Monday, April 2, 2012

Lessons, Videos or Books?

"Lessons, Videos or Books?"
By Sean & Stef Mysel

Over the course of the past few weeks I've been researching an area of golf instruction that I find fascinating.  What actually motivates people to take golf lessons?  Seems like a pretty straightforward question and answer.  In fact you're probably reading this thinking "they take the to get better....MORON!"  Yet, as I've mentioned in the past people have different issues when it comes to taking golf lessons.  Recently, I had just taken on a new player that was referred to me by the owner of the driving range I teach at.  After coming up with a game plan, I asked him flat out why he wanted golf lessons.  Answer was pretty simple, "I play a few times a month and I want to get better, I want the game to be different."  That's a thought I've had plenty of times myself.  A website called actually had some great insights on this.  So let's break this down a little bit.

One of the most frustrating things about getting golf lessons is the multitude of different ideas you have to swallow and digest.  You may get six or more different ideas that have to be implemented at once.  It's difficult and even pros ask to have their lessons toned down some.  For instance, all I am going to work on with my new player is controlling the club face at impact.  That's the entire lesson.  No more, no less.

Another aspect is the intimidation factor.  Even when I get my lessons, there's a little nervousness even though I'm there to correct things I'm struggling with.  Some people feel like their egos can't bear some sort of false embarrassment they can't hit the ball the way they would like to.  I've even had a few people tell me they didn't want their swings on video because, "my swing isn't good enough to be on video."

This leads me to something that we as instructors need to understand.  A lot of what we do isn't necessarily fixing swing faults, better chip shots, etc, it's more about being a sport psychiatrist.  Making people understand that they aren't inferior, it's a game everyone needs help with.  Most importantly, it needs to be made simple.