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Publication: Today's Golf
Swing Thoughts

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          GOLF TIPS - Friday, April 11, 2008
 "Tips... News... And More... All For The Love Of The Game"

Fellow Duffers,

I've got a few rounds under my belt so far this year, and I'm
pleased to report my scores are lower than when the season ended
last year. I hope it sticks around because this is something I
can get used to.

I didn't allow myself to get overly excited and my swing thoughts
were simple: "Slow back and go to a full finish."

The ball didn't fly as far, but boy was it straight.

Let's see if I can recreate that next time out.


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The Gist

Let me cut right to the gist of this tip. To get out of a bunker
in the fairway you should hit the ball not the sand first. If
you hit the ball cleanly and pick it, it will fly far, if you
hit the ball and pinch it against the sand, the golfball will
come out and fly lower than normal. If you should hit the sand
and then the ball, you have played a greenside bunker shot. 

A fairway bunker requires you to hit the ball and not the sand.
Here is an easy way to set up properly for a great fairway
bunker shot. Select the normal club for the distance of the shot
you are hitting. I would suggest staying away from fairway woods
unless you are a very low handicapper. Place the ball in the
middle of your stance. Plant your feet firmly in the sand. Thick
sand will require you to choke down on the club slightly to
compensate for your feet digging in the sand. Align your
clubface, feet, and shoulders towards your target. You are now
in the proper position to hit a fairway bunker shot. At this
point take your normal swing path and attempt to hit the ball
only. The key to the swing is hitting the ball first and not
the sand. Jack was a great fairway bunker player and quite
often he would be able to hit the same shot from a good lie
in a bunker as from the fairway. 


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Ben Hogan did have a secret, but it wasn't in his golf swing--
at least not the swing itself. It's not possible to gain
Hogan's accuracy from just a single golf tip because Hogan's
secret was in the process he used to control his golf swing to
become one of the most accurate golfers of all time. This is
also the very reason his secret has been an enigma for over 40

Ben Hogan's secret was his extraordinary ability to focus.
This was not a gift from heaven. No, Hogan spent long hours
perfecting his focus technique.

Hogan would take hours to hit just forty balls. He would hit a
ball and spend a few minutes to rewind the shot in his mind and
go over every aspect of it. Before he hit the next ball he knew
everything he did right and wrong with that shot and was ready
to hit the next one even better.

Hogan fine tuned every swing until it was perfect. He didn't
want any bad swings to creep into his system and create any bad
habits. His swing is not one to emulate unless you are built
like him, but his methods will make any golfer strike the ball

If you read very carefully, you can see in Hogan's books just
what he did. The problem is that you must understand the swing
and his process before you can properly interpret what he wrote.
It was only after discovering and perfecting Hogan's system that
I re-read his books for probably the tenth time, and realized
that he did share his secret, but that he was looking at it from
a stand point of someone who already understood.

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Hogan's swing secret was not just the balance and setup--it's
about how he achieved and controlled balance during his swing
and how you can get similar results using his control methods.

The key phrase is how he controlled his swing movement. Anyone
can make a great swing once in a while, but Hogan was known 
for doing it almost every time.

Hogan said that the game is played keeping the weight on the
inside halves of the feet, but that is as far as he went. It's
too bad because this statement is the key and the starting point
for understanding Hogan's secret of control. His secret? The
swing is controlled from the feet.

I have taken pros and blindfolded them, leaving them to monitor
their swing completely by feel and been able to get them to not
only to strike the ball purely, but to shape their shots
accurately using only feedback from their feet.

Most of the pros on tour use his methods, except they use them
subconsciously. Hogan took the process to the conscious level
so he could monitor and correct his swing in motion.

Today's pros have been convinced that they shouldn't think about
anything during the swing, but it has been proven that the mind
will not think about nothing. Like it or not, your mind works
all of the time, as shown in your dreams. The trick with the
golf swing is to focus in such a way so that those thoughts are
completely visual, thereby never bothering the brain with any
distracting conscious thoughts.

How fast does it work? I have shown high handicap golfers the
very first balance routine right on the golf course and watched
as most of them immediately started hitting their shots more
accurately. From Golfgist.com


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Here's a golf training tip that will help your backswing range
of motion, enabling you to have a much higher clubhead speed
and quickly improve your driving distance.

It's called the Backswing Shoulder Stretch:

1. Extend left arm out in front of you (if you are a right
handed golfer), in a handshake position, thumb pointing skyward.

2. Take right hand and put under left wrist, so the back of the
hands are touching each other.

3. Pull with right hand against left wrist and make as big a
turn on back swing as possible.

4. Hold for at least 15 seconds, repeat two more times.

5. Reverse the stretch to work the follow through. 

As you can see this is a simple golf training tip, but one that
is very effective if you do it consistently. This is a great 
stretch to do throughout your round to maintain a full backswing.

This is just one golf training tip that can have a big impact on
your performance; and is well worth trying.

About The Author: Mike Pedersen is one of the top golf trainers
in the country, author of the Ultimate Golf Fitness Guide, and
founder of several cutting-edge online golf fitness sites. For
more information on his golf training programs, visit his new
golf training site at Perform Better Golf. 

You can discuss this issue or any other topic in the new
Golf Tips forum. Check it out here...

Golf Tips Forum

Questions? Comments? Email us: mailto:sam@gophercentral.com
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