Golf can be a difficult game to learn, you might require the help of an experienced coach. This, however, can be expensive. It might take you some time to get it down, and more time means more money on your coach.
As an amateur trying to get better at the game, you can do self-analysis. This piece is to help you learn how to do this on your own without the help of a coach. Having an experienced person help you is always great but it may not always be convenient.
Alternatively, though, you can study your progress on the golf course and learn what areas you need to improve. Having known what your weaknesses are, you can then work on them. Here are some of the ways you can analyze your golf swing;
With all the technology today, there are various ways through which you can keep track of your golf swing. Using your phone, you can record at various angles as you play. Various golf apps have come up that can also aid with your analysis.
In a way, you carry your coach with you. To get the best results, you need to video at particular angles. You need to know what it is that you should be looking for in the first place. Below are two of the most favorable recording positions that you can consider using for the most beneficial results.
Down the line
This is a great position because it gives you two advantages as you self-analyze. First, you will be able to see the plane of the backswing. You will also see where the club is facing at the top of the backswing.
Face on angle
This position will help you see things that you would not see down the line. You will be able to see the head and position of the ball unlike before. Watching the video, later on, you can compare it with professional recordings so that you can know what to adjust.
While on the practice range, make the necessary adjustments so that you get used to these positions. When you get back to the golf course, it will be easier to get into position with constant practice.
Why do you need to record your swing?
Golf is a game that is not that easy to learn. You need constant practice so that you get used to it. Most times you align what you believe will be the perfect shot but then the result is way off. So many things could have gone wrong before then.
You will try various remedies but sometimes the problem persists. This is because you are trying to resolve something you are not sure of. Recording yourself will show you exactly where you are going wrong.
Watching yourself in position later, you can determine what needs changing. Other times you may make a perfect shot but then realize that your divot is way off. It could be so way off to the right or the left that it leaves you frustrated.
While preparing for your shot, you will initially feel like everything is right. You will later learn that you cannot trust the feel of it. Feel is deceptive, and the divot can mislead you to misdiagnose your movements.
Recording yourself gives you tangible evidence of what is imperfect in your execution. Without the recording, many times you will blame the parts of your swing that you are already good at.
This leads to a vicious cycle of trying to improve what does not need to be improved. It is easy to think that for example, it is your takeaway with the problem when it is perfect. When you watch yourself on that note, you will know exactly what needs fixing.
Steps to follow to analyze your golf swing
You now know what you need to do to record yourself and why you need to do it. You now need to also know how you should do it. The most important part of the golfing process is the set-up.
The set-up determines a lot in regards to the outcome, making or breaking your shot. Here are some of the important factors you need to look out for during the set-up process.
#1: Check your alignment
One of the common mistakes golfers make is not checking their alignment for every shot they make. Make sure that you have a club or an alignment stick every time you are on the practice field.
Get into the habit of aligning your shot. As you watch the video, check if you are square with the target, closed or open. You must determine this because if you are not square with the target then your aim will be incorrect.
Watch to make sure that your hips, feet and shoulders align with the target. If it is not so, remedy it the next practice round you take. Practice until it comes to you easily. For a right-handed player, you need to make sure that you are open slightly to the target.
With your aim slightly to the left, you will have a shallower downswing and your chances to hit the target will increase. The common mistake is having people set up closed and aimed to the right. This means you have to pull back left and your slice will be weak – a bad shot.
#2: Work on your posture
Posture makes a big part of your setup. While trying to work on your posture, work from the ground up. Be conscious that you should have a slight knee flex, your back should be straight and your butt out.
Ideally, your chin should be high enough to let your shoulders rotate under on the backswing. If you have recorded yourself, it will be easy to fix all your posture issues. Watch for how you stand and all your movements, practising the ideal posture.
#3: Study your grip
Your grip can ruin your game. As you watch your recorded video, study your grip and how you hold your club. Check to see if your grip is strong and steady. The club should be perfectly balanced in your fingers and not your palms.
You need to also make sure that your grip pressure is elevated. If you notice any pressure in your forearms when you’re holding the club, then you are holding it too tight. When holding the club, the grip should be light, this allows you to secure the club at the top of the backswing.
