The Pyramid Of Learning (P8)

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Power vs Accuracy

When working on ‘Power’ you must ask yourself what you are trying to achieve.

If you are not naturally a good athleteor are not physically able, then you are unlikely to hit the ball miles. I would recommend that you spend more of your practice time on other aspects of your game. Play to your strengths. If you can develop a good short game then you will be more than a match for most of the longest hitters at your club.

Even if you are not that athletic you can learn to improve the quality of your strike and to hit the ball more consistently. You can learn to build more speed and pressure into your strike, and most importantly make more strikes out of the middle of the club. Most golfers would hit the ball further by swinging at 75% speed and striking the middle of the club face than by swinging at flat out and striking the ball in consistently out of different parts of the club.

So my adviceis not to strive for the perfect strike that will send your ball careering 250+ yards straight down the middle. You may achieve this once in a while but more often than not you will fail. You should be more concerned about the consistency of your drives interms of distance, flight and accuracy.

I tell my players – including Henrik Stenson (above) – that it’s not the quality of their best shots that I care about; it’s how good their bad shots are. If we can narrow down the number of bad shots and the variety of bad shots then we are on the road to success. I call this a ‘Deviation Pattern’.


Deviation Pattern

Next time you practice, go through your bag and take a number of shots with each club at a specific target. Record the total distance travelled ( in the air and roll on landing), the trajectory of the flight and the accuracy ( missed 10 feet left, 15 feet short,etc). Keep a score. Then try and beat that score next time you practise. It’s a fun game and an easy way to measure your improvement in ‘Power’ through recording changes in length and in ‘Accuracy’ through your deviation pattern.

You can use this exercise to set your self reasonable goals:

  • If you are hitting the bal lalong way but all over the driving range, then you might want to focus on building accuracy into your game using the techniques from the Pyramid of Learning before trying to build more power in your game.
  • If you are a short hitter but fairly a ccurate then you may want to focus on improving your length with out compromising on accuracy.

Once you have set yourself some realistic goals and have a yardstick for improving results, then you have aplatform from which you can build more of the key swing elements which–if implemented correctly–will aid you in your pursuit of a more consistent swing, a cleaner ball strike and greater (controlof) distance.

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