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WGC Accenture Matchplay Rorys Mistake!

Well an a amazing two weeks in California & Tucson, great weather early then snow!

Was not expecting the white stuff to follow me to the desert, and I think Rory & Tiger are considering paying me to not follow them again!

Record so far been at two of their tournaments and in the first one they both missed the cut, and in the second one they both lost in the first round!

I know matchplay can be a bit flukey but even so that is some record, I could even believe it could be  a bit of a jinx?

Anyway the golf course at Dove Mountain is superb but vicious, greens are so hard, huge slopes and very fast, the course is very long for example a 536 yd par 4!

I got up close to all the players and got some great slow motion videos, including a last practice session with Rory before his first match on Wednesday.

He was hitting great shots on the range , drivers very long, he said he was hitting the new driver better than ever.

He gave an impromptu interview with Golf Channels Kelly Tilghman and she was asking Rory about his clubs, his new house, his girlfriend, and even wanted his phone number!

He is very popular in the U.S. large crowds following the world no1, he was looking composed and in control considering everything that has happened this year, and I believe the new clubs are not an issue at all.

I believe Rory is simply not swinging as well and of course their is huge expectation, which adds more pressure and that will not go till he wins with his new equipment.

I have put his swing on my Youtube channel and give my views and make a comparison with Justin Rose & Hunter Mahan who both swing the club on a consistent swing plane.

Take a look and see what you think and let me know.

 

Happy Golfing.

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Youtube channel      David Bown PGA

 

A Swing misconception, address is not impact !

Many golfers come to me for lessons, many have played for years , some for less than a year, some are total beginners,  they all have have misconceptions of what makes a good golf swing, they have totally the wrong information. But if that is all you know , that is what you try and do, and it leads them into going down the long road of tips, quick fixes, listening to their playing partners which although are trying to help, are not qualified to assess and explain how a golf swing works and deliver a structured way of learning.

No, we all know it takes work, commitment  and dedication to improve, but you also need the right information to improve, you could spend hours, months , years, doing completely the wrong thing !

When a golfer comes to me to have a lesson, they usually will want to improve their ball striking, they want more consistency and they want more distance.  

When I see them  there is a definite pattern of misconception of where they should be at impact.

They all believe that if they return the golf club to their address position at impact they will hit good shots !

How wrong can they be.

I video their swing and when they swing down, the club head is virtually at the same point at the 9 o clock position on the downswing as it is at the 9 o clock position on the upswing ! 

If you imagine looking at a circle face on, their club almost traces the same line, has the same width up and down!  They are doing what they believe to be correct, but it is totally wrong. You will not see this on a good player.

What they get when they do this is hit fat shots, that is hitting the ground before the ball or thin shots which is hitting the ball on the upswing.They are so inconsistent, they are frustrated.

When they hit the thin shot they believe this happens because the have lifted their head !  Another misconception !

How do I change this belief ?

Easy , I just show them the impact alignments first, show them how to get there and get them to feel it.

So here are the key points. 

Hands ahead of the ball, around 4 to 6 inches.

Shaft will be leaning forwards.

Weight on the left side, head does not move forward at impact.  

Hips are open to target, shoulders less, more parallel to target. 

Right side lower than address.

Right elbow still bent at impact.

They get it straight away, a light seems to go on, they understand that you strike down on the ball, to achieve a better compression of the ball, get a better flight on the ball, and retain more energy into impact.

They were throwing the energy away so early, they wanted to get the club head to the ball so fast , they did not use their body, their pivot to transport their arms down into the release area, so now they will have energy stored , to release into the ball and the turf after impact.   

They will not be manipulating the club with their hands, they will be more consistent, they will be using their body in the correct sequence, the club will be accelerating into the ball, they will get more distance, and of course they can now strike down on the ball and achieve better contact.

All of this achieved by explaining  a misconception and the golfer getting the facts behind a good swing.

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Youtube channel Bowngolf

What you can learn from my golf lesson to me?

I have been busy coaching and have not had the quality time to work on my swing. I wanted to change a few things, so I thought it would be a good idea  to give you my thoughts and also give you an insight as to how I go about making a change in my swing.

