If you have watched the Golf Channel at all you have probably seen the ads for the Hank Haney “BluePrint – Tour Pro Secret” video series. Mr. Haney starts out by saying, “All the instruction out there seems to only be about the swing…and it drives me nuts.”
Yes, I said he was wrong…not about the majority of instruction being on the swing…but, the part that drives him nuts.
I completely agree that the Game of Golf is a complex assembly of physical and mental gymnastics to get the little ball into the little hole. I agree as well that to “Play” the game well, you have to manage an incredible amount of variables in order to eventually create a good “Score”.
However, it all begins with developing the ability to swing the golf club in a manner that will strike the ball as consistently as humanly possible in order to get it to that little hole in as few swings as possible. It doesn’t matter what your swing looks like. It doesn’t have to be a “perfect” swing. It just has to be consistent.
“Playing” the game is, in my humble opinion, the next step after you have developed a solid swing movement pattern memory through practice and good instruction. “Scoring” comes well after a strong playing ability.
The problem is that most golfers want to jump right to having (not earning) a really good looking score card without having done some “training” to go from Swing to Play to Score. That’s why so many clubs are broken, bent, thrown and mutilated during a beautiful walk (or ride) on a beautiful golf course. Jumping into the deep end of the “playing” aspect of golf before being able to strike the ball well is what creates “Hackers”.
Every ball manufacturer in the world is happy that golfers don’t practice a lot because they go on to become large investors in the company. The old joke is,”Golf Balls Are Like Eggs. They Come In Dozens, And You Have To Buy More Every Week”.
I use the term “training” earlier because that’s what it takes for the majority of people who want to improve to play and score well. The people who “try” to play golf are the ones who become the most frustrated and are slow to admit that they “Play” golf. They will tell me that they “Play At” golf.
The bottom line here is that Hank Haney, love him or hate him, knows a thing or two about golf. I think he missed the mark on his ads, giving the impression that some new techniques will “make” you play better. I believe wholeheartedly that spending more time working on consistency in your swing will pay larger dividends down the road. I can without hesitation tell you that is has done just that for me.
I can hear the jeers now.
Let me know what you think!
Thanks for reading!