As you’re about to see, both of these answers aren’t exactly wrong, but they’re not fully right either. Yes, how hard a golf ball is hit, or to be more specific, how much force propels it, plays a role in the distance that it ultimate travels.And yes, how straight a golf ball is hit affects the direction in which the golf ball flies off in.But does any of that help you?
If you were to go to the driving range, right now, and try a few drives with just these two answers as your guide, you’ll notice a couple of very annoying things. Basically, you’ll be trying to hit you ball hard, and straight.What do you think will happen?
Well, you may get the golf ball to get marginally further, but you’ll probably find that the harder you try to hit the ball, the less able you are to get it to go straight. And you’ll also find that while you know that you should be hitting the ball straight, you’re not really entirely sure of how you’re going to accomplish that.At the end of the day, you’re probably going to end up feeling tired, and maybe even straining your muscles from trying over and over again to hit the ball harder.
So what other factors affect the distance which a shot travels, and how accurately it does so? For starters, there are numerous factors that are really beyond your control (unless you happen to have some kind of magic powers).
These factors include such things as the wind, temperature, and even the altitude at which you’re hitting the ball from, and to.
Now as you can obviously see, you’re not going to be able to do much about any of those factors, and so while it is nice to keep them in mind so that you can compensate, it isn’t something that you should be overly concerned with at this point.
When you take a swing, it is the point of impact between your golf club and golf ball that is of crucial importance, because that is absolutely everything about what propels your golf ball down the fairway.And there are factors to consider insofar as that goes as well.
Naturally, force plays a role, but you know that sheer power isn’t the answer to everything. Also, you know that how straight you hit the ball, or rather, the angle at which you hit the ball, plays a role in the direction.But did you know that the angle at which you hit the ball plays a role in how far it goes too?Did you know that the impact was a factor?
Without getting overly into the physics of it all, let us simply say that if you hit a ball straight on, all of the force that you hit it with is going to be transferred in the direction which you want it to go, rather than being split up into other directions.
Unfortunately, this leaves you no better off than you were a while ago. Certainly you have a deeper understanding of the issue at hand, but you still don’t know how exactly to get more force, and a better angle, into your shot.Why don’t you try to guess though? If you want to, go ahead, but we’re going to be covering something that makes things a little bit clearer in the next section.
Seeing as you already know that the one thing which you have control of is your swing itself, it would be a good idea to start from there. With that in mind, let me ask you this question: What can you control about your swing?Know what the answer is? Practically everything.
Of course it isn’t as simple as just wanting to swing perfectly. If it were that easy, then you could just head over to a golf range, concentrate really hard on swinging well, and things would just magically fall into place.
No, sadly, that isn’t going to happen, and so we’re going to need to take an even deeper look into your swing itself, what affects it, and how you can improve it.
Let’s start off by breaking down the swing itself into various components. Now, before you even start to swing the golf club, there’s already some things that you need to consider there: Your equipment.
Does equipment play a role in your swing? Well, it must, otherwise why would you be lugging around an entire bag full of golf clubs when you could just carry around one golf club for every purpose.
Okay, so you have your equipment, then what? You get yourself into position to take the swing of course. And there’s yet another thing that affects your swing: Your stance, and body position, as well as the grip with which you’re holding the golf club.
Great, what comes after that? Well the swing itself naturally, and even that can be divided into the backswing (where the club is moved backwards), downswing (where the club is brought down towards the ball), and followthrough (what happens after the club hits the ball).
That wasn’t too hard to follow was it? And look: You’ve managed to identify several key components that each play a role in your swing itself. Let’s recap, just to make sure we’re on the same page:
1. Equipment Choices (Clubs, and possibly even Tees)
2. Pre-Swing Positioning (Stance and Grip)
3. Swing (Backswing, Downswing, Followthrough)
Brilliant! You’ve now successfully dissected your swing into various components. Remember though, what we’re interested in is distance and accuracy, right? Do all of these things affect distance and accuracy specifically?
