But it really doesn’t matter what you do before you strike the ball (Look at Jim Furyk). What matters, in physics, is the point of impact and direction the club is going at that spot.
The basic idea behind this is that you really only need your club to do 2 things to send a ball straight to your chosen spot.
1. Have the clubface square at impact
2. Have the end of the club follow along the target line until a release “point” where the club will then follow through naturally over your shoulder to a finish.
For instance, when you use the driver, since the swing with the driver is the flattest (closest to horizontal), the point where you release the club to finish will be sooner than if you use a sand wedge. The wedges generally will have a more upright, vertical plane and so I find myself actually having the wedge and higher irons following all the way down the target line until, at one spot, it actually points at the target before releasing to a finish.
The longer the club, the less likely it is to actually hit the spot where you are literally “pointing at the target”, however, it is still valuable for those longer clubs to start a little practice swing by first pointing at the target and then bringing the club back to “find” the right backswing.
Why is this concept important or even worth considering for my game?
Because if you are going to try and improve without spending hours on the range practicing every intricate move a teaching pro gives you over a period of time, then you need something SIMPLE that your unconscious can take, understand, and run with.
If you try to do Mental practice for the list of things you need to keep in mind while trying to achieve the perfect swing, your unconscious mind is likely to get confused and give up, just like you do when you hear too many things at once. Square and point is SIMPLE!
Also, if you have an uncontrollable hook, you might find this concept helpful in straightening out some. Pointing the club at the target more will make your swing a bit more vertical which will necessitate more of a fader’s path.
Part of square and point is talked and written about when you see references to keeping the clubhead on line for the first couple feet after striking the ball. I totally agree but it’s only part of the story.
Here is a question one of the members asked specifically about this:
“ I do have a question on the square and point.
Are you talking about squaring the club face to the target and then with
your arms pointing the head of the club at the target (at which point the
shaft is parallel to the ground) or are you talking about simply moving the
club face ahead of the ball a couple of feet while maintaining its alignment
to the target?
That part was a bit hazy to me. “
And here is my answer:
“Square and point” means as you mention: “squaring the club face to the target and then with your arms pointing the head of the club at the target”. (with caveat in paragraph 2 above)
Now, having said that, the way I use this concept, is to think about it during my practice swing. Mentally see a “freeze frame” of these 2 spots in your swing occurring. Direct your unconscious to accomplish these two positions with your club and the ball has to go straight since you understand the physics of it that necessitate that result if successful. The swing is really happening too fast to try to manipulate your hands to “square” the clubface. You just need to give a good message to your subconscious along these lines and over time and let IT accomplish that.
Just like you ride a bike you don’t consciously think about all the muscle contractions necessary to balance and pedal and steer.
Depending on the person, you can go so far as to focus your whole swing around this even while doing your regular swing, or you can subtely (sp?) let it sink into your unconscious over time and let it slowly become a part of your swing that you built using a good swing method taught to you by a pro or other instructional swing system.
If you’ve ever seen a golfer swing the “Natural Golf” way, (originated by Moe Norman) then you might notice that they really understand this concept. They actually almost finish their swing pointing at the target.
However, I and others take our regular swing and let the swing finish naturally AFTER having the clubface point toward the target at one point. And don’t forget that to help set it up, you can begin a practice swing by starting with the club pointing at the target and then bring it backwards to help “set” and feel where the backswing should go to be on a good plane as I described in the CD.
When I’m on the range warming up for a round is when I really work on this concept and then when on the course, I just say outloud or think “square and point” to direct my unconscious to make it happen. Off the course, I do this in my head.
Here’s the kicker: When visualizing this as you nod off to sleep, imagine yourself doing this in slow motion. Slow your swing down so that you can actually see the clubface at the moment of impact with the ball, in a perfectly square position and then freeze the vision again at the perfect spot of release so that the ball HAS TO GO TO THE TARGET. You will then be sending clear, direct messages to your subconscious of what you want it to accomplish! Use any of the techniques on the CD’s for visualizing.
Greens and fairways!
I want to write a little bit more about goals and goal setting. Yes, I know you’ve heard this all before in your business meetings and self-help books and psychology classes etc., etc. And yes, I used to roll my eyes when another speaker or “performance genius” would blather on and on about how we must set goals.
Well, you know that I have taken this seriously enough to include a template with your CD’s to kickstart you into doing something along these lines.
Why? Because, I just can’t ignore the facts about how this works on our mind and our game can be helped by being reminded of it.
What facts you say? Have you ever known somebody who retired and then watched them waste away because they had nothing left to do? Nothing left to strive for? No more challenges? Now, most of us have golf as our challenge and we take great pleasure in trying to achieve our dream score. But there are some sad examples in the golf world too.
