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The real reason golfers donít get better with practice


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#61 Golfer4Life

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 08:29 PM

I have 100 yds in my backyard, so I practice mostly from 100 and in.  I feel comfortable with the rest and the short game it is my favorite part of the game.

I don't do it everyday, but enough to keep me sharp.  I'm honest about it, I don't get better because golf is not my number one activity so I don't invest more time on it.  I'm happy with my game the way it is at the moment.

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#62 alfriday

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 08:58 PM

View Postoikos1, on 14 November 2018 - 08:23 PM, said:

View Postalfriday, on 14 November 2018 - 06:43 PM, said:

Perhaps you should read it again.

I did, and the author provides zero evidence for his ultimate conclusion: "This process is the difference between the golfer who still plays off 19 at the end of the year and the one who is now a 13 handicapper."

The article doesn't answer your question either: "If you can only practice two hours a week, how do you get the most improvement out of the two hours?"

However, i have heard that a 90's shooter can become a 70's shooter just through meta-awareness, so there is that.

I can explain it to you.  But I can't understand it for you.  The answer to my question was the article.  That should be obvious.    

Perhaps you should click on the links in the article and review the references.


With that, I am done with you.   It's your time you will be wasting on the range, not mine.

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#63 oikos1

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 09:38 PM

View Postalfriday, on 14 November 2018 - 08:58 PM, said:

View Postoikos1, on 14 November 2018 - 08:23 PM, said:

View Postalfriday, on 14 November 2018 - 06:43 PM, said:

Perhaps you should read it again.

I did, and the author provides zero evidence for his ultimate conclusion: "This process is the difference between the golfer who still plays off 19 at the end of the year and the one who is now a 13 handicapper."

The article doesn't answer your question either: "If you can only practice two hours a week, how do you get the most improvement out of the two hours?"

However, i have heard that a 90's shooter can become a 70's shooter just through meta-awareness, so there is that.

I can explain it to you.  But I can't understand it for you.  The answer to my question was the article.  That should be obvious.

Perhaps you should click on the links in the article and review the references.


With that, I am done with you.   It's your time you will be wasting on the range, not mine.

Nothing in the links about "This process is the difference between the golfer who still plays off 19 at the end of the year and the one who is now a 13 handicapper" and it certainly doesn't answer how to get the most improvement out of the two hours of practice time but glad you got your drive by and "done with you" in.

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#64 FourTops

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

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#65 Obee

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 10:43 PM

View PostFourTops, on 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM, said:

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

"Badness"

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#66 ryan983

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 10:55 PM

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 10:43 PM, said:

View PostFourTops, on 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM, said:

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

"Badness"

Youíre a pretty big proponent of swinging your swing and owning your unique move.   How would  a 12 handicap get to scratch and beyond without fixing their technique?   Can they just groove their 12 handicap move and get to plus territory when enough practice?

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#67 Obee

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 11:04 PM

View Postryan983, on 14 November 2018 - 10:55 PM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 10:43 PM, said:

View PostFourTops, on 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM, said:

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

"Badness"

You’re a pretty big proponent of swinging your swing and owning your unique move.   How would  a 12 handicap get to scratch and beyond without fixing their technique?   Can they just groove their 12 handicap move and get to plus territory when enough practice?

How long has the 12 had a club in his hands? What's his athletic background?
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#68 ryan983

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 11:16 PM

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 11:04 PM, said:

View Postryan983, on 14 November 2018 - 10:55 PM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 10:43 PM, said:

View PostFourTops, on 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM, said:

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

"Badness"

Youíre a pretty big proponent of swinging your swing and owning your unique move.   How would  a 12 handicap get to scratch and beyond without fixing their technique?   Can they just groove their 12 handicap move and get to plus territory when enough practice?

How long has the 12 had a club in his hands? What's his athletic background?

Youíll make it whatever you want to fit your argument.   You move the goal post depending on the thread youíre in.  

I was a low single digit/scratch for the last 20 years +.   This includes my college years.   The best I could get to on my own was scratch when I was playing all the time.   Athleticism is never something Iíve lacked.  

I hardly played for some of those 20 years (couple times a month with a 6 month season).  I picked it back up seriously about 4 years ago.    Started really focusing on my mechanics the last 3 years bc I knew I was limited with the move I had and my body couldnít handle the stress I was putting on it.   Iím well into the plus range now and my anti handicap is miles better than it was before.   Iíve picked up 30-35 yards off the tee at age 35.  

I get tired of the swing your swing mantra.   Sometimes your swing will only take you so far.  No matter how long youíve played and how athletic you are, you will be limited if you have glaring technical flaws.

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#69 Krt22

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 11:22 PM

That is why you need the meta awareness to swing your swing without technical swing things. If you see the swing you can become the swing

Edited by Krt22, 14 November 2018 - 11:22 PM.


