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About the Blog

These posts can still be found in the category list, under "about." If you want to add a comment to the original post, you can do so there.

Welcome to the Ruthless Golf Blog!
Originally Posted Tuesday, August 11, 2009

You may have heard someone say that the putting stroke is just a small version of the full swing. If you did, that someone was probably from a previous generation of teachers and golfers; hardly anyone seems to agree with that nowadays.

I believe just the opposite: The full swing is just a big version of the putting stroke. If you begin by learning the basics of a good putting stroke, you have a good foundation for building a solid full swing. A solid chipping stroke is only slightly different from a solid putting stroke; a solid pitching swing is only slightly different from a solid chipping stroke; and a solid full swing is only slightly different from a solid pitching swing. Start with a solid putting stroke, and you’re halfway to a solid game.

And the real beauty of it all is that a solid putting stroke is so simple that even a child can do it!

In this blog I’ll try to take the ideas in
Ruthless Putting and expand them to include the whole game. Hopefully I will not only make the principles of good putting easier to understand, but help you learn how improving your putting can help you improve your whole golf game. We’ll learn how to develop a low-maintenance golf swing, one that doesn’t require a lot of practice in order to perform for us. In addition, we’ll look for shortcuts to help improve our game when we don’t have a lot of time to practice, as well as seeing what we can learn from the pros on TV. (Although it may not be what they expect us to learn!)

The Comments Are Always Open
Originally Posted Saturday, October 17, 2009

In case you didn't know, you can comment at any time on any post here at Ruthless Golf.

Some blogs shut down comments after a couple of weeks. I can understand that, as many blogs deal with "popular" topics - that is, things that are hot for a few days or weeks, then fade away. But with Ruthless Golf, the material is mostly instructional and therefore not likely to be dated anytime soon. A post that may not be particularly useful to you right now may suddenly become very important a few months down the road... and you may find you have questions.

In case I don't catch it myself, I've got the blog set up to notify me by email when a new comment has been posted. So if you have a comment or a question, go ahead and add it on. I usually catch it within a day, unless I've had problems.

Thursday (10/15/09) is a classic example. I woke up to find my computer wouldn't boot. It took me most of the day to get it fixed; apparently Microsoft sent 16 different patches out, and something screwed up the boot sectors of my hard drive. After several attempts to repair the problem and a quick trip to see the Geek Squad, I was able to get the system fixed. When it finally came up I found that the post I had set up Wednesday night for Thursday had the wrong date and didn't show up as planned. I fixed that, then found Brian's comment on the last post about coiling from a week ago.

So don't hesitate to leave a comment or question, even if the post is several months old. I'll find it.

Introducing the Practice BRAINge
Originally Posted Friday, November 13, 2009

Brian left a comment late Wednesday on this post to let me know that golf season was pretty much over in Canada. He also said that his last three rounds had been the best of the year, which makes me feel pretty darn good!

Still, it got me thinking. Many of us don't get to play much golf this time of year―some because of the weather, some just because of family obligations during the holidays. If we improved this year, how can we hold onto the gains when we can't get out and play? And if our game needs work, isn't there something we can do to get ready for the new season?

I think there may be. I've read about people who were prisoners of war or were imprisoned for their religious or political beliefs, who, in order to keep from being broken, began mentally playing sports. They would imagine a round of golf or a tennis match in extreme detail, trying to actually experience the memories; they would smell the freshly-mown fairways, or feel the fuzziness of the tennis balls. They would try to imagine their muscle movements, feeling the stretches and strains as they played the game.

What interests me is that many of these people actually improved their games while imprisoned!

Scientists say this happens because the brain can't distinguish between reality and imagination if the images are realistic enough. If you've ever had your heart race at a horror movie, you've experienced this phenomenon.

Therefore I'm introducing the practice BRAINge, which will show up as a new listing in the sidebar category list. Every so often, I'll add a new "practice session" that focuses on a vivid mental image, one that will help you to better feel a good golf swing. The idea is that, when you have a few seconds, you can focus on one of these images and help your mind "groove" this feel. Hopefully, when you get back to the course, these practice sessions will help you swing better.

Granted, this is an experiment, but it certainly won't hurt to try some of them over the winter. When the new season starts, I'll be interested to see if these images help any of you get off to a quicker start. You can just put a comment on the relevant post if it does.

I'll post the first BRAINge session tomorrow, and then I'll add a new one every so often. I hope you all find them helpful.