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What you can learn from Luke Donald BMW PGA champion

Did any of you see Luke Donald win the BMW PGA championship at Wentworth on Sunday?

He was the defending champion and he achieved another PGA victory in fine style, this also took him back to world no 1.

It  looked like it was going to be a duel between two Englishmen, Donald and Justin Rose over the final eighteen holes, and even though Donald had a two stroke lead over Rose you never know what will happen in golf.

As it turned out Donald had his usual precision with the irons, and the putter was working well, he shot a 68 and won by four from Rose and Paul Lawrie, who shot a  great final round of  66 to share second place.

So how did Luke beat all his rivals?

Obviously he had all parts of his game under control, and when he had opportunities to make birdies his strength his putting, came to the fore.

Rose did have his opportunities but could not get those putts to drop when he had to.

I followed Luke round Wentworth on Tuesday the practice day, I always go on the practice days because I can take my camera and you can get  up close for some great swing sequences.

Luke was with Dave Allred his performance coach who has given Luke a more focused and measurable practice regime.

He really does work hard on his bunker play which is spectacular, virtually every hole played he hit practice bunker shots from all different areas around the greens.

I watched him earlier in the year at Dove Mountain for the WGC matchplay tournament and he would practice his putting for at least an hour every day, and using his putting aids to help him, a tee either end of the putt with string tied between them, he had his putting mirror all lined up, and had his caddie watching. He also putted with one hand his right and was making fifteen foot putts regularly!

Its not just putting a few balls round the green for an hour.

They say he is a short hitter, well he hit drives at Wentworth between 280 yds to 320 yds, its all relative, ok some players hit it thirty yds longer, but they do say, drive for show and putt for dough!  

His great strength is he sticks to his game plan and he knows his strengths and weaknesses, what he can and can’t do under pressure, and keeps going relentlessy, he doesn’t force things and if he makes a birdie great, and if he makes a bogey he just continues, he can forget the bad shot and usually bounces back with a birdie on the next hole.

His body language and demeanour are very good you don’t know if he has had a good or bad hole, or round.

Lessons to learn 

Have a practice routine and a plan of improvement.

Practice your putting and bunker play.

Keep calm and focused during play.

Know your strengths and weaknesses and don’t try shots on the course you have never practiced. 

 

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

My Youtube channel     Bowngolf

 

 

Want to strike the golf ball like a pro ?

What do the tour players do and the average golfer does not when we are talking about impact alignments?

I ask all my higher handicap golfers and my beginners this question.

Where do you want the club & your hands to be when you strike the ball ?

Answer they give is ” I want to return the club to my address alignment at contact or impact ”

Well if that is what you believe then you are certainly achieving your goal !

But it is totally wrong! No wonder golfers are not improving, they do not understand the alignments required  at impact for a powerful shot .

To hit longer,crisper & more consistant iron shots you need your hands leading the clubhead into the ball , with the shaft leaning forward at impact, not hands inline, & certainly not behind the ball at impact !

There is a new training aid sweeping America its called the Tour Striker, and this club gives you the hands forward impact, because if you do not do this you cannot strike the ball at all ! Here is the link to the video.My students are eagerly awaiting delivery of their clubs! I will be writing a review on the Tour Striker soon !

 

 

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 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

 

Get Rid of Inconsistent Golf Once and For All

When I am on the range or on the course teaching, there seems to be a huge number of golfers that come to me and they are what I call OUTSIDERS.

I will explain what I mean.

The OUTSIDERS are a type of golfer, its a way they swing the club, they can be young or old, they can be fit or weak, flexible or strong, male or female, they can be experienced golfers, they are struggling golfers, golfers who do not improve, never play to their potential, golfers who resign themselves and think  they are uncordinated and will never play good golf, so its a very large percentage of people out there.

What is the opposite of an OUTSIDER? Its an INSIDER!

An INSIDER refers to the way a golf club is swung.

Let me explain an OUTSIDER to you first, its what I see so often on the driving range and teaching bays throughout the world.

Is this you?

You want to hit the ball as far as possible, you put a huge amount of physical effort into hitting the ball, you see the distances on the range and you feel obligated to get the ball out there as far as you can, you try and hit a seven iron 150 yds but only hit it 125 yds maybe, you never hit the same shot three times running, it goes left , then it goes right, you hit one straight but it flies just above the ground, or you hit the ground before the ball, if you hit one solid it goes very high?