Well, as you know, angle and power are what you’re going for, and so, yes, each of these components plays a role in getting your ball to where you want it to go. Naturally, some parts are more important than others, but for that really perfect swing, well, you’re going to want everything to go as smoothly as possible.
As you can imagine though, it isn’t easy to focus on everything, but you needn’t worry too much. We’re going to be taking things slowly to start off with, and focusing on the really important parts that need to be focused on.
Progressing through this guide, you’ll be able to glean a far greater understanding of golfing than you probably thought. And best of all, you shouldn’t have too much trouble following any of it.
But it will take some effort on your part, make no mistake.
Generally, it would be a good idea that you don’t just sit back and try to soak in all the theory that we’re going to be giving you. Get out to the driving range and try things out as you learn about them.We’ll talk more about this later, for now, let’s look at something easy to get you started.
No surprise that this is out starting point, after all, it was the very first component we realized would play a role in our golf swing. We’re already in agreement that not all golf clubs are the same, so the real question we’re going to have to take care of is: What makes them different?
Naturally, there are different types of clubs for different occasions, you know that much, hopefully. But since our focus is distance and accuracy at the same time, it isn’t really the ‘type’ of clubs that we’re too concerned with.What else is there though?
Okay, how closely have you looked at your golf clubs? Go grab one and peer at it for a while now if you’ve never really done that before. Somewhere on the club you should notice a letter, that is one of: S, X, R, A or L.Each of these letters denotes a different type of flex. Know anything about flex? Not really? Well, don’t worry too much about it, we’ll be giving you a brief introduction right now!
At this juncture, let’s just assume that not everyone swings the club in the same way. If you’ve played even a little golf with your friends, or even just gone over to a range and watched others play, you’ll see this easily.
Some people swing their club very fast, while others prefer a more slow and measured motion. Some have a very smooth stroke from start to finish, while for others it appears jerky. Depending on the type of swing that you have, you’re going to be applying a different type of force to the club that you’re using. And depending on that force, as well as the flex of the club, it is going to bend in different ways.Remember those letters that we mentioned earlier? Each of them is a type of flex, and this is how they’re broken down:
· X – Extra Stiff · S – Stiff
· R- Regular · A – Senior · L – Ladies
While we’ve covered what flex is, and how it affects your club, what we’re really interested in is how flex affects the distance and accuracy of your shots. That’s what we’re going to discuss now.
Thus far, we know that a straight shot, logically, requires the club to hit the ball squarely (i.e. completely straight). With the shaft of the golf club itself bending during its motion, that also means that it needs to be included in the consideration for getting the right alignment when the club actually comes into contact with the ball.Due to this fact, the distance, accuracy, and of course, trajectory at which the ball travels are all affected by the flex of the golf club that you’re using.
If you do end up using a golf club with the wrong type of flex, then you’re probably going to face situations where the face is misaligned at impact, causing the shot to go off-target in unpredictable directions and with less power than they should have.
When your flex is too stiff, your shots will probably tend to fly off to the right if you’re righthanded, or to the left if you’re left-handed. Also, it will end up following a lower and shorter path than it really should.
On the other hand, with a flex that is not stiff enough, you’ll find that your shots do exactly the opposite, and fly off to the left if you’re right-handed, or to the right if you’re left-handed. Predictably, they’ll also follow a higher trajectory.
Sadly, it isn’t the easiest thing in the world to do; getting the ‘right’ flex of golf clubs, that is. And things are made that much more difficult by the fact that although there are indications as to just how flexible a golf club is (i.e. the flex ‘letters’ that we mentioned earlier), they tend to vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.In short, there is no ‘unified’ system to evaluate flex. Where does that leave you? Well, there are a few options that you could pursue.
Nowadays, most beginners end up going for a ‘club fitting’ with a golf professional. Really, it is the easiest and most sure way to end up with the right type of golf clubs, and they are easily found at many of the bigger golf shops as well as golf schools.
