Have you ever take a professional golf lesson? Did it help? If not, here are the three critical factors that you need to optimize the time and money you invest in professional golf instruction.
Set Realistic Expectations How long will it take to improve? This question is based on the assumption that learning new information will produce instant results.
This is the fundamental reason many golfers only take one lesson: if they don't see immediate improvement, then they consider the lesson a waste of time and money.
Allow at least 30 days to see consistent improvement.
Conditioning your mind and body to accept a new technique usually requires a 30 day incubation period.
Once you have a feel for the new swing, then you need a system to trigger it automatically.
This will be the topic of a future article.
Focus on Cures - Not Faults Faults are effects.
Cures are causes.
A clear understanding of cause and effect is critical.
You can't correct swing flaws without fixing the underlying cause.
Focusing on mistakes simply perpetuates an endless loop of supplanting one flaw with another.
We tend to repeat what we focus on.
Concentrating on error correction simply reinforces the mistakes.
The key to effective instruction is knowing what to do instead of what not to do.
Wait 72 hours after a lesson before playing a game A guaranteed way to short-circuit new muscle memory is to play right after a lesson! We tend to resist change.
While we might acknowledge the flaws in our technique, most of us (subconsciously) look for any excuse to remain firmly entrenched in our comfort zone.
The majority of students play worse right after a lesson.
Under playing conditions, the temptation to revert back to your old technique is almost irresistible.
Your nervous system (ie.
previous conditioning) will always override conscious control.
A new habit has to be developed gradually.
You will need a minimum of 30 days before the new technique begins to feel comfortable.
The longer you can refrain from playing after a lesson, the more ingrained the new technique becomes.
The corollary of this third key, is to take a lesson at least 72 hours before a game.
Taking a golf lesson the night before a big match, is a surefire recipe for disaster! In summary, here are the three critical factors: (1) establish realistic expectations with your instructor.
(2) focus on causes - not effects.
(3) allow 72 hours before or after a lesson before playing a game.
Next month, you will learn the cornerstones of the phrase that "golf is 90 percent mental".