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How to improve your golf swing in 7 steps

All golfers dream of the perfect swing. They dream of the best of Tiger Woods, the speed of Freddy Capps, the short game of Phil Mickelson and the skill of Brad Faxon.

But even if you put all these players in one, they still don’t produce a perfect swing, it really doesn’t exist. But hey, we can dream, right?

We can also chase that dream. After all, whether it’s golf or life, it’s about the journey, not the destination. So in our quest for perfection, we want to move forward, not disrupt or retreat. Here’s what to do if you want to shoot for the stars and improve your swing.

Looking for gear to wear when hitting the green? Here we find the best golf shoes and the best golf gloves. We also have some great tips here to improve your setup technique.

1. Find a regular coach or coach

According to the National Golf Foundation, less than 20 percent of golfers seek professional guidance. Instead, they try to learn on their own, whether through instructional videos, books, or, worst of all, getting advice from friends.

A golfer can use up to 14 different clubs. While the basic swing for most of them is the same, there are definitely differences, especially between tee shots, irons, short game, and putts. It takes time to master each of these different skills, but if you guessed it, it’s hard to improve your technique no matter how much you practice.

A coach or coach can help you with this. Not only do they know how to teach the technique, but they are also able to track your progress. Alison Curd, Master PGA and LPGA Professional believe that if players really want to improve, they need coaches to steer them in the right direction. This is suitable for experienced players as well as beginners. However, he recommends letting go of the idea of ​​”perfection.”

“When students come up with the word, I tell them they’ll spend the rest of their lives striving for perfection,” said Cotter, PhD, one of the top golf coaches in the country. “That’s not feasible in the golf swing. Even the robot that tests the device can’t swing the golf club in the exact same and perfect way every time.”

2. A good swing starts with a good foundation.

Before you start swinging your club, you need to have a solid setup. Professional golfers can help you too, and that remains the same in all great swings. One of the greatest players of all time, Ben Hogan, said good golf starts with grip. Stance, aim, and stance are also part of the foundation that must be laid before the swing begins. Posture refers to the angle of the spine, the inclination of the shoulders, the way the arms sag, and the curvature of the knees.

“With the grip, the hand is the only part of the body that touches the club,” Curdt said. “Your feet are the only part of your body that touches the ground and your stance allows you to touch the ball at the right angle. So if you don’t have those three things aligned, good luck trying to get the ‘perfect’ one Swing, that’s not going to happen.”

However, he emphasizes that a professional golfer can help you choose a grip that fits your individual physical characteristics. “If you want to swing well, the grip has to be firm and the coach can adjust it for you.”

3. Shooting should be predictable

One of the most important aspects of a great swing is that it is repeatable. This means that you can usually predict the outcome of your shot. For example, any player who has missed both sides knows how frustrating it can be when you’re not sure where the golf ball is going.

So whether your swing produces a fade, a draw or a relatively straight shot, being able to do it over and over is an enviable trait. Again, an instructor can help you decide what’s right for you.

4. Good balance translates into a better swing

No matter which golf swing method you choose, there are of course several ways to successfully swing a golf club, and balance is always key. While weight transfer during the swing is important, be careful not to balance with the outside foot or roll back (when the golfer falls back from the target while completing the swing). Again, this is where a good setup can help, but if you think about keeping your balance at all times, your chances of swinging are greatly increased.

photo of man playing golf club

(Image credit: Getty/Photo and Co)

5. Online coaching can be valuable, but be careful

There is a lot of golf instruction available online now. One trainer might tell you to swing around your body, while another might suggest more up and down motions. Anyone can guess which one is right for you, but more importantly, you’re probably trying to find a solution that doesn’t really solve your problem.

“I think learning new Internet skills is the equivalent of self-diagnosing WebMD disease,” Curdt said. However, he acknowledges that online content has great value when used properly. Teachers often work with students and then prescribe video exercises they might want to do.

There are also paid online instructional programs where users can submit swing videos and then get feedback from their coaches. It’s better to go with a coach in person, but it’s also better than going alone and is usually cheaper.

6. Get ready for your best swing

While a custom set of clubs isn’t necessarily advisable for beginners (it can be expensive for one), the right equipment is a must once you get started.

Adjustment will help you find the correct length and position of the club, which is how the club is positioned on the address. Perhaps the most important feature is the curvature of the shaft, which is usually related to how fast a player swings the club. If the shaft is too flexible or too stiff, the player must adjust the swing to be successful. Getting your clubs to fit properly, which you can do at a golf shop or golf course, will make developing your swing much easier.

7. Don’t forget the spiritual aspect

It’s no secret that your mood can have a huge impact on your swing. For the most part, especially for amateur players, it’s a catch-up game. Record offline and learn how to get back in place. It’s in your swing if you’re feeling anxious or depressed.

“You have to see how you deal with adversity,” Curdt asked. “Can you handle all the differences and changes that golf courses bring to us?”

Again, this is where a trainer can help. While perfection is indeed an impossible goal, it’s still worthwhile, and with good attitude, good game planning, and patience, it’s easier and more fun.

