Welcome to Lisa's Place. Each month Lisa Newling will be passing on her words of wisdom to help you better enjoy this wonderful game of golf.
Lisa is an AA accredited PGA Professional and is well qualified to help you with your game. You can find out more about Lisa and how to contact her here
This month's article from Lisa is on your stance.
Your Stance or Set up is a crucial element of your golf swing. Creating a sturdy, balanced foundation is important for a coordinated, powerful golf swing. Placement of the feet is fundamental for building a strong stance.
A woman should position her feet hip width apart, measuring from the outside of the heels to the outside of the hips. As we already know, many women have narrower shoulders than hips. It is no longer necessary for women to use the shoulders as a reference for foot position when taking a golf stance.
A man should position his feet shoulder width apart, a little wider with the Driver. 70-80% of a man’s power comes from his upper body. The momentum of the legs in the weight shift accounts for the other 20-30%. That is why you need a solid foundation for balance. The extra resistance men achieve by having less hip turn and greater torso turn is some times referred to as the X-factor. This is not always the ideal model for women as it requires greater upper body strength.
Correct posture is what gives you stability to swing with balance and good balance is crucial when you address the ball. All great athletes, whether they are dancers, jockeys, tennis players, gymnasts or golfers have good balance.
To achieve the correct posture, address the ball with your legs straight, tilt your spine forward from your hips and slightly bend your knees to feel balanced. The weight should be evenly distributed in your feet. You should still be able to wiggle your toes. The amount of tilt you need will depend on how tall you are.
The forward tilt also affects your arm position at address. Your arms should hang down and out on an angle, away from your body.
It is important to slightly bend your knees.
Set up to the ball with your knees bent forward in line with your feet. If your knees aren’t bent they will not provide the power to turn, push and drive. Your knees need to be bent a little forward over your feet- not angled in toward each other (knock knees).
Your spine will automatically lean slightly to your right side (left side for lefties) when you grip the golf club. The correct grip will help the shoulders form the correct angle naturally.
Your head should follow your spine and be a little behind the ball rather than directly over the ball. Focus your eyes on the back of the ball and envisage driving a nail through the back of the ball rather than on top of it.
It is too easy for golfers to focus on top of the ball and resist shifting the weight back and through during the swing. This is because they are trying to keep their head steady over the ball. Forget that, the head moves, all good players have a certain amount of lateral movement with their heads.
Next time you watch the golf on TV take note that the players head does move. Line the players head up with something in the back ground and you will see.
Happy Golfing. Lisa Newling.
The grip is your connection to the golf club. The purpose is to attach your hands to the club so that you can feel and control what the shaft and club head are doing. I cannot emphasise how important it is for a woman to have the correct grip for her hand size. There is no such thing as a perfect grip, there are choices to make based on your own goals as a golfer.
There are 3 basic grips:
Ten- Finger or baseball Overlapping Interlocking
For beginners, I recommend the Ten Finger grip. This is the most comfortable of the three grips, and because every finger is on the club it is also the strongest grip of the three. It is a great grip for people with small hands.
After the hands gain strength and learn to work together and the student gains confidence, I suggest changing to the Overlapping grip for added power. This grip is similar to the Baseball grip, but the little finger (for a right handed player) rests snugly on top of the left hand between the first and second fingers.
The Interlocking grip was made famous by Jack Nicklaus, this grip requires greater strength because two of your fingers are not on the club, the first finger on the left hand locks into the little finger of the right hand.
The style of grip you choose is not as important as placement or position of your hands on the club. I will describe the next section of the grip for a right handed golfer, lefties do the opposite hands. Start by placing the club in your left hand about a Centimeter from the end of the grip. Place the club in your hand where your palm and fingers meet. Wrap your fingers around the club until the crease between your thumb and first finger aims to your right shoulder. You should be able to see two knuckles on the top of your left hand when you look down at it. You should feel the pressure in the last three fingers of your left hand, not the palm of your hand. Your right hand then goes onto the club and the crease made by your thumb and first finger is aimed over your right shoulder, the pressure should be in the thumb and first finger of your right.
