The Basic Steps to Perfect Golf.

Master file.

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Eyes Focused on the ball..(Changed - 26/10/2012)


If you asked every golfer of the world if they watched the ball during the down swing movement, each and every one would say yes. However the truth of the matter is that although all golfers watch the ball during the down swing movement, not many actually focus on the back edge of the golf ball.

What the average golfer does is that they look at the ball as whole and also take in the surrounding area.

To compound matters, they also allow the focus of the eyes to move away from the ball a fraction of a second and begin to look towards the target area - before the ball is actually struck.

 

The mid to lower handicap golfers focus on the back edge of the golf ball and also watch the golf ball a little bit longer, almost until the club head is just about to make contact with the ball.

However the top professional and top amateur golfers actually watch the back edge of the golf ball until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball - with nearly every shot.
However it is the odd time when they do not watch the ball until the club head strikes the ball that inevitably results in a bad shot.

The very best golfers focus intensely on the back edge of the golf ball until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball for almost every shot.
Imagine trying hit a nail into a piece of wood without actually focusing on the head of the nail until the precise moment the hammer head hit the nail, without a shadow of doubt you would miss- hit the nail. - This is why you must watch the ball right up to the precise moment the club head strikes the ball.

So my analysis is that the longer you are able to maintain your focus on the back edge of the golf ball before the club head strikes the ball, the better golfer you will become.

Perform this action with every shot and your golfing skills will move to a much higher level.


Perception of the golf ball.

The way that you look at the golf ball whilst playing the golf shot can have a dramatic effect upon the quality of the golf shot.

Speaking from experience I can assure you that there is a difference between simply just looking at the golf ball and the precise act of keeping your eyes fully focused on the back edge of the golf ball as the club head swings into the contact area.

At the address position, most golfers simply stare at the golf ball.
The image they see includes an area of the grass around the ball -- they do not define the focus of the eyes precisely on the back edge of the golf ball.

You do not believe me?? -- carry out the following test.

Take your normal stance and address the ball and absorb what you see. -- You will notice that as you look at the ball you are basically staring at an image that includes an area of grass that the ball is resting on - you are not focusing on any particular point on the golf ball.

Now pick up the golf ball and hold it so that you can read the manufacturer`s name - and whilst continuing to read the name on the ball, bend over and place it back on the ground/tee peg with the manufacture`s name, in a position where the club head would make contact with the ball. -- Then whilst continuing to read only the manufacturer`s name on the ball, gradually raise your body until you are back to the normal address position.

You will instantly notice that by concentrating solely on the manufacturer`s name on the back edge of the golf ball, you are not aware of the grass around the golf ball. -- You are actually focusing the eyes exclusively on a particular spot on the golf ball.

By focusing your eyes on the ball in this way, it clearly demonstrates how vague your perception of the golf ball may have been before you carried out this exercise.

As I have stated earlier, to compound things, most golfers take their eyes off the golf ball a fraction of a second before the precise moment the club head actually strikes the golf ball and simultaneously this allows the head to rotate away from the original address position too soon.

However in addition to focusing on the spot that the ball was lying until well after the club head has made contact with the ball, you must also continue to hold the head so that the left eye remains slightly behind the ball with "pin point accuracy", keeping the head in the Fixed Frontal condition, and also maintain the upper body angles until both arms are straight.

I cannot stress too strongly how important it is to maintain the focus of your eyes on the back edge of the golf ball throughout the back swing and the down swing.

You must maintain this focus on the back edge of the golf ball until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball in order to achieve a very good contact of the ball, but also to achieve accuracy of the golf shot.

This action will ensure that the head is held in the correct position until after the ball has been struck.


Therefore be it on the tee, the fairway or the rough, it is absolutely vital that as you address the ball you must focus your eyes on the back edge of the golf ball.

For example, from the moment you begin the back swing you must focus your eyes on the back edge of the golf ball, But you must hold this focus on the back edge of the golf ball throughout the back swing movement and the down swing movement - right up until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball.

( If you want to understand what I mean by watching the ball until the club head strikes the ball -- If you hold a very sharp sewing needle in your left hand and then tried to physically touch the tip of the needle with the index finger of the right hand, you will note that to avoid being pricked by the needle you have to watch the tip of the needle very carefully so that you literally see the tip of the finger of the right hand actually touch the tip of the needle - this is how intensely you must watch the back edge of the golf ball, i,e until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball.)


This is the number one priority that all golfers should adhere too and I cannot stress too strongly how much this basic principle contributes to playing very good golf.

Most golfers find it difficult to watch the ball with such intensity, however if I can do it, so can you -- it simply requires the golfer to maintain the focus on the back edge of the golf ball right up to the point when the club head makes contact with the ball.

However when you see the results of performing this very basic principle, it will spur you on until it becomes an automatic action within the golf swing process.


Unfortunately not enough attention is given by the top golf instructors in order to teach this very basic principle of the golf swing - in fact I have never heard a top class golfing instructor or a top class golfer mention how important this basic principle contributes to playing very good golf, but when questioned, they respond as if I am simple and assumes that everybody knew you had to watch the ball with such intensity.

(If you are correctly focusing intensely on the ball when playing short irons, immediately after the ball has been struck you will notice a dark patch on the ground where the ball was resting - - this dark image, which only shows for a nanosecond, is an automatically reaction of the retina converting the white image of the golf ball into a dark image, therefore when you see this dark image on the ground after the ball has been struck, you know that your focus on the ball is intense and correct.)

 

Therefore if you wish to play better golf you must teach yourself to actually watch the ball until the precise moment the club head strikes the ball and then after the ball has been struck, hold the focus on the ball for that extra mill-second so that you actually see the ball moving away from its resting position.

