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13, July 2016

Golfing Tips: Hitting the Ball

The difficulty of hitting golf balls is over-rated. In golf, whether in a practice range or in a tournament course, the ball is just sitting there and the player can take their time to swing at it. It is easier than baseball, where the ball is moving at high speeds, or tennis, where both the ball and the players are moving; people think these two are easier than golf. In actuality, hitting golf balls can be quite simple.

golf ballsFirst, take a good look at your target line. To make a good shot, you have to know exactly where you want the ball to go. It doesn’t matter if you are just practicing swings; the direction you want your ball to fly should always be included in your considerations before moving. After doing so, stand and align your body – hips, feet and shoulders – parallel to your established target line. Slightly flex your knees and bend from the hips, forward. Center your weight on the balls of your feet. Lightly rest your triceps against your chest and hold the club in your normal grip. Let your arms relax straight down; in this position, your hands should be positioned under your chin. This is the relaxed address position. It is relaxed but ready for action.

Begin the backswing motion by turning your shoulders. Without lifting or bending your arms, you should be able to turn as far as your hands being at waist-high. Your forward tilt should be enough to put your arms and hands in the proper plane for a one-piece takeaway. Allow the elbow of your dominant hand to bend as you continue your backswing. Your other arm should be relatively straight. This one-arm-bent-other-arm-straight motion lets your wrists cock with least effort. Avoid twisting your forearms just to swing on the same plane. Bending your elbow will correct your club’s angle into the plane naturally.

Once you reached the top of your backswing, you will feel a slight drop of your hands as a reaction to your shoulders setting and stopping their turning motion. Don’t force your shoulders to turn more than what feels natural; it will only upset your swing plane. After this, begin your downswing. Doing the previous steps mentioned here would let you do the recommended downswing “beginning from the lower body” naturally. A good image for the downswing motion is throwing a Frisbee or swinging a baseball bat. The key to this motion is to keep your forearms relaxed and the left elbow – if you are right-handed – pointing down to the ground. Using this way, you can square up the club’s hitting face and “backhand” the golf balls. Then you can hit the ball and swing into your finishing position. You’ll know that you’ve done the previous steps correctly if it is easier to hit the ball and more difficult to stop swinging. Always remember what direction you want the ball to go as you hit and hold that line until you finish your swing.

The target line would be more stable mid-swing if you keep your left arm – again, if you are right-handed – pointing towards the ground. This will be easy if you rest your triceps against your chest through most of the swing. During the top of your backswing, it will slightly move away then re-touch as you start downwards. The left arm – if you are right-handed – would also move slightly away at the finish of your swing. This will make your swings more consistent and simpler to accomplish.

Hitting golf balls needs practice and getting used to the equipment. Like most sports, it requires that the player feels that the equipment – in this case, the club – is an extension of their arms. This is the reason why players practice for quite a few runs when playing with a new type of ball or a new club.

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