Tips From The Pro

Tips from the Pro

The Backswing

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Because the ball is lying on the ground to the side of you there must be an upward and downward swinging of the arms combined with a rotational motion of the body. The shoulders rotate on a shallower or flatter plane than the arm swing. The tilting or rocking rather than rotating of the shoulders forces the arms to swing predominantly upward rather than upward and around. This bad shoulder movement on the backswing prevents the body from unwinding freely on the downswing. So remember to rotate the shoulders on the backswing.


Tips from the Pro

Standing the correct distance from the ball

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Take your normal setup with a driver, then let go your lower hand and let it hang. It should hang in line from where you took it OFF. If you stand too far from the ball your hand will move closer to you when you drop it off the grip. If you stand too close your hand will move away from you.


Tips from the Pro

Squaring the clubface at impact

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The back of the left hand, assuming you have a decent grip, will show you where the club face is through impact.The common mistake is swinging through the shot with the back of the left hand and the clubface pointing up. When the side of the hand leads the way, youhit weak slices. To hit straighter shots you need to release your hands through impact. As you swing into the ball turn your hands so that the back of your left hand points down the target line.


Tips from the Pro

Slice Fix

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Picture a clock on the ground with the target line from 6:00 to 12:00 and the ball sitting in the center of the clock face. Deliver the club head on a path that swipes across the 7, travels through the ball in the center of the clock and exists the hitting area over the 1. That’s a perfect inside-out path. If you slice your swing, it travels from 5:00 to 11:00 and if you shut the club face you hit a snap hook.


Tips from the Pro

Alignment

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Pick a spot in front of the ball, draw an imaginery line to your ball and align your setup to that line.


Tips from the Pro

Shoulder Turn

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Make sure that you turn your shoulders 90° to the target line. Your back must be facing the target at the top of the backswing.


Tips from the Pro

Coaching Books

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Garth’s coaching books “No More Three Putts – Volume 1” followed up by “How To Approach Your Fourth Putt With Confidence – Volume 2” will certainly help you get over the yips. His latest book “When All Else Fails – Head Down And Force (with footnotes by KJ Dunkley)” gives the reader a simple approach to this graceful game. Enquire at the Pro Shop.


Tips from the Pro

Downswing

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Do not force the downswing. Let the club head and the arms drop. Let gravity bring the club head down. If your hands are soft and passive, your hands will turn over by themselves. As your arms drop down, let your right hip rotate to the target. After impact, make sure your right heel lifts up off the ground.


Tips from the Pro

Fairway Bunkers

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To escape fairway bunkers, you must make good ball-first contact. Avoid hitting the sand first. If you take sand after the ball, like a normal divot, that’s fine. When you hit the sand first, the club slows down and will result in a shot that comes up well short of the green. To make good ball-first club contact, you must adjust your setup. Place the ball slightly back in your stance. This will result in hitting the ball first before bottoming out and hitting the sand. Another setup key is to grip down slightly on the club about half an inch. Doing this makes the club slightly shorter and more difficult to hit the sand too soon during the swing. As a result, take one extra club so you can make a controlled swing.


Tips from the Pro

Aiming:

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Imagine you are standing on a railway line with your feet on one track and the ball on the other track. Picturing the tracks parallel lines helps me identify the target and keeps the body lines parallel to one another. All to often golfers address the ball with contradictory body lines eg. Their feet aim right but their shoulders aim left. These “crossed lines” force the golfer to make awkward adjustments in the swing. When you address the ball make sure your feet, knees, hips and shoulders are all parallel to the tracks.