You’ve Read Some of the Best- What Are Some of the Worst Tips in Golf?
Have you ever gotten bad golf tips? You might be thinking; “There is such a thing as bad golf tips?” Whether we are amateur or professional golfers, we are all trying to get better. And it seems that there is no shortage of advice, good and bad. If you just do a search on Google or YouTube, you can find advice on every part of your game. What are some of the worst tips you’ve been given? I’ve been golfing for a long time, and I’ve heard many bad tips. I’m not saying I haven’t tried them, and at times even given some myself. But some have been pretty bad. And they haven’t helped, except for showing me what not to do. So here are a few of the tips I’ve heard or been given that I really appreciate.
Some Not-So-Good Tips
The following may sound right and may have some merit. But be careful. Doing these things can engrain bad habits and actually hurt your game.
1) Keep your head down and keep your eye on the ball
I was watching the Valspar Championship when Gary Koch and David Feherty made a great teaching point about a professional’s golf swing. They said that when hitting full shots, you want to hit through the ball… if you’re trying too hard to keep your head down and keep your eyes on the ball, you’ll swing TO the ball instead of THROUGH the ball. To get better results, get your head up on the swing, allow it to follow the ball, and swing through the ball.
2) Imitate MY grip or MY swing
You can get the basics or the fundamentals from others… In fact, I’ve learned the best tips for me and the tips that have helped my game the most from two old-timer’s methods; Harvey Penick and Ben Hogan. But when reading the pros golf tips, or when taking lessons, try them out, tweak it, and see what works best for YOU…try not to be married to the idea of doing exactly what someone else does or exactly how they do it.
3) Take your time
Have you ever been in a really good rhythm when you’re golfing? You visualize your shot, line it up, and hit it. You’re playing at a nice pace, and you’re playing well…And then you see it; the backlog of players ahead of you down the fairway, or on the next tee. Waiting around can really throw off your golfing rhythm. My golfing buddies and I have adopted the idea of “ready golf”; if you’re ready, go ahead and hit. Not only does it speed up our rounds, but it helps to keep us in a better rhythm. I realize that not everyone appreciates this way of playing; so make sure those you are playing with are okay with it.
4) The ball doesn’t matter
I see people at the golf stores buying the balls that the pros play. They’ll spend crazy amounts of money on balls, just to go out on the course and shank them into the woods or into the lakes. If you’re a high handicapper, a ball with a high spin rate isn’t necessarily going to help you. If you have a strong slice, a ball with a high spin rate will only make that worse. Do some research and find a ball that fits you. Personally, I have been using mid-level Srixon balls; they seem to work well for my game. It’s worth a little extra effort; take the time, look for a ball that fits YOUR game, not someone else’s.
My dad has this habit of using any ball he can find. Dig one of the woods, the mud, the lake? Go ahead and hit it. Then he wonders why it doesn’t roll true, or it seems heavy when he hits it. Maybe it’s because that ball is full of water!
I used to grab a scuffed ball or a “junky” ball for tee shots over water or down a narrow fairway. After watching me do this a few times, one of my buddies said, “Garbage ball, garbage shot”. I realized I was setting myself up for failure. After all, I didn’t want to lose one of my good balls. So I was basically conceding the fact that there was a good possibility I was going to hit a bad shot. That kind of thinking definitely doesn’t help. A large part of golf is mental and visual; if you step in and are convinced you will hit a bad shot, you probably will.
What to Do or Not Do With These Tips
Have you ever been playing and received any or maybe all of these tips? Me too. So do us both a favor. The next time you are about to say one of these things to one of your playing partners, STOP. Don’t say it. That is unless you’re playing for money, then go ahead and give bad tips. Just kidding. As amateurs, we can use almost any help we can get. Try to avoid the reasoning that any help, is good help.
Here’s an interesting statistic I read on another site today, and it kind of surprised me; “There are 27 million golfers in America. Only 5 percent of them will ever break 100, and of that 5 percent, only 2 percent of them will ever break 80.” For all of the people that are playing golf, I figured the scoring would be a little better. How about you?
Do you consistently break 100? 90? Maybe even 80? What are some bad tips that you have ignored? What are your favorite tips that have helped you improve? Please comment on this post and let us all know!