My swing changeFirst I needed to see my swing on video, to get a clear picture of where I am NOW in my swing, not where I FEEL I am, this is a huge part of working on the right thing, its so easy to trust your feel, or you may look in a mirror, the problem is you PLACE the club where you want it and its not in real MOTION.

The other great teaching aid is my analysis software, I can place the hi speed camera on a tripod, film my swing then download it in to my Mac, I can draw lines angles etc.

So, I want to keep my head more centred, I have a habit of moving too much to the right and also lifting my spine angle on my backswing, basically I need to stay more centred and stay more over the ball.

The picture on the right feels so dramatically different to me , yet it looks slightly different here, trust me its  a HUGE CHANGE in the feeling of my swing!

Now the feeling I got when I did this was as if  my upper body was moving left on my backswing and also moving downwards!

It was very strange feeling and immediately I was out of my comfort zone!!!

I hit around sixty balls, filming each one and checking it on my camera.

Guess what my brain was telling me , yes you are moving way to the left, yes I am moving so far downwards with my shoulders that it was ridiculous!

I FELT as if I was moving left with my upper body about ten inches, and my chest was going down about four inches!

Ok , so I checked in the camera, and no way was I moving downwards, no way was I moving to the left!!

It was marginal, a slight difference!

Incredible yes?

Well this is what happens when you try and change an established swing pattern, you are virtually on auto pilot when you swing and although my conscious mind was telling me yes you are doing what you want, my video told me different!

So my next step was to super exaggerate the movement I wanted with the camera rolling, this felt so EXTREME it was ridiculous.

GOOD GETTING BETTER!

Gradually I was starting to get more accustomed to this feeling, I started hitting the ball more crisply, it was going straighter and a bit further with more height.

Its simple really , all I have to do is do the EXACT OPPOSITE of what I was doing before and EXAGGERATE it about 100% and I think I will get where I want to be !!!

It is work in progress as Tiger calls it, and that is so true.

For all my students and all you golfers out there taking lessons, all your teachers know how hard it is to make a change, we have all been there, it doesn’t happen in one lesson, it takes, patience, perseverance , dedication to the cause.

Don’t get distracted from your main goal, work at it, write it down in your golf notebook, what you are changing, how the new change feels to you.

So when your instructor tells you do do something new, it feels weird, you feel that you cannot hit the ball at all, this will pass, its called CHANGE, not of us like it, but stick with it and have faith and belief in it and maybe like Justin Rose you will get your reward!!

Good luck!

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

To Subscribe to my golf channel http://bit.ly/15yVpdy

 

 

Off to see the Tiger in the desert!

Well its been cold but dry in the UK and I am missing that nice warm feeling of sunshine on my back, its been a while!

But as luck has it, a great opportunity has arisen for me to go to Abu Dhabi and Dubai to see the HSBC golf tournament, its Tigers first tour event of the year and world no 1 Luke Donald, Lee Westwood, Rory McIlroy are all playing so its a bigeee!

Will be great to see Tiger close up and his swing changes, and I also really hope we get a close tournament with Tiger, Rory, Lee and Luke all playing well and a real finale, it just happens so rarely when the top two or three players in the world are battling it out over the final eighteen holes,

This of course is a great opportunity to get some hi speed video footage of all the worlds best  after some winter tuning and I will be there filming everyone of them.

Will have them posted up on my website when I return.

Take a look on Sky sports they are covering the event from Jan 26 th to 29th and see some great golf.

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

 Youtube channel    Bowngolf

 

Seve golf legend

Seve at Wentworth

The great Seve Ballesteros what a player, he had charisma, magic, you just had to watch him play because you never knew what was going to happen, something magical usually did !  

My opportunity of watching Seve was at Wentworth in the eighties at the World Matchplay tournament played in October, all the superstars of golf played in the tournament then, I remember watching Nicklaus, Player, Watson, Miller, Trevino, Norman, Faldo, Graham, Marsh, Irwin, , these players were heroes, and there was an aura about Nicklaus, Player,Trevino, Miller etc, but none of these players had the charisma, flair and pure magnetism of Seve Ballesteros !

