Shank Stoppers

You’re enjoying a great day on the links, and you have an easy pitch to the last green where a par or even a bogey will give you your best score in a month. Easy pitch, easy swing, stick it close. But instead, some evil dragon maliciously guides your hosel toward your ball, and you shank it right of the greenside bunker. The shot so unnerves you that you proceed to shank a succession of shots around the perimeter of the green counterclockwise.

Get Happy

As an instructor, one of the most common swing flaws I see is the dreaded reverse pivot. This move wreaks havoc on any golfer’s ability to hit consistently good golf shots. One of the best ways to overcome the reverse pivot is to try a drill designed to make it impossible to hold your weight back on your downswing. I call it the baseball drill, or the Happy Gilmore, named after the title character in the film who steps into the golf ball the way a field goal kicker lunges toward the ball.

Triple Overlap

One of the most common causes of bad pitches and chips is the dominant

hand (right for righties) taking over  the swing. The result is

typically scooped or thin contact that produces fat or sculled shots.

To alleviate this tendency, learn to make your hands work together by

experimenting with the triple-overlap grip. This technique effectively

takes the dominant hand out of the swing, and promotes a descending

blow, which is absolutely critical to creating crisp contact and

consistent results.

Ten-Minute Swing Changes

Quick Fixes To Save You From Suffering A Bad Day On The Course

The situation: You’re on the range hitting balls, extremely off line

and not very solid, with only 10 minutes remaining before your assigned

tee time. The remedy: W.O.O.D.—quick adjustments that Work Only One

Day, otherwise known as the “quick fix.” These “Band-Aids” are a

necessary part of the game and come in handy when you don’t have time

to seek out a long-term correction from your teaching pro. The key is

knowing what needs adjusting. If you choose the wrong adjustment,

things could get worse.

Align The Easy Way

Align The Easy WayMost of my students struggle with the slice. Many of these golfers have

serious swing issues, but the majority certainly possess enough talent

and an understanding of the golf swing to keep slices at bay. The

problem is they’re trapped into hitting slices because their setup

facilitates swinging on the out-in path to which all slices owe their


Swing Barefoot For Balance

The majority of recreational golfers fail to achieve the balance needed

to excel at golf or any athletic activity. One of the reasons why most

golfers don’t swing in balance is that they swing too hard. A rule I

like to impose on my students is “Swing as hard as you want to as long

as you finish the swing in balance.”

Wake Up Your Game!

Sometimes golf just isn’t fair. Professional baseball has Spring Training. The NFL and NBA have training camps and a handful of preseason scrimmages. But golf? Well, it’s up to each and every professional to get their game on track on their own and show up ready to compete at the highest level. There’s no organized stretching sessions (Can you see Tim Herron or Phil Mickelson showing up?), no group mental conditioning, no preseason practice tournaments. Professionals are left to prepare by themselves.

Caddy Knows Best

Five key tips learned from a PGA Tour caddy

As a golf instructor and PGA Tour caddy, I’ve seen my fair share of

golf swings, ranging from the sweet rhythms of the best players in the

world to the herky-jerky moves of the frustrated first-timer. Yet

despite the huge gap in natural ability between the novice and the

professional, I’ve learned it’s not uncommon for the world’s elite

players to struggle with a few of the same mechanics and

course-management issues that a casual 18-handicapper might face during

a round. The swings of touring professionals may be more advanced, but

nobody is ever really immune to the occasional swing flaw or mental

mistake. We’re all human after all.

L.A.W.S. Revisited

Match your swing to your body type for maximum performance

Not all athletes or golfers have an extreme body type. Instead, a great

number of players fall into the “in-between” category, meaning they

have a relatively “average” build with a solid combination of

flexibility and strength. If you have this type of body, you need to

develop a swing that takes advantage of both attributes, not just one

or the other. This body type is best suited to a Leverage swing.

Swing Thoughts That Really Work

Think your way to a better golf swing now

Old-school golf instruction is full of imagery that was originally

created to help players make what were perceived as the the proper

moves in the swing. In those days, many of the technical aspects of the

golf swing weren’t completely understood, largely due to the lack of

video technology that exists today. Instead, players mostly relied on

feel, natural talent and repetition to hone their technique and overall

game. Not surprisingly, the average scores of recreational golfers

barely ever improved significantly, other than what was delivered by

technological advances in equipment and golf course conditioning.