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#70 ryan983

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 11:31 PM

View PostKrt22, on 14 November 2018 - 11:22 PM, said:

That is why you need the meta awareness to swing your swing without technical swing things. If you see the swing you can become the swing

Iím certain that was my issue before!   If only I knew that back then!   😁


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#71 Obee

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Posted 14 November 2018 - 11:41 PM

View Postryan983, on 14 November 2018 - 11:16 PM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 11:04 PM, said:

View Postryan983, on 14 November 2018 - 10:55 PM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 10:43 PM, said:

View PostFourTops, on 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM, said:

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

"Badness"

You’re a pretty big proponent of swinging your swing and owning your unique move.   How would  a 12 handicap get to scratch and beyond without fixing their technique?   Can they just groove their 12 handicap move and get to plus territory when enough practice?

How long has the 12 had a club in his hands? What's his athletic background?

You’ll make it whatever you want to fit your argument.   You move the goal post depending on the thread you’re in.  

I was a low single digit/scratch for the last 20 years +.   This includes my college years.   The best I could get to on my own was scratch when I was playing all the time.   Athleticism is never something I’ve lacked.  

I hardly played for some of those 20 years (couple times a month with a 6 month season).  I picked it back up seriously about 4 years ago.    Started really focusing on my mechanics the last 3 years bc I knew I was limited with the move I had and my body couldn’t handle the stress I was putting on it.   I’m well into the plus range now and my anti handicap is miles better than it was before.   I’ve picked up 30-35 yards off the tee at age 35.  

I get tired of the swing your swing mantra.   Sometimes your swing will only take you so far.  No matter how long you’ve played and how athletic you are, you will be limited if you have glaring technical flaws.

What's your point?

Have you seen my posts of guys who get pegged as 8 - 16-caps because their swings are so "flawed"? But they're actually scratch amateurs. With jobs. Who play to 1 to +3 indexes? In tournaments? That are verifiable?

As to "moving the goal posts": Yeah, golf is a complicated, nuanced game that is equal parts art and science. You're damn right the goal posts move depending on the individual player and situation.

What, exactly, are you taking issue with? Have we ever interacted?
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#72 Obee

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 12:36 AM

View Postryan983, on 14 November 2018 - 11:16 PM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 11:04 PM, said:

View Postryan983, on 14 November 2018 - 10:55 PM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 10:43 PM, said:

View PostFourTops, on 14 November 2018 - 10:17 PM, said:

I guess the key question is "what are they practicing" to not get better?

"Badness"

You’re a pretty big proponent of swinging your swing and owning your unique move.   How would  a 12 handicap get to scratch and beyond without fixing their technique?   Can they just groove their 12 handicap move and get to plus territory when enough practice?

How long has the 12 had a club in his hands? What's his athletic background?

You’ll make it whatever you want to fit your argument.   You move the goal post depending on the thread you’re in.  

I was a low single digit/scratch for the last 20 years +.   This includes my college years.   The best I could get to on my own was scratch when I was playing all the time.   Athleticism is never something I’ve lacked.  

I hardly played for some of those 20 years (couple times a month with a 6 month season).  I picked it back up seriously about 4 years ago.    Started really focusing on my mechanics the last 3 years bc I knew I was limited with the move I had and my body couldn’t handle the stress I was putting on it.   I’m well into the plus range now and my anti handicap is miles better than it was before.   I’ve picked up 30-35 yards off the tee at age 35.  

I get tired of the swing your swing mantra.   Sometimes your swing will only take you so far.  No matter how long you’ve played and how athletic you are, you will be limited if you have glaring technical flaws.

BTW, congratulations on your improved golf. Are you playing tournaments?

About half the guys that I know who play legit, tournament-tested, scratch golf have a coach they see, anything from once a week, to once a month. The other half never, or almost never see a coach of any kind.

I am only talking about the working people. Not professionals. Not self-made people without jobs with unlimited time. People who have to choose what they do with their "golf time."

Half have coaches. Half don't.

I recently surveyed 50+ SoCal scratch and below golfers on this very subject. Will be doing a write-up on my findings soon.

If you think I think coaches are useless or that everyone can become their best completely on their own, that is not at all the case.

I do think that most people would benefit from focusing more on HOW to learn and the underlying CONCEPTS of golf, ball flight, the golf swing, and scoring, than on positions and specific swing theories.

Often times, though, the fault is as much with the pupil as it is with the student. Teacher can do a great job of balancing positions and overall concepts, and all the student hears are the positions, and thus fixates on them.


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#73 PutterKilledTheDream

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 01:59 AM

Obee. Great post.Well articulated my man.

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#74 jbw749

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 07:49 AM

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 01:48 AM, said:

View Postctmason_98, on 14 November 2018 - 01:04 AM, said:

View PostJim Waldron, on 12 November 2018 - 06:43 PM, said:


Of all the items he listed, having good meta-awareness in general and especially in feel channel on the body when learning are most important, by far.

I think it is fantastic if you teach people successfully. I donít know anything about how you teach, and donít care.