One year I went with my video camera and was filming the players and I went down to the practice ground and there was Seve just about to start hitting balls, there were barriers all round, but here was a great opportunity to film the man himself, I got up the courage to  ask him if I could video him, he replied yes and told me where to stand. That is how I got such a great view of his swing down the line ! 

There are a few things to comment on, firstly the sound when he hit the ball, I hope you can here a bit of that, and his divots were so square , he moved so freely and fluidly during his swing,his rhythm, it was a gracefulness, but he had huge power as well, plus an amazing touch around the greens, with the looks of a hollywood actor, what a combination !

Here is a clip of Seve using a short iron, I was very fortunate because I filmed him hitting many shots from the same position, from wedge to driver, from the caddie leaving him the balls to start, to Seve finishing with his caddie collecting them all and just hitting a few more wedges at the end.

It was a great day for me, and he will be remembered by me as a golfing genius, and that I managed to see up close his remarkable talent !

I hope you all enjoy this clip, I just want to keep watching it !

http://youtu.be/bu24-_pW64I

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Youtube channel Bowngolf

The DNA of your Golf Swing

There is so much misleading and contradictory information in the golf instruction world. No wonder golfers are not improving as they should.

Anyone who wants to improve their game and get better has to start by taking a very close look at how they swing the club.

See the reality. Usually how your swing feels is not for real, feelings can mislead. How can you analyse and get feedback while you are in the moment of swinging the club ?     

Video analysis is where you must start, look at your swing, see it, picture it .

You now have a reference point, a starting point so you can move forwards.

You don’t have to do everything perfectly to hit good golf shots, just remember that when you are on the range trying to analyse every inch of your swing, no wonder there is a lot of paralysis through analysis out there.

The Master Keys as I call them or the DNA of your golf swing are crucial for your golfing improvement. What are they you might ask, well go to my website and you will get the information you need to lower your scores and enjoy your golf. Golf is meant to be enjoyed ! So take a look.

Your confidence will rise because for the first time you have a plan of improvement.Its just that learning, and mastering a move  like the golf swing is not an instant thing , you have to have control over the four Master Keys.

I call it the Master Keys to good golf, and really its the DNA if you will, once you have learnt it, golf becomes FUN & you become a better striker of the golf ball.

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Youtube channel Bowngolf

 

A week in the Life of a Tour player?

I know it all seems great travelling the world, playing in exotic warm locations, and if you are good enough earning a living at it , and for a very special few a vast amount of money to be made! But take a look at the last tournament the flagship event on the European Tour, wow did things go wrong there! Firstly Sergio Garcia makes a very stupid comment about his great pal Tiger Woods, this was at the players awards dinner just before the event, then every player and his dog is asked to give an opinion on what was said. Then European Tour head George O’Grady makes a statement and gets that all wrong on Sky tv, and has to issue a apology. The weather is rubbish, its winter out there! I was there at Wentworth filming the players for my video channel, and it was cold, dull and windy, no fun at all, I can tell you! This year the BMW PGA had all of the triumphant Ryder Cup team playing at Wentworth, it was going to be a classic! Sorry No it wasn’t, the lead up to the event was marred by poor comments from people that should no better, ok the weather was totally out of anyones control, but I was at the course all day on the Monday & Tuesday , the official practice days, and I never saw Rose, McDowell, McIlroy, Donald, Westwood, Poulter, on the golf course at all!! Where were they? Its strange that McDowell, McIlroy, Donald, Poulter all missed the cut, and what should have been a fantastic tournament never materialised. I know McDowell won the week before, so he is forgiven, Westwood also put up a good showing, but the so called top players who were expected to fight for the win, all missed the cut! It was left to the lower ranked players to put on a show, and Marc Warren, and Simon Khan and Matteo Manassero certainly provided great entertainment during the last few holes, and of course the brilliant golf played by Khan and Manassero during their play off was enthralling to watch. So it was of to Walton Heath for some players to try and get one of the ten places up for grabs out of a field of around a hundred to qualify for the US Open at Merion this year. The weather was cold and very very windy, the greens fast, balls were being blown around, as Walton Heath is Six hundred feet above sea level, heather awaited any stray shots, players were nearly getting on par fours in one and then playing a 30 yd chip and watching the ball roll and roll straight over the green, and then dropping a shot! The wind must have been blowing around twenty miles per hour. Players started  teeing  off at 6.40 am in two balls. I saw the winner Simon Khan, yes he was there playing another two rounds and playing great golf for a seven under par total to win the event. Paul Casey had a poor start with a 74 but shot a fantastic 64 in the second round to qualify. So its not all glamour out on the European Tour, the competition is intense, the pressure never ending, and its all about the score and not making stupid comments! What surprises are in store for us next week? Please can we have a summer?   Enjoy your golf!

