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Saturday, March 19, 2016

Cheyenne Woods on Mastering Your Swing

I believe this is the first time I've had a tip from Cheyenne, and this is an extremely good one. You can read the entire article at this Golf Digest link, but I'll add a few extra thoughts.

Cheyenne Woods

Basically, Cheyenne's tip boils down to this: You can dramatically improve your game by focusing on just one club. In her case, it's the wedge. No, she doesn't say which one... and that's what I want to focus on.

Many of the great players in our game have learned to play with just one club. Seve learned with a 3-iron, and stories of him hitting greenside bunker shots with one have become legend. Judy Rankin recommended beginning your golf education with an 8-iron in an instruction book she wrote. And I remember reading a magazine article where Chi-Chi Rodriguez talked about the things you could learn by playing a full round of golf using only a 4-iron.

What makes a single club such a valuable learning tool?
  • Using one club makes it easier to learn consistent contact because you don't have to keep adjusting for different shaft lengths. (You can learn that after you can hit one club reasonably well.) Cheyenne mentions this in her article.
  • To hit shots of different lengths, you have to learn how to match up swing length with shot length. You won't be hitting every shot with a full swing!
  • Tagging on to the last one, Cheyenne mentions that hitting many less-than-full shots will help your weight shift. If you aren't trying to kill the ball, which makes you tight, it will translate to a more fluid motion.
  • Like Seve, you'll learn to manipulate the loft of the club to create different trajectories for different shots. Chi-Chi specifically mentioned learning to control distance by learning to draw and fade a single club.
  • In general, it will just force you to think creatively when you play. You'll have to think about shots when you can't just pull another club from the bag.
Just spending some time on the range, hitting a single club to a variety of different flags, using different shot shapes and trajectories, and then doing some chipping and putting with the same club, can help you become more confident of your ability to work your way around the golf course.

It's a simple tip that can be fun as well. Try a 9-hole match with only one club, letting each player choose the club they want to use. That can really liven up a game... and make for some interesting betting!





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