You are an OUTSIDER!

You let the those thoughts and moves control you!

You try so hard to get the clubhead to hit the ball.  

You try to get clubhead speed and get the clubhead to the ball as quickly as possible.

Would you like to be an INSIDER?

Do you want to be more consistent?

Do you want to hit the ball much further with less strain and effort?

Do you want a reliable shot shape?

Do you want to strike the ball with more authority?

So this is how you become an INSIDER.

You focus on what  you do.

You are aware of your thoughts, and you control your racing mind and haphazard thoughts and quieten your mind down through focusing on what you want your MIND and BODY to do and its not trying to hit the ball!

First Step.

Your MIND must be in play and working for you not against you.

Your MIND/BRAIN sends signals to you muscles which move your bones, which moves the golf club, which moves the ball.You need to know how to move your body.

So you must learn to move  your inside, your core, hips, trunk so that they are the power source, so the club starts following your movement during the swing, the club is a follower not the leader.

Most golfers THROW or PUSH the club with their arms to generate power and when that does not work, they THROW or PUSH it even harder!

Your arms are NOT your power source !

They arms transmit the energy developed by your body from your pivot and a sequence of events occur so you unleash your full potential through the ball, its like a boxer throwing a punch, they use their body, feet, hips, trunk in the correct order and it releases out through the arm, they dont stand flat footed and stick an arm out as hard as they can.

Same as throwing a baseball pitch or a cricket ball, a javelin, the shot, the hammer, the INSIDER, the body, moves first before the OUTSIDE speeds up.

So learn to control your mind and  body and work on getting your INSIDE to move your OUTSIDE.   

The OUTSIDERS are your Arms, your Wrists, and  the Clubhead !

So you have a choice the INSIDERS use THE LAWS of MOTION and the OUTSIDERS  FIGHT THE LAWS of MOTION!   

Which one are you?

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

My Youtube channel Bowngolf

 

 

Rory McIlroy using Pivot Power

Here is US Open champion Rory McIlroy using his pivot in the correct downswing sequence to retain the energy created, loaded and stored in his backswing and unleash amazing clubhead speed through the impact zone.

A great example here.

For someone 5ft 10 in & 11st 6 lb/160 lbs to hit the ball 300 yds with a 3 metal on one tee shot! is incredible and to also hit many drives over 300 yds and play with that control is amazing.

His performance in winning the US Open will be talked about for some time, he was two strokes a round better than his nearest rival, he led from start to finish, all his so called weaknesses as repeated over and over by the golf analysts dissappeared, his putting would not hold up, could he scramble, his course management was poor, no what we all saw was a young man unleashing his pure golfing talent on the golfing world, he was focused, he had something to prove, his swing a thing of beauty was under full control, the crowd loved him, he destroyed his Augusta woes, & he is the youngest US Open champion for over eighty years ! WOW !

His whole game seemed to click, the putting looked good, his control of distance and holing out was exceptional, his short game was on song, his irons were like lasers, especially the first three rounds, all you saw were irons right on the flags, his driving was immense, long and high with draw, which suited the course, he looked fearless, and he had control over his mind, which was a huge factor in this incredible performance.

The stats for the tournament , in greens in regulation and driving accuracy and distance were brilliant.

So Rory had the whole package this week, and I sincerely hope we see him have many more major wins in the coming years.

Rory we all knew you had the talent and the game, and now you have that inner belief and strength that all winners possess , Congratulations to you & as the americans say you were AWESOME !

 

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

Choosing your Golf Coach

I went to the PGA  TRADESHOW in early October, it was held in Harrogate Yorkshire, a great town to visit, I had not been to Harrogate for thirty years, so it was great to go back again, and meet up with my fellow professionals.

I spent some time at the GASP systems stand, thanks to Steve and Mervyn, which have some really good products for video coaching, I use GASP LAB and can vouch for their equipment and their customer service. A great new product is their teaching app for IPHONE which you can download from ITUNES.

It has a drawing program and a tools menu so you can draw lines on to your video, it is really helpful when I just want to highlight something to my pupil on the range quickly.

