Golf is a sport of constancy, requiring a certain level of technique and concentration to achieve the desired results. Practice makes perfect, but what exactly do you practice when you get out on the course? The answer is simple: “Practice your weaknesses”, and you do this for every type of shot so that your statistics improve. When we talk about statistics, we’re not talking about the score on each hole, but rather the performance statistics for each shot. These statistics are divided into two variables: centering and distance.
The principle of centering represents the point of contact of the ball on the bat when striking. A well-centered ball will be struck in the middle of the club head and should, in principle, travel in a straight line. On the tee shot, a well-centered ball will have increased distance and reduced backspin. You’ll also notice that a poorly-centered ball will, more often than not, cause a “slice” or a “hook”, i.e. lose its trajectory as it curves to the left or right. So, good body movement and centered contact with your driver’s head are all it takes!
When it’s time to hit with an iron, the same principle applies, but the ball will react differently depending on the angle of the club. For example, long irons will propel the ball lengthways rather than upwards. A poorly-centered ball may therefore “slice” or “hook” the ball, or even “topper” the ball. Short irons, on the other hand, are used to produce lobbed shots, so a well-centered ball will produce a high, straight trajectory, letting the ball land where it should on the green.
As heat increases, the ball travels better through the air. That’s why it’s important to establish the distances that each stick will provide. Here’s a table to help you choose the right stick for the distance you want to achieve.
To recap, your performance statistics on the golf course are largely determined by the centering of the ball on each shot and the distance you wish to cover. With this information, all you have to do is practice your technique and master your strength according to the distance you want to cover, to improve your final score!