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Using The Driver In Golf – Your Starting Advantage

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Teeing up a ball to start off on any hole can be exciting, the sense of power that you have holding the longest club in your bag is a great feeling. People are often overcome with nerves and emotion because of what’s at stake with that first shot. Using the driver in golf is a true starting advantage when executed properly, or it can be a complete disaster when not.

There can be an argument made that the driver is the most important club in the bag, or some may say it’s your putter because you can really knock off a lot of strokes with great putting. The driver is important in a different way, giving you a great starting point to play from on your second shot, if you gain maximum yardage while keeping it in the fairway. It can give you a boost mentally and set you up with more confidence on all your remaining shots from tee to green.

When your shot does not go well it can be the complete opposite and lead to a disastrous hole or even affect your complete round out there. The driver, when not executed properly can play on you mentally and make it uncomfortable in the tee off box, creating tension and affecting your swing plane and ultimately your shot.

Most beginner or intermediate golfers want to use their driver too much and sometimes it’s just not the right club selection for that particular hole. It’s important to really decide if the risk is worth the reward on each hole based on your surroundings. When in doubt, club down a bit with a 3 wood or iron and put your ball in play on the fairway with a club that’s easier and more forgiving to hit.

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Proper Execution

Being successful with your driver all starts with proper execution. Your stance, the height of your tee and how you swing are all going to play an important part in making a great shot. What do your surroundings look like? Is it a narrow fairway lined by trees or are there hazards set up in the right places to land in? Do you know the yardage that you generally hit with your driver so you can judge where your ball is going to land? Definitely questions you need to ask yourself before a shot.

Another thing that most higher handicap golfers don’t think about is the driver they are using. Are you using the right driver that suits your game? The latest and greatest driver on the market might be cool to own but if you can’t hit it properly because the technology and makeup of the club is not built for you then what good is it? Choosing the right tool for the job is extremely important.

Setup Is Your Foundation

A proper stance is going to be the starting point of your power. Your stance is going to be wider with your driver than any other club in your bag because your swing is going to be longer and wider. Make sure your feet are slightly wider than your shoulders to give you a nice stable balance. The toe on your front foot slightly turned out.

Flex your knees slightly to allow easier movement of the upper body and play the ball in line with your heel on your front foot. A proper tee height is generally when the ball is about half a ball higher on the tee than the height of your club head placed next to it while on the ground.

Swing For Power

The motion of your backswing is going to be the same for your driver as it is with any other club. Pay special attention that your hips are turning and not sliding as you are going through your takeaway with the club. Think long and wide as you move the club through your backswing. When you get to the top of your swing, your shoulder should be turned under your chin and both the shoulders and hips should be loaded and ready to unleash with great speed and power.

On the downswing, let the hips lead the way and the shoulders to follow, arms and hands come last. It’s extremely important to follow this in sequence to deliver the clubhead into the ball on the correct inside path. If the process is rushed, you will likely unwind your shoulders too quickly and swing “over the top” creating the dreaded slice as you move on an out-to-in path, losing power in the process. Follow through with your lower arm extending right down the target line to maintain your power and accuracy.

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The Right Driver For You

Choosing the right type of driver for your abilities is really a necessity if you want to maximize all the distance and control out of your club. The two main areas you should be concentrating on are the type of flex the shaft has and the amount of loft in the club head.

Flex is made in a variety of types including, regular, stiff, extra stiff, ladies, and senior. Everyone is going to fall in their own category here based on their strength and mainly their clubhead speed. It is extremely important to get your swing speed measured so you can make the most out of your driver with distance. Choosing the right flex is half the battle.

The other important piece to consider is the loft of your driver. The loft measurements can go anywhere from 9-15 degrees depending on the style, usually going up in 0.5 degree increments to get the right loft angle that suits your needs. When judging what loft is best for you, as a rule of thumb, the higher the loft, the more height you will get with your shot.

Women’s, seniors and the drivers designed for higher handicap golfers are going to give you those higher lofts in the club to assist you with an easier ball flight and a better experience off the tee. Another type of driver you can look at is one that has an adjustable loft. Generally designed with a variety of loft angles that you can explore and really dial in the number that suits your driving needs.

There are a few other things to consider with a driver as well. The size of the head or face, how large is the sweet spot? Are you looking to control your shot with a fade or a draw or just trying to get pure distance? Some drivers on the market also have adjustments you can make to alter the face to customize your type of shot. A driver with an “offset” at the head can be very beneficial to a higher handicap golfer to help square up the face at impact.

Gain Your Advantage

Technology has come so far in all golf clubs in today’s world, so using the driver in golf isn’t just as simple as picking up any old club anymore. If you want to really help your game it’s essential to dial in every aspect of the best driver that’s going to suit your ability and type of game.

