Too much analysis can create paralysis

In the bunker, focus on the spot behind the ball, as demonstrated by Jae

In the bunker, focus on the spot behind the ball, as demonstrated by Jae

Over the past few months you would have read my articles covering the basic fundamentals of the game of golf.   One of the key components of a successful round is to know what to focus on during your golf shot.  Many of us tend to focus on too many components of the swing at any given time, leading to a crowded thought pattern which interrupts the free-flowing golf swing.   To overcome this, it’s a good idea to have just one key thing to focus on with your golf swing.

For those of us seasoned golfers who have spent many years moulding their golf swing, are time poor and don’t want to make a great deal of change to their swing,

here are some key thoughts for various aspects of the game which should help you to achieve a free-flowing swing:

Putting – Use your eyes to feel the distance you need to roll the ball.  Instead of looking at the golf ball whilst setting up for your putt spend most of your focus looking up and down the line of your putt to the hole so the brain knows how hard you have to roll the ball for correct distance.  Your one key thought is to focus on the speed not your mechanics.

Bunker shots – When playing a bunker shot you need to make a reasonably full golf swing and you are trying to hit approximately 5cm—or two inches—behind the ball.  Take your stance and place your club behind the ball above the sand.  Just before you start your swing move the head of the golf club two inches behind the ball to where you want to enter the sand.  Focus with your eyes on that spot then take one more look at your target where you want the ball to land.  Refocus your eyes back onto the spot behind the ball then play your shot trying to hit the sand where your eyes are focussed.  Remember to follow through.  Your one key thought is to pick a spot behind the ball and focus on that spot.

For the full swing hold your balance at the finish of your swing on your left side (right-handed player), as demonstrated by Travis.

For the full swing hold your balance at the finish of your swing on your left side (right-handed player), as demonstrated by Travis.

Full Swing – the biggest problem that we all have with our full swing is that we focus too much on the mechanics of the swing whilst trying to hit the ball and our swing becomes fragmented.   Once you have set up correctly and just about to start your swing think of a free-flowing motion and a balanced finish.  Your one key thought is to hold your balance on your front foot at the finish of your swing.

Chipping – the biggest problem a lot of us have with chipping is that we move our head and our body too quick to the finish position and this leads to bad contact with the golf ball.  After you have taken your set-up and you have picked your spot where you want your ball to land, focus on one dimple on the back of the golf ball and try and watch the middle of the golf club make contact with that dimple.  Your one key thought here is to watch the club hit the ball.

There is a great golf saying that if you ask a person who played badly what he was thinking about during his round he will tell you many things that he was working on.  If you ask a person that played really well what he was thinking about he finds it hard to think of anything.  Sometimes it’s a case of the less we think the better we play.

For more information on how to play better golf contact your local PGA golf professional or contact me at Royal Pines Golf Club on the Gold Coast.

FOOTNOTE: Jae and Travis (pictured) are part of my elite squad.  If you wish to join the squad and learn on a regular basis with me, then please contact me, as limited spots will be available soon.

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