Monday, 21 September 2009

Send It

"A golfer has to train his swing on the practice tee, then trust it on the course." - Dr Bob Rotella

It's not that I've had nothing to write about on here ; more that there's so much that I don't know where to start ! One thing that's hugely important when you're working on your swing is to differentiate between practice and "real play". On the range, or if you're just knocking a few balls around the course, it's fine to think about your swing mechanics, what you're supposed to be doing, and what you're doing wrong. Any time you're trying to record a good score though, you have to forget about it !

It seems paradoxical, but when you're trying to put a score together you really have to forget about improving your swing during this round. Dance with the swing you bring. Trusting the swing you have will work much better on the day than trying to change stuff as soon as you hit one bad shot. When I saw a book called Zen Golf in the bookshop, of course I couldn't resist buying it. It's very good. It talks about using a "key phrase" just before you swing, mentally telling yourself "let it fly" or "it's all yours" to turn off the thinking mind and just let the shot go. I'm trying to use "send it" because it amuses me to say that to myself in the style of a poker player (Action Dave was a great one for "send it"). It's also good because the book talks about sending the ball to the target rather than hitting it, or at least that's how you should think about it. Obviously in reality you do still actually hit it. I played a social round today which was good fun, although a little trying towards the end when the group in front were holding us up. After a break for a sandwich I had two more hours trying to sort my drives out. I just managed to work the change I need before collapsing with exhaustion so we'll work that out some more on the range and have another bash soon.


  1. I went round on Friday telling myself to swing the club, not hit the ball (or "swing, don't hit").

    Results: execrable score, although my unerring ability to put the ball 2 inches from the lip of every bunker on the course didn't help. Surprisingly decent off the tee, short game sucked. Need a different Zen for the lob wedge, clearly.

  2. You know, I think "Swing, don't hit" is subtlely different and might even be counter-productive. But it's what works for the individual.