Ever hear of David Duval? He was on top of the golf world at one time. Player of the year. Better than Tiger Woods. British Open winner. Shot a 59! I recently saw an interview with him and he said that during the peak of his game, his goal was to “be the best I can be.” That is the weakest goal I’ve ever heard.
In contrast, Tiger has goals to win the most tournaments of any player of all time and to beat Jack Nicklaus record for most Majors won. Specific and measurable. Duvall is pretty much done and Woods, you know all about him. Ian Woosnam was another one who fell hard after reaching a peak (winning the Masters). There are countless others in the same boat.
You must have a golf goal in front of you! But you don’t want to be thinking about it on the course.
I had this concept hammered on me recently as well. I had always wanted to “Break 80” as my goal. I did that. After that, I wanted to break par. I did that this year as well. Right after that, my game began to slide because my fire was out. I then went out and turned in my last 20 scores and established a handicap for the first time in my life, a 5.2.
Recently, I’ve been looking at that little card with that number on it and NOW I WANT IT TO BE A 3! Whala, instant fire in my gut for this game. That fire has pushed me to do my nightly mental practice like I did to achieve my past goals. It’s given me a REASON to stick to my pre-shot routine like a dance number. And even better, all of a sudden, I REALLY want to play again!
Don’t underestimate the power of this but I do want to remind you not to think about your score when you are on the course. If thinking about your goal on the course fires you up to play “cool mad” like Sam Snead, then by all means, think about it. But don’t start telling yourself that you have to make this shot to shoot your scoring goal. Your major goal should mostly just be used off the course.
Youron-course goals should be to stick with your routine, to have 18 holes where you focused 100% at the right time, etc.
Allright! Now let’s get out and do it! C ya’ next time.
Greens and fairways!
One of the most common problems I hear from golfers is that they
swing perfectly in practice and not as well on the course.
Or, that they do well on the front and then blow it on the back 9 or
Or, they do well in fun rounds but seize up and choke under pressure.
Their golf nerves get the best of them.
These problems all stem from the word “expectations.”
At the heart of what I do for golfers and athletes is to give them
PERSPECTIVE and then help them replace those old programs in their
The perspective is the antidote to expectations and calming those golf nerves.
What is perspective anyway?
First of all, there’s no wrong or right about it. Have no judgement
about the way you should or shouldn’t think about anything! One
person’s worst idea is another person’s gold mine.
If you’ve been reading my work for any amount of time, you realize by
now that there is no one way to swing or one way to think in order
for all golfers to play their best.
If those scenarios above are causing you to get nervous or get tense, or
get the yips, then it’s likely that you have created a program that
says this is one of the most important things in life that I can do
and therefore, the feelings of stress come up in order to “prepare”
you to do battle.
You see the problem now? Your body goes into a mode that is no
different than if you were fighting for your life.
Having said all that, let me give you some general principles to
bounce off of that can help you to gain a perspective that can sink
into your unconscious mind.
suggestions to help counteract this response right when it’s
happening at the course.
1. It’s not your life, it’s not your wife, it’s just a game
2. We are fragile beings and can die tomorrow. How does this putt
compare to that?
3. What if you were able to float your body out in space and watch
the spot on the earth where you are golfing…while connecting to
your higher belief systems…up there, at that moment
4. Will the legacy you want to leave your loved ones be affected by
5. Does this round have any relevance to your overall purpose/mission
for being alive on the planet right now?
6. Wow, this tension, stress, tightness feels a lot like being
excited and energized doesn’t it?
Those thoughts kind of make the next shot pretty insignificant now
don’t they? How does that change your response? Your state?
Maybe you can pre-live these pressure situations and give yourself
those 6 thoughts and then experience a calmness that follows before
you ever go out for your next round…
Golf is supposed to be fun!! Decide that that is your main objective
and then you will just naturally play to your potential. And then
when you get up to that pressure putt or back 9, then you can be calm
as a monk. That’s how it works….
Greens and fairways,
Thank you for receiving “The Legends and Gurus of Golf”
As promised, Here is that golf ebook “How To Solve Your Golf Problems”, and the one that I wrote called: “Why You Can Improve Without Practice.” Left Click on the links to bring them right up to read or Right Click them and choose “Save Target” or “Save Target As.”
Or cut and paste:
This is a large file, 21 mb and could take awhile to download. With a slow internet speed, be patient and let it download.
Some browsers take longer than others and have problems. You might consider using
or cut and paste:
How to solve your golf problems is an excellent resource for you to have on hand for as long as you play the game.
And for those that wonder if I’ve gone off the deep end, well, read “Why You Can Improve..” and decide after that 🙂
Be sure and tell your friends about golfing_tips website.
If you’ve found this page by referral or otherwise, you will want to get the the follow up trainings at golfing_tips
Greens and fairways,