Maximize Stay and Play Golf Experience

Players of all ages and abilities are most effective when they practice, practice, practice. Many stay and play golf facilities have driving ranges. There are some that have indoor simulators. Hitting balls is a great way to hone your skills, enhance balance control, and burn calories. You can also ask the staff about lessons or how you can practice with their pros.

Is your equipment up to par? Do you need new gloves? Take your clubs to the pro shop and have the staff repair them. This is where you can solve the last minute hiccups that occur.

Rest and Hydration

Get at least 8 hours of sleep prior to your outing. It will improve your focus and performance. Be sure to drink plenty of water before tee time. Playing 18 holes in the sun can lead to dehydration if you do not drink enough fluids.

Warm Up

Before you begin playing, do some stretching exercises. Take a few minutes to extend your arms and legs. Making a few swings is another way to warm up. Hit a few balls and gauge how the wind is blowing.

Walking vs. Riding

If you walk the entire 18 holes, it is equivalent to a 5 mile walk or almost a 4 mile run. Using a cart is a helpful way to get around the greens if necessary, but walking the course can burn up to 2,000 calories.

Eating Healthy

Most stay and play golf courses offer healthy snacks to their patrons. Consider packing some fruits and vegetables to have on hand while you play. Granola bars and nuts will help you refuel and keep your mind sharp.

Keep Moving

A player can exceed 10,000 steps in a typical round. That is the recommended guideline for daily exercise. Stretching in between shots can burn more calories. If you are waiting for your turn, you can walk around and practice your swings.

The biggest plus of a stay and play golf facility is the short distance from the greens to your room. After a full day, you can relax with your peers and get ready to repeat it the next day.

Choosing Right Golf Balls

Maybe using the same type golf balls as the PGA golf pros will improve your game…and maybe it won’t. You need to choose the golf ball that’s right for your own game. Choosing the wrong kind of golf ball can be a bigger handicap to your game than starting at the 19th hole. Choosing the right kind of golf ball can have you feeling like a Tiger, even if you don’t quite have his handicap.

Golf balls come in three styles: 2-piece, 3-piece, and high performance. 2-piece golf balls are designed for improving your distance, while 3-piece and high performance golf balls can typically help with accuracy.

The 2-piece golf balls are especially good if you’re just starting out or if you’ve played just enough to know you really want to give this sport a try. They’re also terrific for high handicap golfers who have been around a while. Hey, we can’t all be pros! These are the most common type on the market and usually less expensive than 3-piece balls. Best of all, the large rubber core provides faster speed off the tee for those of you with a slow swing. In turn, that gives you greater distance.

It could happen that the first time you played, everyone was astounded at the way you slammed that little white ball with the power of a major league batter aiming for a grand slam. But that’s doubtful. Distance is usually developed over time as you develop your swing and find the groove. When you are just beginning, chances are you need to improve your accuracy more than your distance. Once you’ve developed your accuracy, then is the time to choose a golf ball and clubs that will help improve your distance.

If you haven’t developed consistent accuracy – that is, having the ball consistently land in the same “general” area each time – then the 3-piece golf ball probably isn’t right for you. It’s just not as forgiving of miss-hits as the 2-piece golf ball. The same goes for high performance balls. They’re pretty much designed for advanced golfers…and their price bears this out!

One factor to always be considered is cost. Simple, standard 2-piece golf balls usually come in 18-packs and are relatively inexpensive. The cost of golf balls may seem small in comparison to the overall cost of pursuing the sport but the inexperienced golfer can go through a lot of golf balls in a very short space of time!

The key, as with most golf equipment, is to choose the right kind of golf ball for your level of play. Consider your swing and your game, and then choose the ball that will help eliminate your weaknesses and build upon your strengths.

If you don’t choose the right golf ball for your level of play, your golf round might just become what Mark Twain once called it: “…a pleasant walk, spoiled”.

Golf Specific Weight Training

Why should there be any reason for fear when 80 year old persons are comfortably going through them. And what’s more is these elderly persons have quite often hailed the weight training as being responsible for the dramatic improvement in their game as well as the easing of nagging pains that usually do not respond to medication like back pains.

Junior golfers are also enthusiastically embracing golf specific weight training with similar results. Some of these kids are barely in their teens. But what has been even more amazing is the impact that the golf specific weight training has had on their golf game. Many have been able to increase the distance of their drives by yards that are in the higher levels of a double digit figure.

Still this has not prevented golf specific weight training from being greatly feared amongst many golfers who have various excuses not to touch exercise.

There are those who claim that weight training will give them bulging muscles and make them stiff when it is common knowledge that flexibility is very important in golf.

For these golfers, the mere mention of dumb bells sends shivers down their spines as they picture themselves struggling with heavy weights in some gym somewhere.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Golf specific weight training really involves strength training and not body building. As a result it involves the use of lifting lighter weights more repetitively.