Even as you practice this action you will forget it from time to time, but if you can teach yourself to perform this action on every shot, I can assure you that you will see a dramatic improvement in the accuracy of the golf shots.


At first you will find it very difficult to hold the focus of the eyes fully on the back edge of the golf ball until the club head makes contact with the ball on every shot.

In addition, you will also find that at first it is almost impossible to keep the focus of your eyes on the ball until the precise moment the golf ball actually moves away from its resting spot.

However by constantly reminding yourself of this action and then seeing the results of this action, you will accept the significance of the action and it will begin to enter the long term memory.

So practice, practice and practice this action, and in time you will never forget carry out this basic fundamental principle.


Top class golfers have a natural ability to focus intensely on the back of the golf ball as they swing the club head into and through the contact area.

Therefore if you can train yourself to fully focus on the back edge of the golf ball and hold this focus until the club head makes contact with the ball, the quality of your golf will improve dramatically.
( When a top golfer says that he is striking the ball well, they may not realise why they are striking the ball well, but what it actually means is that they have maintained their intense concentration for practically every shot that they made during the round.)

 

Therefore when you have your next practice session, experiment as follows:-

Make a red round mark on the golf ball and place the ball on the tee so that the mark on the back section of the ball and is just visible as you address the ball. -- Fix your eyes on this mark and keep your eyes fully focused on this mark as you make a back swing and the down swing movement. Continue to keep the eyes fully focused on this precise mark until the club head makes contact with the ball, but importantly hold the focus on the golf ball for that extra millisecond so that you actually see the golf ball move away from its resting position.

(You can compare the using a club head to strike a golf ball with the action of using a hammer to drive a nail into a piece of wood. You do not look at the hammer head when trying to hit a nail -- you watch the head of the nail very carefully until the precise moment the hammer head strikes the nail.)


Self Teaching Method.

You can begin to teach yourself to watch the club head strike the ball on the practice putting green.

On the putting green, focus your eyes on the back of the ball and as you return the putter face to the ball, concentrate on literally seeing the precise moment when the putter touches the ball.
But importantly keep this focus on the ball until the ball actually begins to move.

This is an action that is easily said than done, simply because as I mentioned earlier, your mind rushes ahead and the eyes begin to track the line of the ball even before it has been touched - however with concentration it can be done.

Therefore always begin your practice sessions on the putting green with this "watch the club head touch the ball" practice routine - this will encourage this action to enter your long term memory.

 

Expand this method to the chipping area and again force yourself to watch the back edge of the golf ball until the club head actually makes contact with the ball and then hold the focus so that you see literally see the golf ball move away from the resting position.

When you perform this action correctly, you will notice how crisply you strike the ball, but even more importantly, how accurately you strike the ball.


I can guarantee that if you can train yourself to focus your eyes on the back edge of the golf ball until the precise moment the club head makes contact with the ball and then continuing to watch the ball so that you actually see the golf ball move away from its resting position, the quality of your golf shots will improve dramatically.

But you must focus on the back edge of the golf ball with such intensity so that the only image that you see after the ball has been struck is the black mark on the ground.

This principle also applies to the pitching, chipping and the putting stroke.

Total concentration on this task is essential if you wish to play better golf.


Many golfers are able to hit the ball off the tee with no particular problem. However when it comes to the second or third shot to the green, they often miss-hit the shot.

The reason for this is that their concentration is at its highest level on the tee and therefore the golfer is totally focused on the ball.
However when it comes to playing the ball off the fairway or from the rough, the golfer does not take enough care to fully focus on the back edge of the golf ball as the club head swings into and the contact area.

So if you experience this problem, tighten up your concentration when playing from the fairway or the rough.


If you carry out a golf swing whilst focusing on a back section of the ball or the dimples of the golf ball on the back edge of the ball, you will immediately notice a dramatic improvement in the strike of the golf ball.

At first you will find it very difficult to maintain the focus on the back section of the golf ball until you actually see the ball move away from its resting position, but persevere and you will eventually reap the benefit of your efforts.

Do not simply take my word that this basic principle will dramatically improve the quality of your striking action - try it for yourself.


Putting.

The same applies when you are putting --- After you have lifted the ball in order to clean it, replace the ball and fully focus your eyes on the very back edge of the golf ball -- but importantly you must focus your eyes on this very back edge of the golf ball and actually see the putter head make contact with the ball.

Importantly, as the putter makes contact with the ball, do not allow the eyes to follow the movement of the ball, you must continue to focus on the spot that the ball was standing and keep your head in the original address position with a "pin point accuracy" and swing the putter through the contact area.

If you can maintain the focus on the ball whilst performing the mechanical action of the putting stroke, you will begin to notice that the ball rolls on the exact line that you intend, but beware, you must not allow the eyes to follow the ball and also do not allow the head to move with a lateral motion.

This principle of actually seeing the club head strike the ball is equally important when you the chip shot.


Clearly defining the focusing of the eyes on a particular spot on the back of the golf ball and maintaining this focus as the club head swings into the contact area is one of the major keys to playing very good golf, so make this aspect of the golf swing a priority.


Proof of the Importance of this Basic Principle.

I was recently chatting to a member of my golf club as we played a round of golf and I mentioned how important it was to actually focus on the ball until the club head struck the ball.

He immediately responded by saying that this is exactly what he used to do when he was playing to a handicap of three but he had completely forgotten about this basic principle.

He simply assumed that as he was getting older he was simply loosing the ability to play good golf.

After being reminded of this action he began hitting the ball long and straight off the tee and the rest of his game also improved dramatically. He hoped that he would not forget this basic principle again.

So there is actual proof from a previously low handicapped golfer of the importance of this basic principle.


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