Learning a new skill in life can seem very daunting no matter what that skill is. Golf can seem very complicated, and any budding golfer can suffer from information overload. It is so easy to get tied up in knots thinking about grip, stance and alignment, setup and ball position, tempo and balance, and so on. The club can begin to feel like an octopus in your hands…and it’s far too easy to not be able to see the wood for the trees; so let us just examine the basics of the game.
The object of the game of golf is to get the ball from the tee to the hole, in as few a number of shots as possible, using the golf clubs to control the direction and distance in which the ball travels. So, the golfer’s aim with each shot is to progress the ball towards the hole, nothing more than that. It is far too easy to think that the goal is to have a perfect swing…each budding golfer will develop their own unique swing, with the help of guidance from their teacher AND through their OWN EXPERIENCE.
So the number one focus for every shot is to select a specific target and hit the ball towards it. For the golf ball to go in the right direction, the club head will need to hit the ball square, and the ball flight will tell you whether or not this has happened, and every golfer can learn from their awareness of the ball flight and can then adjust their swing so that they do hit the ball square. This is the second important focus.
These are the two most important things to do in golf – pick a target and aim at it, and be aware of the position of the club head when it connects with the ball. A baby doesn’t try to walk exactly like the adults in the house – he plainly cannot do that, he learns to walk in his own unique way. A child learns through their own experience, and through guidance. Every would-be golfer is a unique individual – having their own unique body and mind, and they will learn to play golf within this framework.
So long as thoughts are kept simple and clear, an individual will find it easy and fun to learn to play golf, so that they can truly enjoy the experience, without fear, and without getting tied up in knots.
And this is true of golfers of every handicap. The majority of golfers will relate to having experienced, at some time or another, a complete lack of confidence and loss of trust in their game. They grip the club and it just doesn’t look right, it doesn’t feel right…and they have no idea why this is the case. In the main this is due to lack of awareness of the basics of the game, a misdirection of focus. They are focusing on how to get a perfect angle at the top of the back swing, or keeping their wrists firm, or making sure their back is at the optimal angle, and so on. They’ve forgotten to focus on the ball and hitting it forward towards a target with a square club face, and this is basic to any successful shot (unless you are intentionally creating side spin so as to shape the ball flight).
And so the inevitable happens, the golf shot is less than perfect, and confidence dips lower, the club is gripped harder and more focus is given once again to the other mechanical things and a cycle of negative effect can easily occur. This is why I began this article by saying that golf can be a really tricky game to learn. It is like no other game, and learning to play golf well poses an interesting mental and physical challenge to those who care to do so.
Roseanna Leaton, specialist in golf hypnosis cds and hypnosis mp3 downloads.