Using a great driver is going to give you a huge mental lift in the tee box when you know that the club is specifically designed for your game. This, combined with proper setup and execution with your swing are definitely a proper recipe for success in your driving game and it will carry forward in other shots throughout your round.

Remember that knowing when to pull the big boy out of the bag is also a critical choice based on your surroundings, but if the time is right there’s no greater feeling than to grip it and rip it! Get out there and enjoy it and if you have any questions please hit me up in the comments section below.

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Golf Swing Training Equipment – Will It Help Your Game?

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In the world we live in today, let’s face it, we are all pretty busy out there. Often we can only get to the course or even a driving range once a week? Maybe a bit more or less depending. What better way to improve your game than by doing some training around the comfort of your own home when you have some free time? Let’s look at some different types of golf swing training equipment that we can use to make the most of our time and get our game in better shape. Today we will look at the different styles or types of devices, how they work, and what they can do to help.

 

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Swing Training Aids

There are literally hundreds of swing training aids on the market today and more showing up by the day it seems. Trying to select the right one that suits your needs can be confusing and intimidating at times. The main goal and purpose of any swing training aid is to ultimately help train your mind and body to get on a proper swing plane and tempo, encouraging you to develop that feel and muscle memory over time. There are a few types that can be beneficial to your game.

Arm Bands

  • Help promote a proper one-piece takeaway, keeping your arms and body in sync and your back elbow close to your body. It is made up of a stretchable material and can really be beneficial to training your body to execute a more efficient swing.

Weighted Swing Clubs

  • A weighted club can really force you to swing on a proper path. Through repetition, you can gain that feeling of swinging on the right plane as the club and gravity does the work to keep you on line. There are many styles that all work in a similar fashion with the ultimate goal of achieving that golden swing!

Swing Training Straps

  • Similar to an arm band, the training strap usually is a velcro type of unit that wraps around the body and upper back arm. It can really help in that “flying elbow” type of takeaway that can lead to an improper swing path and inconsistent ball striking. It primarily keeps that back elbow close to the hip on your downswing to promote a great swing.

Flex Swing Trainers

  • There are many variations on the market of this type of product. It is usually made up of a compact style shaft with a rope and some type of ball attachment, or can be just a flexible shaft with a weighted head. The purpose is to improve tempo and proper wrist technique. Very beneficial in developing a proper feel and tempo to your swing.

Club Sensors

  • This product can be used in conjunction with the above products and can really be a game changer. An attachment to your club that measures the mechanics affecting ball height and shot results. Generally synced to an app, this product can tell you swing tempo, speed, club path measurements, and your club angles at the face and shaft. Pretty incredible technology to really be able to study your game and make improvements.

Driving – Chipping Nets

These are always a fun backyard product to have. They definitely come in all shapes and sizes to suit any type of area you are setting up in and can be a really convenient way to practice. Set up your driving mat with a net, incorporate some swing trainers above and there you go! Practice in privacy and achieve great results for the course.

You could also opt for some smaller chipping nets that will promote accuracy on distance. Just visualize where you want your ball to land as if you’re taking a greenside chip and try to land it in the netting. An excellent way to improve your short game at an affordable cost.

 

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Range Finders – Launch Monitors – GPS

Technology again folks. There are so many styles on the market for all of these units. The portable units can be brought to the course to help your game there.

  • GPS watches and portable units can tell you the precise yardages to greens, hazards, dog-legs an even pin direction on blind shots. If you know your clubs well, in a way where you know how far you hit each one, these GPS units can be a huge advantage for you on the course.
  • Range finders can be a cool product to add to your arsenal if you are truly all about distance. Most of these units can lock in on a flag stick with great accuracy so you can find your yardage to the pin. Some will even compensate slope, temperature and other aspects to give you a real true distance. A huge help in making a proper club selection for every shot.
  • Launch monitors are really the “cream of the crop” in technology. These units measure ball flight and really give you every aspect of what your ball is doing. Swing speed, ball carry, ball speed, launch angle, apex, smash factor, it’s all there. Some even have voice output of your distance. An incredible source of information to help your game and have fun doing it.
  • Golf simulators offer a real game experience in the comfort of your own home. Get all the same golf measurements in a launch monitor and hit any ball from tee to green using your own clubs. Use it as a practice tool with varied settings or challenge your friends to a round in your home viewing it on a screen. A real convenient unit to have at home.

Putting Devices

There are a variety of putting devices out there. Some are designed for all out fun where you are just trying to sink your shots on a putting mat into the cup, others offer a more serious approach with mirrors and strings to encourage proper alignment and stroke. It is truly a personal preference as to what you’re looking to gain out of one of these products. They all can offer a great experience.

I find that the putting mats are fun for competition with friends but can be a bit boring if you’re using them by yourself. The more serious training devices are great for practice alone and can really be a huge help to your game when you commit to regular practice and take that same putting stroke to the course.

