(Sample Lesson from Dan Carraher (iteachgolf) who can be found at www.mysdgi.com)
One of the things I hope this blog can accomplish is to get golfers involved with better instructors. Personally, most of the teachers on these top 100 lists I wouldn't go to if they paid me for the lesson. I should know, I've seen quite a few of them or their disciples.
Yesterday, I came across a post on the GolfWRX forum that stated the following:
I ended last season at a 4.7 handicap, which was up slightly over the previous year. The last few rounds I played were awful, but I attributed that to the quick onset of winter in the Northeast...it got too cold too fast and I just didn't play enough to be consistent.One of the first things I would ask an instructor before going to them is something along the lines of this question.
I've started this season even worse off, however. I hit balls at least once a week at a local indoor range and felt great as the weather broke. I have been completely inconsistent - I have no idea what the ball will do when I hit it. My most common miss is a total shank or hosel rocket, though...about 4 of 10 shots.
I've taken a lesson - which made things significantly worse...that is when inconsistency turned into hosel rockets. The woman tried to fix about 200 things (left foot flared, stomach in, stronger right hand grip, hold the club butt higher, thumbs to the target after release, stand farther away form the ball. etc) and gave me nothing to work with other than a list (needless to say, I will not be going back to her). I've focused on the fundamentals at the driving range (grip, alignment, stance, ball position) and have had some productive sessions, but it has not translated to the course. Lately, though, the sessions have been extremely discouraging and unproductive.
At this point, I cannot break 100.
I think it's important that the instructor give you the correct answer, preferably as detailed as possible. But I also think you need to ask it in a way where you don't give away the answer or allow the instructor to look it up online.
Remember, the golf swing is really about controlling the Big 3 in the end:
- Clubface control
- Club path control
- Low Point control
And it's also about using your pivot to make the swing and those controls dynamic. If the teacher doesn't understand the actual laws of ball flight, then they really cannot correctly diagnose problems you have with your swing.
But, let's look at that original post again.
I have no idea what the ball will do when I hit it. My most common miss is a total shank or hosel rocket, though...about 4 of 10 shots.Helps if the golfer knows exactly what happens at impact to cause the ball to fly the way it does. Also helps if the golfer can understand what usually happens when they don't control any of those 'Big 3' factors in the golf swing.
We all know the shank is a shot off the heel. But what many of us don't now is that mis-hits tend to be a club path control problem. My guess is the golfer is 'tipping out' at P6. Now why he's tipping out is another issue. But to keep it at it's base...he has a club path control issue.
I've taken a lesson - which made things significantly worse...that is when inconsistency turned into hosel rockets. The woman tried to fix about 200 thingsThe golfer's clubpath control has just gotten worse.
(left foot flaredThe question to ask is, how will this help me control my path better?
stomach inHow does this help the golfer control his path better?
stronger right hand gripHow does this help the golfer control his path better?
hold the club butt higherHow does this help the golfer control his path better?
thumbs to the target after releaseHow does this help the golfer control his path better?
stand farther away form the ballHow does this help the golfer control his path better?
I've focused on the fundamentals at the driving range (grip, alignment, stance, ball position)That's part of the problem. THOSE ARE NOT NECESSARILY THE FUNDAMENTALS!
Control the clubface. Control the path. Control the low point. Improve your pivot.
Those are all of the fundamentals you need to work on.
How does grip, alignment, stance and ball position necessarily help control the golfer's path?
This golfer doesn't understand the concepts of controlling the path, face, low point and improving the pivot. Thus he goes to instructors who don't understand that and never succeeds. Ask questions. Understand the ball flight laws. Make sure your instructor understands them as well. Make sure your instructor understands the 'Big 3' as well.