Balance? We Don’t Need No Stinking Balance!

Balance?

Oh, Yes You Do!
This post may be a little controversial, but it is something I am passionate about. (SEE VIDEO BELOW)

I grew up in Chicago, and from as far back as I can remember, I fell in love with ice hockey and, of course, the Chicago Blackhawks.  I got very involved with hockey and eventually went on to become a professional referee.  To this day, I occasionally  lace up the skates and play with much younger guys at open hockey sessions at Ice Works in West Palm Beach, Florida.

What does this have to do with balance and the golf swing?  Well, here goes.  About a week ago, I turned on the TV at about 7am and tuned in to the Golf Channel and the Morning Drive. As I was going about my morning, I heard someone in a panel discussion talking about athletes and which ones were the best golfers (in general). I can’t remember who it was that said he thought hockey players were the best overall golfers (or something to that effect).  That certainly caught my attention, and I began to come up with my ideas on why that is most likely true.

Of course, the obvious ones are that golfers and hockey players are both using a “stick” (neither of which are made out of wood anymore) with a blade or face, to swing at a round object in order to propel it into a hole. One being 4.25″ round and the other being a 4′ by 6′ rectangle. Another similarity is that both sports require a rotational motion to propel the object.  The one similarity I want to embellish on is that in order to perform very well, they both require good balance.

This is where the controversial side of the argument comes in.  Ice hockey players don’t have to work on balance drills to improve their balance, their balance improves as they skate more and more. I believe that golfers can improve their balance by repeating their golf swing over and over with the intent to improve their balance.

Hockey players are so well “connected” to the ice that on just a 1/8″ blade, attached to a boot, laced up to their feet that they can maneuver in nearly every direction in a split second with ease and confidence. So why is balance such a big deal when we are standing on solid ground in shoes with “spikes” (generally) and are swinging a golf club in only one direction?

In my opinion, it’s because golfers in general don’t work at building the strength needed for good solid balance.  For many golfers, golf itself is the only real physical activity in their lives…and most of the golf they play involves a cart and the ability to drive it. Just walking more on the golf course will help develop better balance.

In this video I will tell the story of how I came to realize it is not about “balance”.  I’ll show you some strength building and solid base developing drills that are simple, easy and can be done in your home, office, hotel room and at the practice range to give you a much better “feeling of connection” to the ground in your golf swing. Hey…maybe “We Don’t Need No Stinking Balance” after all.

I hope you enjoy the video.

Ken Pierce
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