A very simple golf lesson

Amanda is a 16 year old golfer. She’s talented but a little stuck. Her coach told me that she has been “messed up” and is working on getting her game back on track.

I could see right away she has a flair for the game. She wasn’t interested in talking, but preferred to putt and chip and chase golf balls around.

When she started hitting some full shots I could see some tension. She was a little stiff and not quite sure of herself – a sign that there could be some over-coaching going on.

Me: Amanda, would it be ok for me to coach you for a few minutes?

Amanda: Sure, that would be great.

Me: OK, I’d like for you to start the ball at the left side of the green and then have it move to the right – maybe a metre or so.

Amanda: I have trouble with the fade. I can’t hit it very well.

Me: Let’s not worry about the past now. Just get comfortable and see if you can hit a fade.

Amanda hit 3 perfect shots in a row. They were brilliant attempts. I then gave her another club and asked her to hit a slightly higher fade.

Again, Amanda was able to hit the ball beautifully.

Me: It’s a shame you can’t hit a fade because those shots were really good. Oh well, maybe next time.

Not sure Amanda understood my sarcasm but I was pleased for her. Our little session was completely untechnical and she was able to hit balls for a few minutes without clutter. She was free and able to swing the club in a way that suited her.

Her coach didn’t miss her work either (he was viewing from the green)

Coach: They were great shots. Amanda has trouble hitting a fade and is constantly fighting a big pull.

Me: Would you like to know how I got her to hit those fades?

Coach: Yeah, what did you tell her?

Me: It was really complicated and technical.

Coach: What was it?

Me: I asked her to play a fade …

The look on his face told the story.

Me: Has anyone asked her to experiment with fading the ball?

Coach: No. We’ve been working on her setup and her backswing and her downswing.

Sometimes the simplest lessons are the most effective. And sometimes it’s easy to ignore these lessons because they’re just too obvious. And oftentimes coaches think they need to work on the fancy stuff at the expense of the simple things.

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  • Grayden Provis

    Reply Reply March 24, 2015

    Coach: No. We’ve been working on her setup and her backswing and her downswing.

    Dr Phil: And how’s that workin’ for ya?

    • Cameron

      Reply Reply March 24, 2015

      Thanks Dr. Phil. Thanks for dropping by.

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