Make sure both creases, or “Vs” in the grip aim at your right shoulder
The grip will feel uncomfortable to start, however, after time this will change. Please stick with it. Getting the grip right is an important start to your golf swing. So get a grip on your game and enjoy.
Do you find you are in a rushed frame of mind when you are on the first tee?
Busy sending the kids off to school, doing household chores, rushing through traffic and always getting the red lights. Does that sound familiar? Have you ever wondered why it takes you 5 or 6 holes to settle into your round of golf?
Golf is a game of planning!
When you have a game of golf organised allow plenty of travel time to the course and try to arrive 40mins before your Hit off Time.
The first thing is get your clubs out of the car, make sure you have no
more then 14 clubs in your bag (the maximum amount allowed) and you have
plenty of golf balls.
Go to the Pro shop register and collect your card .The Pro Shop appreciates you registering early. Be flexible, the person starting the field has an important roll to ensure everyone hits off at the correct time. If people don’t turn up you may be moved into another group to allow the field to move at the same pace. Depending on the length and degree of difficulty of the golf course it should take between 3 ½ and 4 ½ hours to play.
Now you have registered, time to warm up. If the golf course doesn’t have a Driving Range, go to the practice net. Most courses have either or both. Using a mid iron spend 15mins hitting shots to loosen up your muscles and find a nice rhythm for your swing.
If the course has a chipping green hit a few chip shots feel how the surface of the green is reacting with your shots. You can also feel if the green is hard or soft under your feet when you walk on it. The speed of the green varies with the weather condition.
Generally the practice putting green is close to the 1st tee, this allows you hear your name called to the tee. With 2 or 3 balls start close to the hole practicing your stroke and getting some confidence for those short putts. Gradually move further away practicing different lengths, again for confidence and also speed. While you are on the putting green you will normally meet your playing partners, and work out which group you are to follow. Finish your putting 10mins before you tee off, this allows you to make sure your card has your handicap on it, get your glove, tees and ball marker out of your bag along with your ball. Go to the bathroom if you need to.
Your name has been called and you are asked to move to the tee, swap cards with your playing partners and NOW you are ready to go.
This routine will make a big difference to your golf it is a lot better than running to the tee, struggling for the first 5 or 6 holes. Getting off to a good start has a positive influence on the rest of your round.
Food for thought
As a general rule Professionals will allow at least 1 ½ hours for their warm up.
And they do all of those points above!
Happy Hitting Lisa Newling .
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions via email email@example.com or on my mobile 0417 485 635.
Moore Park Golf Academy
Previous Months Article
August 04 - Let us begin.
Why do I need a golf lesson?
What ever reason you want to play golf it is a huge advantage to learn the right way. You can easily get into bad habits that are hard to break. Learning the right technique of the golf swing to suit the individual will improve consistency ultimately lowering your scores and will assist in preventing injuries.
Golf books and magazines are a fantastic source of information. You get ideas from these books, the only problem is your interpretation. Friends will always offer tips, be careful, what works for them may not work for you, your body type or your ability.
The fundamentals of the Golf Swing are the same, however, our physical strengths and weaknesses contribute to the way in which we move the golf club. We are all built differently and therefore will all learn differently. Some learn visually, some verbally and some by feel. The Golf Instructor will determine your learning style and will asses your strengths and weaknesses and then determine what area of your swing is causing you problems.
Having a Golf Lesson helps you understand your golf swing. There are many aspects to the game of golf - it is not just about the full swing. Putting, chipping, bunkers and those “getting out of trouble” shots can all be improved through a golf lesson. Learning all the techniques properly will ultimately improve your game.
Golf doesn’t need to be complicated. Keeping the swing simple is important. Golf is a fun sport and should be enjoyed. Remember the best golfers in the world still require golf lessons from their instructors, why not you?
Good Golfing, Lisa Newling
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions firstname.lastname@example.org or on my mobile 0417 485 635.