Archives for September, 2015

Are Your Clubs Killing Your Game

As we age our bodies change. Most of us are not active enough to remain as flexible and strong as a 20 year old.  As you lose flexibility and strength, your old golf clubs may hurting your game. Fortunately the technology in golf club design is improving. If you want to enjoy this game as you age, you should try out a variety of clubs to see what you are missing.

I have recently been renting golf clubs while traveling. I thought I was just saving time and energy hauling clubs around but it was actually giving me the opportunity to experiment with different clubs. Hitting balls off a mat at a golf retailer is just not the same as testing clubs on a golf course. You really should see the flight of the ball as you take your divot on real grass. These are things that you should be concerned about:

Dump your old clubs. They may be killing your game.

Dump your old clubs. They may be killing your game.

Club Weight
I had a bad experience with some heavy steel shaft clubs in Bermuda. The golf was wonderful but it took me 8 holes to sort out the problem. I just did not have the wrist strength to handle the clubs. I finally adjusted my tempo and parred 6 of the last 10 holes.

If your grips are worn out or your glove is old, you are  losing the opportunity to loosen you grip. As you tighten your grip to hold on to your club, your arm muscles tighten and shorten. This creates 2 problems. First you lose your ability to snap your wrists through impact. Tight arm muscles will also shorten your reach causing topped balls.

Another lesson learned: I tried playing without a glove on a humid day and almost lost my club in a lake as my sweaty hands slipped on the grip. That was almost an expensive mistake.

Offset Clubs:
If you are playing with offset clubs you may be compensating for a swing flaw that you have eliminated. Clubs with an offset head are like a crutch for your game. When you figure out how to swing properly from the inside, you really need to get some conventional clubs and get your game back on track.

Strength and Flexibility
As you age and lose your strength and flexibility, you should consider lighter, fiberglass, flexible, shafts for more whipping action to increase you club head speed. This solution may not be ideal for your first test because you will need to change your transition and tempo to enjoy the benefit of these flexible clubs.

Changing clubs is not an easy process. Take your time. Check out as many options as you can before you make your decision. Whatever you chose, remember to keep practicing with GOLFSTR+ and get your tempo right. Buy one today at

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Golf: A Unique Opportunity for Perfection

Golf is a unique game. No other sport allows you the chance to make a practice swing using the weapon of your choice on the exact surface and grass condition where you are about to make your shot. You control your footing and you know the angle of the ground under your feet so why aren’t you taking advantage of this very special opportunity? You should be using your practice swing to achieve the perfect shot or putt. YES, WITH THE SAME SPEED, FOLLOW-THROUGH AND BALANCED-FINISH.

Often I see my golfing companions with a perfect, relaxed practice swing. Then they step up to the ball and panic. They forget to rotate their arms, shoulders and hips as they rush their arms to a minimal back swing. Then they rush their down-swing with their arms without shifting their weight to their forward foot. This sequence typically results in a topped ball and the golfer falling backwards. This is insanity.

Albert Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing something over and over again and expecting a different result.  Why not practice the right swing, hold that feeling and then duplicate it when you hit that little white ball?

Discovering the Benefit of the Practice Swing
Hitting out of a sand trap or hazard is the only area where you can’t ground your club and take a complete practice swing. This is a good example to help you understand why the practice swing is so important. That’s also why these shots are more difficult than any other shot in your game. You really should try to complete a full practice swing on the same up or down or side slope outside of the hazard before you attempt the shot.

User your practice swing to create a complete mental image of your perfect swing and just duplicate it when you hit your ball.

User your practice swing to create a complete mental image of your perfect swing and just duplicate it when you hit your ball.

Build Your Confidence before you Hit Your Ball
People panic when they step up to the ball. They see it as a crisis moment. They think, “Now what am I going to do with this shot”. WRONG THOUGHT! You need to use your practice swing to take the pressure out of your shot. You know what you want to do and where you want your ball to land so rehearse that shot before you stop forward to hit your ball with confidence.

Your practice swing has to be in the same cadence as your planned swing. You need to feel that wonderful feeling of a great practice swing before you take your actual swing. Perfect your swing before the actual swing. Get in a YOUR COMFORT ZONE before you hit the ball. Feel the tempo. Step forward and repeat that swing.

There should not be any difference in your practice swing and your actual swing at the ball. Duplicate it in order to get your body in a comfort zone. You may find it helpful to create a rhythm by repeating the same mental words in your practice swing as you say when you take your actual swing. To slow my cadence down I often use the mental words: “Straight Arm. . . Sweep in and Finish”

[NOTE: ”Straight Arm” is my last thought before I start my swing or during my waggle, “Sweep IN” during my slow backswing [to focus on an INside to outside release], “and” during my controlled transition, “finish” as I impact the ball and swing to a balanced finish.

Of course you should practice the correct swing with every club for straight arm and wrist lag with your GOLFSTR+. Buy one today on our website:

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Is this a “Head Game”?

How can Jordon Spieth be the #1 Golfer in the World and then miss the first 2 cuts in the FedEx Cup playoff?  [Barclays: “worst round in years”, Deutsche Bank Championship, “terrible yet again”] We do know that he changed to a new set of clubs for the Barclays and then went back to his old clubs the following week at the Deutsche Bank. This is crazy. What is going on?