So with all that said...this sentence is complete gibberish.

And if it makes any one feel better, by all means just chalk it up to me just not being as smart as you.

I don't know what a "feel channel" is, but I'm a big believer in meta-awareness being something every golfer should start to understand.

Feel channel to me (Jim may have a different definition) is where you are non-judgmentaly observing how things feel while performing an action, this approach excels learning. You may practice in slow motion in front of a mirror over and over on a motion, but when you swing for real you are a student of HOW it feels.

As apposed to chasing feels and trying make body parts feel a certain way by talking to them. You read somewhere it should feel like your right elbow should be in front of your navel at P6. Then you talk to your right elbow during the swing trying force that feel and if it doesnt feel like you achieved it then you grade it as poor. If you did achieve it then it's good unless it led to a bad shot in which case you think that feel now doesn't work for you. It's a viscous cycle. Always chasing new feels judging them good or bad just like a gambling or drug addict.

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#75 BMC

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 08:03 AM

Hmmmm

https://www.youtube....h?v=eGDBR2L5kzI

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#76 oikos1

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 09:15 AM

View Postjbw749, on 15 November 2018 - 07:49 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 01:48 AM, said:

View Postctmason_98, on 14 November 2018 - 01:04 AM, said:

View PostJim Waldron, on 12 November 2018 - 06:43 PM, said:

Of all the items he listed, having good meta-awareness in general and especially in feel channel on the body when learning are most important, by far.

I think it is fantastic if you teach people successfully. I don't know anything about how you teach, and don't care.

So with all that said...this sentence is complete gibberish.

And if it makes any one feel better, by all means just chalk it up to me just not being as smart as you.

I don't know what a "feel channel" is, but I'm a big believer in meta-awareness being something every golfer should start to understand.

Feel channel to me (Jim may have a different definition) is where you are non-judgmentaly observing how things feel while performing an action, this approach excels learning. You may practice in slow motion in front of a mirror over and over on a motion, but when you swing for real you are a student of HOW it feels.

As apposed to chasing feels and trying make body parts feel a certain way by talking to them. You read somewhere it should feel like your right elbow should be in front of your navel at P6. Then you talk to your right elbow during the swing trying force that feel and if it doesnt feel like you achieved it then you grade it as poor. If you did achieve it then it's good unless it led to a bad shot in which case you think that feel now doesn't work for you. It's a viscous cycle. Always chasing new feels judging them good or bad just like a gambling or drug addict.

Feel channel focuses on "How it feels", yet you are non judgemental?  Then I have to ask, how do you reconcile a feel that feels great and proper yet the results are crap? This is what many golfers actually do.  They do something that "feels" good or correct, yet it's not what they should be doing at all.   At some point the results have to be judged and the feel as good or bad or how else do you improve?

By the way, googling "feel channel" provides zero hits, which is quite unusual for google.  Do you have any references or links as to where one might learn more about "feel channel"?

16

#77 ryan983

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 09:37 AM

This is in response to Obee.  My browse won't let me quote the prior comments for some reason.

I don't post much as I have a wife and 4 kids at home but I read some threads while sitting at soccer practice or over lunch, etc.  You post a fair amount and to me, the predominate tone of your posts seem to be that you just need to play golf or work on your mental game or now your meta awareness.   I don't hit it very far and look at how I compete against all the long ball hitters.  You can do the same!  Just own the uniqueness to your swing and go!

There is absolutely a place for that.  But that can do harm to the guys that need to address other technical issues before they can just go play in competitions and not get DFL.   It's good to see you say you don't think everyone can become their best on their own.  That's not what I take away from most of your posts and neither do the other guys on here that I know

Most posters here asking for help are a long way off from being a traveling, tournament playing scratch.  They need help with their technique whether that be long game or short game.

yes I play tournaments and am in the "have a coach" group.

Edited by ryan983, 15 November 2018 - 09:42 AM.


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#78 Atrayn

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 09:41 AM

View Postoikos1, on 15 November 2018 - 09:15 AM, said:

View Postjbw749, on 15 November 2018 - 07:49 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 01:48 AM, said:

View Postctmason_98, on 14 November 2018 - 01:04 AM, said:

View PostJim Waldron, on 12 November 2018 - 06:43 PM, said:

Of all the items he listed, having good meta-awareness in general and especially in feel channel on the body when learning are most important, by far.

I think it is fantastic if you teach people successfully. I don't know anything about how you teach, and don't care.

So with all that said...this sentence is complete gibberish.

And if it makes any one feel better, by all means just chalk it up to me just not being as smart as you.

I don't know what a "feel channel" is, but I'm a big believer in meta-awareness being something every golfer should start to understand.

Feel channel to me (Jim may have a different definition) is where you are non-judgmentaly observing how things feel while performing an action, this approach excels learning. You may practice in slow motion in front of a mirror over and over on a motion, but when you swing for real you are a student of HOW it feels.

