Improving Your Golf SwingLooking for golf swing advice to improve your golf swing is like a hobby for a lot of new golfers. They become almost obsessed with finding the tips or secrets that will propel them from novice to professional overnight. It shouldn't really come as any surprise though, few golfers start off by learning the basic golf swing thoroughly. When you look at how we learn most sports, especially field sports, then it becomes easier to understand. We pick up the necessary skills as youngsters playing around with our pals, any scrap of land or a park will do. Golf is a bit harder to pick up this way, it needs so much extra space completely free of other people. That means there is less of a chance of learning golf in this casual way. So how do you go about improving your golf swing?
First of all, whether you realize it or not, almost every golfer has their own unique and individual golf swing. Even the professional golfers have different golf swings from each other. Which makes improving your golf swing a little more difficult, especially if you are trying to improve by picking up swing tips from watching the pros on the box. Trying to emulate the swing that your favorite tour pro has is the last thing you want to do, maybe once you get your handicap down in the low single figures, you might be able to pick up the odd improvement, but until then, you are just wasting your time. The tour pros use a finely tuned golf swing that they have to constantly work on in order to maintain it at it's optimal level, and even they have bad days with their swing. The difference is that they understand their swing so well that they know what to work on to fix it. If you want to hit longer, straighter drives then stop trying so hard to be an instant professional and find out all you can about your own unique swing.
Golf Swing StylesJust to make things more complicated, there are also a variety of different golf swing styles to choose from, stack and tilt, single plane, two plane and the classic or modern golf swing, to name just a few. Most golf instructors teach the golf swing style that they have chosen to use themselves, mainly because that is the only one they've studied and know. Most golf schools and academies only teach one golf swing style, and that is where the problem lies. all these different golf swing styles work in their own right. They just wont work for everyone.
As I said, we all have different golf swings, and that's because every golfer is different. There are no two golfers that have the same physique, ability, mental attitude, knowledge or even feelings, and how your feeling affects your golf swing. A one-size-fits-all golf swing does not exist. Even a one-style-fits-all swing doesn't work for everyone. We are all unique and because of this, all our swings will be unique as well. That doesn't mean that there will not be similarities, indeed, the fundamental basics of all golf swing styles are the same.
What Is Your Golf Swing?Every golfer has their own natural golf swing that is dictated by their physique, ability and skill level. It's this swing that should be tweaked to incorporate the basic golf swing fundamentals in order to improve your golf swing. By taking the time to learn and understand the basic golf swing and your own natural swing and abilities, you will reap the rewards and find that improvements will be rapid, and more importantly, lasting.
If you ask most golfers why they fail to improve, they will most likely say that it's because they don't play or practice often enough. But, the reality is that unless you have the correct knowledge and understanding, practice will make no difference. With the right knowledge and understanding of your swing, practice will be more effective and will make all the difference.
Golf FundamentalsThe game of golf is truly an individual sport, whether we are playing on our own or in a foursome, we are really competing against ourselves and our previous performances. This is one of the many unique qualities of golf, and is one of the reasons that it remains challenging no matter what our skill level is. It's also true that the golf swing has certain fundamentals that form the basis for everyone, at least for the ones who bother to learn them.
As I said, the basics are the same for everyone. However, due to the differences in people’s body shape and size, no two people will ever have the same golf swing. Each person will have to adapt their body movements and coordination to perform a proper golf swing in their own way. Taking the time to develop your own method of playing golf will greatly improve your enjoyment and success at the game, but developing your own golf swing has to be done with the right knowledge so that it is based on the proper fundamentals. Practicing the basic fundamentals of the game until they are ingrained in your muscle memory will lead to consistency in your golf swing, something that all golfers strive for.
Keep Your Head UpOne of the most basic faults that golfers have is in their stance, if you are guilty of this, then you can see an immediate improvement very easily. That is to keep your head still and look straight at the ball with your chin up. The position of your head should be straight in line with your spine, and your chin should be raised to allow your shoulder to turn under it during the backswing. A lot of players, especially beginner golfers, tuck their heads into their chest and look straight down at the golf ball. This, of course, restricts the amount of movement they can have with their swing.
The problem with having your chin too low is that your head will have to move during your swing. Your head can move slightly to the right (righties) when your weight shifts to the right during your backswing, but your eyes should still remain parallel to the ground. In other words, your head should not tilt during your swing.
If you are having difficulty with this, try a few practice swings without hitting a golf ball. keeping your head straight and an eye on the ball try to swing your golf club backwards and forwards while keeping your head still and eyes firmly fixed on the ball. If you detect your head tilting, then raise your chin a little more until your head remains still. Now you know what it should feel like for your head to be in the right position at address.
This is something you will need to practice until you can get into the right position without having to think about it. Once your muscle memory has it locked in, you should have no further trouble with this part of your swing. Remember that your spine should be straight as this is the turning point for your entire swing.
Golf is a Balancing ActBalance is another part of playing golf that is often overlooked. A lot of the time when a golf ball is mis-hit, it's due to coming off balance during the swing. A bad balance causes all sorts of different golf swing faults at any given time. When you have an inconsistent golf swing, you'll most likely spend most of your time trying to sort out all the golf swing mechanics that you can think of. You'll probably change your grip, buy a new driver, get a new set of golf balls, go for a few lessons from your local pro, everything and anything you can think of.
The last thing that you'll look at is your balance. But it should be the first. Balance is the most important part of the golf swing, without good balance you will never be able to hit the golf ball properly with any consistency.
If you think that balance could be one of your swing problems then try these few things. Try and go through the complete golf swing from address all the way through to the finish as slow as you can, it will do a couple of things. You will find out just how good your balance really is, if your swing has any imbalance in it at all, practicing in this slow motion way will show it up very noticeably. Once you have your balance sorted out, continue to practice in slow motion and work on the mechanics of your swing. It will also give you all the time in the world to see and be aware of every part of your golf swing. You will have the time to analyze your swing in a way that is impossible when you are trying to complete the golf swing at normal speed. It's amazing what you will discover, and how it will sort out a lot of your golf swing problems. When you are happy with your swing and your balance, you can try speeding up your swing again... gradually.
You might also try extending this a stage further by doing your slow motion swing with your feet only a couple of inches apart. This is a great way of improving your balance, it also stops you from trying to hit the ball too hard. Give this a try, especially just before you start a round of golf. It is also an effective form of warm up exercise to begin your game with. When you can complete a full swing at normal speed with your feet close together and not come off balance, then you have cracked it.
Improving your golf swing needn't be difficult, if you keep things, especially your swing, as simple and uncomplicated as possible, you will reap the rewards in consistency and trouble free golf. Then you will be in a good position to start working on increasing the distance of your shots.