Most golfers who play once a week don’t have the time, money, or desire to invest in hitting thousands of practice balls under the watchful eye of a competent instructor. Is there an alternative to help the “average” golfer build a better golf swing?
Adopt an exercise that builds optimal muscle memory.
Every golfer is familiar with the notion of muscle memory; the more often we repeat a specific movement, the sooner it becomes ingrained or automatic. The ultimate goal is to get a “feel” for the new technique to happen automatically.
The idea makes a lot of sense, but the results are often disappointing.
How can we guarantee that a drill will be effective?
There are three essential elements that determine effectiveness.
First, the drill must be appropriate for the golfers current skill level. It would be an exercise in futility to ask a novice golfer to focus on developing a “lag” on the downswing. Start with the basic movement of the new technique.
Second, make a habit of rehearsing the motion. Most golfers have to overcome a natural resistance to change. The first step in developing new muscle memory is to quiet your mind and muscles to accept change in small increments.
Habits are the key to running on autopilot. Make exercise part of your daily exercise routine. Two minutes a day is more beneficial than a single thirty minute session once a week. Tired, sore muscles aren’t receptive to new ideas.
Third, develop the discipline to take your mind off swing mechanics during a game. This could be the biggest challenge. Thinking and feeling are diametrically opposed; The more you think, the less you feel. The quickest way to short-circuit muscle memory is through conscious thought. Have you ever wondered how you can take shot after shot like a semi-pro on the practice range and then fight your way to breaking ninety?
Mental discipline applies to golfers at all skill levels. Their ability to keep thinking and doing separately is crucial. Develop a simple pre-injection routine.
The value of a pre-shot routine is to occupy your conscious mind, so you can take your mind off swing mechanics for a second and a half and just hit the damn ball! Some examples used by professional golfers are discussed in a previous article titled, Power Moves.
Discover an exercise that applies to your unique skill level. Start with the basic movement and rehearse regularly. As the new technique begins to feel natural, gradually refine the movement. Allow your conscious mind to focus on results rather than technique, and you’ll take your game to a whole new level.
Thank you for reading.