Archives for November, 2018

Is your Brain Getting in Your Way ?

If you play golf with too many thoughts in your mind, you are setting up to fail.  You need a way to simplify your game and clear your mind before every swing.   Practice the correct full swing on your practice swing and then move up to your ball and go into auto pilot.  Swing with confidence and don’t let your brain get in your way.

Brooks Koepka said that “he has NO swing thought”.  When he settles over a shot he says “his mind goes quite”.  He says that he is not trying to work on anything while he is playing a round of golf. He simplifies the game so much that his only thought is if he will miss long or miss short.

He knows the shot that he needs to make with every slope condition and with every club. Practice gave him the peace of mind and confidence that he will make each shot the way he visualizes it.  At the start of the 2018 season, while he recovered from a wrist injury, he learned to fall in love with the game of golf again.  He missed playing so much that his mind learned to tune-in to every shot when he started to play again.

Get those crazy thoughts out of your mind when you make the perfect practice swing. Then repeat at the same speed when you power that ball directly at your target.

KEY FOCUS:  He learned to put pressure on himself when he was practicing.  Adding pressure to make the perfect swing (WHILE HE WAS PRACTICING), forced his attention for the perfect setup and relaxed grip for a powerful swing during his rounds of golf.

David Alred is a famous golf instructor who worked with Luke Donald [born December 7, 1977 – lucky 7’s?]. In 2011 (at the age of 34, 3+4 = lucky 7) he was the top money earner on the PGA Tour as well as the Race to Dubai.  Alred also worked with Francesco Molinari to help him train for his win at The 2018 OPEN.  He help both Donald and Molinari win by practicing to make every shot a winner with a planned purpose.  Each shot was to save par or setup a birdie or win a match.  The pressure was on to perform.  He made them practice under pressure to make every shot a perfect shot.

Golf is unpredictable.  You need to practice for the unpredictable lies on unpredictable slopes.  Make yourself uncomfortable and learn to make the shot that you want.

You chock when you lose your rhythm.  Make your practice swing a perfect full swing with the right rhythm.  Know that your practice swing will execute the right shot.  Then repeat the same light grip and controlled swing to a balance finish.   It really is an amazing feeling when you feel your shot and then make the shot, especially as a recreational player.

When you practice, figure out why a shot goes left or right, long or short and especially why it was perfect.  That’s what Bubba Watson does.  Practice with GOLFSTR+ for every swing in your game.  Buy one today at www.golfstr.com 

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Golf 101: Direction Control

Controlling the directions of your ball flight is more critical than any other part of your golf game. Most courses are fairly forgiving with wide fairways but don’t let that fool you into going for the gusto on every shot. The final LPGA Tournament of the year (CME Globe) is held at Tiberon Golf Club in Naples, FL. It’s not a long course but it is narrow and any shot into the woods is not forgiving. I’ve played that course a few times and I know what those ladies were going through. Without direction control you will never score low.

My game falls apart during the 3 or 4 holes where one of my shots decides to slice or duck hook. Every par 3 will tell you if you have control of your direction. If you aren’t hitting the green and 2 putting, that should be your wake-up call. I tend to lose my direction control when I try to put more power into my swing or when I feel a little cocky about may last birdie. It ALL comes down to mind control and swing tempo.

Your fairways may be wide but don’t let that fool you. Know how to control your direction and plan it for every hit.

How to Focus on Direction Control
Consistent Swing Tempo: Take control of your game when you find your rhythm at the driving range before your first tee drive. If your hips, shoulders and arms are moving correctly, you will control the direction of every shot. Every shot with each different club on different slope of the ground demands your attention for the right setup but don’t let that change your swing tempo.

Choose the Right Club: Changing wind direction can play with your mind. Commit to your shot when you chose the club that will reach your target with an 80%, controlled swing speed.

Find your Swing Speed: Swinging faster and slower for each club is the kiss of death. Consistent cadence allows you to keep your hips, shoulders and arms in a consistent timing sequence. If the wind gets a little stronger, don’t swing harder. Either wait for the gust to die down or make sure that you have 2 clubs to choose from to reach the distance that you want.

Test your clubs for three quarter and half back swing at the same Cadence: You will find situations where you have to swing with a limited backswing. Practice these swings at the practice range to see how they affect your direction control.

Adjust for your Short Shots: Slowing down your swing for any of you longer clubs will often lead to leaving the face of your club open (causing a push or slice). The same problem happens when you use your Pitching, Gap or Sand Wedge. Gripping down when you have too much club is always the best way to keep your consistent swing cadence. If you have to slow down your swing cadence then you should setup with an open stance with more pressure on your forward foot. This allows you to get your hips, shoulders and arms through the shot to a full finish (WITHOUT LEAVING YOUR CLUB FACE OPEN).

Why do the pros look like they are in control of every swing? You got it: They swing with the same pace and cadence for direction control. Sure they can hit further than you because their lag and release is more powerful. Remember: Control direction first and you will save a lot more stokes in every round of golf. Practice with GOLFSTR+ to learn your ideal cadence. Buy one today at www.golfstr.com

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Quick Fixes for Brain Cramps on the Golf Course

Have you ever been playing a round of golf when nothing is working right? It may start at the first tee or the wheels fall off half way through your round. When it happens you need to recognize that your body is not moving correctly. If you are in a match, you can’t use a golf training aid. However, we found some great fixes from GolfRX and a few pro golfer tips to fix your BRAIN CRAMPS.

These are legal ideas that you can do while you are in the middle of your round.