If you choose to take this option, then you’ll have the pro take various measurements, as well as observe your swing itself before he or she makes a recommendation of what you should be using. Naturally, you need to actually be able to swing a golf club decently first, so it would probably be a good idea to get a respectable swing before you go for this kind of ‘fitting’.Otherwise, you’ll have to go by the trial-and-error way, and try out as many different types of golf clubs, with as many different levels of flex, to see which one feels right, and performs best.
To do so, some people go for various ‘demo days’, or even just borrow clubs from others to give them a try. However you do end up carrying this out, as you can well imagine, it is nowhere near as effective as having a qualified professional give you a recommendation.But that said, it certainly is better than nothing.
We’re going to leave golf clubs there for now, as we’ve covered most everything that there is to know about it. To sum it all up: Choosing the right club with the right type of flex will definitely improve your shot distance and accuracy.For now, we’re going to be moving on to the actual shot itself, or, rather, the preparation right before the shot.
Gear all sorted? Check! And as you know it’s about time we got started looking at your swing itself. Being the sort of game that golf is however, it should be no surprise that what you do before your swing is just about as important as what you do during your swing.What is it exactly that you do before you take a swing though?
Well, to be rather obvious about it, first you need to grab hold of your club, then you need to stand by the tee. In other words, the two main areas that we’re going to be looking at now are your grip and your stance.
Both of these are of immense importance, as you’ll soon see, and so you would do well to be mindful of them at all times during your golfing. Even more experienced players often lapse and lose concentration or simply forget about some aspect of their grip and stance, resulting in a bad shot.
Your aim, in this section, should be to understand what makes your grip and stance so important. Once you understand that, you’ll realize the full weight that it carries and why if you ever want to increase the distance and accuracy of your shot, you’ll need to pay attention to both your grip and stance constantly.
With this guide here to teach you that, and also give you an insight into the correct type of grip and stance, well, you should be able to markedly improve your golfing results by the time we’re done.
To be certain that we cover all the bases, we’re going to be looking at each of these two important aspects of positioning individually, and in a no-nonsense manner that tells you precisely what you need to know.Beginning with… your grip on the golf club.
Experienced golfers have a distinct advantage when it comes to grip. Having played many years, and felt their golf clubs in their hand constantly, they know when they’re feeling the right grip. It is just instinctive.
For a beginner though, that is an advantage that isn’t present. After all, the very feeling of holding a golf club is new to you, so you couldn’t possibly be expected to differentiate between the ‘right’ feeling and the ‘wrong’ feeling.
What you need to do though is learn to tell that difference. And while, true, it will take time, and practice, you’ll certainly get a helping hand if you know what the right type of grip is in theory.First though, let’s take a brief look at why getting that right type of grip is so incredibly important to all golfers.Importance of the Right Grip
Pay attention to this part of the theory – understanding it could really make the difference to your swing and by extension, the distance and accuracy with which you can get the golf ball to travel.That incentive enough?
One great way to realize the importance of your grip is to understand the fact that it represents the connection between the rest of your body and your golf club. Basically, with any kind of swing, you’re channeling all your power through your grip and into the golf club.Sounds important doesn’t it? And it definitely is. But even our explanation so far is really not stating the full import of a good grip.How about we take a closer look at the grip itself, and more specifically, the role that it plays in your swing?
Naturally, you undoubtedly have surmised that a lot of the force of the swing is generated by the movement of your club, and fueled by the muscles in your arm. If you have a golf club handy, go ahead and take a few mock swings, and see if you notice anything that is contrary to this opinion.
Did you? Well, if you didn’t try again but this time pay close attention to your wrists. If you do, you may notice that unlike the rest of your arm, which probably moves pretty fluidly if you have a good swing, the wrists end up ‘cocking’ towards the end.This ‘cocking’ motion, sometimes called a ‘flick’ of the wrist, is where a lot of the power of the shot lies.