They also have golf drills which you can access, you can see my teaching drills on the app, which I know will help you improve your golf. 

As part of the PGA TRADESHOW were a number of seminars which we could attend, the speakers were top in their fields and  they were very educational. 

To maintain my Advanced  PGA status I have to maintain a certain number of points to keep that AA status, this means that you attend seminars to gain points each year, and you are willing to learn and keep improving your level of expertise, and that you are aware of new research and keeping up to date with all the latest technology. Its a great addition to the other areas I use to upgrade my skills and knowledge, this game is like peeling the layers of an onion, there is always another layer, and there are always more questions ! 

I chose three speakers to see, the first was Michael Hebron a PGA of AMERICA golf professional, who has written many books, and won many accolades for his work as a teaching professional, I had not seen Michael since the PGA of America teaching summits that he organised in the nineties in San Francisco and New Orleans, it was nice to speak to him again.

His seminar was called Neuro Learning, how the brain learns, not only in golf training but in learning anything.

It is a huge subject and was a subject that as a teacher is so important, if I can help you learn more quickly and simply, so your brain can take in the skills in a more natural way, rather than thinking about various components as you swing the club, that would greatly enhance my teaching and coaching skills and your learning.

My second seminar was by Jamie Edwards and it was basically about communication and developing our own skills, which was very useful, Jamie had a lot of enthusiasm for his subject and again it was very useable not only for my business, but for life as well.

My third seminar was with Fredrik Tuxen of TRACKMAN, he has developed a system for tracking the flight of the golf ball and its the number one ball flight monitor in the industry.

TRACKMAN now delivers ball flight analysis information which was previously before TRACKMAN, a kind of guesstimate of what happened when the clubface contacts the ball, and how it reacts during flight. 

Now there is proof.

Basically the ball reacts to the angle of the face with an iron to the ratio of 75% and to the path of the club 25%, with a driver its more 85% clubface and 15% path. Which before we were led to believe that the path of the club had a much larger effect on the starting direction of the ball.

This subject is pretty technical and there are many parameters that influence ball flight, but as a coach we need to know what influences there are on the ball flight of our students, as it can only make us better in helping our pupils improve, and that is why I attend these conferences.

When a student comes for to me for help, I feel I need to have the facts to help that person improve, not myths and assumptions, and we have an amazing amount of technology and information at our disposal to help golfers.

There is of course with all this training and knowledge a proviso, as coaches we must make sure we do not overload our golfers with all this data.

An analogy is like being a doctor, a doctor is trained over many years and has accumulated vast amounts of expertise in different fields, but when you go to see your doctor does he tell you everything he has learned about  the subject you are wanting help with?

NO.

I know you just want to get better, but you also want a doctor who has experience, and you can trust, and they might give you their best advice, but in my experience I would not just accept what they say without asking questions and doing some research as well.  

So he uses his experience and knowledge and gives you as much information as you desire, or as much as he feels is appropriate that will help you get better, and if he cannot, he refers you to the appropriate expert in that field that can help, a consultant.

So find yourself a PGA golf professional with that experience and  the education that enables him to deliver what you require from your lesson in a way that delivers the improvements you want, and teaches in a clear, structured and informed way.

You are then on your way to better golf and building a great relationship with a very important person to you, your golf coach!

 

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

 

 

Golf Drills featured on GASP app for Iphone!

Exciting news !

A few of my coaching drills from www.bowngolf.com are now featured on the new app from Gasp Systems, its the GASP Golf Swing Mobile app.

Its a great way to work on your game when you are out and about on the range, you can have your coach right there with you, so you never forget, what you need to do !

Technology is amazing now, so much new innovation and development all the time, and things change so fast!

Lesson to learn

One thing to remember though is that we humans take a bit longer to change and evolve, so when you are working on improving your game be patient, work to your intended plan , stay focused, keep working on the basic keys, not quick fixes and you will improve 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 Bowngolf

 

 

 

Rory McIlroy Hi speed video analysis

Rory is on the range at the BMW tour event at Wentworth May 2010, he worked his way through the bag, starting with the wedge, I have sequences here of a five iron,3 metal and driver to show you. He was hitting easy 3 metal shots, staying low and straight, then he would cut loose and the ball would just keep rising on a much higher trajectory as he inceased his power.

