Sports

These tips will get you in the swing of things

By Jennifer Wyatt

Published 11:27 PDT, Fri April 13, 2018

It’s golf season! Yay!

Are you getting into the game for the first time, or back into the game after a winter’s rest?

Before you hit a ball, do a dynamic warm up to get the blood flowing.

And here are a few things to get you going.

Three Things About Set-Up

1) Grip: Please get someone to show you the grip, or to check your current grip. If you aren’t holding the club correctly, your swing will take extra effort, maximum power won’t be available to you and the direction of your shot could be off target. Feel the grip in the fingers more than the palms.

2) Stance and Balance: Have good posture, bent over from the hips. Feel like you’re sticking your rear end out, not sitting. Arms are pushed downward, under your shoulders. Have a slight knee bend and your weight balanced toward the heels versus the balls of your feet.

I wish I had known this long before I learned it. For most people, it’s a good place to be in the set-up.

3) Alignment: This is something that is obvious at the driving range, but that can go off line on the golf course. When I observe students on the course, often their feet are aligned about 30 degrees to the right of the target (for a right-handed player).

Remedy: Without hitting balls, practice aligning to different targets, take aim, and check the line of your feet by placing a club or alignment stick along your toes; after five repetitions, you will have improved.

Three Things About The Swing

1) The wrists hinge (think badminton or squash) so the club can load and unload.

2) The body turns (or twists) into the backswing, and unwinds through the ball and into the follow through and finish.

3) Your posture remains the same (head in one place) while you do the first two things.

Three Important Things About The Golf Experience

1) It should be fun! Whether you are having lessons, playing a game, or playing a tournament. And even if you’re not having your best day, you can practice positive habits such as being patient and grateful.

2) It is a chance to slow down, be with friends, or meet new people.

3) We can use it as an opportunity to Un-Plug and be “present.”

•LPGA tournament winner and a member of the BC Golf Hall of Fame, Jennifer Wyatt (www.jenniferwyatt.ca) has worked as a golf commentator and now teaches the game at Quilchena and Savage Creek.

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