The sort of light weights that teenagers and senior citizens alike do not have any problem handling.

Whether you dread it or not, the facts are that golf specific weight training is extremely important for any golfer.

Cornerstone to A Consistent Golf Swing

Consistently solid contact is a by-product of accurately re-creating the three key positions outlined in the previous article. These basic elements are the foundation for analyzing any swing in slow motion. Everything you else you hear or read about proper swing mechanics are by-products of the three key positions.

Let’s dig a little deeper. Is there anything we can do before the swing begins to increase the odds of achieving the three positions automatically?

What is the basic element (ie. cause) underlying every swing? A golfer’s balance at address. Based on my experience, the majority of once-a-week golfers assume they are perfectly balanced at address, but fight to maintain it once the swing begins.

Can you predict a golfer’s skill level by examining their posture at address? Any golfer, even a novice, can sense a player’s proficiency by observing their body shape at address. If we can agree that posture affects balance, then poor posture is the¬†ultimate cause underlying every recurring swing fault.

Here is a guideline for mastering perfect posture: you want to stand as close to your natural height as possible.

How often do you see a golfer on the practice range “hunched” over the ball at address? Perhaps this is an unconscious habit developed over years of being told to “keep your head down!”

Is there a simple technique that guarantees perfect posture (and balance) every time? Of course. Every tour player uses a modified version of this technique. As you develop a feel for the technique, the three elements (ie. positions) mentioned above will quickly become second nature.

What is the secret to perfect balance?

The key is feeling the weight of the club – from the moment you take it out of the bag until the end of the follow-through. If you can’t feel the clubhead before the swing begins, then the odds of maintaining perfect balance at impact are slim indeed.

There are two guidelines for creating perfect balance at address.

Number one: stand tall and allow the clubhead to extend your arms naturally so the clubhead hovers above the ground. Number two: bend the knees enough to just kiss the ground with the clubhead.

Watch closely and you will see how tour players barely ground the club behind the ball (or if they do, the club is raised slightly before the swing begins).

Focus on feeling the weight of the clubhead and get ready to hit the ball farther with less effort.

Become a Better Golfer Today

Taking the hands out of the golf shot provides more consistency.

  • Explanation: The face of a golf club opens up, or rotates, during the golfer’s backswing. If a golfer is right-handed, the golfer should take the hands out of his/her swing by swinging left of the target, or 11:00, while leaving the hands open and fairly inactive throughout the swing (this creates a consistent shot that curves left to right).
  • A golfer who swings the golf club along a path directed right of the target, or 1:00, will have to flip his or her hands over to square the club face to the target before impact (this is difficult to do consistently and is, therefore, not recommended by me to be a golfer’s shot of choice).

A golfer should think about where he or she wants to hit their golf ball rather than where he or she does not want to hit it.

  • A common phrase states that golf is 90% mental and 10% physical. Therefore, the thoughts that go on in a golfer’s head contribute a significant amount to his or her scoring outcome.
  • Negative thinking, such as “do not hit this golf ball in the water to the left and do not hit this golf ball into the bunker on the right”, is the type of thinking that golfers must avoid and overcome.
  • Positive thinking is the only type of thinking that will help you on the course.

Regardless of a golfer’s level of experience, he or she should always remember to practice the fundamentals to the game.

  • Keep your eye on the back of the ball; focus on a dimple.
  • Keep your head still until after impact.
  • Keep your knees bent during your backswing (do not sway and do not lock your knees).
  • Have a fairly relaxed grip (as though you are holding a tube of toothpaste or a baby bird).

Golf Shafts

Now, this was the brief detail about golf and its governing rule. Let us talk about the other, but very important detail in golf i.e. the performance of the golfer. The performances of any player in any game make their career and define the future path. In Golf too, all the focus lies in hitting the ball appropriately and this hit all depends upon the characteristics of the club. The golf club is a Golf stick which is used to hit the ball as said in the above lines. It is a long stick with the club head at the bottom.

The Golf club is chosen on the basis of golfer’s need and playing strategies. The Club has a shaft and club head, which is individually important. Both of the things are important for players. Here we will see about the importance of Golf Shafts.

The Golf Shaft is the long stick or tube which reaches out to the club head. The Golfer’s hand is connected to the club head through this shaft. This shaft is really important for the players as it totally depends upon the quality and features of the shaft for hitting the ball according to the desired needs and requirements of the golfer. The flexible shaft would let the player hit the ball with less force applied to the club for larger distances while the rigid golf shaft needs more force to hit the ball for larger distances. The quality of the shaft means the material of the shaft also matters a lot. The steel shaft needs more strength to hold it while the graphite shafts that are made from Carbon fibers are much lighter compared to the former. The graphite shaft also reduces the jerk or stinging vibrations felt while hitting poor strokes. It is usually chosen by amateurs and starters who do not know much about the game and more importantly wants to play the game in a lighter note. Once a player gets experience than he or she can go for a heavy shaft or steel shaft.