As apposed to chasing feels and trying make body parts feel a certain way by talking to them. You read somewhere it should feel like your right elbow should be in front of your navel at P6. Then you talk to your right elbow during the swing trying force that feel and if it doesnt feel like you achieved it then you grade it as poor. If you did achieve it then it's good unless it led to a bad shot in which case you think that feel now doesn't work for you. It's a viscous cycle. Always chasing new feels judging them good or bad just like a gambling or drug addict.

Feel channel focuses on "How it feels", yet you are non judgemental?  Then I have to ask, how do you reconcile a feel that feels great and proper yet the results are crap? This is what many golfers actually do.  They do something that "feels" good or correct, yet it's not what they should be doing at all.   At some point the results have to be judged and the feel as good or bad or how else do you improve?

By the way, googling "feel channel" provides zero hits, which is quite unusual for google.  Do you have any references or links as to where one might learn more about "feel channel"?

"Feel channel focuses on "How it feels", yet you are non judgemental?  Then I have to ask, how do you reconcile a feel that feels great and proper yet the results are crap?"

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#79 Obee

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 10:32 AM

View Postlarrybud, on 15 November 2018 - 09:14 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 12:57 PM, said:

Which is pretty much the point of the original article: most people don't understand how to learn complex skills. That doesn't mean they are bad people. Or stupid. It means they don't understand it. Yet.

But learning that complex skill doesn't have to be complicated.  Take example of a TON of juniors who don't have the mental capability of complex thought, yet they can learn to swing a club and succeed at high levels.

So how do they do it?  Does a teacher talk to them about ulnar deviation, or P4- thru P7, or metacognitive self-monitoring?  Of course not!  So why does anybody think that an adult needs to know any of that to improve?

So why don't people get better?  For a number of reasons:

One - Bad/complicated/incorrect golf instructions - If you're leaving your lessons with more confusion than when you got there, you got the wrong guy.  If your instructor is chasing a symptom rather than the root cause, your improvement will be short lived.  And if your idea of practice is beating 200 balls with no specific intention, that will only get you so far.

Two - Golf is collection of very different skill sets.   I always see it as 5 different skills: Driving, irons, short game, putting, game management.  I see very few similarities between driving the ball and putting, except that you're hitting a ball in each. Hitting unique short game shots to save a stroke is very different than hitting a full iron, for example.  And being able to measure your ability for a given shot which is then used to influence how/what shot you play also takes a non-physical skill set that some might not posses.

So to get to one's potential, each of those areas has to be improved, and few people have the time to work properly on each one.

I agree with literally everything you said in that post.

I'm not the "ulnar deviation" guy (as you know). Far from it.

I think you somehow think "meta-awareness" is akin to overly complicated INSTRUCTION. It's not at all. It's a state that allows one to both receive instruction AND self instruct in a much more efficient way.
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#80 Jacob Mac

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 10:54 AM

View PostObee, on 15 November 2018 - 10:32 AM, said:

View Postlarrybud, on 15 November 2018 - 09:14 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 12:57 PM, said:

Which is pretty much the point of the original article: most people don't understand how to learn complex skills. That doesn't mean they are bad people. Or stupid. It means they don't understand it. Yet.

But learning that complex skill doesn't have to be complicated.  Take example of a TON of juniors who don't have the mental capability of complex thought, yet they can learn to swing a club and succeed at high levels.

So how do they do it?  Does a teacher talk to them about ulnar deviation, or P4- thru P7, or metacognitive self-monitoring?  Of course not!  So why does anybody think that an adult needs to know any of that to improve?

So why don't people get better?  For a number of reasons:

One - Bad/complicated/incorrect golf instructions - If you're leaving your lessons with more confusion than when you got there, you got the wrong guy.  If your instructor is chasing a symptom rather than the root cause, your improvement will be short lived.  And if your idea of practice is beating 200 balls with no specific intention, that will only get you so far.

Two - Golf is collection of very different skill sets.   I always see it as 5 different skills: Driving, irons, short game, putting, game management.  I see very few similarities between driving the ball and putting, except that you're hitting a ball in each. Hitting unique short game shots to save a stroke is very different than hitting a full iron, for example.  And being able to measure your ability for a given shot which is then used to influence how/what shot you play also takes a non-physical skill set that some might not posses.

So to get to one's potential, each of those areas has to be improved, and few people have the time to work properly on each one.

I agree with literally everything you said in that post.

I'm not the "ulnar deviation" guy (as you know). Far from it.

I think you somehow think "meta-awareness" is akin to overly complicated INSTRUCTION. It's not at all. It's a state that allows one to both receive instruction AND self instruct in a much more efficient way.

Can we just be honest here for a second?  If a teacher said pay attention to how this feels,no one would object.

Some people object when golf instruction devolves into new age pseudo intellectual double speak.  That kind of marketing approach makes some people skeptical.  My mom teaches psychology at a university, and she's way easier to understand than some of this jargon.  And she actually knows what she's talking about.

