Pro Tips

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Simply Algarve Magazine - Swing Plane
November 2019
Following on from our previous article in Simply Algarve, where we covered how to start the backswing we would like to continue and discuss how to get on plane in the backswing. As you can see from the picture on the right, the club is perfectly set at this key point of your backswing. Remember, when practicing you should work on a three to one ratio of practice swing to balls hit respectively.

Here are three very important checkpoints that you can use to make sure your swing is on plane at this stage:

1. Shoulders should be fully rotated at this point, 90 degrees, with hands opposite the centre of your chest.

2. The shaft angle at this point should relate to the position of the ball, not pointing straight down in line with your feet – this would be too steep an angle – or towards the horizon creating a flat backswing. Checking your shaft angle in a mirror or by using your alignment sticks when practicing can help you to achieve this position and appreciate the feeling.

3. Your wrists should be fully hinged, creating a 90-degree angle between the shaft and the left arm (for right-handed golfers).

On the market you will find many training aids all of which claim that they can help you with your swing plane. However, we believe that the best on the market is PlaneSWING! You will get an instant feel of the swing plane along with a better understanding of the back swing. When your Golf Swing is on plane it helps you to gain greater distance and accuracy. If you wish to experience the PlaneSWING under Professional guidance then contact Richard or Eddie to book your lesson.
Simply Algarve Magazine - The Takeaway
October 2019
Following on from a previous article of ours in Simply Algarve, that carried the message: ‘To be the BEST YOU on the fairways make sure you appreciate the fundamentals of golf,’ we are going to discuss now the start of your golf swing...the takeaway.

If you can start each swing along the right path, keeping the club in a good position early on, there’s a much greater chance that the rest of your backswing will follow that good path – and that in turn will promote a good downswing and a solid, straight strike on the golf ball, whch is exactly what you want.

A number of common takeaway faults are evident in many golfers who, as a result, spend the rest of their swing working hard to adjust in order to make a decent contact with the ball. Not great if you want to become a more solid and consistent ball striker. Rather than go through each common fault, let’s stick to what a good golf swing takeaway looks and feels like... There are three very useful, very objective checkpoints that you can use to make sure your swing begins on the best possible path.

They are these:

1 Start the takeaway by allowing your left shoulder to turn towards your chin (for the right-handed golfer). Keep the left arm straight and the hands passive (no wrist hinge or rotation at this stage) until the club reaches hip height, keeping the club in front of you for as long as possible.

2 As the club reaches a horizontal position, check that the butt end of the club points at your target. If you have access to a mirror use the down the line view to check that the club is in this position.

3 The club head should cover the view of your hands. Looking down the line, the blade of the club should run parallel to your spine angle (see the photo above).
Pro Tips
September 2019
Great golf posture is crucial for consistent, accurate and powerful ball striking. You don’t have to be an athlete to achieve great posture, the tips on this page will work for golfers of all shapes and sizes. The golf swing is essentially a turning motion around your spine; the better the angle of your spine at address, the better it will be throughout the swing. Five key points to consider are:

1. Keep your body weight focused on the balls of your feet. Too much on the heels and you will feel like you are falling back when you swing; too much on the toes and you will feel like you are falling forward at some point in your swing. With weight focused on the balls of your feet, you will feel balanced.

2. Bend from your waist, so that you can create a straight spine. Your hips should be your hinge from which to flex your torso over your legs. Your body is now ready for rotation because your core and base are stable.

3. Do not let your chin rest on your chest which would allow the spine to curve too much before and during the swing. Many amateur golfers take the keep-your-head-down mantra too literally. By keeping your head down, you are increasing the curve in the mid-high back area. By putting an increased curve in the mid-back area, you will decrease your swing width.

4. As with any sport, you should have a slight flex in the knees, creating what is known as ‘dynamic balance’. A slight knee flex in both knees means the body is ready for action, crucial to controlling your centre of gravity. You are putting yourself in a position to perform with great efficiency and you are minimising the possibility of injury.