Spice Up Your Game

As you can see, there are a many types of golf swing training equipment available out there that can be very helpful to your game. Some of them are really inexpensive and can be a huge benefit to improving your swing and making you a far better golfer in the process. I encourage you to align yourself with something that’s going to work for you and stick with it. Put in the time and dedication and you will truly improve your game.

Technology has changed this great game of golf in a big way and we can all reap the rewards if we want. It’s there for the taking. Please leave me a comment below if you have any questions and I will gladly reply. I wish everyone the best in their successful journey to improving their game!

 

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Difference In Golf Balls – Does It Matter To Me?

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Difference-In-Golf-Balls

 

You bet it does! There are countless types of golf balls on the market and choosing one that suits your needs can really be confusing at times. Knowing the difference in golf balls and what each one can do for you will help you make a more informed decision and make things a little less challenging at the checkout and on the course.

Believe it or not, these little round things are packed with loads of technology and are designed to do certain things for a golfer. It is quite important to pick the proper type of balls that are going to be more designed for what you are trying to achieve out of your game.

Outer Cover

There are generally two types of covers that are used in the construction of a golf ball, a surlyn ionomer cover and a urethane cover.

Typically, a surlyn ionomer cover is used on cheaper balls and is made up of a plastic with amazing elasticity properties. A great quality of this type of material is having excellent durability that allows a ball to take a good beating with minimal scuff marks. These balls can last a long time and hold up very well.

The urethane cover is a softer material, thinner and a different texture. These are going to be on most of your more expensive balls. The softer material absorbs the clubface more at impact and really allows the grooves of your club to dig in and apply spin to the ball. You are going to go through these balls a little quicker as they get scuffed and cut up over time.

Inner Construction

The inner construction of a ball can vary. A two-piece ball is made up of a rubber core and an outer cover but some of these balls on the market today can have anywhere from two to five layers in their makeup. The separate layers are made up of different material densities with the firmest being at the center of the ball. Each of those layers are designed to do something with the ball when energy is absorbed, whether it be spin, flight, or control etc.

Generally, the faster your clubhead speed is, the more layers on the ball you will want. Like many things in this great game of golf, it really comes down to feel and physics. If you can feel that ball absorb into the clubface, you are sending it on a mission to do what its designed to do.

Distance VS Control

This debate is purely a matter of preference. Some balls are designed for distance and some for a softer feel and control. I would recommend having a few types in your bag for a round of golf, more importantly educating yourself before you pull a ball out of your bag. Know what that specific ball is designed to do and pick the right tool for the job. Much like picking the right club for your shot, it’s equally important to pick the right ball to tee off with for that specific hole.

The urethane cover balls are going to spin more and fly lower giving you more control and the surlyn ionomer will spin less and give you a higher trajectory, often giving you the more distance. Keep in mind, if you are already struggling with hooking or slicing the ball, a urethane cover is going to make it spin even more, thus creating even more of a problem in your game.

The Right Ball For You

It really pays to test out a few different types of balls and see what’s going to work best for you. Typically, a two-piece ball is usually great for beginners as it offers distance and limited side spin. Your main objective as a beginner is to get the ball in the air and keep it straight and playable in the fairway.

An intermediate golfer might explore a more layered type of ball construction, limiting distance but providing a little more control and feel on the ball when needed. Someone with a low handicap or a professional is going to want that soft cover and multi-layered ball so they can shape the ball according to spin and feel, really use the technology in the ball for what it’s designed to do.

Ball compression is another thing you should be looking at. It can be split into three different levels.

  • High Compression – A swing speed of 105 mph or more would be considered high compression. The most suitable ball for you would be a compression rating of 90 or higher. The ball will be dense enough to still give you some control vs focusing on just distance.
  • Mid Compression – If your swing speed is between 85 – 105 mph you should be using a ball rated in the 80 – 90 range for compression rating. A good balance of distance, feel and control.
  • Low Compression – Anything under 85 mph for swing speed you’re going to want a low compression ball. This ball is the typical choice for beginners, juniors, seniors, and ladies. You should be using a ball with a compression rating under 80 to give you a little help with distance on the ball.

Make Your Game better

So as you can see, technology has really gone into the construction of the golf ball over the years. There is definitely a difference in golf balls and one out there for everyone that can be used to improve their game. Too often people upgrade their driver or other clubs at the hope of getting those extra yards but they forget about the most important tool that’s used for every shot on every hole.

If you want to gain distance, or maybe you feel that you can’t control the ball around the green like you want? It could be as simple as choosing the proper ball. It is often an overlooked item by beginners and intermediate golfers and one that can greatly improve your game and have you on a fast track to lower scores. In this challenging game we need every advantage we can find. Start your next round by using the right ball for your skill level and impress yourself with the results.