How does this relate to the grip? Simple: With the right kind of grip, the ‘flick’ of your wrist will ensure that you hit the ball face on, and propel it further, with great accuracy. On the flipside, with the wrong kind of grip, you’re going to probably end up slicing the shot. A good grip is really a prerequisite to a good swing, and therefore, a good shot. It allows for a natural movement of the wrist that makes it part and parcel of the swing itself. In a nutshell, you should definitely try to get your grip as perfect as possible.
Okay a full instruction in the do’s and don’ts of grips is going to take a lot of time, and now that you know its importance, you can focus on it as you should and devote more time to practicing your grip.For the purposes of this guide, we’re not going to get too in depth into all of this, but we’re definitely going to give you a few pointers which you can use to get yourself started.
Armed with these pointers, you’ll be able to go out there and work on your grip. If you don’t know anything at all about gripping the golf club though, you might want to consider getting some advice in that first.Still, no matter what level you’re currently at, these pointers are bound to be helpful to you at some point, so pay close attention!1. Gripping Lightly
To some, this may seem to be something that goes against common sense. Many beginners, naturally, are of the opinion that when you’re swinging your golf club you should have a nice, firm and tight grip on it.Unfortunately, this could not be further from the truth.
When you’re gripping your club too firmly, you’re automatically tensing up the muscles throughout your arm. This in turn makes them ‘stiff’, and prevents you from getting that beautiful, flowing swing that comes naturally.As a result, you’re more likely to end up not hitting the ball squarely.
Of course, the opposite is also true – if the grip is too loose, then you’re going to end up having your golf club slip in various directions. Just as with a firm grip, this will cause you to not hit the ball squarely as well.So what’s the solution? Well, toe the middle line!
Ideally, your grip should be somewhere in between complete-tensed-up firm, and nonexistent light. That way, you’ll be able to maintain a strong enough grip on your club so that it does not stray from the position you want it to be in.
While at the same time, you’ll be able to achieve that natural swing that you should be aiming for. You know – the one where your wrist moves automatically and also gives you that extra kick of power.
Yet another common mistake that is made by golfers – both beginner and otherwise, is to allow their grip to shift back into their palms. Some beginners don’t even realize why this is bad, and so automatically grip with their palms from the very beginning.By using your palms as opposed to your fingers, you’re definitely going to end up with a shot that is not nearly as powerful, and also lacks direction. But why is this so?
Well, for starters, your fingers are amazing tools during your swing. With them placed on the handle, you can feel the swing from start to finish, and what’s more, you can guide it in exactly the manner of your choosing.
To avoid the tendency of the club to slip back into your palms, you’re going to have to constantly keep watch for it. Also, be sure to re-grip your golf club themselves fairly often so that wear and tear doesn’t make it slick and contribute to the problem further.Backed by your fingers, you’ll find that your swing has extra power, greater direction, and even your wrist will ‘kick’ into action more properly. Before we leave this section, there’s one final pointer that really should become a bread and butter part of your pre-swing routine.3. Check Your V’s
Just as you’re ready to take a swing, spare a split second to glance down at your golf club from where you’re standing and check your grip. If you can cultivate this one very, very simple habit, you’re going to find that you hit amazing shots much more consistently.Honestly, it really takes less than a second. Okay, sure, it might take a little longer until you get used to the process, but once you do, it really does just take a quick glance. So what is it that you’re looking for with this glance? Well, two ‘V’s.
Note : For the purposes of this explanation, just be aware that the ‘leading hand’ means the left hand for right-handed golfers and the right hand for left-handed golfers. Also, the trailing hand means that right hand for right-handed golfers and the left hand for left-handed golfers.
These elusive V’s are formed as thus: The first one comes from the crease between thumb and forefinger of your leading hand, and should point towards your right shoulder, if you’re right-handed, and of course, your left shoulder, if you’re left-handed. Also, you should see only the first two knuckles of that hand.
Similarly, the second V comes from the crease between the thumb and the forefinger of your trailing hand, and should point… well, toward your chin or slightly to the right or left of that depending on whether you’re right or left-handed respectively.Simple enough?
