The Benefits Of Video Analysis In Golf Instruction

When I am teaching golf, I often encourage my students to receive a video lesson of their golf swing. Surprisingly, many are afraid to use this tool, as they are afraid to see their own swings on video. Yet, I believe video analysis is the most effective tool in my arsenal.

The use of video gives tremendous feedback to the student. Occasionally, while I am teaching and moving a student through their swing the way I would like them to swing, they will say “that doesn’t feel right” or “that feels awkward.” Or, sometimes they will say they thought they really had done what I asked them to do on a particular swing, even though from my vantage point, it was clear they had not. Yet, when they see their own swing video, and then how I want them to swing on video, they know they need to make some changes to get better.

As a result of this, I now insist that the first lesson a student receives from me will involve the use of video. I have set up an indoor golf studio that includes video equipment and a golf simulator. The simulator provides feedback as to what the club is doing at impact. The simulator tells the student whether their swing path is inside out, outside in or square, and also indicates the angle of the club face at impact. Is it square, closed or open? An explanation in regard to the physics of ball flight laws will accompany this feed back.

Once we see the overall pattern of the swing path and ball flight on the simulator, I bring in the video camera. I combine this with the analysis software that I use. Analyzing the student’s swing in slow motion will reveal the swing faults of the student. This analysis then helps with developing a plan for improvement.

The advantage to using video over the standard lesson on the driving range is clear. When on the driving range, if a student continues to struggle with their ball flight without seeing their own swing on video, they will tend to dismiss the changes that the instructor is communicating. They simply move on to the next instructor to try and find that magic fix. This is why many instructors simply focus on trying to provide a quick swing fix, rather than communicate a plan for overall improvement in the swing. The problem is, that quick fix will disappear just as quickly as it appeared.

On the other hand, when a student views video of their swing, they receive substantial feedback regarding the faults they need to correct. If the student gets a good explanation of cause and effect from the instructor based upon what they see in the video, they will have more confidence in the changes the instructor wants to make.

Not only that, but a student can incorporate the use of video in their own practice. Many of the popular video analysis programs can be purchased for home use at a steep discount to what the professionals pay for higher end programs. A standard video camera and computer are all the equipment that is needed. Once a student understands the swing changes they are trying to make, the use of video can provide them feedback on their progress.

The bottom line is that video analysis is now the single best tool a golf instructor can employ when teaching their students. As such, the serious golf student should eagerly seek out instructors who employ this technology regularly.

Copyright (c) 2009 Scott Cole

The Different Types Of Golf Shots

At any point during a game of golf the golfer has to decide what type of club to use. This decision is affected by a number of factors, including location on golf course (tee, bunker, green etc.) and condition of the ground (rough, bunker, etc.).

The different types of shot within the golfer’s arsenal are: normal stroke, layup, draw, punch (knock back), fade, flop shot, pitch shot, drive, bunker, approach, and putt etc., will be discussed here in brief.

The Tee Off Box – The drive – This is played at the start of a game from the tee, with the objective of sending the golf ball as far as possible down the fairway.

The Fairway and Hazards – Draw – This is a special type of shot that acts differently for left or handed players. For right handed players the ball when hit will arch round to the right while travelling through the air. For left handed players, the ball will arch round to the left whilst travelling through the air.

Punch (Knock back) – When up against overhead objects (bridge, branches of a tre, etc.) or having to play into the wind, the shot of choice would be the Punch shot, or knock back as it is otherwise known. This shot is able to avoid such obstacles because is sends the ball through the air in a low trajectory (closer to the ground then other shots).

Lay up – This is used when more accuracy is needed, and is played from the fairway just after the tee off. It does not travel as far as other types of shot, but is one of the most accurate.

Pitch shot – This shot is used when the golfer needs a more exact shot and does not want the ball to bounce back or roll too far from where it lands. It is used in places such as hitting the ball onto the green.

Bunker – When the golf ball land in a sand trap, the golfer than needs to play what is called a bunker shot. This is played with a lofted wedge club, and the ball is hit high, which results in the ball travelling over the lip of the bunker and staying within the area of the green.

Fade – This is a special type of shot that makes the ball travel in the reverse direction in the air that it is hit. Therefore, if hit by a right handed golfer to the left, it will arch round to the right, and for a left handed player hitting the ball round to the right, it will then arch round to the left.