You gotta pay the bills, so if saying overcome the illusion of the tilting digital plane breaker sells better than saying bend your wrist back, great.  But that is going to be off-putting to some.  I think that's the crux of the argument.

But I personally don't care.  If people like it and spend their money on it,keep cashing them checks.


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#81 deadsolid...shank

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:04 AM

View PostJacob Mac, on 15 November 2018 - 10:54 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 15 November 2018 - 10:32 AM, said:

View Postlarrybud, on 15 November 2018 - 09:14 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 12:57 PM, said:

Which is pretty much the point of the original article: most people don't understand how to learn complex skills. That doesn't mean they are bad people. Or stupid. It means they don't understand it. Yet.

But learning that complex skill doesn't have to be complicated.  Take example of a TON of juniors who don't have the mental capability of complex thought, yet they can learn to swing a club and succeed at high levels.

So how do they do it?  Does a teacher talk to them about ulnar deviation, or P4- thru P7, or metacognitive self-monitoring?  Of course not!  So why does anybody think that an adult needs to know any of that to improve?

So why don't people get better?  For a number of reasons:

One - Bad/complicated/incorrect golf instructions - If you're leaving your lessons with more confusion than when you got there, you got the wrong guy.  If your instructor is chasing a symptom rather than the root cause, your improvement will be short lived.  And if your idea of practice is beating 200 balls with no specific intention, that will only get you so far.

Two - Golf is collection of very different skill sets.   I always see it as 5 different skills: Driving, irons, short game, putting, game management.  I see very few similarities between driving the ball and putting, except that you're hitting a ball in each. Hitting unique short game shots to save a stroke is very different than hitting a full iron, for example.  And being able to measure your ability for a given shot which is then used to influence how/what shot you play also takes a non-physical skill set that some might not posses.

So to get to one's potential, each of those areas has to be improved, and few people have the time to work properly on each one.

I agree with literally everything you said in that post.

I'm not the "ulnar deviation" guy (as you know). Far from it.

I think you somehow think "meta-awareness" is akin to overly complicated INSTRUCTION. It's not at all. It's a state that allows one to both receive instruction AND self instruct in a much more efficient way.

Can we just be honest here for a second?  If a teacher said pay attention to how this feels,no one would object.

Some people object when golf instruction devolves into new age pseudo intellectual double speak.  That kind of marketing approach makes some people skeptical.  My mom teaches psychology at a university, and she's way easier to understand than some of this jargon.  And she actually knows what she's talking about.

You gotta pay the bills, so if saying overcome the illusion of the tilting digital plane breaker sells better than saying bend your wrist back, great.  But that is going to be off-putting to some.  I think that's the crux of the argument.

But I personally don't care.  If people like it and spend their money on it,keep cashing them checks.

Solid point there. The skeptics (like me) have a difficult time not thinking “snake oil salesman” when they hear terms like these. Are they really new, original thoughts or ideas, or just a big word renaming of something simple?
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#82 rich s

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:16 AM

I did not read the whole thing, forgive me but I can fix all of you with two words and a number. Here is what I need you to do. Sit down and close you eyes. Clear your mind. You are in a dark room. You are staring at nothing-ness. Two words and a number are starting to form but you cant make them out yet. Deep breaths. Feel your heartbeat as the words and number get clearer and clearer until you can finally make them out....SkyTrak 7 Iron

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#83 wmblake2000

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:31 AM

A friend do mine (scratch, plays competitively) quotes his coach: “golf is hard. Keep trying”

There are a ton of variables in learning to play golf better. At the top of that list is learning how to learn more efficiently and effectively.

The one thing this debate says to me is learning to improve is not a ‘one size fits all’ kind of thing. For every example of how one went about improving, a contrary example exists.

Me, I absolutely agree with the original article and is what I would advise as a learning process. Forming meta-awareness (watching how your mind/body work) and learning how to directly feel your body in motion without anything muddling that connection  are both a central part of my process.

But people have different theories of Everything (!) based on their life experiences as how their brain/mind works and thus have different starting points. The initial model will create tissue rejection by some. Too academic, too abstract, too weird.

I see this same debate happen on wrx over and over and over on almost every topic.

The unwinnable part of it for both sides of this eternal debate is the cause of the debate is not the topic, itself. It is more fundamental. It is about how developed a person’s overall awareness is and how differently that awareness can be experienced and understood. The debate is really about ‘how things are, how life works for me - which i assume is more or less a universal truth.’

For me, golf is fun because it is such a challenge. It takes every bit of my best - diligence, learning how to learn, performing under pressure, sorting thru ambiguity, dealing with frustration and discouragement and so on - to make progress.

My point: have a little humor about what bozos we all are on this bus. Golf is hard, keep trying.

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#84 Obee

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:35 AM

View Postryan983, on 15 November 2018 - 09:37 AM, said:

This is in response to Obee.  My browse won't let me quote the prior comments for some reason.

