There are two elements that make a great golfer - technique and feel. Golfers often focus a lot on technique but have no feel, therefore inhibiting their maximum performance. Find out more about feel and how to maximize it in the golf swing with this golf tip.
Technique is a solid base for a golfer. It is extremely important to have great technique as it provides efficient and repeatable movements that mean that the golfer has control of the different parts of his or her body and the golf club allowing them to attack the ball at the right speed, in the right direction with the correct part of the club face.
Feel is the superglue for the different techniques and body movements to work together and make one whole movement. A golfer with great feel knows exactly where the limbs and the golf club are at every point in the swing and has great timing so that even with imperfect technique, the club always attacks the ball correctly. For maximum performance, both technique and feel are needed.
Feel is mainly experienced through the hands in the golf swing. They are the part of the body that controls the golf club and can sense the weight of the club in time and space. To have great feel, the golfer must have a good neutral grip and be very relaxed with the grip of the club so that the fingers can sense any vibrations or movements in the golf club through the golf swing motion.
An easy exercise to improve the feel of the golf swing is as follows. Take some practice swings with the eyes closed. As the practice swings are taken, focus on relaxing the hands and arms progressively more with each swing of the golf club. During these practice swings, try to 'feel' where the club head and particularly the club face is through the impact area. Is it open (to the right for right handed golfers), closed (to the left for right handed golfers) or square (pointing at the target)?
Following this, hit some golf balls and practice hitting the ball as normal but focusing on using the hands to work through the ball differently for each shot, to strike the ball with an open, closed and square club face. If you are successful, for a right handed golfer, the ball should fly to the; left with a closed club face; right with an open club face and; straight with a square club face. The aim is to feel where the club face is through the shot so that the ball flies in a certain direction by only changing the hand position.
Finally, hit shots with another golfer present and do not look for the golf ball after the shot. Keep looking down after the strike and then tell the other golfer where you think the ball has gone and how far. The other golfer can then feedback to you on whether you were correct or not. If there are no other golfers present then another way of doing this on your own is to put some strike tape on the face of the golf club and guess which part of the club the ball has been struck from - middle, toe, heel, high or low.
All of these exercises improve the feel of the golf swing and improve the chances of playing well even though your swing technique may not be absolutely perfect.