The Six Key Mistakes That Most Amateur Golfers Make

GOLF_FOOTWORKYou’ve got one week before the big golf outing and this year you want to make a big splash by playing the best golf of your life. Here are six key components of the golf swing that you should avoid in order to maximize your efforts in preparation for the big event.

  1. Gripping the golf club too tight – Tension in the golf swing is a serious impediment to creating a smooth, rhythmic swing that can naturally produce an impactful release of the club head through impact.
  2. Standing too far or too close to the ball at address – Whether your reaching too far or jamming yourself inside, it’s essential to make sure that your stance begins with your arms hanging freely down while gripping the club.
  3. Swaying instead of rotating during your backswing – Nothing removes a consistent ball position at impact than a sway that takes your center of gravity back and forth while making it extremely difficult for you to match your setup with the point of impact.
  4. Swinging the club with your arms instead rotating your body – The rotation of your chest and shoulders leading down to your hips helps generate the power and consistency of your golf swing while swinging the golf club with your arms virtually prohibits your core from performing effectively.
  5. Failing to begin the downswing by clearing your hips through the target – Reaching a fundamentally sound position at the top of your backswing can easily erased with an inefficient downswing that must be controlled initially by the rotation of the hips toward the target.
  6. Raising or lowering your head by altering your spine angle during the swing – Maintaining your spine angle throughout the swing provides the key point of the pendulum. Move this pendulum point and it’s anybody’s guess where your club will end up at impact.

  7. As with most every golf swing tip, repetition is essential as it’s the best way to rapidly create positive muscle memory. Once your mind and muscles can experience what the right way feels like, your performance will improve drastically. So practice each of these golf tips and watch your scores drop.

The Trick to Avoiding Topped or Thin Golf Shots

Fat Golf ShotHere are some interesting golf statistics for you. According to Dave Pelz, over 65% off all golf shots are played within 120 yards of the hole. And according to Dr. Jim Suttie, over 65 percent of all golfers lose their original posture when they swing a golf club.

Also according to Suttie, a ball that has been topped, thinned or fatted does not occur because you looked up. Nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, you probably did stand up, but it is very unlikely that you looked up. Golfers, even professionals, will often lose their spine angle at impact. The result that typically happens for them is a block to the right or a hook to the left. This is because the standing up at impact makes you rely on your hand action, where you have to hang on to the club or release the club too early at impact. I have always said that the hands are chokers when it comes to being consistent. Golfers must use their body, and let their hands respond to the motion.

So what are you trying to do when you make a good golf swing? Getting a good posture at address is the first step. Once you are in a good posture, your goal should be to simply stay in that posture on the backswing, and turn your shoulders 90 degrees (perpendicular) to your spine. If you are able to do this, then you will be in a good position to start your downswing. Many golfers either stand up on the backswing and lose their spine angle, or dip downward towards the ball. In either case, the movement up or down will cause inconsistent impact.

The downswing is somewhat similar to the backswing, in that the shoulders must again rotate 90 degrees to the spine. When the upper body pulls away from the ball coming down, this is called “coming out of your spine angle” or “standing up.” This can cause a lot of thin, fat, and toed shots.

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The One Golf Swing Concept That Can Change Everything

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What’s the one thing that most amateur golfers struggle with? Mike Malaska, Worldwide Director of Instruction for Nicklaus Academies, explains the difference between weight shift vs. swaying and provides an amazingly simple solution.