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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

Bradley Dredge Hi -speed video Driver swing

This Hi -speed video of Bradley was taken at the Open qualifier at Sunningdale on Monday 7th June, he is hitting his first tee shot of the afternoon round on the Old course, on his way to a 65, and it was a perfect shot , straight and long, in the middle of the fairway.

This is a really good angle to see  his sequence of movement throughout his swing. Which as you can see is superb.

His posture is balanced and the angle of his spine and knee flex are perfect, he is balanced, athletic, he is grounded and  ready to move into his swing.You need a strong base, and be well planted if you are going to generate power in your swing, and Bradley does this so well.

He starts  his movement superbly,  his chest, arms and club are perfectly synchronised as he move into his backswing, he is just coiling up his chest and his hips are responding to the turn. He has  a great backswing wind up, is well balanced and has more weight on his right side .

Watch his transition closely, you can really see how his hips move first on the downswing, and his upper body is still coiled, he is not starting down with his arms or wrists, they are trailing behind.

The club is lagging behind, as his body moves left and starts to unwind, incredible energy is being stored by correct sequencing of his body . A major key in accuracy and power.

He has power, rhythm, great balance, athleticism, a superb golf swing, I wonder why he is not in contention more, it may be putting and short game that is just holding him back or maybe the mental side, but the swing does look very good. A very good model for you to see, very sound technique with great power. 

Tiger ties Nicklaus win record.

Tiger Woods is always in the news, and so it proved again last week when his win at the Memorial golf event meant he tied Jack Nicklaus with 73 PGA  tour wins, he has only now to beat Sam Sneads total of 82 wins to become the all time PGA tour leader.

Tiger is 36 years old , Jack was 46 when he set his mark of 73 wins, an incredible acheivment, how many more can he win?

Tom Watson has 39 PGA wins and is tied tenth, Phil Mickleson has 40 wins.

Here are the top six.

Snead 82

Nicklaus 73

Woods 73

Hogan 64

Palmer 62

Nelson 52  

Tiger is now up to fourth in the World Rankings, he was 60th only six months ago.

This was his second win this season on the PGA tour and is looking to be coming into form at the right time with the US Open coming up soon.

He seems to have his swing under control and is playing a fade as his stock shot, but is also able to hit the draw when required, his putting looked really good he shaved a few holes for birdies, and down the final few holes he raised his game when his competitors couldn’t.

The shot everyone is talking about, even Jack Nicklaus congratulated Tiger, was the flop shot he played from over the green out of the rough at the 16th hole, an amazing shot, it was in the rough, downhill fast green, with a ridge in the green and water beyond, and he holed i! Wow!

It looked like the Tiger of old, playing spectacular shots to win tournaments.

I noticed his swing was much less mechanical, less of the radical practice moves, up and down to the left, now does that mean Tiger has got it now, he can see the shot and execute, or does it mean he is not sticking to what he did earlier in the year and has evolved it into the swing he has now?

His stats are also so much better, his fairways hit , his GIR are all better.

The great thing I see in Tiger is that he can work the ball, high, low, fade, draw, he has imagination with his shotmaking, he plays clutch shots so well, he has huge experience of WINNING.

One proviso to this is that when he won at Bayhill he looked back to his best, only to falter badly at the US Masters, which was a huge surprise, so it may be too early to speculate on the US Open.

I think Tiger will probably win another three times this year, making five wins this season, could he get back to world number 1?

I know this when Tiger is in full flow its amazing to see, all I want now is Rory McIlroy, Tiger, Bubba, Mickleson, Donald and Westwood all playing well, in contention on the back nine on Sunday!

What a shootout!

It will be fun watching the rest of the season.

 

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

 

 

The Open 2014

Rory McIlroy

I was willing Rory to win as I watched the final round unfold on TV, it was closer than many people thought, but he won!

Rory’s majestic play the first few days were exceptional, a golfer in peak form fulfilling the potential we knew he had, making the game look so easy.

That final round was so different to the first three days, he made a brilliant start, birdieing the first hole with a monumental drive nearly 300yds into the breeze, superb iron shot and a great putt.

He we go he is going to win by seven or eight shots surely?

But having a six shot lead and the expectation of the crowd, the press, and himself it proved a hard task to play cavalier golf.

The chasing pack had nothing to lose, they could just go for it and attack, and they did so many scores of sixty five, sixty six were coming in.

Sergio Garcia played fantastic golf and proved that he has got back his love for the game and is strong ready to compete at this rarified level of the Majors.

Ricky Fowler played so good all week and his now showing his huge potential we knew he had but was sometimes too inconsistent.

He has been working on some swing changes with Butch Harmon and they are working.

Fowler, Garcia, Mcilroy are birdie machines, they do not hold back, they attack when they can, go for par fives, they are aggressive .

Sometimes that approach has got them into trouble, but when it comes off and the course is set up in a fair way, it is so exciting to watch, and so it proved at Hoylake this year.

