTAL FOCUS and skill you can’t succeed in golf. The world record long ball hitters rarely play in pro golf tournaments. There are a lot of pro golfers who drive over 300 yards but they still need that magic touch around the green.

Every golfer has experienced that shot where the ball springs off your club like a rocket, lands where you planned to land it and then rolls to the perfect spot.  Your mind was totally focused so that the shot was executed perfectly. It was your focused mind that made that perfect shot. If you can par 1 hole, you can par 18 with the right focus.

Learn the right swing, practice with GOLFSTR+ and commit to a 100% MENTAL FOCUS on every shot. Think your shot through and make the perfect shot every time.

Check out GOLFSTR.COM

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Stretch Exercises for Swing Flexibility

GOLFSTR+ was developed to help me train for more consistent hits and longer drives. I soon learned that I needed to do more than swing with a straight leading arm. 5 additional uses of GOLFSTR+ helped me correct my swing but I was missing one important component: FLEXIBILITY. Strength is important but you need flexibility to Swing Like a Pro.

I found 4 simple exercises that will loosen your spine and shoulders. I’m over 65 and I want to hit drives consistently over 240 yards. I have seen skinny youths and females with minimal muscle-mass hit 280+ yards so I know that it can be done without brute strength. Torque and wrist lag release are so critical to hit’em long and straight. Yoga is a wonderful activity to improve flexibility over your whole body but if you don’t have the time, try these 4 exercises:

1/ Chest Stretch: Lay on your back with arms stretched straight out and the back of your hands resting on the floor. Without lifting the back of your hands and arms off the floor bend your elbows to form a U shape with your arms. Then form a V shape and finally point your arms straight over your head. At any point if your arms or hands start to lift off the floor, just stop and let your muscles relax and stretch for 10 or 15 seconds. Return your arms to your sides and start over again. The goal is to eventually stretch out to reach directly over your head without lifting them off the ground. Kids have no problem doing this. It took you a long time to lose your flexibility so don’t expect miracles to happen overnight.

Knee Roll Spine Stretch2/ Knee Roll: Remain on your back with your knees bent and your arms pointing out from your sides. Now roll your knees to one side while keeping your arms outstretched and both shoulders on the ground. Then slowly roll your knees across and to the floor on the other side. Eventually you will get your knees closer to the floor and keep your opposite shoulder on the ground. Over time you will get closer to this goal. Do not push to the point of hurting your back. This is a gradual stretching exercise which will improve your flexibility and release your spine over time.

3/ Pizza Lifts: Kneeling and resting your butt on your heels, bend forward and rest on your elbows on the floor. Now slide one arm forward along the floor, turn your palm to the ceiling and raise it slightly like you are holding a pizza pan. Hold for 5 seconds. Now repeat on the other side. You should feel the stretch of your LATS (Latissimus Dorsi muscles which rap from the base your arm around your back). I found this one on Revolution Golf.

4/ Shoulder Release: Either laying on your back or sitting or standing: fold your left arm across your chest. With your right wrist wrapped around your elbow, pull your straight arm across your shoulder line and hold the stretch for 5 seconds. Rest and repeat about 4 more times. Do the same stretch a few times with your right arm to give your body balance and to help it recover. I found this one on Golf-Info-Guide by Thomas Golf.

You need to build up your flexibility gradually. Do these exercises in the evening when you are watching TV. If your back starts to ache, lay off the exercises until you recover. You should not be in pain when you do these exercises as you need to limit the strain on any muscle groups and your spine. It may take a month but your swing will really benefit from your new flexibility.

Use your GOLFSTR+ to make sure that you are getting the full benefit with flexibility and the proper swing (Straight Leading Arm, Flat Wrist and Full Wrist Lag). To review last week’s Swing Tip about testing your Flexibility Limitations CLICK HERE

You can’t create an effective straight leading arm swing without flexibility. Frankly, I struggled with my straight leading arm until I improved my flexibility. Now I have to use GOLFSTR+ to remind myself to limit my backswing as I lose control when I over rotate. When I get it right, my swing feels smooth as butter and the ball flies out of sight. Friends are asking me if I am on an exercise program but my new flexibility and the whipping action of the club head make all the difference.

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