Golf is a sport that is more than just a game for many people. It represents a way of life. While it can be an expensive sport to play if you want to join a private club, there are plenty of public golf courses where you can plan a round without breaking the bank.
Like any sport, golf requires practice if you want to become a good player. Here are some tips to help you master the art of playing golf.
A good golf game starts with the proper grip. Here’s how to do it:
- Use both hands to grip the golf club. You should use an interlocking grip (with your fingers laced together) or an overlapping grip for the best results. An alternative is to use a 10-finger baseball grip and hold the club the way you would a baseball bat.
- The club should sit between the first and second joints of your index finger and cover your entire palm, all the way to the base of your pinkie finger.
It may take some practice to get used to this grip, but it’s important to get it right.
The next thing is to make sure that you have the proper stance. The right stance will ensure that you have the stability and leverage you need to hit the ball properly. Here’s how you should be standing.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart for a tee shot with a driver. (With other clubs, your feet should be even with your hips.)
- Bend your knees slightly.
- Lean slightly forward, with your arms hanging loose from your shoulder sockets.
It’s important not to carry too much tension in your body. If you do, the tension will translate to your swing and you won’t get the lift or distance you need to be successful.
How you stand in relation to the ball is just as important as your overall posture. If you don’t position your body properly – and your club properly in relation to the ball – you won’t get the shot you want.
- Stand with the ball slightly left of center, toward the inside of your front foot.
- Your front foot should be just below the socket of your front shoulder for a tee shot.
- For shots with other clubs, move the ball toward the center of your stance for the best results.
- The face of your club should be square to the target. It may help to set the clubface before you set the rest of your body. That way you can be sure that it’s right.
- If you need help aligning yourself, try choosing an intermediate target (a twig or a distinctive patch of grass, for example) and use that as a way of making sure that you maintain your orientation as you lower your head to take the shot.
Again, getting your aim right takes some practice. It may help to start off practicing on a putting green so you can get accustomed to the process and then move up to a golf course when you’re ready.
Perfecting a golf swing is something that takes years of practice, but here are some tips to help you master the basics.
- Turn your shoulders around your spine as you move the club back. Your weight should shift to your back foot.
- Make sure your wrists are at a 90 degree angle when the club and your arms are parallel to the ground.
- Move your front knee toward the target to begin the downswing of your club.
- Your whole body (your hands, arms, and torso) should work together, shifting your weight to your front foot as you hit the ball.
- Allow the swing to follow through naturally, letting the momentum carry your club up and over your head.
This method is helpful for a tee shot and for other long distance shots.
Finally, you need to have excellent putting technique if you expect to master the art of playing golf. Here’s how to do it:
- Stand about two and a half putter head lengths behind the ball.
- Bend your knees slightly.
- Grip the putter with both hands, loosely, with your dominant hand on the bottom and your weak hand on top.
- Bend forward slightly so your head is directly over the ball.
- Use a slow, measured swing to hit the ball.
Every green is different and even the best golfers miss sometimes, but this technique will help you improve your putting.
Golfing can be fun, especially if you know how to play properly. Mastering the simple techniques in this article can set you on the path to complete golf mastery.
Author Bio – This article is a work of Pete Morten on behalf of Loch Palm Golf Club, Phuket, one of the best value for money golf courses in Phuket.