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Chip Shot For Golf – Essential To Your Success

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Mastering the chip shot is really an integral part of your golf game. There are countless times throughout a round that you will need to lean on this type of shot to get yourself on the putting surface. Note that when I’m talking about a chip shot for golf, there are many different ways to approach the shot and will be dependent on yardage, the ball height you require, whether you’re chipping uphill or downhill and the thickness of grass you are taking your shot from.

Let’s take a look at the different situations and what kind of technique and club selection is required to get that ball on the green and really try to shave some strokes off your game in the process. Once you establish a good chipping technique that’s half the battle. Sure some shots will be a little trickier than others but by building a solid foundation and good fundamentals all your shots will revolve around the same approach.

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Chipping With A Wedge

Setup For Success

Establishing a proper setup is crucial. That is your base and starting point for achieving a successful shot. You really want to start with a narrow stance, your back foot slightly ahead of the other foot and playing the ball almost off the inside of that back foot if you were drawing an imaginary line to the ball. Your body should have a slight lean towards the target to help promote a downward strike to the back of the ball. The hands should be slightly ahead of the ball and you want to grip your club as you would your putter, choking down on the club for extra control. Make sure you have a little knee flex going on as well.

Visualize, see the shot before you hit it and look at the spot where you want the ball to land. Hold the club softly and open your stance towards the target line. Keep your head up and back straight, no tension in the arms. A bad habit to get into is hunching over the ball, so make that extra effort to focus on your posture every time and you’ll be giving yourself a great chance to succeed.

Great Shot Execution

The chipping stroke is pretty straightforward. It’s really a back and then forward type of approach controlled by the shoulders more than the arms and hands. You do not need a lot of force as it is more of a touch and feel type of shot. Start the backswing with the shoulders and allow the arms and hands to follow.

You are really trying to establish that 1-2 kind of tempo, without rushing your backswing or forward swing. Strike the back of the ball and let the loft of the club do the work. This is at the most a half swing as you bring the club back and more often than not it is really going to be maybe a quarter swing.

One of the biggest mistakes that people make is cupping the wrists and trying to help the ball in the air. Do not do this! It is extremely important to keep the arms and wrists straight and let the shoulders initiate the forward movement. Your wrists will then uncock naturally through the process.

The Right Club Selection

Your choice of clubs is going to vary depending on the technique you are intending. If it’s a long chip and you’re looking for more roll than ball flight, I would go with something like a 6 or 7 iron. This technique is often referred to as a bump and run technique. When attempting a shorter chip you could go with a sand wedge or lob wedge and give yourself a bit more height and less roll once the ball hits the putting surface.

If you’re caught up in the greenside rough I would recommend a 60 degree wedge like your lob wedge to give you some much needed loft. Put more of your weight on that front foot and make sure to grip the club more firmly as the rough will try to twist your clubface. Make a very upright backswing and on the downswing you want to expend force downward to penetrate the grass and pop the back of the ball. If you hit down sharply, there generally won’t be any type of follow through.

When your ball is in the fringe or in short, light rough around the green you could opt to use a 3 wood as your chip shot to give it just a slight bump onto the green. You’re going to want to choke way down below the grip and treat it like a putter, popping the clubface into the back of the ball and letting it roll up to the pin. This shot is very much about touch and feel on how much force you want to use but with the proper technique you will find this far superior to use than trying to use your putter off the fringe.

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3 Wood Chip

When Not To Chip

On a few occasions in your round of golf you will find yourself in tough situations where you will need to pull off a very skilled shot. If you happen to be just on the other side of a greenside bunker and pin placement is right at the front of the green directly straight ahead, you really don’t want to chip on and have the ball roll to the far side of the green. You may have to test your luck with a flop shot approach.

Start by opening up your stance and the clubface and have the ball position off your front heel. I like a wide stance and you want your body to stay pretty quiet, using just your shoulders, arms and hands. You want a long swing and quick acceleration through impact on the ball, sliding the club under the ball and a full follow through.

You will be using a 60 degree lob wedge and trying to aim for the toe of the club to deaden the shot and gain a high trajectory, while landing the ball softly and sticking it close to the pin with minimal roll. It can be a difficult shot to pull off but a very rewarding one when you do!

Just know your limitations and do not attempt a flop shot unless you have a decent lie and the ball is sitting up on the grass. If you are on a flat surface or the ball is sitting down in the grass you run the risk of chunking the ground or skulling the ball.

Mastering The Short Game

Much like putting, the chip shot for golf is an essential part of your game that you need to focus on. Without a doubt, it will knock strokes off your game rapidly if you master the different techniques and make smart choices with your club selection and touch on the ball. With proper setup, visualization and execution you will be well on your way to a more enjoyable and successful round of golf each and every time you step on the course. Don’t forget to take the time to practice your chipping techniques and feel free to reach out to me in the comments below if you have any questions.

