BONNERS FERRY — Today begins the 148th Open Championship at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland. Being the final Major of 2019, there will be some great golf and plenty of drama on the beautiful linksland golf course.
Watching the greatest golfers on the planet ply their trade on TV may not be as helpful as working on your swing on the driving range or golf course, but it just might help you identify a few things that you should do to help improve your golf swing and lower your scores.
Watch the pre-shot routine of the players. After deciding which shot they want to hit, they go through the same physical motions in the same amount of time before hitting the ball, every single time. This is how they get comfortable and are able to put 100 percent of their focus into the shot.
Watch how long they hold their follow throughs on every swing (except for very uneven or deep rough lies). The best players hold their follow through until the ball hits the ground on a lot of shots. That is a great drill to do on the driving range and then apply to the golf course. Holding your follow through until the ball hits the ground is not as easy as it sounds, but is a great way to “stay down,” or maintain spine angle for the duration of the swing, a common fault with nearly every golfer.
Watch how long they maintain their body posture on putts as well. They “stay down” until the ball goes into the hole or travels past it.
Watch how the golfers react after hitting great shots and bad shots. Nearly every great player has little emotion tied to their last golf shot (unless it’s a hole-in-one or something similar). This helps them stay on an even keel during their round and stay focused to the task at hand. They utilize the five second rule: after hitting a shot, whether it be good or bad, stop thinking about it after five seconds and start thinking about the next shot. Do you do this? It really does help.
When you tune into the Open Championship these next four days, watch the techniques of the best players in the world and maybe you can transfer a few things into your golf game. Maybe sitting on the couch watching TV can improve your golf.