Golf instructors, golfing schools, golf advice, even self-help instructional golf materials flood the media. No matter where you turn, it seems like there is always somebody ready to help you get a better golf swing. But before you start accepting any of this help, you need to think about a few things first.
Separate the Good from the Bad
Like any other sport, the best way to improve at golf is repetitive practice using the proper form. The tricky part is figuring out exactly what the proper form is, and how one goes about acquiring it. The sad truth about this industry is that there are a lot of pseudo-experts and unproven techniques out there. If you apply the wrong advice, you could end up with a worse swing than you had in the beginning.
But isn’t that what golf instructors are for? Don’t they correct your mistakes and set you on the right path? Bad habits are hard to break, so it is really important not to develop new ones. If you take bad advice, it only hampers your progress as you will have to unlearn these bad habits before you can start learning the good ones. What is worse, some “training” tips may cause injuries which can hurt your golf game permanently.
Spotting the Genuine Article
There is no hard and fast way to identify bad advice, but certain things should ring alarm bells. Good advice works for lots of people, so ask around. Try to contact other players who have either been taught by the same instructor or have benefited from the proposed technique.
Look at the credentials of the instructor, if he plays a good game that’s ok, but it is also important to see if he has any formal education. People who have no sports medicine background may be recommending potentially harmful drills without them realizing it. Well meaning individuals have caused great harm before.