So what about Tiger Woods, well I think if you haven’t played for five months and had back surgery and come back and  made the cut in the Open with hardly any tournament play, I believe that is a very good performance.

Tiger has always set new levels of achievement and people were divided between either he will come back as before or he had no chance, we know what happened.

The golf world must give Tiger time to get back into his routine and get his preparation right and we should really only judge him in a few months time.

I cannot see Tiger winning another major again.

He was the best golfer I have ever seen, he had it all, great mental strength, power, finesse, putting genius, amazing will to win, course management, and at his peak he had control of his competitors, they could hardly ever beat him, even when he was hitting all over the course he found a way to win. He intimidated his competitors.

Not any more, the invincibility has gone, the young guns have no fear, they haven’t tasted defeat, they love taking on the challenge of a older, fatigued, injured former god of golf and enhancing their reputation.

Tiger absolutely hates it and I am sure he is going to give it one more big go at getting his game back and showing that he can come back one more time, now he is feeling healthy.

He must sort out the driver though!

So who had the amazing power drives this week, the short game touch, the mental strength, made the birdies and saved the pars, had a game plan and strategy and really believed it was his time?

Yep it was Rory this week , he put it all together, we have had flashes of brilliance this year, but then he had a really bad round, which for a player with that talent is really surprising.

This is what I said five years ago about Rory.

“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”

He is well on his way with three majors at twenty five, Faldo won his first Open when he was thirty and had four majors at thirty three, three of them the Masters, a total of six majors in his career, so Rory has about another eight years at least, which is another thirty two attempts to win at least three more to surpass Nick!

I believe he will win more majors, but cannot see anybody getting near Tiger Woods at fourteen majors and Jack Nicklaus at eighteen majors.

Happy Golfing!

David

 

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

Lynn Blake Certified Instructor

contact david@bowngolf.com

07973746872

To view my website. www.bowngolf.com

Youtube channel      David Bown PGA

 

 

 

 

 

Flying Start to European Tour at HSBC Abu Dhabi.

 
Well what a great week of golf at the HSBC tournament in Abu Dhabi, I hope you managed to watch it all on SKY SPORTS, Tigers return, spectacular golf, great weather and a surprise winner!

I was there filming the players and got some great footage of the top players, on the practice ground and the course, it was a very well run tournament on a really good course.

One of the highlights early in the week was when Tiger and Rory arranged to play a nine hole practice round, they got on well and were very chatty. I managed to get some super footage of drives, irons, putts, bunker shots etc, the golf legend Tiger, making a return and the young pretender with huge talent playing and practicing together, it was a priviledge to witness. I have posted some swings on Youtube and here on my website, there are a lot to see,I will keep adding to them, so keep looking!

HSBC opening ceremony

I look forward to seeing more of this during the coming season, which I believe could be a sensational year, and if these players are coming down the last nine holes in a major and we can include Westwood, Donald, Scott, Garcia, Kaymer, Day, Webb Simpson etc etc, it is what we all want to see.

They made the game look very easy ,it was a very long course, 7,500 yds and thick rough, the power they have at their disposal is phenomenal and can overpower a golf course, but to win a tournament you still have to pick the right club, judge the conditions, control your distances, hole putts and retain your concentration, accept a poor shot or bad bounce and the occasional penalty shots, and keep it going for seventy two holes. 

The winner Robert Rock played so well under the pressure of playing with Tiger Woods and many people believed Tiger would win, me included, I watched them both warm up and go through their practice routines, Robert Rock looked solid, but Tiger looked more impressive and was controlling the flight of the ball so well, it looked a formality, well sport and golf is never that as we know. 

The standard of golf on the European Tour is so good, the strength in depth, new players coming through, the quality of the courses, it is a great product and I shall be watching till the final event in The Race to Dubai season. 

It was a brilliant way to start the 2012 European tour and see close up, the return of the TIGER !

David Bown PGA AA Golf Professional

Authorised Golfing Machine Instructor

 contact david@bowngolf.com

07973 746872

Lee is now ranked number 3 in the world, and he has got to that ranking by performing at a very high level consistently.

I was watching him practice at the BMW championship at Wentworth, and you can see the  hi -speed video I took.

Here is a player who has got a lot of confidence in his ability at the moment,  his all round game is very high, his driving is his strength, his putting has really improved and so has his short game.

What can you learn from Lee?


He is very precise with his set up and alignment,  has great rythm and balance and has worked very hard on his weaknesses which were his pitching, chipping and sand shots. Now these areas of his game are much improved, his consistency in his scoring has greatly improved as well, so when he hits the errant shot he can get up and down and  keep his score together, which breeds more confidence. 

Watching all these top players at Wentworth , it is such a small margin that divides the winners, the losers, the players that make the cut, and the ones that don’t, they all strike the ball so well on the range, it is how they play the game on the course that makes the difference . How do they cope with a bad swing, a bad bounce, wrong club selection, bad luck, the conditions of the course,  can they continue to play their game under pressure, how is their confidence, do they believe they can win, believe they can make that crucial putt, can they take the chance when it comes, have they got the inner strength to keep going. do they really believe in themselves?