#4: Check the ball position
If you only use the down the line position to record, then you will not be able to see the ball position. It is therefore essential to record in both positions. Analyze both angles of your swing.
You need to watch and see whether your ball is in the perfect position for the club you are using. Follow the following guidelines when placing your ball;
- The Driver should be off the front of the lead foot or directly below your right ear.
- Have the Fairway Wood directly below the logo on the left side of your chest.
- Short Irons should be directly below the buttons of your shirt.
- All the other clubs should be in between Short Irons and Fairway Woods on the standard shots.
#5: Procure a launch monitor
Do your practice on a launch monitor. The data from your launch monitor can help you improve your swing. The launch monitor takes a record of the spin rate, the attack angle, ball speed and so much data that can help with your analysis. By studying this data, you will know the areas of your swing that you need to work on.
What you need to evaluate
Having checked your setup, you can use apps to further study your execution. Using the apps, you need to focus on some of the key areas so that you know what to improve. Comparing with your recorded videos, study those crucial areas and make the changes accordingly.
Analyze the following key areas and details:
#1: Check your backswing
As you study the videos, emphasize how you execute the backswing. Your backswing is what determines the downswing. During the downswing, you are uncoiling the movement you made during the backswing.
It is therefore important that you spend more time studying your backswing. Use the apps and learn the correct execution. When you are back on the practice range, try doing it the correct way. With constant practice, you will be able to do it with ease soon enough.
#2: Check your tempo
Study your tempo and make comparisons with professional players. You will learn that the best players maintain their tempo back and through. Study and practice to maintain a good tempo.
As you work to attain the perfect tempo, compare with the results you are attaining. Compare at different tempos till you find the perfect range. Study your backswing and make certain that your club is not going too fast or too slow.
#3: Path of the backswing
After you have studied the tempo, check the path of your swing. Analyze to see if it is inside, straight back or outside. If it is too inside, it makes it easy to push it right if you get stuck. If the swing is too inside, you can start the backswing with your upper body, producing a pull cut.
If your swing is too inside, on the way back, it is easy to pull a ball or hit a push and snap hook. Watching your videos, observe the shoulders and how they turn. Also, study the first part of your backswing and understand your swing path.
#4: Top of the swing
If you record your video when you are using the driver, analyze it to see if you are parallel at the top. Check if you are parallel with your irons and wedges. If you extend far away beyond the parallel, it will be hard for you to hit fairways.
Your consistency at hitting the fairways will be ruined and you will find that your timing is off. Try to be a little short of parallel with your clubs, even the irons and wedges.
#5: Watch your downswing
Your downswing contributes a lot to how you will execute your shot. As you study your videos, watch how you perform the downswing. The top of your backswing determines what your downswing will be like.
Watch to see whether you pause at the top of your backswing or if you rush into the transition. Note that your pause does not have to be very long. You will build tension with long delays.
However, do not rush to hit the ball, if you rush, your speed will be lost as you hit the ball. As you start your downswing, go down smoothly so that at impact, you still have a lot of speed. Observe your path of the downswing.
Watch the way the club moves as you begin your downswing. As you study your downswing, observe to see if you use your upper body or your lower body. As you practice, make sure that you come in slightly shallow to drop the club in the spot. This will help you get the lag that creates a lot of power.
#6: Check the follow-through
Study how you finish after you hit the ball. Check for your balance and the movement of your feet. As you study your finish, compare with that of elite professionals. This is one of the ways you can learn to better your game.
Study and watch videos of professionals. Watch their best shots and mimic how they do it.
How to fix your golf swing mistakes
The biggest problem while trying to fix problems is trying to do everything at once. This will only build performance anxiety and affect your performance further. Take it one step at a time.
Start with your set-up. Following the tips, learn how to get into a good position. Make sure you are square with the target and that your grip is right. Then work on your backswing since it determines your downswing. Then check your transition to the downswing, the downswing and the follow-through.
Final Thoughts on Self Analyzing Your Golf Swing
Following these tips and steps, you will improve your swing in due time. Hiring a coach or trainer can be expensive. Following these tips, on the other hand, will lead to personal driven improvement.
Record yourself at the different angles and study how you play. Use the available golf apps and study the moves of professionals. With consistent practice, you will get there. As a bonus, you will also have the satisfaction of having achieved a feat all on your own.