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A Greenside Chip

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How To Hit A Sand Wedge – It’s Easier Than It Looks

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Like everything in the game of golf it is truly a game of challenges. There are many types of techniques that you need to learn to be successful on the course for every situation. Getting your ball out of the sand can often look like a struggle, but when done properly it just becomes a routine part of the game and those fears tend to subside with more practice.

Learning how to hit a sand wedge properly will get you well on your way to lower scores and impressing yourself with great escapes from the greenside bunker like a pro. That is our focus here, as a fairway bunker would be a completely different approach with longer clubs and not typically using your sand wedge.

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Greenside bunkers

Setup With Confidence

It all starts here as the foundation of a successful shot. You’re going to want to have an open stance to start with and align your feet, hips, and shoulders to the left of your target for right-handed golfers, and align to the right of your target if you are a lefty golfer. This sets you up for an out to in swing that cuts across the sand and ball.

The clubface needs to be in an open position. If your body alignment is set up to the left of your target then your clubface should be angled to the right of your target, and opposite for lefties. By opening the clubface you are increasing the loft of the sand wedge and allowing it to slide through the sand a lot easier.

By weakening your grip on your top hand slightly, it encourages the clubface to stay open and not have the hand accidentally rotating the club into a closed position at impact. The ball position should be just forward in your stance, opposite your front heel.

Swing Technique

A regular greenside bunker shot is all about technique and not strength. There is not a long takeaway in the swing or a lot of body movement either. Bring the club back so your hands are at about shoulder height and make sure your grip pressure is light. Break your wrists early on your backswing and cock them fully. This is a very “handsy” type of shot just using your hands and arms while your lower body stays relatively quiet.

Your swing through impact of the ball is dominated with your lower hand, guiding the club and almost throwing it towards the ball. You are not hitting down too steeply, but rather sliding it through the ball, entering the sand 1 to 3 inches behind the ball depending on what you are trying to achieve with the shot. Closer to the ball will give you more ball height, while further away allows the ball to run more at a lower trajectory. Either way, you want to take sand with the ball.

Trying to pick the ball cleanly without any sand can lead to disaster, as your ball can very easily get away from you and fly over the green way too far and past your intended target.

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Take your sand with the ball

Accelerate Through The Shot

One of the most common mistakes of an inexperienced or poor bunker player is decelerating through the impact of the ball. Trust me, I understand the fear involved when attempting this shot but that usually stems from a previous experience of hitting the ball too clean and not hitting through it. Once again, you must take sand with the ball and focus on your club head speed getting faster as it travels through the sand and then powers through the ball.

Remember your lower hand is the guide hand. The way the sand wedge is designed with the heavy weight at the head, wider flange at the back, and a lower sole than the leading edge, it really allows the club to slide through the sand rather than digging in.

Playing A Buried Lie

Once in a while you will encounter a situation where you get to your ball and find that it is virtually plugged or buried in the sand. You will need a slightly different approach to the methods described for a regular bunker shot. You will need to find a way to make the club penetrate the sand as deeply as possible.

Start by entering the sand about 2 inches behind the ball and take a divot at that point. The swing is going to be a lot more steep and vertical, still using an open stance and clubface. You are again going to be moving in an out to in type of swing path with your hands ahead of the ball and body leaning slightly towards the target. Apply extra force with that lower hand and push down firmly, you are not swinging through this kind of shot and will have almost no follow through as the sand grabs the club head after impact usually about a foot after you make contact.

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The ball is plugged or buried

Have Some Fun At The Beach

When your ball ends up in the sand, have some fun with it. Sure it’s going to take some practice and commitment to get better at it but it’s totally worth it. Using the right approach and technique will give you more control over your complete game. Now that you know how to hit a sand wedge, it will allow you to be more aggressive with approach shots, knowing you are fully capable of splashing your ball onto the green from a greenside bunker.

I promise you if you put the time and effort in at perfecting your technique you will without a doubt lower your scores and look like a pro doing it. Personally for myself, I find it the most rewarding shot in golf. It’s all about touch, feel and technique, and if you happen to hole one from the bunker, look out! That right there makes up for any mistakes all day.

If you have any questions or if I can help in any way please hit me up in the comments below and I will definitely get back to you. All the best on your successful journey from the beach!

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Splashing the ball out

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Fix My Golf Slice – Keeping Your Ball In The Fairway

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One of the most frustrating missed shots in golf is the dreaded slice. It usually starts off straight and then the ball tails off to the right if you’re a righty or left if you’re a lefty. Unless you want to carry a chainsaw in your bag as an extra club we’ve got to solve this issue!

I have a good friend that used to line up way off line, facing in a different direction to compensate for his slice, until he actually hit it straight one day and hit the roof of the pro shop that was 2 fairways over. Lol. True story. His first exact words were ” It’s time to fix my golf slice.” It is definitely a far more enjoyable game when you have control over your ball.