My key points to improve  are.

  1. Find a good Instructor
  2. Video your swing and know your swing.
  3. Know your weaknesses.
  4. Have a plan to work on them.
  5. Work on your mind game.

The Blueprint for Change!

Recreational golfers are not improving  because they do not understand what they have to do to change or modify their technique, and also they do not appreciate how much quality repetition is involved in changing an old habit into a reliable new one.

Sticking at changing a old habit to a new one  is very hard, you need huge discipline , it involves several thousand correct repetitions of the one specific move you are working on, and that takes several weeks of intense effort, it is the same as getting fit by going to the gym, you must do it regularly to reap the rewards.

Here is an example, if you can do one hundred correct repetitions every day for one week= 700

Repeat for four weeks = 2,800 reps you will start to really own that movement, not having to think it through. It can take between 3-5 thousand repetitions to OWN the new move 

So you can see that when you go to the range and hit 100 balls with the intention  of improving your swing  the results will be poor, because you are not creating the new pathway in your swing, you might be “thinking the new move” but you cannot make a swing change and hit balls swinging at full speed and do it correctly. 

You cannot change a motor skill that quickly, you have to learn new pathways and build up a new pattern, which takes time, dedication and focus.

I give my students a blueprint of what they need to do technically and give them the required amount of repetitions so they can achieve their goal. Do the new movement at a very slow pace, feel and see that it is correct every time.

Success  Regime

  1. Slow motion moves only.
  2. Every practice session do at least 100 reps.
  3. Continue this routine every day for 4 weeks. 

You have the information, why not start right now  and really IMPROVE?

Make 2010 your year !

First Major is the US Masters and who will win?

We only have to wait another few days and we will be at Augusta for the US Masters, the first major of the year and in my mind the most enjoyable to watch.

I think the course plays a huge part in that as we all know it so well, and its the only major played at the same venue.We have seen so many past winners play the course, we know what can happen on the back nine on Sunday at the Masters!

Remember last year!

Phil Mickleson has won three times since 2004, Woods has won three times since 2001, his last win was 2005 in a playoff.

Four Europeans have won in the last twenty years, two South Africans in the last four, so to get a European win this year on current form looks a distinct possibility, but the americans do have a very good record, ten wins in the last twenty.

So who do I think will win, well Tiger does play well there and he is in form, so he must be in with a great chance, they do say horses for courses so Phil Mickleson must play a part , he seems to raise his game for Augusta, of the other Americans I think Keegan Bradley is worth watching, long hitter, putts well, also Brandt Snedeker has played well at Augusta, could Bubba eagle a few holes with drive and a wedge!

Of the Europeans Luke Donald must have a good chance, his short game and putting is superb and he has proven that he can win, Justin Rose has played so well of late, he can putt, his short game is very good and he has a lot of confidence and can keep a score going when not at his best..

Now we come to world number two Rory McIlroy, what a talent, long hitter, great iron player, putting hugely improved, and short game, has learnt how to win and is much more consistent than ever before, will last year effect him, well did it effect him at the US Open last year!

Last year he played so well at Augusta for three rounds that if he had putted reasonably I think he would have had a eight shot lead going into the last round, his tee to green play was so good.

If he plays his normal game he must have a great chance again.

Can I see Poulter, Casey, Garcia, McDowell or Westwood winning unfortunately no is the answer.

So my picks for the Europeans are, Donald, McIlroy and Rose. pretty obvious ones really.

US picks would be Woods, Stricker and Keegan Bradley .

Of the rest of the field, Adam Scott looks good.

So there we have it, I have tried to use form, gut instinct and some logic into this but as we know on the back nine on Sunday at Augusta anything can happen, and it probably will, that is what makes this event so special and why I will be watching to see who wears that green jacket come Sunday evening.

It is probably the most eagerly anticipated Masters for many years, Tiger on a comeback, and the young guns out to prove themselves. 

 

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

 

 

 

 

Tiger Woods Mystery !

Tiger’s in the news but, not for his golf ! We very rarely hear anything about Tiger’s personal life , everything about his life is so well controlled, just like his golf, everything ordered, planned out and executed. Until now !

What is going on ? All his fans want to know .  I am sure we will find out soon.

Well this just shows that Tiger is human , not a machine. He can control many things out on the course, but not everything in his life. 

We can all learn from Tiger, his planning, his dedication, his mental toughness in the heat of the battle out on the golf course, but sometimes things don’t go as we like.  On the the golf course, we sometimes feel out of control and go into the downward spiral of doubt and lose our confidence .

How can you recover and regain your composure?  

Take a few deep breaths, refocus on what you want to achieve, slow down your breathing, filter out any unneccesary thoughts and focus on one thing at a time. Try it next time. It works !

Tiger Woods

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