Golf shaft’s weight also matter. As said above the Carbon fiber shaft is lightweight and it hits the ball lightly. And the heavyweight like steel shaft hit the ball hard. The other important thing that is missing here is that the material of the shaft also changes the twist of the club. The little difference in angle of twist at the club head changes the motion and direction of the ball to a great extent. It not only changes the game, but also affects the confidence of the player.

The golf shaft has kick points over the shaft which differs in few inches, but actually makes the club hit the ball in different ways. These “Kick Points” are actually the flexibleness of the shaft at a particular point which determines how the club will hit the ball and how much force will be required to strike. The low kick shaft is the ones where the kick points will be present at lower shaft i.e. just above the club head which makes the shaft bend above the club head. While the other kick points will go up and up afterward. The lower kick point will not allow the majority of the shaft to bend and therefore it happens to be good for the high launch of the ball at the start. For example, when a golfer wants to throw the ball at a greater distance with less force than the lower kick point shaft club would be used. Same is with the “medium kicks” and “high kick” shafts.

The golf as said at the start has not same playing territory at all places. It could be a small region or large ground. But the game of golf is totally depending upon the striking capabilities of the striker. The striker should be wise enough to decide and calculate accurately about the force, distance, and quality of the club. All these things will only work out if the golfer is able to decide wisely one more thing and i.e. golf shafts. The material, kick points and length, weight matters to the golfer when it comes to playing or striking the ball.

Every Golfer has its own style to strike the ball. Some golfer might be good at striking slowly at small distances while another golfer could be good at striking the ball to larger distances with great force. The golfer would definitely want to go for strength when striking and slower down on the weak points while playing golf. Isn’t it? Then the best decision to buy the club would be choosing the club with a shaft which can strengthen the positives and reduces the weakness in the player. That is why the graphite shaft with lower kick point would be chosen by a player who wants to launch the ball with great force without applying much energy. The steel shaft could be chosen by the golfer which can strike the ball with great force even at great distances.

So that is all about golf and golf clubs. Today we discussed how the golf shaft can make or break the game and why is it important to choose the appropriate golf shaft. The game of golf not only requires the wise decisions and strength while striking the ball, but it also needs a lot of patience and mental strength to play it cool.

Delusion of Perfection

We need solid fundamentals as a foundation, but the constant search for swing flaws, simply reinforces the belief that you’re not good enough to forget them. It’s a vicious circle.

Is perfection defined in terms of form or results or both? Can you name one professional golfer who has a perfect swing? Some swings are more aesthetically pleasing, but form and function are not always related. How many golfers do you know who have perfect form, but can’t hit the ball out of a wet paper bag?

How would you define consistency? The most consistent players have obvious swing flaws. Bubba Watson’s feet shift and slide like he was wearing rollerblades. Jordan Spieth’s left elbow has a definite “bend”. Look hard enough and you can find technical glitches in almost every swing.

Take a moment to visualize your last perfect shot. Can you recall what you were thinking or feeling? I would guess that you find it easier to recall the feeling, rather than the thought process that preceded the shot.

So what’s the point?

Consistency is a product of feeling; your ability to recall the feeling of your best shots is the secret to constant improvement. If you can hit quality shots on the practice range, then you have the ability. Instead of trying to constantly “fix” your swing, why not develop some techniques for anchoring in the feeling of your best shots?

Your swing, like your signature, is constantly changing based on how you feel. Let’s try a little experiment. Do you have a pen and paper handy? Across the top of the page, write your signature as fast as you can. Now move down to the middle of the page and do it again.

Can you see any differences in the two signatures? At first glance, they may appear identical, but take a closer look. Perhaps you dotted an “I” in a different place or some of the letters are more slanted.

Despite the differences, you would agree that they are consistent – both signatures are uniquely yours. Which one would you define as perfect?

Your swing is a by-product of how you feel. How you feel can change in an instant. Develop some techniques for recalling the feeling of success, and your degree of consistency will rise automatically.

This article is Part Two in the series devoted to helping the once-a-week golfer move beyond swing mechanics. Your ability to quickly recall the feelings of success, allows you to consistently re-create your best shots.

Achieve the Proper Golf Swing

If you have been trying to accomplish the proper golf swing through traditional ways and still aren’t happy with your results…you’ll need to keep reading this article to find out why.

You see…it’s your body that is keeping you from achieving the proper golf swing and playing your best golf! Doesn’t that make sense?