On The Green – Approach – This is short ranged shot that takes the ball from the fairway or perhaps and obstacle (eg bunker, rough) and places it onto the green.

Chip shot – This shot is used as a short approach shot to the green. The shot itself only sends the ball a short distance and is suited to this situation.

Flop shot – This is played instead of a chip shot when the golfer needs to send the ball over an obstacle and onto the green. The ball on landing will either spin back or come to a dead stop.

Putt – This shot is used on the green to either put the ball into the hole or to place the ball as close as possible to the hole, ready for potting. The ball is sent along the grass of the green, it never leaves the green, unlike the other types of shots, which propel the ball into the air. The ball is usually hot at an angle to the target hole. Due to the way the greens are constructed the ball cannot have a direct path to the hole because of the curve of the ground.

Lag – This is a long putt used to place the golf ball as close as possible to the hole without actually potting it.

Learn to Play Golf

Golf is a celebrated game among the elite. Golf can be a very gratifying game but sometimes it can prove frustrating too. So unless a person has love or passion for the game of golf it is not easy to learn to play golf. People who want to learn to play golf are offered a cafeteria of choices to train themselves. But real practice sessions are a must while learning to play golf. The other options for learning to play golf include golf videos, golf books, interactive videos, golf articles in magazines and direct learning program for golf.
Some of the important thumb rules that are kept in mind when learning to play golf are
Learn to play golf gripping the club in the correct way
Learn to align the club face properly
Learn to have the correct swing and the art of back swing
Learn to have a controlled swing
Learn to master the move of one-piece takeaway
Learn to enhance of straight ball flight,
Learnto have a perfect impact
Learn to boost consistency
Learn to have increased distance
Learn to have the right hand actionThese key areas of the game have to be concentrated upon so that the efforts put forth in learning to play golf bears fruits. Though a professional golf trainer is important to a great extent to learn to play golf, a lot more lies on the shoulders of the person who learns to play golf. Consistent and regular practice is a must to learn to play golf efficiently and effectively. Repetition of a skill while learning to play golf is a must to bring in self-confidence and victory. Allowing criticism also helps because a check comes for a fault from an outsider which a person learning to play golf will not be able to see for himself.
Learning to play golf might be a group activity with groups ranging from two to a maximum of eight. Persons learning to play golf can undergo these training sessions at any time of the year for it is available all through the year. Improvement is facilitated by allowing the persons learning to play golf to join in groups based on their levels namely- beginners, intermediate and advanced.
Getting the right equipments to learn to play golf is important. But investing on expensive equipments at the earlier stages of learning golf can be a waste.It is imperative to learn the rules and etiquette of the golf game while learning to play it. A basic level of competency in golf is a must when you play in a golf course. This can lift up your confidence levels which are also very essential while learning to play golf.

The three major problems that arise for golfers when learning to play golf are inconsistency, slice and distance. Even though ready made solutions are available on golf books and videos and no matter how much a person reads or discusses on golf, learning to play golf needs the person going to the range and doing it practically; for practice makes a skill perfect.

New And Used Golf Balls – Matter Of Preference

When you are a seasoned golfer, new and used golf balls does not really matter anymore. More often you will take a look at the quality of the golf balls and how it suits your game. The only reason why you might be considering between new and used golf balls is your budget. Let us face it, you read this article topic already knowing what might be in stored for you. But is it really all that? Let us take a look.

The new age golfer – Long gone are the times when we shell out loads of money on new golf balls and finding that golf balls is an expensive sport to play. No, it no longer is expensive despite the technology and the golf balls getting better and better. We have to take a look at another angle. The new age angle.

Technology have made golf much more easier and wonderful to play. Not to forget that it is getting cheaper through used golf balls. Yes we can lose tons of golf balls and still have access to them for a cheap price.

Did we forget the new age technology called the internet? This resource have allowed many used golf ball dealers to buy lost golf balls from others all over the world and resell them. In fact, this business have become so huge that the only difference between them is the difference in grading, quality and service. Prices are often very much the same.

Of course, these are for the budget golfer in mind. So the question now is when do we go new golf ball hunting when we are counting on used golf balls everyday? If so, the quality of golf balls will drop as the number of rounds left on them will diminish after some serious whacking.