 

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Look At Your Clubs

When I say this I mean, what kind of clubs are you using to start with? As a beginner you should be using a type of iron set that has an offset where the head meets the shaft It is a slight bend that helps you get your club face squared up on impact and gives you a fair chance at a great long and straight shot. A cavity back on the iron (open back) and over-sized head also gives you more distance on your shot and a bigger chance to hit the sweet spot on the club.

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Cavity back irons with over-sized heads

More experienced golfers would be after more of a straight, blade type iron so they can shape and adjust their shot according to how they want to hit it.

When using your woods and driver you need to look at the shaft on the club. The stiffer the shaft, the more swing speed you need to impact the ball in order to get your maximum distance. As a beginner or average golfer I would recommend a regular flex or even a softer flex, with a higher degree of loft to get the club working properly for you while maximizing your distance on the ball at the same time.

Foot Technique

If you are continually slicing a ball, chances are you are coming over the top on the ball and leaving the face of your club open instead of hitting from the inside out. Remember, ideally you want to impact the ball on the inside and square up as you drive through the ball and follow through.

Another common problem is when your wrist on your top hand is cupped at the top of your backswing, leaving the clubface open as well. You want to make sure that your wrist is flat and forearm is straight at the top of your backswing, with the clubface square.

A great practice technique is to drop your back foot back about half way to where your front foot is planted. This forces you to bring your body around and connect on the inside of the ball. I do this quite often even on the course if I want to make sure my shot stays alive in a situation where a water hazard is on my “slice” side or sand etc.

Stay Down On The Ball

The importance of staying down on the ball is crucial. Impact the ball, head, arms, shoulders stay down and drive the club through the ball, impact the back of the ball and follow through to take that divot. As watch these pros it happens on every shot. That’s a proper shot on a ball. The divot comes after impact on the ball.

Practice Your Craft

Practice, practice, practice. It’s just that kind of game. Get to your local driving range and work on it. integrate the right mechanics in your body so it becomes muscle memory. Nothing is more rewarding than solving a swing issue like this and when you do hit the course you know how to avoid the problem.

Work on the foot technique of dropping that back foot back a bit and set up your range balls with the stripe on the right angle so you can visually see how you want to hit it from the inside out. You will start getting a feel for squaring up the club face. As you get better at hitting it consistently you can start bringing that back foot forward and even with your front foot, while still applying the same type of swing technique.

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Your Time To Shine

So there you have it. It all starts with using the right type of clubs to minimize the fight. A very important starting point for a beginner. That is the foundation. Fix my golf slice? That’s half the battle right there, then it’s really about practice and technique after that. If you work at it diligently it won’t take long to start developing that feel for striking the ball properly to avoid slicing it.

Dropping that back foot back a bit should make you start hitting a draw, where your ball curls to the inside. Learn to play like that and get comfortable with it, and before you know it you’ll be shaping your shots accordingly to get around obstacles and keeping your ball in the fairway far more often.

This is just another way to shave those strokes off your game and make a round of golf more enjoyable. If there are any questions or if I can help in any way please hit me up in the comments and I will do my best to get you on the right path.

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Putting Tips For Beginners – Sink Your Shots!

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So you want to shave strokes off your game, right? Well out of any club in your bag, the putter is definitely the place to do it. A lot of golfers focus on their driver, you’ll see it all the time at the driving range, and it’s great to practice with all of your clubs, don’t get me wrong, but most tend to neglect the most important club in the bag. Let’s go over some putting tips for beginners that will help you raise your game, lower your score and have you sinking more shots.

Putting-Tips-For-Beginners

Types Of Putters

There are tons of different types of putters out there in today’s world. The one you choose is solely based on personal preference. Some that are a basic blade style right up to ones that look like a spaceship at the head. All great in their own way and all offer different balance, weight and ball alignment strategies. I encourage anyone to test a few different styles out to find a comfortable fit that works for you. It is very much a specialty club for each individuals likes and dislikes.

Your Ball Hits The Green!

Putting-Tips-For-Beginners
Check your line and read the break

Some days just hitting the green with a shot is rewarding enough, but in order to raise your game we need to shave strokes off of it with great putting and execution.

In golf, the only time you are legally allowed to pick up your ball or touch it after tee up is when your ball is on the green. I always recommend marking your ball on a green. Place your ball marker behind the ball tight to the ball and pick your ball up. Give it a wipe, any debris can directly affect the true roll of your putt and completely change your shot accuracy.

Crouch down so you can see your line to the hole and look for any breaks or slopes that will affect your shot towards the hole. At this point I like to place the ball down and angle it using the letters or name on the ball as a line towards the angle I want to hit it. Think of the slopes and how the ball would travel towards the hole, how you would need to angle it to get it there. Pick up your ball marker.

