Free Golf Tips for Beginners or Anyone
By Paul Nichols
Range Tips Grip tips: Your hands should work together as one unit with your palms facing each other as if you are praying, which you probably will be at times. To check this, take your address position and lift the clubhead straight up just by bending your wrists. If you grip allows you to swing the shaft straight up to the middle of your head, without the face angle changing, then you grip is good. While doing this, does the face of your clubhead still look straight? If so, that means the pressure from each hand is equal.
Alignment: A good way to check or correct your alignment is to use a couple of old shafts or any like thing and place 1 on the ground aimed at your target line a few inches on the other side of the ball. Take your stance and check with another shaft or club to see if your shoulders, hips, and feet are set up parallel to the target line.
I take a second shaft and stick it the ground about 3-4 feet back of my back foot at an angle comparable to my club at address. Experiment with the exact position until it is in a place that you miss it by a couple inches on the way back and through. If you take it back slow and look at the gap between the two you can get it at just the right angle so that it gives you a good indicator as to your swing plane. IE: you can see if you are coming back too far inside or outside. Be careful the first few times as you don't want to hit the shaft during your swing. You can use one of those "pool noodles" or a pipe insulator on the shaft so you don't get killed or give someone next to you a stroke if you hit it.
Now when you are ready to hit some, you stand behind the ball and pick a spot on the ground or another tee 2-3 feet ahead of the ball and in your target line. It and the ball should form a line parallel with the shaft on the ground.
All you have to do now, is to swing down that line through the ball.
Balance: I like to hit balls at times with no shoes on. It may sound silly, but you will be surprised how much you will feel with your feet. You will feel all aspects of your weight moving during the swing. You should feel the push as you come down and through the impact area, and then the weight shift onto your front foot.
Good Practice: A good way to improve your ball striking with irons is to pick a torn up part of the teeing ground at the range and use it to hit balls from. If you can train your self to do this, when you do play from the fairway the ball will almost seem as if it is teed up. On some courses where the ground isn't the best, your swing will be immune to bad lies.
Visualize Your Shots: A lot of teaching pros tell you to pick a spot to land your tee shot on to help your visualization, but what I like to do is to use two or three flags, trees , or whatever is out on the range to form the boundries of an imaginary fairway alyhough narrower than a real one. If you can hit shots within the "boundaries", it greatly increases your confidence. If you get to the point where you can shape your shots inside the boundaries, when combined with a solid repeatable routine, you really have something to work with when the pressure is on.
Slice Correction: A good way to combat a slice is to put a small mark on the back of the ball,(opposite the target). When you go to swing, focus all your attenetion on that mark until after impact. It's very difficult to come "over the top" while doing this. Try it!
Hook Correction: One main reason people hook, myself especially, is because their weight stays on the back foot or even moves backward in the down swing. One way to fight this, is to make a conscious effort to "stamp" your front foot down at impact. I don't mean to actually lift and drop your foot, but feel as if you are stamping your foot down just at the moment of impact. To do this, you must shift your weight. Watch the hooks disappear.
Puttig Tips: Get the speed right and you won't three putt. The correct speed ideally is that if you miss, the ball stops 12-18 inches beyond the hole,(except for lag putts).
Lag putts when you don't feel confident or over 30 feet. Pretend you are putting into a 4 foot barrell and anything you leave inside that 4 feet is good. Seeing as it will be 2 feet or less, it probably is.
Never use your wrists in a putting stroke, just arm and shoulder muscles and you will control the distance much easier.
Don't look up until your ball has rolled at least 6 feet.
Go with your first thought/feeling when seeing the line, it is right more often then not.
Spend time practicing 6 footers. If you can make 3 out of 4 of them, you will putt better than 80% of all golfers.
If you play at the same course a lot, look at the greens in a hard rain sometime and notice the way the water sits on the green to see all the nuances/breaks in it.
Chipping Tips: For short chips, all you need to do is use a putting stroke. As with putting It is much easier to control distance when you don't involve your wrists.
A good rule of thumb in club selection for chipping is to get the ball rolling on the green as soon as possible, and run it up or down to the hole.
If you have 3 chips, one a flat 40 footer from just off the green, one an uphill 40 footer, and one a downhill 40 footer, instead of varying your swing, consider using the same swing for all three. For the uphill, an 8 iron, for the flat, a 9 iron, and for the downhiller, a wedge. The change in loft will make up for the difference in slope.
P. Nichols: MySquidoo
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Online golf lessons
Fitness tips to improve your golf game
Working Golf Specific Exercises Into Your Fitness Routine