I don't post much as I have a wife and 4 kids at home but I read some threads while sitting at soccer practice or over lunch, etc.  You post a fair amount and to me, the predominate tone of your posts seem to be that you just need to play golf or work on your mental game or now your meta awareness.   I don't hit it very far and look at how I compete against all the long ball hitters.  You can do the same!  Just own the uniqueness to your swing and go!

There is absolutely a place for that.  But that can do harm to the guys that need to address other technical issues before they can just go play in competitions and not get DFL.   It's good to see you say you don't think everyone can become their best on their own.  That's not what I take away from most of your posts and neither do the other guys on here that I know

Most posters here asking for help are a long way off from being a traveling, tournament playing scratch.  They need help with their technique whether that be long game or short game.

yes I play tournaments and am in the "have a coach" group.

So now it comes out: You're in the "People should have a coach" crowd. Should have just said that right up front and we could have saved ourselves some time. :-)

One thing to keep in mind about the overwhelming majority of my posts: They are typically aimed at the 2 to 8 handicap range -- players who have enough hand-eye to play the game at a decent level, but who have, as yet, not been able to get over the hump to be able to compete in legit local or regional gross events.

Rarely, if ever, would I tell a 16 handicapper who's been playing the game for 8 years that he needs to "just play golf" to reach his goal of scratch. A player like that will inevitably have some enormous technical flaws that need addressing.

Technique is super important. But only repeatable technique that allows for a consistent strike within a range that gets the player to his or her goal(s).

When I'm on the range prior to playing (which is about the only time I hit balls due to limited time and back issues that make dedicated practice time frustrating at best and impossible at worst), I am constantly working to refine my technique. Literally every shot is a micro-adjustment here and a stance change there, and a grip tweak ... yada yada yada.

I'll say it again: Technique is super important.

What I can't stand is the group out there who poo-poo those who say: "Well look at Furyk, Couples, Ryan Moore, Daniel Berger, DJ, etc. They're great players and they have bizarre swings that are technically unsound."

The patronizing swing-gurus show up and say: "Well, yes, that's all well and good, for them, but you don't have any of their world-class athletic ability and hand-eye, so you better swing the club in a very narrow range of what is right and wrong or your have no chance of ever getting to your goal of scratch or below."

Yes, I'm paraphrasing above. Yes, I'm exaggerating to make a point. But I'm not far off. I've seen it over and over. It's a dismissive, patronizing reply that completely ignores real-world examples to the contrary.

What guys like that don't realize is that if you took video of 100 tournament-level, scratch ams, you would (likely) get the same amount of "swing weirdness per capita" as you do on the PGA Tour, which is to say: "A whole lot of it."

The real world doesn't bear out what many instructors want to see. It's like they ignore the idiosyncratic swings and pretend they don't exist. They're all "exceptions." Except no, they're not. They are out there, and they are legion! LOL!

If you don't agree with my premise then we have nothing more to talk about. I'm more interested in how do so many golfers succeed with "weird" swings than I am with just about anything else in golf. And I don't even have that weird of a swing. It's short and a bit flippy, but from hip to hip, where it matters most, it's a decent, repeatable move.

But nobody would teach it to anyone. And that's what I see, at least half the time as I go up and down the line at legit tournaments. For every one swing that looks "sound," there's a corresponding one that's not at all what any instructor would teach. How could that not make people wonder? How could that not cause anyone to re-evaluate what "technique" is? How could it not cause one curiosity?

I'm going to be doing another, more detailed survey soon, and it's only going to be golfers who didn't get serious about golf until adulthood (20+) and who got to the competitive scratch level. I'm curious what I'll find. I'm going to ask them a battery of questions with as little bias as possible. I think I'll learn some interesting things....

Finally, I absolutely love golf. I love everything about it, but mostly I love playing the game with something on the line. Because of that, most of my comments are geared toward helping people become better players and scorers and much less about their technique. Both are important.

However, I think that if many golfers (especially those 2 to 8 handicappers that I love to encourage) worked backwards from their scoring goals to their shot goals, to their ball-flight goals, etc. and reverse-engineered their results themselves (with consultation and guidance from a professional, when necessary), then they would have a much easier time getting to their scratch/below goal than by putting their instruction too much in the hands of their swing guru. (Wow that was a long sentence!)

So much more to say on this topic -- especially the topic of guys who actually get to scratch without having played in college. I'm open to my theories being wrong, but I'm really looking forward to getting some data and analyzing it...

Continued great golf to you....
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#85 wmblake2000

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:38 AM

And Larrybud. You, sir, should take a few deep breaths before you insult people for offering their well considered and thoughtful understanding. I know it is satisfying for some people to do this but in the end it just damages our common desire to enjoy the game and learn what we can from each other.

