High Performance Golf 2: How To Simplify Your Golf Game

12 Responses

  1. Peter Taplin says:

    Thanks again for these pearls of wisdom. Your key measures of performance sum up perfectly what we need to be doing and not how we do it. This confirms what we can all observe among the top tournament pros. The variety of swings is amazing but the results demonstrate that all have largely mastered the key performance measures. The variety of physiques alone suggests that this is going to be the case. Last year’s ‘Masters’ winner is a wonderful example though undoubtedly unique.

    • Eric Jones, MA, PGA says:

      Hi Peter – Thanks for your comment. You are correct – we seem to have lost sight of WHAT we are supposed to be doing, and are spending too much time on the HOW part of the swing equation. Understanding the 4 outcomes – Center Contact, Directional Accuracy, Distance Control, and Shape control keeps the focus where it should be, and provides a framework to assess whether or not any swing change we are making are the right ones. My hope is that I can begin to shift the golf culture towards what makes sense so that more people are happier and having more fun playing golf instead of getting confused in the details of the swing. Thanks again!

  2. Mike Harris (Germany) says:

    Hi Eric,

    I started playing when I was about 45, I was realy quite bad, this was maybe because my first Wife , would buy me Golf balls or a Glove for presents but hated me playing, so I only played about once a month my playing partners would play twice or more each week.
    Now 76 (tomorrow) , I have a new German Wife who likes me to play as often as I want , problem here is lack of courses but with much pratice my short game is getting quite good , putting was never a problem and can go round a local 6 hole par three practice course in an ave of 22.3, (par 18), .
    The holes rang from 70 Mtrs to 165 Mtrs ( this I can reach with my 3 Wood ) on a good day,
    so to any one who feels like chucking their clubs in the bin , I say it’s never to late to improve..

    Happy Golfing

    Mike Harris in the “Black Forest” Germany.

    • Eric Jones, MA, PGA says:

      Hi Mike – Sounds like you made a great upgrade. Welcome to the family. If you ever have any golf questions, use the Comments box at the bottom of the videos. Cheers!

  3. Fritz says:

    I took Eric’s driver clinic and after two small adjustments, one you would never think of, Eric had me consistently hitting the ball in the center of the club face and on a good trajectory. The clinic is well worth the price.

  4. John Lundsten says:

    I really enjoy your analysis. I have trouble with both distance control and accuracy on chip shots. Some instructors suggest planning to land the ball in the same place on the green (two or three feet on) each time you chip, letting it run to the hole. This means you use the same swing each time but change the club depending upon the distance between the landing point and the hole. The second technique encourages use of the same club for each chip but vary the face loft and swing to match the distance to the hole. Do you have an opinion about which is the more reliable method? Change the club or change rthe swing?

    • Eric Jones, MA, PGA says:

      Hi John – Great question about using different clubs or the same club when chipping around the green.
      Let me put it to you differently.
      The MOST IMPORTANT of the four performance outcomes (Center Contact, Distance, Direction, Shape) for chipping is Distance Control. The reason is that most amateurs are farther away from the hole short or long than they are left to right.
      So the performance measure we use is “How many out of 10 can you stop within 6 feet of the hole?”
      In my informal polling, which includes PGA Tour players, about half chip to a spot, and about half to the flag. The majority use different clubs for different distances.
      But the best answer is the one that works best for you.
      So I suggest you conduct a series of “chip-offs.” Hit 10-ball sets and compare the results. Let the performance results be your guide, rather than what some “guru” has to say.
      Keep us posted!

  5. Tom Hunt says:

    I have a lot of trouble hitting my 3 wood from the fairway. When I hit it well it’s great, but I normally top the ball. Please help me solve this problem.

    • Eric Jones, MA, PGA says:

      Hi Tom – Topping is a common issue with the 3-wood. And that’s exactly what I was talking about in the video. You have a “contact” issue. You need to find out how to hit the ball in the middle of the club face with your 3-wood. It may turn out that there is a swing issue. But at least you are starting with the right question: How do I make contact with the middle of the club face? Just asking that question and then focusing on the answer when you practice will allow you to evaluate the effectiveness of whatever swing changes you are making. I’d start with the obvious one first: Keeping your eye on the back of the ball AT IMPACT. It’s surprising how many golfers take their eyes off the ball just before impact. Sometimes it is the body rotation that turns the head right before contact. Sometimes it is too much concern with the shot outcome. Other simple changes to experiment with would be to move the ball back or forward in your stance, or to move farther from or closer to the ball. These are set-up changes, which are simple to implement. And it may mean you don’t have to change your swing at all.
      This is what I mean about simplifying the game. Rather than start monkeying around with all kinds of swing changes and focusing on getting the movement right, focus on getting the contact right.

  6. Warren says:

    Excellent article. I will try to use this as a centering device. That is, mentally remind myself every time I do not go back to this list for my game or practice routines.

    • Eric Jones, MA, PGA says:

      Thanks Warren! The performance measures are particularly helpful for a post-shot analysis, as well as for organizing practice sessions. It always comes back to one of these four things. Sometimes that means the swing needs to change. But at least it provides a framework to evaluate whether or not the swing changes are effective.

  1. 2013-06-24

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