Content

How to improve your golf swing in 7 steps

Every golfer fantasizes about the perfect golf swing. They dream of having the power of Tiger Woods in his prime, the rhythm of Freddy Couples, the short game of Phil Mickelson and the putting expertise of Brad Faxon. 
But even if you combined all of those players into one, they still wouldn’t produce the perfect swing —  it really doesn’t exist. But hey, we can dream, right?
And we can also pursue that dream. After all, in golf as well as life, it’s about the journey — not so much the end. So in our pursuit of perfection, we want to be making constant progress, not sabotaging it or taking steps backwards. Here are some of the things you need to do if you’re looking to shoot for the stars and improve your swing.
Looking for gear to wear as you step out on the green? We’ve found the best golf shoes and the best golf gloves here. We’ve also got some top tips on how to improve your putting technique here. 
1.  Look for a coach or a regular instructor
According to the National Golf Foundation, fewer than 20 percent of golfers seek professional instruction. Instead, they try to teach themselves, whether it’s through an instruction video, a book, or — worst of all — getting tips from friends. 
A golf player can use up to 14 different clubs. While the basic swing is the same for most of them there are certainly differences, especially between driver, iron play, short game, and putting. Each of these different skills takes time to master — but if you’re guessing it doesn’t matter how much you practice, it’s very difficult to improve your technique.
A coach or instructor can help to guide you. Not only will they know how to teach technique, but they can also observe your progress. Alison Curdt, a Master PGA and LPGA Professional, believes that players need a coach to guide them in the right direction if they really want to improve. That goes for seasoned players, as well as beginners. Nevertheless, she suggests letting go of the idea of ‘perfection’.
“When that word comes up with students, I tell them they’re going to be seeking perfection for the rest of their lives,” says Curdt, who is one of the top golf coaches in the country and also has a doctorate in psychology. “It’s not attainable in the golf swing. Even the robots that test equipment can’t swing the golf club exactly the same and to perfection each time.”
2. A great swing begins with a great foundation 
You need to have a solid set up before you even start swinging the club. A golf pro can help you with that, too, and it is a constant in all great swings. Ben Hogan, one of the greatest players of all time, said that good golf begins with the grip. Stance, aim, and posture are also part of the foundation that must be set before a swing commences.  Posture refers to spine angle, shoulder tilt, how the arms hang, and knee flex.
“With grip, the hands are the only part of the body that’s touching the club,” says Curdt. “Your feet are the only parts of the body touching the ground, and your posture is allowing you to set up at the correct angle to make contact with the ball. So if you’ve got those three things misaligned, good luck trying to make your ‘perfect’ swing – it just won’t happen.” 
Nevertheless, she stresses that a golf professional can help you to pick a grip that aligns with your individual physical characteristics. “The grip must be sound if you’re going to have a great swing, and a coach can customize that for you.” 
3. Shots need to be predictable
One of the most important aspects of having a great swing is that it’s repeatable. That means you’re able to predict the outcome of your shots, most of the time. Any player with a two-way miss, for example, knows how frustrating it is when they can’t be sure which way the golf ball is going. 
So whether your swing produces a fade, or a draw, or a relatively straight shot, being able to do it time after time is an enviable trait. Again, an instructor can help you hone in what’s right for you.
4. Good balance translates into better swings
No matter what method of golf swing you choose — and there are definitely different methods to successfully swing the golf club — balance is always key. While weight transfer during the swing is important, you must be careful not to sway over your outside foot or reverse pivot (when a golfer falls backwards away from the target as they complete their swing). Again, that’s where a great setup will help, but if you think about staying in balance all the time, your chances of swinging well increase dramatically.

(Image credit: Getty/Photo and Co)
5. Online instruction can be valuable, but be careful
There’s a wealth of golf instruction online these days. You can find one instructor who might tell you to swing around your body, while another might advocate a more up-and-down motion. Which one is right for you is anyone’s guess, but more than that, you might be trying to find a fix that really doesn’t address your problem.
“I see learning new skills from the internet as the equivalent of self-diagnosing a disease from WebMD,” Curdt says. Nevertheless, she admits there’s plenty of value in online content when it’s used properly. Instructors will often work with a student, then prescribe video drills they might want them to work on. 
There are also paid online instruction programs where users can send in videos of their swings, then receive feedback from an instructor. It’s not as good as being with a coach in person, but it’s better than going it alone and usually more affordable. 
6. Get your clubs fitted for your best swings
While it’s not necessarily advisable for a beginner to get custom fit for a set of clubs (it can be expensive, for one), once you get going the right equipment is a must. 
A fitting will help you find clubs that are the proper length and lie, the latter of which is how the club sets at address. Perhaps the most important feature is shaft flex, which usually correlates to how fast a player can swing a club. If the shaft is too flexible or stiff, the player will have to make adjustments in the swing to be successful. Getting your clubs properly fit, which you can do at a golf retail outlet or at a golf course, makes developing a swing that much easier. 
7. Don’t forget the mental side
It’s no secret that your state of mind can affect your swing greatly. Most of the time, especially for amateur players, it’s a game of recovery. Hit a shot off-line, then figure out how to get back in position. If you’re anxious or frustrated, it will manifest itself in your swing. 
“You need to look at how you handle adversity,” asks Curdt. “Are you able to handle all the differences and variability that the golf course gives us from shot to shot and day to day?” 
Again, this is where a coach can be so helpful. And while perfection is indeed an impossible goal, it’s still a worthwhile pursuit, made easier and more enjoyable by a great attitude, a good game plan and patience. 

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