What an amazing talent at 20, winning a US PGA tour event in fantastic style, I remember thinking as I watched him shoot 65-62 over the last two rounds, this is how we would dream to play golf, massive drives, laser irons and holing putts, calm and controlled, it looked so easy to him.Those two rounds were very exceptional and I believe they are going to be rare for anyone to reproduce, especially on such a high calibre golf course as Quail Hollow.

His rhythm is superb, his balance, his fluidity of movement is second to none, it is all done with such flowing grace, that here is a very special golfer, who when in full flow makes golf look so easy, even more so than Tiger, who has more of a carved out or chiselled golf swing, more man made, and of course he has made significant changes to his swing through out his career, and I believe he is in the process of making more changes now. I can’t wait to see him back at the heights we all know he can achieve. Back to Rory.

What can you learn.

1. Rory is very relaxed at set up, excellent posture, alignment, great grip, looking ready and balanced to move into his swing.

2. Starts moving his chest, and arms so well together, and as he continues to turn his right side away his wrists hinge so naturally as he continues to wind up his chest, core and hips into a superbly poised and balanced location, no excess motion as he continues to move into the transition of his golf swing.

3. He starts down with a slight squat of the legs as they and the hips start to drag and pull the trunk and the arms downwards, a superb sequence of motion, maintainig lag not only between his arms and the shaft, you can see the shaft loading, but also note how he uses pivot lag, in other words how the sequence of his body unwinds relative to each other, creating the most powerfull movement he can to hit the ball prodigious distances.
He is working very hard here and creating lots of power, yet in real time it looks so smooth and fluid, because his sequence of movement is so tremendous and flows so well into a free flowing finish, he continues to turn his right side through to a very full finish, wish I was that flexible !

If Rory can continue to stay healthy, learn how to keep his score going when not quite at his best and eliminate small errors of judgement on course, such as course management and shot selection, there will be no stopping this young man becoming a regular tour winner where ever he plays in the world and become the best european player since Seve and Nick!

This is the start of giving you the information you need to really improve your golf .

I will be talking about the things you need to understand and more importantly to execute, which will enable you to lower your scores consistently.

Also you can tell me what you want to know!

I have been a PGA professional since 1975 and in the coaching industry for over thirty years and it still amazes me that people are not getting better !

With all that digital video has to offer, the internet, the books that are written by the best players in the world telling you how to play, how they think or feel they do it, the coverage on tv and seeing the best players play the game.

Why are golfers handicaps not getting any lower ?

Any Ideas?

I have a few here we go.

  1. Most golfers do not  know what to practice.
  2. They just  want to hit it as hard as they can.
  3. They have no awareness of where the club is in relation to their body.
  4. They have no plan of action or blueprint.
  5. They do not practice enough.
  6. What they feel they are doing bears no relationship to what is really happening in their swing.

US Open Merion Hogan and the rest.

Hogan swing sequence driverWell a US Open is nearly here, and its at the famous Merion golf club in Pennsylvania this year.

An iconic image in golf is the golfing legend Ben Hogan hitting a 1 iron into the 18th green at Merion in 1950 to make a par and get into a  three man 18 hole play off with Lloyd Mangrum & Tom Fazio.

In those days you played thirty six holes on the last day & Ben Hogan had only eighteen months earlier survived a terrible car crash that nearly killed him, so he played thirty six holes, then had to play another eighteen on legs that were weakened and fatigued, yet he went on to win that US.Open!

He then won the 1951 and 1953 US.Opens as well as the 1948 US Open.

Hence the Ben Hogan legend and Hollywood made a movie about his life called Follow the Sun.

Tiger Woods is the same age as Ben Hogan when Hogan won in 1950, Hogan won six more of his nine majors after this win, will Tiger get the win which will catapult him to more majors?

If Tiger does win win it will be his fourth US Open, tying him with Hogan, Nicklaus, Jones, and Willie Anderson.

The first two rounds pair up Tiger Woods, Rory Mcilroy and Adam Scott, world number one , two and three, and it should be a great battle to see who comes out on top, as these three players are probably the best to watch.

You can look at these great players and many more on my Youtube channel David Bown PGA

Take a look at my golf channel, click subscribe and learn from the greatest players in the world!

 

Happy Golfing!

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

 

 

 

 

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