Favorite Golf Tips and Q&A
I'm not a
pro and I don't pretend to be. I've been playing golf for over
30 years now and I still have my amateur problems like most of
us but through the years I have developed a good understanding
of my golf swing. As I get older and start losing some flexablity,
the on-going challenge is physically being able to do what my
mind wants to do. For me, golf starts with a good frame of mind.
Having positive swing thoughts and having the confidence (in your
swing) is the key to good results. I composed The Golf Album to
help my mental attitude on the course. Just as you practice your
golf swing, you need to prepare and practice your mental attitude
as well. The Golf Album may help you achieve this.
Here you can read some of my own tips and some quotes from some
of the best teachers and pro's. For the golfers who are just beginning
or have a high handicap, I always recommend taking a series of
golf lessons from a teaching pro and not try to work it out yourself.
You will only develop bad habits which are hard to break and take
twice the time to get it right. Been there, done that! (photo:
Torrey Pines 04')
(song title from the Golf Album)
this is huge! I've heard many pro's say how there is no power or
distance from a fast takeaway. All the club head speed is coming
down to the ball. A slow takeaway and finishing at the top sets
up good rhythm, tempo and balance. I've watched golfers think they
are taking the club away slow yet they are jerky and fast losing
the correct plane of the club path and a good sense of tempo. This
is huge to get it into your head to gear down the takeaway. You
will hit straighter and purer shots and start to feel a sense of
rhythm and tempo.
Improve Your Takeaway
by David Leadbetter
of whether I'm working with a top player or just an average club
golfer, the problem that I see most often is that most swing errors
happen during the first three or four feet of the takeaway. Many
golfers take the club back too far inside or outside the target
line. Some pick the club straight up or loop it around. As a result
of these moves, most golfers lose backswing width and do not coil
properly. Remember, what you do to start the swing really affects
what happens later in the swing. If you get a good start, you're
likely to have a good finish. Start off badly and you're going
to finish badly.
Here is a simple drill that will help you get everything -- the
hands, arms, and shoulders (the triangle) -- started on the right
Line up two balls on your target line about a foot apart from
each other. Move the second ball about an inch inside the target
line. Take your address position over the first ball and focus
on your target. Swing back and push the second ball away, then
swing through and hit the remaining ball.
Focus on the Target
by Jim McLean
Do you ever
find yourself guiding the putter back maybe too slow, watching
the putter head on your backswing, making very tentative strokes
or guiding the ball, or even yipping? Well, let me give you a
little tip, an idea that Johnny Miller actually used to win a
PGA Tour event. What Johnny did was to simply stop looking at
the ball when putting. Instead, he changed his focus and looked
at the target. It's very similar to a pool player as he looks
at the target ball and not the queue ball. Why not do the same
thing when putting? By looking at the target, it takes your mind
off everything else except the target and you just stroke the
putt. It's amazing how much this can free up your body and your
stroke. Give it a try and I'll bet you'll make more from the 15
to 20 foot range!
|Putt It There
(song title from the Golf Album)
looking at your target. Here I'm talking about your target line
not always the cup because of breaks and grain on the green. Putt
it there is another positive thought to get you to relax the hands
and make a smooth and full putting stroke. DON'T DECELERATE!
| Swing Tempo
Drill by Steve Scott
a tour professional or a amateur player, it is really important
to have good swing tempo. Here's a drill that instructor Martin
Hall has taught me and I think it will help you. Start by hitting
three pitching wedge shots, one after the other, using a nice smooth
swing. Then take your driver and try to make the same exact golf
swing as you did with your pitching wedge. This drill will keep
you from swinging "out of your shoes" on the first tee. It's a very
simple drill to do and it will help you warm up before you play.
I hope it works for you on your next round of golf.
Weight Shift Drill for Straighter
Shots by Ed Dougherty
find the easiest thing to do first is get into a good stance.
Then I try to focus on where my hands are during the swing. Wherever
your hands are during the swing is where you want your weight
to shift. Let your weight shift by turning your hips in the direction
that your hands are moving. Thinking about the swing in this way
should help you finish the swing with your weight on your left
side. A good and balanced finish position usually produces stronger
and straighter golf shots.
|Green Tunnels (song
title from the Golf Album)
vision, looking down the middle of a fairway or at your target,
blocking out all negative thoughts such as hazards, bunkers and
out-of-bounds. Be positive and commit!
The best players
keep the angle of their spine consistent throughout their entire
swing. High handicap players usually raise their body up during
the backswing and move it forward on the downswing. Add more consistency
to your swing by keeping your spine angle in the same position from
start to finish.
| Shoulder Turn
This is another
huge tip for me, hopefully it will help you too. On the takeaway,
getting the left shoulder under the chin tells me I'm making a full
shoulder turn, keeping my head in a good position and the club in
a good position at that top of my swing. I want to feel the left
shoulder touching my chin right before I start my downswing. During
the downswing, I keep my head behind the ball while shifting my
weight to the leftside swinging the club down the target line.
Attitude Is Everything by
The learning attitude sets the whole tone of how people go about
developing new skills and/or taking skills that are marginal and
improving them. Players must be honest with themselves. They have
to be realistic but in positive terms. They have to realize that
a good attitude is a necessary part of the learning process and
should not get upset with themselves when mistakes are made. Mistakes
are a necessary part of the learning process. Champions learn how
to handle disappointments, then set up a solution to the problem
and identify how to fix it.
Q & A
absloute favorite course, if you have one? I've
been very lucky to have played several great courses but not all
of them (yet) but I would have to say Ballybunion in Ireland.
It has the beauty of a Pebble Beach coastline (more dramatic)
and the character of a links course all rolled into one. The Irish
are so friendly and enjoy life to the fullest. I enjoy taking
a caddy, walking and chatting with the locals.
great music, great CD's. What's your favorite ball? I've tried
several brands from Callaway Blue, Nikes, Maxfli Revolution but
I seem to always go back to Titleist. I've had 2 hole-in-one's
to date, one in each century! Both with Titleist balls. Right
now, Titleist Pro V1 and the new Bridgestone 330S are my favorite
your best score and on what course? In 2004,
I shot a 74, first and only time I played on a newer course in LA
called Aliso Viejo in Orange County, designed by Jack Nicklaus.
I was jet lagged from Florida. Go figure! But in 2011, I played a newer course in Boca Raton, Florida, Osprey Point and shot even par 72!
I see from
your photo you played Torrey Pines in San Diego, what did you
think of it? Wow! I spent a weekend down there, stayed at
the Lodge (first class place), played North and South courses.
I would recommend playing the North first to get a feel of the
greens, wind and grass before hopping onto the famous South course.
These are great tracks, no doubt. I had my 'A' game with me on
the South and it was tough. I loved it, you have to be straight,
long and a good putter to score well. Challenging and beautiful.
In August the weather could not have been dialed up any better.
My only disappoint was the driving range. They need to get it
up to speed.
going to LA for a few weeks and wondering if you have any favorite
courses open to the public? Sure! Here
in the LA area we have some great tracks. Robinson Ranch in Santa
Clarita, Tierra Rejada, Rustic Canyon (links style) and Moorpark CC in Moorpark, a newer course
Angeles National in Sunland (north LA), Malibu CC, Lost Canyons
(Shadow course is gimmicky), Industry Hills. These courses
are in the LA/Ventura county area. If you are going to Orange
county, I'm not as familiar with the tracks down there. I did
play a few in the Corona area. Oak Quarry and Eagle Glen are great
tracks too and all of them open to the public.