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor contact david@bowngolf.com 07973746872 To view my website. www.bowngolf.com Youtube channel David Bown PGA

 

Why are golfers handicaps not getting lower!

So in the main they do not know what to practice, they haven’t the awareness of what they are doing, they try to swing too hard, there is no blueprint to guide them through and keep them on course.

This sounds really worrying, golfers do want to improve don’t they?

My aim is to help you sort out these issues and get you all playing better golf and having more FUN !

What I do in my coaching is first of all give my students , if they are beginners, is a blueprint of the key things they need to do, keep it simple, not too much information, it is so easy to overload with information, it can become  paralysis through analysis if the coach gives out too much info, especially if the coach is not as experienced and is trying too hard.

Less is more, it will pay off.

If I have a golfer who has played for many years and cannot make long term commitment to rebuilding their swing, guess what I don’t. Be realistic they cannot swing like Tiger Woods, so lets use what they have and work in such a way that we fix the key components and with these changes they will play better. You do not have to have a great looking swing to play better and lower your scores, you must understand what makes your swing work and then it’s maintainance, through correct understanding of your swing you can practice much more constructively.

You are not just hitting balls trying to find a swing, YOU KNOW YOUR SWING !

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Is Tiger Woods back?

 

Everyone is asking will Tiger come back, will he win, will he win a major, is his domination over, how are his swing changes going?

Here are a few obsevations and thoughts after watching him in Abu Dhabi, his first tournament of 2012 and really getting up close and filming him on the course and on the range for the week. 

He is certainly gaining control of his new swing, we can all see that.  A few technical observations are that he starts the club back slightly more closed, which means more toe down than he used to.  It’s almost a reversal of what he did before with Hank Haney, he has a steeper shoulder turn on the backswing and is working the club up on a slightly steeper plane.  It’s an inward hand path, shaft outside his hands as he starts back, and a steeper shaft angle on the backswing.  He is fading the ball ever so slightly, on some shots he is using a lot of upper body rotation and holding off his short and mid irons, also hitting the three wood with a low tracer bullet flight, which is very very impressive!

You have to be strong to swing this way and I hope Tiger’s back and knee hold up during the year.

He still has a lot of power, great imagination around the greens, one thing I have seen in Tiger is a couple of poor pitches from around 70 yds, which he hit a bit heavy and just got on the front edge of the green, I never saw him do  this before.

You can see he exaggerates these moves on his practice swing, but when he swings it’s not as radical as this, it’s more a rehearsal of the pattern he is trying to create in his mind and body.

Can he gain control of the driver with this swing?  We will have to wait and see.  When he really needs a safe shot he is playing a fade.  During the last round in Abu Dhabi he missed a lot more fairways and greens, which after watching him on the range before the last round  this was very surprising as he looked in complete control of his swing.

At the moment everything looks very controlled and he is bedding the swing in to competetive play, maybe his best form will come in April?

Tiger certainly got the attention of the players on the range, many were sneaking a look while they were hitting balls. Tiger does have a great posture and composure, he walks round the golf course in a slow deliberate way.  Certainly when I watch Tiger playing I know I am watching a golfing legend and I cannot forget the amazing shots he has produced throughout his career and all those major wins he has.