5. At address, the arms should hang straight down with the butt of the club a hands’ width from the thighs. This will allow your arms, shoulders and neck to be relaxed, allowing your arms to swing freely through the plane of your swing. From a visual perspective, the lateral view of a correct posture would have a plumb line beginning from the anterior shoulder that would run in front of the knee and centre over the balls of the feet.

algarve golf tips alignment
August 2019
Following up from our previous article in Simply Algarve. So to be the ‘BEST YOU’ on the fairways make sure you appreciate the fundamentals of golf, we are going to discuss body alignment.

People often forget, golf is a target game, and like any target game, aiming to the target is an essential first step. Your initial setup can give your mind and body the actions and complications brought into the swing by misaligned body positions. Visualise your target line, then align your body to that line. Here’s how…

First stand behind your ball and pick a small intermediate target on your target line. Then address the golf ball with your feet, hips shoulders and eyes parallel to that target line. You’ll be surprised what a huge impact this simple fundamental can have on your shot. Align your body (and club, discussed in our previous article) properly, and let your golf swing flow. By properly aiming your body along your target line, you increase the likelihood of a free swing on a correct swing path. When your feet, hips, shoulders, eyes, and club are not aligned with each other - or with the target, they conflict with each other and cause all sorts of problems with your swing and ball flight. So go out there and AIM… ALIGN… SWING…

Getting better at golf usually comes down to the small details. There isn’t anything glamourous about working on your body alignment, but it can go a long way towards helping you play your best golf. Getting this fundamental correct, requires patience on the driving range to work through the pre-shot routine, time after time until you have it perfect.

Don’t be tempted to make radical changes to your swing that might not even be necessary. Work hard on getting your body alignment correct before every shot to see quick and powerful results on the course.
Pro Tips
Simply Algarve Magazine - The Club Face
July 2019
Following up from our previous article in Simply Algarve, So to be the ‘BEST YOU’ on the fairways make sure you appreciate the fundamentals of golf, we are going to discuss what to look for when you place the club square behind the ball. Aiming the club face correctly is one of the five key points at set up before you take your shot; the five points are Club Face, Aim, Ball Position, Posture and Grip!

When you have chosen your target we suggest you stand behind your golf ball and pick a mark approximately 10-15cms in front of your ball on the target line. At address you will need to have the leading edge or bottom groove of your golf club at a right angle, pointing down your target line. To take your address, with your feet together, hold the club out in front of you – this is a very good way of checking if the club face is square – with the toe of your golf club pointing directly to the sky.

If you are able to match the leading edge to a corner of a building when on the practice ground, this again is an excellent aid, giving you a perfect vision of the leading edge being square. As discussed in previous articles you should always use your alignment sticks on the practice ground! The ball position stick is set at 90-degrees to your target line, so again helping you to get your club head square at address.In the next issue we will help you to get your body alignment square to the target line, matching nicely with your club face. If you are struggling then we would recommend booking a lesson with one of your PGA Gurus.
June 2019
Following up from our article in the May Issue of Simply Algarve Magazine: ‘ So to be the BEST YOU on the fairways, make sure you appreciate the fundamentals of golf,’ we are going to discuss what to look for when you grip your golf club.

The perfect grip can lead to the correct wrist action throughout the swing. It is easy for your coach to check your grip when standing in front of you, but it is important to be able to check it yourself.

The ideal grip should consist of two knuckles showing on your left hand and a V shape made between the thumb and first finger. The grip of the club should pass through the fingers of your right hand with the right thumb covering the left thumb - this will create another V shape between the thumb and first finger of the right hand. Both Vs should point to the right shoulder, as shown in the picture to the left. If you look in the mirror you can see perfectly if your grip matches our description above. For left-handed golfers, the left hand is your right hand, the right hand is your left hand with the Vs pointing to your left shoulder.

There are three variations to the perfect grip related to the size of your hand; to understand which one best suits you, we would recommend booking a lesson with one of your PGA Gurus.