Take Your Best Shot

The shot is really a lot about feel and it can take some practice to get the right touch on the ball. Weather conditions, length of grass, length of your putt, what type of break or non break you may be facing, all will affect how hard or soft you want to hit the ball. I’ts really about feeling it out on that particular day. Get some practice putts in on the practice green before you start your round. Gain your feel early, it all helps.

Your putting motion is just back and forward, all together with your arms and shoulders, everything moving together in unison. Think of a clock pendulum, back and forward, one motion. Follow through the ball the same length you took your putter back. You want to hit square to the back of the ball on your stroke, a common mistake is coming in from the inside on impact and changing your shot completely. You’ve set your ball up already and angled it accordingly and now you are standing above your ball and hitting it on that angle. Don’t second guess yourself looking down on the ball, it may look off line but it isn’t, Don’t let the eyes play tricks on you. Trust it and hit it.

Make sure your stance is comfortable relative to the ball. Sometimes the ball is in the middle of your stance, sometimes it may be a little forward in your stance, but I say it’s all about feel. If it feels right and you feel like you can put the right touch on the ball at the angle you are facing then it’s the right stance to be in for that particular shot. Every approach on different greens is going to be different because of distance, type of break etc. It is important to trust your own feel and intuition and learn from it.Putting-Tips-For-Beginners

Watch Your Ball Impact

Your eyes should be directly over the ball, keep that head down to watch the impact and follow through, then look at your ball. Lifting the head up early could affect the line your ball travels on and could make your stroke chunk the ground or just make bad contact with the ball. Stay patient in a nice fluid motion. Again, it’s purely a feel thing and you have to practice the repetition of the putting stroke so it becomes a natural feel.

Don’t Throw Your Clubs

Haha. For 1, they’re not cheap and they do break, trust me, but really it’s about having fun. Getting out there and making some nice putts is so rewarding. Knowing that you truly read that break and put the right touch on the ball is a skill and something to be proud of.

In golf, we are all aiming to 2 putt on every green, that’s the target that most golfers want to achieve as an average rule of thumb. So if I’m giving you my best putting tips for beginners I will say this… Regardless of how many strokes it takes you to get to the green, just focus on trying to 2 putt once you are on it. That right there alone is victory on every hole and once the rest of your game rounds into form you will be unstoppable.

If you are genuinely serious about improving your game, don’t let the rest of your game ruin your putting game because of frustration. Treat them separately and you will be pleasantly surprised how you are rewarded for your effort. Remember you are only really playing against yourself in golf. It’s about bettering your own game if you are learning. Now go shave some strokes off your game and sink those putts!Putting-Tips-For-Beginners

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Beginner Golf Swing Basics – Improve Your Consistency On The Course

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Beginner-Golf-Swing-Basics
Tiger Woods

One great thing about the game of golf is that it is essentially a game built on equal terms. No matter what your shape or size is, whether you are short or tall, stronger or not, there is always a club in the bag that can even up the playing field with your opponents. I have come up with some beginner golf swing basics that if followed and practiced properly, will have you improving your consistency greatly and ultimately having more fun!

Before we get right into the swing portion there are some very important steps needed first to help you achieve that great swing. The way you set up directly affects the way you swing and proper impact on the ball is vital.

The Grip

It all starts here. Without a proper grip you are setting yourself up for less success on the course. A lot of beginners will use a style where hands are apart, almost like holding a baseball bat. This allows the club to twist around with limited support and when the club head impacts the ball it may be pointing at a bad angle, thus affecting where your shot goes considerably.

There are many types of grip styles out there and it’s important to find one you’re comfortable with. Practice different ways of holding the club and see what works for you. The important thing is to find a way to lock both hands together.

I personally use an interlocking grip where you lock your pointer finger on your top hand between your pinky and ring finger on the lower hand. This keeps both hands securely together, both thumbs should be pointing straight down on the shaft of the club. Now you know when everything is straight and in line with your club face.

Beginner-Golf-Swing-Basics
Interlocking Grip

Body Alignment

The importance of where you are aiming your ball is critical. Take a look at your target from directly behind your ball, step back a bit. Sometimes it’s a completely different perspective compared to standing over your ball ready to swing. Angle your body accordingly.

When you are ready, step up to your ball and keep your top hand on your club to get your standing distance from the ball. Place the club head down near the back of the ball where it feels comfortable and add the other hand on the club. You don’t want to be reaching, just extended arms that hang comfortably down.

Knees should be slightly bent and make sure you can see your shoulder alignment is square on both sides out of the corner of your eyes. Hips will be set back and your upper body angled forward facing the ball.

Proper Stance

Your stance is basically the way your feet are placed on the ground in relation to the ball. There are many ways to adjust your foot placement depending on the type of shot you are trying to take but we are going to focus on the basics and the most common starting point for beginners.

