Winter - A Great
Time To Improve Your Golf
I grew up in Southern California where golf is a year round activity and, not unreasonably, I came to believe that the only way to become a good player was to hit balls and play as much as possible, year round. But I always wondered how golfers from cold winter climates became good players considering they couldn't practice on the range or play for four or five months out of the year.
I now know the answer—practice doesn't necessarily mean hitting balls on a range. Hitting into a net in the basement is great practice, but when adjusting the swing or learning something new, it is actually better to limit the hitting of balls until the new movement can be performed comfortably with practice swings.
When learning something new, the best form of practice is to swing in slow motion in front of a mirror. Try to make the movement as perfectly as you can and gradually bring it up to speed (over a number of days and weeks) while maintaining quality. Once at full speed, the emphasis should change to hitting balls, preferably into a net so the focus is on the swing movement rather than on where the ball goes. This procedure can be maintained throughout winter so that when spring arrives you'll be a better golfer after a month or two of getting acclimated to playing with your improved swing.
Golfers who live in the colder climates can take advantage of their situation when they continue to work on their swings through winter. During the cold, they can train their muscles to swing properly without the distraction and frustration of trying to hit a ball to a target with a swing that is unfamiliar to them. This could actually be an advantage and people in warmer climates should take advantage of this type of practice as well!
Remember, right now is always the best time to start improving your swing, and if it happens to be winter, that's all the more reason to begin your improvement program.
Casey Eberting Golf Instruction
Tulsa / Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
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