Making Golf Easier

Riding a bike, driving a car or throwing a ball are all done with little thought about HOW. You are not thinking about how to do these skills - you are performing them naturally.

Have you ever stopped to think about HOW you perform these skills? When you do, it may become apparent that almost all of these daily skills are done with little or no thought. They are automatic.

And it’s good they’re automatic because if they weren’t we’d never get through the day. We’d burn so much energy we’d be continually tripping over ourselves. So much so we might not make it past lunchtime.

Virtually no traditional mainstream instructor has picked up on this fact. The golf instruction world is stuck in first gear - too blind to see a better path. This outdated instruction is deeply ingrained, with many coaches reluctant to change.

A Golf Story

Let me share a quick story that highlights this point.

A few years ago I got the job of my dreams. I was accepted as a Trainee Golf Professional and I had my chance to pursue my love of coaching. But it didn't turn out that way. My boss was a stickler to the traditional methods and wouldn't hear of my ideas. He threw the book at me and told me to adopt from the traditional golf teachings or get out. This was despite him knowing that normal methods hadn’t worked for me.

So here I was. A young golfer, with a deep passion for the game, who was told not to rock the boat. Now this would have been fine except the system had failed me. I spent years doing as I was told and got worse, not better. I was frustrated and not sure what to do next but it was obvious to me this golf pro had been brainwashed into thinking there is only one way to coach and to discredit any challenges to that way. I think it's time for a reality check.

What needs to be hit home is this:

Even the most talented golfer in the world cannot perform under pressure unless he can automate his game. If this same golfer disrupts his learning system long enough he will fail (there are many examples of champion golfers who have lost their game after trying to fix their swing or who have gotten way too technical).

The simple point is this: If the best players can't control their swing consciously (or find it extremely difficult to make swing changes) then what chance do you have?

If you've been playing golf for more than a year, but you still experience frustration and poor golf then it's because you're getting in your own way. It’s as simple as that.

By the way. You probably know deep down that you should be playing golf with less mental clutter. The problem is the concept is so simple that it’s easy to ignore. So most gloss over it while they search for the next quick-tip or fix.

When teachers realise that the golf swing is not the most important thing, coaching will take a leap forward. The golf swing is part of the big system, it's not the entire game.

This is so important but so different from traditional thinking that I sometimes feel I’m pushing things uphill. Almost every golf book, DVD and instructional article is about fixing some aspect of your technique. Technique rules the golfing world but is it really helping you?

Take a peek at the PGA Tour. These are the best players in the world and they can hit just about any shot. Now look at the best players on the secondary tours (or even mini tours) from around the world. Do you see any major difference in their technique?

It’s hard to spot any variation and sometimes the golfers appear to have better technique. They all hit the ball in a similar way, but there’s a huge void in their ability to play the game. I’m just going to come out and say it…

… playing your best golf is not so much about your technique, but rather learning how to maximise your ability to play the game when it counts. When you learn to think less about your technique and really play the game, your technique takes care of itself.

And just maybe wouldn't it be great if all the golf instructors realised that golfers don't really care how pretty their swing is or if their golf swing conforms to some new swing theory. What golfers really care about is playing golf somewhere near their potential and enjoying the game - not be continually let down and disappointed.

Many of my supporters think classical golf instruction has gone too far. The explosion of technology and information has rendered it useless - it’s a brilliant business model because the poor golfer struggles to improve, while all the time thinking there is something wrong with him.

I agree. And this point needs to be made clear - the system is broken, not you.