Generally you want your feet about shoulder length apart to start with for most clubs. You can narrow your stance slightly for shorter length clubs or go slightly wider than shoulders for a long club like your driver. Your toes should be perpendicular to your target line for the back foot and slightly turned towards your target on the front foot, about 20 degrees. Keep your weight distribution equal on both feet.

The ball should be in the middle of your stance for most clubs and move slightly forward in your stance as the length of your club gets longer. For example, your driver is your longest club in your bag and ideally on tee off I like to have it lined up with my heel on my front foot if you’re drawing an imaginary line towards the ball. The shorter clubs like my wedges, 9 iron, 7 iron, I would play in the middle of my stance.

Your Swing

At last, we are ready to talk about beginner golf swing basics that will get you hitting that ball straighter and further. You can see by now how the previous fundamentals go hand in hand with achieving that proper swing. Your swing can be broken down into 3 parts or sections:

Backswing

Upon takeaway of your club it is very important to keep your arms close to your body. For right handed golfers, (opposite for lefties) you want to keep your right arm close and bring the club back and around you while transferring your weight over to that back right foot. The club will be rising at a 90 degree angle to the ground. Club, hands, arms, and body all turning together as one, using your core as you turn your upper body.

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Top Of The Backswing

Remember, you don’t have to feel that this needs to be done super quick, even when you’re on the course. Every golfer’s swing is going to be a bit different. It’s quite fine to gradually and slowly start moving your club away properly while keeping good posture, until you reach the top of your backswing.

Downswing

The downswing happens quite quickly. You are at the top of your backswing and now it’s time to power through the ball. There is not a lot of time to think at this point but you really want to make sure that you swing the club down into the ball from the inside as you impact the ball. Your club face will square up and hit the back of the ball.

Beginner-Golf-Swing-Basics
Downswing

Lead with hip rotation as you start on your downswing, keep those arms close to the body on that proper swing plane you had in your takeaway. Head down and eye on the ball. If you lift your head up, you’ve now changed your alignment and your proper plane and it will affect your swing.

Let the club do the work, the loft angles of the clubs will lift the ball as you strike the back of it, don’t try to lift up on the ball. As you swing think about building speed as you move towards the ball. It’s not the kind of swing where you swing as hard as you can right from the start.

Follow Through & Finish

The importance of follow through after the ball is impacted is crucial. Continue your momentum through the ball, arms fully extend, hip rotates as weight transfers to your front foot and your back foot is on its toes. You are now looking at your ball flying towards the target. Your shot is now complete.

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Follow Through
Beginner-Golf-Swing-Basics
Finish

Final Thoughts

So there you have it! Some great fundamentals to go by here. I truly believe that if you follow along with these steps you will be well on your way to a greatly improved game.

Playing great golf requires practice and repetition of the right habits. Sure, it’s going to feel a little robotic at first and lots of thinking through things, but after time it just becomes normal, your muscle memory develops and you just start doing these things naturally. You will be rewarded and proud of yourself for putting in the time and effort.

So go hit that driving range and start your journey to happiness on the course. If you get a little frustrated turn on your TV and watch every pro golfer miss-hit some shots on a regular basis. It is truly a very humbling game.

Go out there and have fun! Making a few great shots in a round of golf is very rewarding and will keep you coming back for more. Wishing you great success!

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About John

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Welcome to Golf Training and Tools, a place to find direction, instruction and the appropriate equipment to change your golf game forever.

A LITTLE BIT ABOUT ME

From the time I was 6 years old I was introduced to the amazing game of golf. I spent many of weekends with my grandfather hitting different courses in my area. As I grew older I started golfing with many new people and developed great friendships along the way.

One thing I always found is golf is more than just a game. It’s a passion and an addiction. There’s always that thirst for knowledge and to want to play better no matter what age you are.

Whether you are a weekend warrior or at a pro level there’s always something that can be done to improve your game, and let’s face it, golf is just simply more fun when you play well.

 

WHY I WANT TO HELP PEOPLE

Simply put, It’s the most humbling game on the planet. I know myself the many frustrations and bad decisions I’ve made out there on the course over time. If I can help someone have a great round and improve their game based on what I can offer then it makes me feel good.

Quite often it really starts at getting back to the basics. Whether your swing plane is off-line, your swing approach is wrong or maybe you’re using the wrong club for your intended shot? All of these things can be corrected over time with education and practice using the right training aids and tools.

 

GOOD PRACTICE LEADS TO PERFECTION

My main goal of this site is to educate and make golfers of any level aware that there is help out there. There is a variety of training products and tools that are available, many I’ve tested myself.

Golf is such an individual game and every little thing can affect your game out there. Nerves, mental stress, poor swing speed or approach. There is a long list and everyone’s problems are unique to them.

Repetition and practicing good habits is key in this sport. If you can train your mind and create that muscle memory over time you will be well on your way to shaving strokes off your game and finding a lot more enjoyment on the course.

If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.

All the best,

John

playsuperiorgolf.com

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