If you have ever had a lesson of any sort with someone of the highest quality, you can come out of the experience feeling the same as walking out of the cinema having seen a great film or a concert of your favourite performer.

There is a feeling of euphoria. Of weightlessness.

For me personally I have come out of certain experiences just absolutely reeling.

“What have I just witnessed? What have I just gone through?”

Obviously it can’t be done every time, but this is sometimes the reaction we should look to provoke.

Switching Off

If I was a player and the practice session was hitting the same club to the same target I would 100% switch off.

If I was a player and the practice session was going through my pre-shot routine and changing club for every shot I would 100% switch off.

Distance vs Height

“See! This hybrid goes no further than my 8 iron! I need to hit it further!”

We hear this a lot. Wedges to around 8 iron seem to go ok with equal gappings and then it falls off a cliff. All clubs seem to go a similar distance.

But what often appears to be a distance problem is actually a height problem. What normally happens is that from about 7 iron onwards the ball isn’t in the air long enough to make up the distance. This then leads to seemingly a number of clubs going all the same distance.

If achieved it can lead to gratifying, higher arcing shots that both go further and create equal distances between the clubs without having to hit it any harder. Nice.

Giving Something

Sometimes you just have to give something. Some players only respond well when feeling like they are working towards something rather than just maintaining and preserving.

New ideas, drills and exercises can all fend off feelings of treading water and the fear of not progressing.

Sometimes you have to give “something” even if it is actually “nothing”.

Ball Flight

Be obsessed with the ball flight. By the ball flight now and the ball flight that could be possible.

Be obsessed with the ball flight.

How are your comfort levels?

You have someone to come you. They only play golf once a month. Strong grip. Hit it really well for someone who doesn’t play but sometimes pulls it. They’re interested in hitting nice shots and don’t take golf too seriously.

The first reaction would be…change the grip to stop them pulling it.

But, and it’s a big but…

How are they going to feel once you change the grip?
Probably uncomfortable.

Where will the ball probably go?
To the right.

Will they practise enough to instill these changes?
Probably not

So you’ve made “technically” a good change but they will probably leave hitting it worse, hitting it to the right and also feeling really uncomfortable. Yes, we can say that they’ve just got to work on it but they won’t. And we knew that they wouldn’t.

The Backswing Matters

The backswing 100% matters. The backswing contributes towards what happens in the downswing. The downswing effects what happens at impact. Impact determines where the ball goes. So, yes, the backswing matters.

But that doesn’t mean that we should all have the same backswing. Some players will benefit from taking it more on the outside. Some on the inside. Wider. Narrower. Feeling clubface closed. Feeling clubface open. The list goes on. It all depends on the player.

The backswing matters. But there isn’t just one backswing that matters.

Try It Without Trackman

If you’re used to giving your lessons with a launch monitor, just try a few without.

Of course there’s a feeling of adding a service with a launch monitor and of course the data can be helpful but see how it goes without it. Test yourself. Could you make as good an improvement without as with? Do they really need it?

Just try without. See how it goes.