For your Drives and Fairway Shots

Jean Van de Velde lost his swing at Carnoustie British Open 1999 final hole. It can happen at any time. Get your swing back.

1/ Correct your wrist release:Flip your club upside down and swing your shaft to allow the grip to release at the bottom of the swing to create a whooshing sound. You can’t do this with straight wrists. Lag your wrists at the top and let them release at the bottom of your swing. Then repeat your swing holding your club correctly. Whoooosh!

2/ Stand with your feet together and swing in balance so that you are not falling back. Now setup normally with a little more pressure on your leading foot. Swing so that you finish in balance on your leading foot.

3/ Put your golf glove under your leading armpit and take a few practice swings. When you take your club back, rotate your shoulders and stay connected without dropping your glove from your armpit. If your body stays connected, you will rotate your upper trunk and generate more power and a louder whoosh at the point of impact.

For Putting:
1/ Putt with our shoulders not your wrists: Try putting with a golf ball pressed between the upper end of your putter and your trailing wrist. If you bend your wrists, the ball will fall out. Putt by locking your wrists and rocking your shoulders to move the V-shape of your arms holding your putter.

2/ Don’t freeze-up changing from your practice swing to your putting stroke: You need to keep your shoulders and spine fluid. Make 1 or 2 practice swings to learn the feel for the correct swing distance to pass the hole by 10 to 15 inches. Then step forward to your ball, stare at your target point for 2 seconds to lock your brain into your putting distance and repeat the same putting stroke.

If you aren’t sinking putts on the practice green before you start your round, you should test your putter to find the “sweet spot” on your putter face: Aim at a target about 3 to 5 feet away on a flat section of a green. Then hit 3 balls off the toe and 3 off the heel of your putter. The balls will consistently move in the wrong direction. Find the “balanced” center of your putter by testing putts on the center-line and then inside and outside of the center-line. Then putt 5 more balls so that you impact the ball exactly at your newly found “sweet spot”.

If you keep playing golf the same way, you will keep making the same mistakes. Shake up your game. Practice with GOLFSTR+ and take control of your game. Buy one today at www.golfstr.com

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Can YOU Hula with a Hula Hoop?

As the weather changes to winter, you should find indoor sports to keep your body active and flexible. Basic floor exercises are a must, in order to keep our bodies in shape. Unfortunately, as we age we spend less time keeping flexible and that is the major reason why we injure parts of our bodies whenever we start a new repetitive activity.

Try the Hula Hoop for exercise. Can’t do it? Your flexibility needs some work.

I was reminded that my body and all of my aging friends are losing our flexibility when we were relaxing with drinks after playing Pickleball. Someone picked up a Hula Hoop and found that we (including anyone else who tired it) could not keep it whirling around our bodies. We all laughed as we knew that we could easily use a Hula Hoop in our youth for fun. Our group ranged in ages from 40 to 75 and no-one had the flexibility to keep that Hula Hoop alive. Wake-up call!

Let’s face it.  As we age, we lose our speed and agility to use something as simple as a Hula Hoop. Our bodies are changing. It may be the girth of our mid-section or the mobility of our torso but it must be affecting our golf games too.

Brooks Koepka is now the number 1 golfer in the world. He said that he works out for 10 hours per week on both strength and flexibility and then puts more time into flexibility. He admires gymnasts and the performers in Cirque du Soleil saying, “Pound for pound they are the strongest people in the world”. He feels that there is no correlation between strength and flexibility. Great golfers need both and you have to put your effort into both areas even though many exercises can develop strength and flexibility.

Ways to Keep in Shape over the Winter
1/ In-door Sports: Workouts on with rubber bands and on the floor only go so far. Sports like tennis, pickleball, squash and badminton are all active sports that affect every muscle in your body. Try to pick-up one of these sport or even get to a skating rink to get more muscles active.

2/ My 97 year old father-in-law starts every day with stretch exercises in bed before he even tries to get out of bed. Then he helps with any odd jobs or cleaning up at the family lumber yard. Whatever you do, don’t stop moving.

3/ I have mentioned one of our blog readers in the past named Raymond, who lives in the French Riviera. Recently he shared his golf success secrets in a response to one of our blogs:
“I’m a normal guy, 5 feet 9 and 160 pounds and I’ve passed the 84 years of age mark. I play to a 7 handicap, 3 or 4 times a week. Having a sound technique is one thing, having a body which suits your swing is another. You have to work on both. I don’t practice at the driving range.”

“For technique, I practice at home in front of a window pane for the full swing (100 swings per day), in my basement for chipping (100 chips) and putting (300 putts) on a 25 foot mat. Simultaneously, I work on my body .I have several regimens: one is taken from JOEY DIOVISALVI’s book FIX YOUR BODY, FIX YOUR SWING (JOEY trains BROOKS KOEPKA and DUSTIN JOHNSON). I also perform isometrics and I lift weights. For speed, I rely on MIKE NAPOLEON’s SUPERSPEED sticks and for core strength I have MIKE BAUMANN’s ULTIMATE SWING SYSTEM (Rubber bands).”  We should all take note. IMPRESSIVE! ]

Rick on the Rotary Golf Blog told us how Tiger Woods changes his golf swing. He works for hours repeating a component of his golf swing to ingrain it into his mind and muscles without ever hitting a golf ball. Repetition is key. We all need to pay attention to our bodies and keep in shape for our golf swing. Practice with GOLFSTR+. Buy one today at www.golfstr.com

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