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#86 Nard_S

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:46 AM

Anybody who has spent time around a martial arts studio knows exactly what Jim Waldron is talking about. My son is 2nd degree black belt, so I had 6 years of watching it. There's nothing new age or snake oil, in fact it's grounded in centuries of their teaching. I played golf with 2 of the Masters. Not a coincidence they easily play to scratch. The process of getting the body to do the right thing the right way in an automatic fashion is rather complex and opaque because it is something that is not done in the language or dialect of conscious thought. It's done in the machine code of the body, the deeper language we use to control movement. Respecting that very real bi-lingual duality is what meta-awareness is about.

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#87 Ghost of Snead

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:47 AM

View PostObee, on 15 November 2018 - 11:35 AM, said:


But nobody would teach it to anyone. And that's what I see, at least half the time as I go up and down the line at legit tournaments. For every one swing that looks "sound," there's a corresponding one that's not at all what any instructor would teach. How could that not make people wonder? How could that not cause anyone to re-evaluate what "technique" is? How could it not cause one curiosity?


Late to the party here, but the best instructors work with what you bring to the table. For example, I don't see Gankas changing Matthew Wolff's backswing.

Run far from any instructor that only teaches a stock swing.
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#88 wmblake2000

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 11:51 AM

View PostObee, on 15 November 2018 - 11:35 AM, said:

View Postryan983, on 15 November 2018 - 09:37 AM, said:

This is in response to Obee.  My browse won't let me quote the prior comments for some reason.

I don't post much as I have a wife and 4 kids at home but I read some threads while sitting at soccer practice or over lunch, etc.  You post a fair amount and to me, the predominate tone of your posts seem to be that you just need to play golf or work on your mental game or now your meta awareness.   I don't hit it very far and look at how I compete against all the long ball hitters.  You can do the same!  Just own the uniqueness to your swing and go!

There is absolutely a place for that.  But that can do harm to the guys that need to address other technical issues before they can just go play in competitions and not get DFL.   It's good to see you say you don't think everyone can become their best on their own.  That's not what I take away from most of your posts and neither do the other guys on here that I know

Most posters here asking for help are a long way off from being a traveling, tournament playing scratch.  They need help with their technique whether that be long game or short game.

yes I play tournaments and am in the "have a coach" group.

So now it comes out: You're in the "People should have a coach" crowd. Should have just said that right up front and we could have saved ourselves some time. :-)

One thing to keep in mind about the overwhelming majority of my posts: They are typically aimed at the 2 to 8 handicap range -- players who have enough hand-eye to play the game at a decent level, but who have, as yet, not been able to get over the hump to be able to compete in legit local or regional gross events.

Rarely, if ever, would I tell a 16 handicapper who's been playing the game for 8 years that he needs to "just play golf" to reach his goal of scratch. A player like that will inevitably have some enormous technical flaws that need addressing.

Technique is super important. But only repeatable technique that allows for a consistent strike within a range that gets the player to his or her goal(s).

When I'm on the range prior to playing (which is about the only time I hit balls due to limited time and back issues that make dedicated practice time frustrating at best and impossible at worst), I am constantly working to refine my technique. Literally every shot is a micro-adjustment here and a stance change there, and a grip tweak ... yada yada yada.

I'll say it again: Technique is super important.

What I can't stand is the group out there who poo-poo those who say: "Well look at Furyk, Couples, Ryan Moore, Daniel Berger, DJ, etc. They're great players and they have bizarre swings that are technically unsound."

The patronizing swing-gurus show up and say: "Well, yes, that's all well and good, for them, but you don't have any of their world-class athletic ability and hand-eye, so you better swing the club in a very narrow range of what is right and wrong or your have no chance of ever getting to your goal of scratch or below."

Yes, I'm paraphrasing above. Yes, I'm exaggerating to make a point. But I'm not far off. I've seen it over and over. It's a dismissive, patronizing reply that completely ignores real-world examples to the contrary.

What guys like that don't realize is that if you took video of 100 tournament-level, scratch ams, you would (likely) get the same amount of "swing weirdness per capita" as you do on the PGA Tour, which is to say: "A whole lot of it."

The real world doesn't bear out what many instructors want to see. It's like they ignore the idiosyncratic swings and pretend they don't exist. They're all "exceptions." Except no, they're not. They are out there, and they are legion! LOL!

If you don't agree with my premise then we have nothing more to talk about. I'm more interested in how do so many golfers succeed with "weird" swings than I am with just about anything else in golf. And I don't even have that weird of a swing. It's short and a bit flippy, but from hip to hip, where it matters most, it's a decent, repeatable move.

But nobody would teach it to anyone. And that's what I see, at least half the time as I go up and down the line at legit tournaments. For every one swing that looks "sound," there's a corresponding one that's not at all what any instructor would teach. How could that not make people wonder? How could that not cause anyone to re-evaluate what "technique" is? How could it not cause one curiosity?

