Can you point a finger on why you play golf? Is it the beautiful courses? The thundering sound of a long and straight drive? Or is it a clutch lag putt that drops to save PAR?
For me it’s all of these things and more. Unfortunately golf instruction seems to have lost its passion for the game. The core of golf still is (and always has been) to get the ball in the hole with the fewest possible shots.
It’s not about having the most beautiful golf swing or about learning how to imitate certain positions and angles with your golf club or body.
Why You Don’t Improve With Classical Golf Instruction
It’s not about the information or the tools. In fact there never was a time when you had so much information about what professional golfers do to hit the ball well.
E. g. what angles and numbers you need to hit to have the longest drives.
There are more than enough books and videos that repeat common golf instruction over and over. Nothing wrong with the information … but nothing new either.
I see two big problems with the classic approach of most golf pros and online golf instruction.
Problem #1 – Focusing on the Symptom
Of course a slice is bad, coming over the top is bad, hitting behind the ball is bad. But what does that help you to play better golf?
And how can you change these symptoms? Fast?
If you are trying to learn a new instrument and someone keeps telling you that your experiments with the instrument sound awful, are you suddenly able to play better? Of course not!
But somehow people expect that effect from golf instruction that focuses on the symptoms.
In my opinion a better way would be to communicate for change, so you as an individual are able to play better golf.
Problem #2 – Treating Humans Like Machines
Do you know the Iron Byron swing machine? It’s a machine that is being used to test golf clubs. You put a club into the machine punch in some numbers and the robot makes perfect golf swings, one after another, like there’s no tomorrow.
Now many golf instructors seem to think that this might be something to aspire for their students or for themselves.
Looking at numbers, angles and simulations all day long. Trying to construct and learn the perfect golf swing.
Do they swing better with these details and the resulting corrections? Maybe a little.
Do people perform better on the golf course knowing their smash-factor, spinrates, attack angles and clubhead speed?
Golf is played by individuals. And you have unique abilities strengths and weaknesses like everybody.
If you want to play better golf the change has to come from within you.
And the task of a good golf instructor is to provoke and amplify that change with words, demonstration and drills.
The 3 Commandments of a Good Golfer
I don’t want to fall into the same trap of repeating old golf tips endlessly. Instead I will try to invoke the 3 commandments of a good golfer in you:
- Always practice golf shots not your golf swing.
- Be a serious student of the game.
- Look at golf as a series of challenges. Having better solutions to these challenges leads to better scores.
It’s Your Choice
Do you want to look pretty with a cookie-cutter golf swing or do you actually want to transform your game to become the best golfer you can be?
It’s your choice.
Good at Golf is the place if you want to learn the game inside out and honor your journey while doing so.
There you’ll find a lot of no-nonsense golf instructions that goes beyond simplified swing tips and useless golf gibberish, empowering you to transform your game from the inside.
About the Author
Greg is a junior golf coach and currently living with his wife and son in Berlin, Germany. He is the author of 120 Timeless Golf Lessons. Greg loves to play golf, as much as teaching it, science fiction movies and classical music.
“Enjoy the game and go hit some!”
Photo: “golfer walking and carrying golf bag” © dotshock – photodune.net