Try it out a couple of times, just to be sure you understand what you should be seeing. Then, once you do, make it a habit at the onset of every shot that you take on the golf course.Believe me, you won’t regret it.
Learning the right way to grip your club is, as we’ve mentioned, just the first step. But it is the first step towards a far greater goal. Don’t make the mistake that many beginners make and put it off to be learnt at ‘some later date’.Remember the saying, “There’s no time like the present,”?
Frankly speaking, that couldn’t be more true as far as perfecting your grip goes. If you work on it now, you’ll be enjoying the benefits for years to come. Whereas, if you put it off, you risk becoming to steeped in bad habits and then you’ll have a tough time breaking them.Face it: It’s far easier to learn good habits than to unlearn bad habits. And speaking of habits, let’s move on to looking at your golf stance.
Essentially, being a beginner, you’ll want to ensure that your stance is as correct as possible from the get go. Then, as you get more and more experienced, and become more accustomed to golf as a game, you’ll find that you may be able to adapt your stance and improve your game further.
What we’re going to be aiming for in this section is to equip you with a good basic stance that will allow you to hit the ball far with accuracy. It is such a stance that will form a base for any further adaptation that you may want to later undertake.
Where you place you feet, how you stand, what angle your club is at, how far away from the ball you are, where the ball is in relation to your feet – these are some of the key considerations that must be taken into account when assuming the proper stance.In a minute, we’ll look at them. First though, let’s get you up to date with the importance of a good golf stance.
By this point, you’re undoubtedly very well aware that a swing is more than just your arms swaying your golf club. Instead, it is a fluid motion of your entire body, propelling your arms, club, and finally, the ball itself.
Naturally, it therefore makes sense that your stance plays a very important role in all of this, seeing as it is your starting position, and how your body moves subsequently is all still based on that one position.
In previous sections, we’ve already discussed how the right grip can help a more ‘natural’ swing. Instead of repeating much of that, let’s just say that the right stance does exactly the same thing.
By ensuring that you’re standing correctly, you’ll increase the likelihood that you hit the ball squarely, and get it to go further than it would otherwise. As a consequence, you’ll also reduce the chance of slicing or hooking the ball.So how do you achieve this sort of stance? Well, let’s look into that now!
Although there are many methods to achieve the ‘right’ stance, and really, there are also many slight ‘variations’ that you might want to try, we’re going to be looking at how you can achieve one very basic, but very useful, stance.
To do this, all you’ll need to do is follow the method. It would help if you have your golf club handy so that you can try it out as you read the instructions, but if you don’t, even pretending that you do is fine.Time to get started! 1. Stand up straight with both of your feet together and your club held up before you.
2. Bend forward, but not too much. A slight bend is more than enough, sort of as though you’re leaning forward. When you do this though, make sure that your hands are not outstretched, but rather hanging downwards.
3. Now, start to bend your knees – slowly. As you do, be careful that you don’t throw yourself off balance. Ideally, you would like to maintain the same sort of balance as if you were standing straight, but just with your knees bent a little bit.4. Having attained this posture, keep it! Shift slightly forward or backwards if you need to, so that the face of your club is positioned squarely behind the golf ball itself.
5. Once you’ve gotten into that posture, you’re finally ready to move your feet apart from each other. When you do so, be sure that the distance between them is about the width of your shoulders.
6. Depending on the shot you intend to hit, and the club that you’re using, you’re going to need to make a decision about where the ball should lie in relation to your feet. For drivers, it should be just inside your front foot. For long irons it should be just a bit in front of the center between your two legs. And, for short irons, it should be dead center.7. Congratulations! You’ve just learnt how to get a basic stance!
That wasn’t tough at all was it? Well, now that you know it, just like your grip, you should practice it until it becomes second nature to you. If you like, you could even start to experiment slightly and see if changing a small aspect of that base stance improves your swing.Nothing is set in stone, remember? End of the day, the best stance in the world is the one that works best for you.
Did you notice that we’ve now covered practically everything that there is to cover regarding the steps that need to be taken before swinging t