I'm going to be doing another, more detailed survey soon, and it's only going to be golfers who didn't get serious about golf until adulthood (20+) and who got to the competitive scratch level. I'm curious what I'll find. I'm going to ask them a battery of questions with as little bias as possible. I think I'll learn some interesting things....

Finally, I absolutely love golf. I love everything about it, but mostly I love playing the game with something on the line. Because of that, most of my comments are geared toward helping people become better players and scorers and much less about their technique. Both are important.

However, I think that if many golfers (especially those 2 to 8 handicappers that I love to encourage) worked backwards from their scoring goals to their shot goals, to their ball-flight goals, etc. and reverse-engineered their results themselves (with consultation and guidance from a professional, when necessary), then they would have a much easier time getting to their scratch/below goal than by putting their instruction too much in the hands of their swing guru. (Wow that was a long sentence!)

So much more to say on this topic -- especially the topic of guys who actually get to scratch without having played in college. I'm open to my theories being wrong, but I'm really looking forward to getting some data and analyzing it...

Continued great golf to you....

You've hit the nail on the head of my inner debate. I started improving as a 16 index several years ago. I had ingrained seriously bad habits since youth and now I was in my late 50's.

Years later after many lessons with several teachers I am on the cusp of playing to my potential (as I age and struggle to retain modest ss). I have a core model of my swing in mind - it's more about % of solid impact than technique but I definitely tie the two together.

My main goal now is to fully and finally settle in on one swing. No more improving it but learning how to play it. I am very close to this.

But I will tell you, getting off the technique horse is as difficult as quitting any addiction.

The one thing I can't see myself doing is not practicing. But learning to practice (and play) without that incessant incremental 'technique improvement' - ah, that'd be nice.

Edited by wmblake2000, 15 November 2018 - 01:46 PM.

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28

#89 jbw749

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 12:53 PM

View Postoikos1, on 15 November 2018 - 09:15 AM, said:

View Postjbw749, on 15 November 2018 - 07:49 AM, said:

View PostObee, on 14 November 2018 - 01:48 AM, said:

View Postctmason_98, on 14 November 2018 - 01:04 AM, said:

View PostJim Waldron, on 12 November 2018 - 06:43 PM, said:

Of all the items he listed, having good meta-awareness in general and especially in feel channel on the body when learning are most important, by far.

I think it is fantastic if you teach people successfully. I don't know anything about how you teach, and don't care.

So with all that said...this sentence is complete gibberish.

And if it makes any one feel better, by all means just chalk it up to me just not being as smart as you.

I don't know what a "feel channel" is, but I'm a big believer in meta-awareness being something every golfer should start to understand.

Feel channel to me (Jim may have a different definition) is where you are non-judgmentaly observing how things feel while performing an action, this approach excels learning. You may practice in slow motion in front of a mirror over and over on a motion, but when you swing for real you are a student of HOW it feels.

As apposed to chasing feels and trying make body parts feel a certain way by talking to them. You read somewhere it should feel like your right elbow should be in front of your navel at P6. Then you talk to your right elbow during the swing trying force that feel and if it doesnt feel like you achieved it then you grade it as poor. If you did achieve it then it's good unless it led to a bad shot in which case you think that feel now doesn't work for you. It's a viscous cycle. Always chasing new feels judging them good or bad just like a gambling or drug addict.

Feel channel focuses on "How it feels", yet you are non judgemental?  Then I have to ask, how do you reconcile a feel that feels great and proper yet the results are crap? This is what many golfers actually do.  They do something that "feels" good or correct, yet it's not what they should be doing at all.   At some point the results have to be judged and the feel as good or bad or how else do you improve?

By the way, googling "feel channel" provides zero hits, which is quite unusual for google.  Do you have any references or links as to where one might learn more about "feel channel"?

Feel channel might be Jim's term. I'm not sure on that.

But is nice to see the original article in this thread at least addressing the subject. Which can be found using Google.

I actually believe that this is the missing link to the answer why most people struggle so to improve at golf. So if it doesn't draw a bunch of Google searches that would make sense.

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#90 alfriday

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 01:04 PM

I wonder how many negative comments the article would have received if the author had left out the background section.  How many would object if he had written "To improve more quickly, the golfer needs to be fully engaged in practice.  Here are two examples, one with a golfer who practices the way many do, and another where the golfer has a plan to improve, is fully engaged in the practice and evaluates the results of the practice in order to plan his next practice session."  

The background information is not necessary for improvement, any more than knowing about spin rates or about the D-plane, or how the relationship of club face and swing path influence ball flight are necessary to hit a golf ball.  Personally, it helps me to know the "why" behind things.  It helps me diagnose a problem, work on it and solve it.  

The same goes for information on maximizing learning--getting the most out of the time spent practicing.  By understanding the "why" behind it, I can structure my practice for maximum effectiveness.   I could blindly follow a coach, but there are no coaches within 90 miles of me.  

Understanding the background information helps me.  I spend less time on the range, hit fewer balls, but improve more than I did when practicing without the knowledge.


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