The answer is simple and we are all affected by it. When you are on a winning streak, your mind and body relax.  You find a groove that feels so comfortable. It really is your mental confidence.  There is a fine line between perfection and losing your COMFORT ZONE. When things go wrong, doubt creeps into your mind. It plays tricks on you by changing your relaxed and confident swing. The difference between leading a tournament and missing the cut in professional golf is really not a lot of strokes. A few bad shots (shanks into the rough, into the water, over the green) and your confidence is ruined.

How Can You Control YOUR Head Game?

Tiger Woods and Jordon Spieth are both suffering from Head Games today.  Where did the magic go?

Tiger Woods and Jordon Spieth are both suffering from Head Games today. Where did the magic go?

I write this blog as much for my game as I do for your game. So I am always watching others messing up their shots as well as doing a reality check on my great shots and my failures. I’m always researching to find that magic that Jordon Spieth lost over the last few weeks.
Accept the fact that this is a “Head Game”. Any mental lapse in focus can and will kill your swing. I am talking about your drives, fairways shots, sand trap shots, chips, pitches and putts. Each shot is a different swing so you need to be focused on the subtle changes for each swing to ensure success.

1/ Study Golf or Take Lessons to Learn the Correct Swing for Every Club in Your Bag:  Consistent focusing on the correct swing is the only way to improve your game. If you don’t have a clear understanding about how to complete each swing with each club, you will never perfect your game.

2/ Swing Cadence, Tempo or Rhythm : When your brain is relaxed and focused, its easy to keep a consistent rhythm in your back swing and your follow through. Your perfect swing happens when you allow your club to finish the backswing without rushing the transition. If your mind takes over and you want a little more speed or power, your grip tightens, your cadence speeds up and you lose that smooth transition by rushing your swing and cutting your backswing short.  DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN!

The next time you see someone miss-hit a shotLearn from their mistakes.  Recall if they rushed or shortened their backswing or was there a whipping action at the top of the swing that throws the club out of sync with the rhythm of the swing. Was their practice swing in perfect balance but their swing (at the ball) out of balance.  Were their hands swinging faster than the motion of their body?  Do they have the effortless cadence of the Ernie El’s swing?

3/ Focus: When your clubs don’t feel right (the way Jordon Spieth felt with his new clubs) or you are distracted by anything like noise or external thoughts, your mind changes its focus and your swing pays the penalty. You need to put 100% of your focus on your correct swing and follow-through.

Practice with GOLFSTR+ to gain confidence with Every Swing in YOUR Game. Buy one today at

SWING TIP NEXT WEEK: What is the unique thing about golf (UNLIKE ANY OTHER SPORT) that allows you to improve every shot?  Are you taking advantage of this?

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Avoid Thin Shots to Drop YOUR Score

We all hate to hit the occasional thin shots. Those dreaded shots where you blade or top the ball and it skids along the ground to nowhere. There really is an easy fix for this. Every professional golfer has learned it and you should too. The solution is easy but the permanent fix is all in your head.

There are 3 issues that you need to be concerned about: Your head bobbing, your bum bending and your swing on uneven ground.

1/ Head Bobbing: If your head remains relatively still during your swing then the distance from your shoulders to the ball is controlled by the bend of your elbows. A bent leading elbow will shorten the distance to the ball and create thin shots. A great drill is to stand with the sun directly behind you so that you (or a friend) can see the shadow of your head. It should not be bobbing up and down during the swing.

Swing without bobbing your head and with a straight leading arm for a consistent distance to the ball.

Swing without bobbing your head and with a straight leading arm for a consistent distance to the ball.

Train with your GOLFSTR+ to keep your leading arm straight in your backswing AND in your downswing. THIS IS PROBABLY THE MOST IMPORTANT COMPONENT OF THE SWING FOR CONSISTENT HITS.

2/ Bending your Bum Toward Your Ball during the downswing will lift your head and shoulders up causing a topped ball or slice. To get more power and accuracy off the tee I saw a simple drill by PGA Professional Eric Hogge (PGA Village, Port St Lucie, FL). He suggested putting a chair (or golf bag) behind your bum and swing by keeping your bum in contact with the chair. Of course there will be lateral movement as you thrust your hips slightly forward up the target line [but never out]. Keep your waist bent at the hips to keep your head and shoulders at the same level.

3/ Ball Above or Below Your Feet: Your body naturally tries to balance in an upright position to avoid falling over when you swing your club. If your ball is above your feet you should choke up on the club to avoid burying you club before you hit the ball. If the ball is below your feet you should take a wider stance with more knee bend to avoid topping the ball. You need to keep your natural posture with a vertical balance. In both cases you will lose distance so take a lower lofted club to compensate.

NOTE: Taking a higher or lower swing plane to hit the ball which is above or below your feet is not as easy as it seems. You practice hitting most of your shots and drives on flat ground so your mind is not programmed to accept an instant swing change. This is also why we tend to miss more greens in regulation as we are hitting from an uneven lie on the fairway or in the rough.

Always practice when you can with your GOLFSTR+ to program your mind for a straight leading arm. Get your swing rotation from your shoulders and hips not from your bent arm.

Remember to do your takeaway with both arms straight to force your shoulders to rotate before you start bending your tailing elbow to pull your straight leading arm and wrist lag to the top of your swing. Rickie Fowler even does this as his practice waggle. It works for him and it will work for you too. Buy a GOLFSTR+ today on our website:

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