If your body is physically declining, and has limited golf-specific strength and flexibility…you will have a minimal chance at ever achieving the proper golf swing.

I hate to be the bearer of bad news…but this is a fact!

There are certain physical ‘musts’ to achieve a proper golf swing.

Here are just a couple:

  • Approximately a 90 degree shoulder turn with a 45 hip turn.
  • Golf posture with a slight bend at the hips and in the knees.
  • Start the downswing with the lower body first, maintaining your upper body coil.
  • Impact…you should be ‘behind the ball’ with your head and upper body as the hips are slightly open.
  • Follow through requires maintaining the spine angle you had at address, throughout the follow through.

Now…you don’t see how physical limitations in both strength and flexibility will limit or not allow you to attain the above requirements, I don’t think you’re really looking at it closely.

The golf swing puts the body under tremendous stress throughout the entire swing. Especially the lower back (due to the coiling and uncoiling of the upper body over a stable lower body), hips, wrists and even shoulders.

The ONLY way to achieve the proper golf swing is to physically improve your bodies limiting factors, so that you can finally achieve the proper golf swing.

Backspin Advice

Honestly, the first thing that you need to realize about creating backspin is that it’s a very tough shot to accomplish, let alone control.

The second thing that you should realize is that there are very few situations where this shot is actually needed.

In my opinion, the best shot to master is an approach shot that bounces once, and then stops on a dime. This shot is not easy to accomplish either, but is more realistic and much more effective in the vast majority of cases.

So I’ll get in to the basics of this shot now, but please realize that an entire book could be written on this subject, and it would still be very hard to incorporate into a recreational game.

Here are the basic conditions that must be met before the shot even occurs. If these factors are not in place, don’t try to create backspin.

Conditions must be completely dry – (the club face, and the ball included)

You must be on the fairway – (grass can’t get in between the club and the ball)

Green’s have to be very nicely kept – (very short)

Now, let me clarify. Those are the conditions that must be met before the shot even occurs. So hopefully, you are beginning to see just how difficult this shot is and why it doesn’t come highly recommended from someone who focuses on making golf simple.

I was thinking of ways to describe the action necessary to create backspin, and I came to the conclusion that the best analogy is one of placing spin on the cue ball in billiards.

Side Note: They say that good pool players are also good putters. So if you want to sharpen your putting skills, I would advise learning billiards as well. It will help you to develop steady hands, “learn to see the line”, and it will also teach you a lot about spin.

In Pool, to create backspin you have to hit downward on the cue ball with a significant amount of force. Notice that players chalk up before hitting a shot requiring a lot of spin (dry). They also go at the ball with a very steep angle. And they hit the lower portion of the ball.

All of this is necessary in golf as well. The ultimate goal is to “pinch” the ball between your club and the fairway. You must take a downward blow at the ball, you must add a fair amount of velocity to your swing speed, and you must make clean contact with the lower portion of the ball. It is all of these factors combined that make this shot so tough to complete with any accuracy.

It’s also essential to have a new ball (preferably a high spin/soft-cover ball), and a newer (clean) club that has some of the grip left on the face. As the ball compresses into the grooves on the face of the club, backspin is created.

On a final note; it’s important to realize that if you make course management the foundation of your game, you will rarely be in a situation where you need to use backspin. Course management is one of the true keys to golf. I’m going to publish a newsletter on it in the next few weeks as well, so be on the lookout.

Golf Swing Tips

Before you can make the decision to get yourself a golf coach, you need to define your goals and to what extent you are willing to pursue them and your budget for the activity.

One big advantage in hiring a coach is that your specific weaknesses will be addressed and corrected. Take that into consideration.

A Golf Coach will also be able to help you to get rid of any nasty playing habits which may lead to injuries like “golfer elbow”.

Talk to a prospective coach and learn how he might be able to help you before you commit yourself to him/her.

Consider the rate for a one-on-one lesson with a pro golfer. Often the range depends on the pro you will be working with and the golf club/school you will be joining

One option to consider if the golf lesson rates for an exclusive one-on-one type coaching is too expensive for you is to go with a group of other golfer so that you can share the expenses

If you choose to go with the expense sharing route, remember to join a class that is no bigger than 4 students in it with one coach. The reason being, if there are less students in a class, you get as much attention as a one-on-one session without spending too much.

One more thing to consider and always keep in mind when you are working with a professional coach is targeting quality over quantity. What I mean by this is that you need to focus on going for a goal of being excellent at a few good techniques than knowing so many that you are unable to execute them properly.

Any coach worth his salt will teach you things that you can ultimately do on your own even without his/her supervision. This includes both playing a better game on your own as well as proper warm-up and stretching routines.

Last, but not least, always try to improve on your game in your own time by watching other great pro golfers on television or tournaments or by watching tutorial videos of what makes them great at what they do