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Pre-Swing Fundamentals Part 4: Ball Position

A (left) and B. SUBMITTED PHOTOS

Ben Hogan, one of the greatest golfers every to live, wrote a book called, “Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf” in 1957. This book is relevant to this day. The golf industry of today has radar systems, launch monitors, high speed cameras, balance boards and many other technological devises that confirms Hogan knew what he was talking about. As most good players in Hogan’s area, he grew up working at a golf course as an Assistant Golf Professional and caddie. The good players were students of the game, and gave lesson at the local country club to make a ... Read More »

Pre-Swing Fundamentals Part 3: Alignment

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Part 1 and 2 covered the grip and set-up position. Now, we move on to Part 3: alignment. This is the simplest fundamental of the four pre-swing fundamentals. Golfers can fix many problems by aiming a different direction. If a golfer always slices the ball to the right 30 yards, they will aim 30 yards left to get the ball to land at the target. This is a reasonable solution while playing golf. However, in the long run, aiming 30 yards left will lead to more problems. Golfers always tell me one thing: I want ... Read More »

Pre-swing Fundamentals Part 2: Address Position

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Now that we’ve developed a solid grip in Part One it is time to address the ball with the correct posture. People are made in different shapes and sizes. There is no one perfect posture in golf. Depending on height, arm length, leg length and torso length an athletic golf posture will look different. However, there are fundamentals of setting up to a golf ball that are absolute. The picture provided shows three different address position. N stands for neutral spine, which is desirable. C stands for a C curve in the back/spine at address, ... Read More »

The Four Pre-Swing Fundamentals: Part 1 of 4

Exhibit B. 3 most widely used ways to grip a golf= club. Left to right: 10 Finger, Over Lap, Inter Lock.

Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org The four pre-swing fundamentals of the golf swing are grip, stance, alignment and ball position. The pre-swing fundamentals are the most important elements to becoming a better golfer. There are a million different ways to swing the club and make the golf ball go towards the target, however correct pre-swing fundamentals are universal. Bad fundamentals lead to bad habits in the golf swing. I teach golfers who aim 30 yards right of their target. The student will hit the first shot 30 yards right of their target, turn to me and say, “See, I told ... Read More »

Pace of Play / Tee it Forward

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Slow play is contagious. It starts with the professional golfers and ends with casual golfers. Nothing is more frustrating than spending a day waiting on the group in front. This is why the USGA launched an initiative called, “While We’re Young.” This initiative is meant to get your attention and take a stern stance on slow play. Pace of Play at the club level is a sensitive issue. It is difficult for the golf professional to be critical and pull aside members that are slow, and it is harder for members to speak up to ... Read More »

One Plane / Two Plane

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org The Plane Truth for Golfers by Jim Hardy is one of the best books written about golf for the casual golfer and the PGA teaching professional. In the book, Hardy explains the one and two plane swing and what swing the golfer should use. Even though I not a method teacher nor am I a Jim Hardy disciple, I use the knowledge from The Plane Truth for Golfers to help students improve. One bit of knowledge I use is changing spine angle tilt at address and shoulder tilt on the backswing to match the arm ... Read More »

Going Mental

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org This game will make you crazy. Golf has so much time in between shots — so much time to think about all the bad things that can happen. I compare it to shooting a free throw in basketball. Nothing to stop the free throw; all the time in the world to think about what could go wrong. Many times, a professional basketball player is a great scorer, but has a dreadful free throw shooting average. This player does well reacting to the defense and makes the plays with their athleticism. Put them at the free ... Read More »

Worst Swing Thoughts in Golf

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Have you ever hit a thin shot or topped the golf ball, and after the shot a playing companion says, “you lifted your head” or “keep your eye on the ball.” I have given thousands of lessons and I have never given “keep the eyes on the golf ball” as advice. However, I have spent thousands of hours fixing swings that revolve around a player trying to keep the eyes on the ball. Let’s talk about these two myths: why they have some merit but can really influence the golf swing negatively in the long ... Read More »

The Dynamic Golfer

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Golf has many things to offer; fun with friends, exercise, friendly wagers, nature, family time, wildlife, etc. If you want to excel at the game of golf you must treat it as a sport. Golf is similar to many sports in which the human body moves in a rotary motion, such as batting in baseball, hitting a hockey puck, etc. The difference is the object is moving in most other sports, so more physical endurance might be needed to get to where the object is located. The kinematic movement to hit the object however is ... Read More »

Putting Around With Rules Changes

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.or As you may have heard the United States Golf Association and The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews — the governing bodies for the rules of golf — have made a controversial rule change. The rule change, 14-b anchoring the club, states that in making a stroke a player must not anchor the club either “directly” or by use of an “anchor point.” Many PGA Tour professionals who make a living playing golf will be affected by this decision. Some tour professionals, like Webb Simpson and Kegan Bradley, have been using anchored putters ... Read More »

Get Fit, Technology is Your Friend

Get the correct golf clubs by getting club fit by your local PGA Professional. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org The progression of technology has changed the world. Technology has helped the world and the people who live in it. New tools have given people more attainable information. As for golf and golf instruction, technology has done the same. Technology, such as the Trackman Launch Monitor with a Doppler Radar System, gives teachers and fitters information on why the ball takes off in a certain direction; why the ball turns after it takes off; how the club should descend into the ball; the rate of which the golf ball descends; etc. More information also comes ... Read More »

Do you have stability in your life?

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Golf Tips Todd Elliott telliott@hideawaybeachclub.org Golf is a sport! If golf is not treated as a sport, it is difficult to improve. In all sports, it is important to have good balance and a stable starting position. A shortstop in baseball, a linebacker in football and a defender in basketball, all stand in a ready position that enables them to make sudden movements. An athletic stance requires slight knee bend, forward bending from the hips and weight on the balls or insteps of the feet. As an instructor, I give a student a tiny push on their shoulders from all ... Read More »