We all know the pros and cons of used golf balls. While it may save you your wallet every time, chances are you might turn into good value merchants that offer great discounts and cheap pricing off new golf balls. Will you have the fear of losing them at a dozen a game?

The answer is a definite no. If you have played your game through and are serious about the sport, you should be well on your way to having a better ball game. After rounds on the green, your shot dispersion should have been tighter, your control should have been better. If not, you can probably just enjoy your days at the range with a bucketful of range balls.

Point is, we will all evolve one day, develop ourselves ultimately. New or used, it does not really matter when you have got a real mean swing and a handful of tricks up your sleeves. You should not be scared of losing a new golf ball down the woods or hazards. Especially when you are starting to rake in some winnings.

Pre Golf Practice Routine

In order to consistently score low, it is highly recommended to form a regular pre golf practice routine before teeing off. A pre golf practice routine will warm your muscles up, and give you the chance to start out on the right foot.

I would recommend stretching for at least five minutes before starting; especially the back and the arms. It is best to take a few minutes to swing a club and warm up your muscles before stretching.

After stretching, spend some time and the putting green and driving range. In the putting part of the pre golf practice routine, bring three balls to the putting green. Start putting from a close distance to the hole, and slowly work your way back. I usually start about two feet from the hole, sink three putts, and then move back a foot. Make sure that you are making your close putts before moving back. It is important to concentrate on the close putts, because if you are not sinking those, you probably will not sink the longer ones.

After putting, move to the chipping portion of the pre golf practice routine. I usually chip about ten shots before moving onto the driving range, but however many you decide to do is up to you. Just remember to take your time, and concentrate on every shot. Do not just go up and hit 20 chips and hope that one gets close.

When hitting balls at the range, it is not the quantity of balls hit, but the quality of your shots that matter. It is much better to hit three or four good shots than to hit 100 bad shots, and reinforce bad habits. Therefore, I suggest hitting three or four good shots with each club. Be sure to take your time on each shot. Start with the higher degree irons, and work your way down to the driver.

Remember, this is just a guideline. Depending on the amount of time you have, and what you feel comfortable with. What works best for one person may not work best for everyone. Use these guidelines to develop a pre golf practice routine that works best for you.

Golf Swing Cures

How to Improve Your Golf Swing

The only way to improve your golf swing is with drills. In fact, there are so many to choose from so you should use your time wisely when you are on the green.

To do that, dont just hit the ball. Assess your speed and distance control because these are factors that will affect where the ball will go.

Instead of just hitting the ball towards a hole, try working with ball markers because this will help you focus more on the stroke and not just sinking the ball. Since your ball will not always land in the same place, it is best to try putting at various distances.

That is for the short game but for the long game you have to hit the ball from one side of the green to the other. Again, watch your stroke because how well you swing will determine where the ball will land. When you walk over to where the ball landed, work again on your short game this time towards the hole and not a ball marker.

The last part of practice should always be closer to the hole. As much as possible, work on a flat surface and if you are able to sink 5 or 6 of these in a row, you can call it a day.

Aside from the physical aspect to improve your golf swing, attitude plays a significant factor as well. This will be useful before you make the putt and when the ball did not go where you wanted it to. You just have to tell yourself to do it again so you will eventually get it right.

There are also golf swing aids you can get for the hands and arms as well as markers which you can use to help you putt on a line. You can buy this from the sporting goods store but as for the marker, you can get this from the hardware store.

Practicing your golf swing does not end when you leave the golf course. In fact, you can also practice this at home by clearing a certain part of your home. If you want to practice your long game, try going to a driving range.

Improving your golf game is something that professionals strive to do even if they have won several tournaments in the past because this is the only way for them to be on top of their game. If you are just starting out, this just means that you still have a long way to go so you can be just as good as them.

Whenever possible, listen to what the professionals say during interviews or what sports commentators write about them because you can also earn a thing or two to improve your game. You dont have to follow everything but if you have tried a few, you will realize which one of these really works.

Being a champion or a professional like one of them will not be easy and this will not happen overnight but with patience and perseverance, there is a chance that your golf swing will become better in the long run so you can be just as good as them. Something that we hope of becoming even if we are not competing in a tour just like the professionals.