He looks at the moment that the flair he has showed throughout his career and his freedom of swing and play is missing, his instinctiveness is not there yet, and this is obviously understandable, maybe we are going to see a more methodical player during this season?

For me the Tiger of previous years was the most exciting player I have ever seen, apart from Seve, and I started watching from the Nicklaus era,1970 onwards, to watch him attacking the course and pulling off amazing shots, fist pumps, birdies, eagles, chip ins, amazing recoveries, playing at  Augusta were magic moments, I hope they return, because whatever view you have of TigerWoods the person, the golf world needs Tiger Woods back at his best, taking on the young guns.

When a superstar in sport has problems, for whatever reason, whether physical, technical, or self inflicted, the question is can they return to where they were?  Can they return to the pinnacle of their sport, in golf at the moment we have several young golfers who have been winning titles, money lists, majors, they have not experienced defeat against Tiger.  They are not Tiger fatigued or battle scarred through consistent losses, hence in the past when he was leading after 54 holes he almost always came out victorious, his competition were beaten before they started.

Now we have many extremely fit, young and very long hitters, they are not mentally beaten golfers, they are not intimidated, they have learnt to win when Tiger was not around, and they cannot wait to beat him when he comes back, to a degree it will make their careers, they are relishing the new challenge ahead.

Tiger is also relishing the challenge of getting back to winning majors and showing everyone that he can return to the pinnacle of golf.

We all will find out if he can come back very soon, and I will be watching him closely at the WGC Matchplay in Tucson in a couple of weeks.   

I hope you can feel how excited I am about this 2012 golf season, it could be AMAZING!

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

A student of mine had a one hour lesson with me today, I had previously given him a video lesson about eighteen months ago, he had to stop playing for six months because he had  broken his wrist snowboarding .

Luckily everything had healed up well and he no discomfort or mobility problems.

He had at  one time been of three handicap, but was now playing off fourteen, he explained that he could not hit the driver as he wanted , it was either starting straight  and cutting to the right towards the end of its flight or flying straight left of target, could also start it left going left. He can hit the ball 280 off the tee and is a powerful player.

So I stood behind him as he set up to the ball with the driver, I always look at alignment, posture, ball position, grip, weight distribution at address.

I let him hit five or six drives, all were either starting straght and cutting about 40 yards to the right, or starting left and cutting thirty yards to the right.

From down the line I could see his downswing path was slightly across and above his intended path into the ball, his backswing was on plane, his turn was a fraction short but controlled, very strong at the top.

He had a narrow stance, his ball position was slightly to far back, his right shoulder was out of alignment to the left, and he looked a bit top heavy at at set up, weight to much towards his toes. 

So I got him to move his right foot across to the right about six inches, his ball position one inch further forward, move his weight further back towards his heels, and move his right shoulder down and back slightly.so that he was now parallel to his target, altough he felt his shoulders were closed !

He now had had more weight behind the ball at address and was better balanced and more stable and grounded

All in all I moved  the ball one inch, his upper body one inch, his weight from his toes to just over his ankle joint , so he was better balanced,  and his spine angle came up slightly, and he was nearer the ball slightly.   So we made about six inches of adjustments in total. He now had his upper body aligned better to the target. No need to alter his grip, it was perfect , his backswing was compact, on plane, no swing thoughts needed, no conscious manipulation of the hands now needed as he swings .

First swing he hit a long high shot, a strong flight, that after it reached the top of its flight it very slightly turned to the left as it came back to earth !

He actually hit it virtually straight , slight draw and long , WOW !

He was delighted, he now needs to practice recognising where he is at set up, and start to get the feel of his new set up so he can reproduce the correct alignments easily and feel comfortable.

So to sum up.

He had too much weight on his toes, ball too far back and his upper body was out of alignment , so he found it very difficult to swing the club on the correct plane through the impact zone, he said ” I feel less effort as I swing, its more fluid now, I am not fighting it”

Always look at your set up first, grip, posture, ball position, weight distribution, and alignment first, get these right first before making any swing changes, everyone should be able to have a good set up, its so important.

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Youtube channel Bowngolf

 

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