FIRST GREAT GOLF SHOT A LIFELONG SEARCH FOR A FREE, REPEATABLE, CONSISTENT GOLF SWING
I still remember the first time I made real good solid contact in the middle of the club face, one of those times when the ball just jumps off the face and flies straight high and true with no effort. I was playing a course in Auburn with my two brothers, Mike and Lou. They must have still been in high school and living at home, since we were all together on a summer morning. It was early morning the sun was warm there was dew on the grass and very few people were on the golf course. I played with a set of my father’s old irons, some kind of very thin blades with brown steel shafts of some sort. They were the lightest clubs I ever felt in my hands. I still have them here in the house.
I could not have been more than six or seven years old when I hit this first great golf shot, or somewhere in that neighborhood age wise. We were walking down the first fairway. I remember going over to the right side probably in the rough and taking out the old 4 iron from the set. I remember setting up to the ball, taking the club back on the backswing, then letting the club head release through the hitting area. I saw the dew on the grass splatter and I can still see the divot flying straight in front of me as I looked up and saw the results of my first perfect contact. The sun was off to the left a little and brightened the flight of the ball as I watched it sail high and straight, then descend onto the green. I can still see the ball mark on the wet surface as the ball landed, and the ball as it spun backward on the short grass. I can still see it and I can still feel it. Here it is probably over 50 years later, and it is all finally starting to make a little sense to me.
Golf Teacher Goals
My goal here is to relate the information and experience I have gained in the golf business over the past thirty years to help make those who visit golfteacher.com better golfers, better shot-makers, and to enhance their enjoyment of the game. Golf truly is the “game of a lifetime.”
I use both high tech teaching equipment and observation. Watching your golf ball flight in regards to what you are doing in your golf swing is the key to any good golf lesson.
By watching and listening to great golfers, and sitting behind the counter watching countless thousands of golfers tee off on the first tee and hit balls on the range, I have developed a great eye and ear for technique or lack of technique in any golf swing. Being able to see and decipher each individual golf swing as it relates to itself is the key component to any great teacher of the game.
High tech equipment is great, but only for the student who requires it. Most of us just want some simple, common sense help with our golf games.
I started using video in my lessons as an instructional tool back in the early 1990’s. I have used many video systems that have evolved into taking video with an iPhone using the V1 system. I take and analyze video seamlessly in real time with no interruptions, right at the site of the lesson. It is a quick accurate system that gives, you the student, instantaneous feedback before you have a chance to forget the feel and results of the shots that we have on video. Video training has also helped me as a player, as it is always a new experience seeing yourself in real time on the screen. Pictures do not lie.
I just this week (4/23/2017) purchased a SkyTrak Golf Launch Monitor Unit. Its a great piece of equipment. I will probably only use it for myself but I view it as a very worthwhile investment in my career as a golf teacher and a golf professional; and as a proficient player. The SkyTrak has much the same interface as the old GolfAchiever, only much more refined.
Over the years I have also used the GolfAchiever golf swing analyzer and launch monitor, the Ernest Golf ES12 monitor, as well as my iPhone video camera and iPhone swing analyzing devices and software. I have hit countless thousands of golf balls using this swing analyzers. But one thing I have found is that most golfers want to get better, but do not necessarily have a need for high tech teaching tools or high priced swing aids that just add to the confusion.
If somebody, a golf teacher for example, would have offered lessons and told me 40 years ago when I first started to golf seriously, (and it is ok to take it seriously because I figure everyone’s goal is to play better, to do this you have to have a little interest) that there is one golf swing move to practice that will incorporate and nurture all other moves into a cohesive pattern that would produce good to great consistent golf shots, I would probably have been skeptical at best and figured there was no easy way to make this move called the golf swing. That is why I spent the last 30 to 35 years as a teacher, player, and observer while playing and giving lessons, trying to figure out how to hit consistent golf shots. And again, I never ran across anybody or any body of work as far as golf swing instruction that would lead me down the path to what I call good golf and good to great golf shots, consistently. Anything that is understandable, coherent, and to the point.
I have heard it said that “you can lead a horse to water but you cannot make it drink.” Taking a golf lesson or two from a qualified golf teacher that speaks to you in common sense language can improve your game and the quality of your shot-making, thereby improving your scores.