Do Tips in Golf Magazines Work?

Golf Digest CoverEver benefit from a tip in a golf magazine?  Usually you can find so many tips and instructional articles, your brain will explode if you try them all.  Normally I consume for the human interest stories, interviews, and full swing sequence pictures, as well as the “Get Fit”articles 😉 but on a recent flight home I found a tip from Graeme McDowell in this month’s Golf Magazine that really helped.

I’ve been in the worst slump in recent memory and have not played even decent since last September.  No doubt the inactivity associated with my large remodeling project put the kibosh on any regular cadence, and it had the doubling effect of forcing the feeling of relearning the game every time out.  My ball striking had become a spaghetti plate of swing thoughts and the downstream artifacts were ugly.  At that point, you’ll take any help you can get, so magazine tips at 31,000 feet were not out of order.

The fix was quite simple and made a ton of sense after I analyzed, but was probably just stupid luck that I found it.  G-Mac had you keep your left upper arm tight to your chest throughout the back swing and downswing – that’s it.  My off-season back swing drills were attempting to get the club more out in front of me and had clearly disconnected my arms from my torso.  While I thought I looked good in my positions, I had in effect taken the club back with all hands; hence the awful ball striking.  I went out Saturday on my local par-3 course for a quick nine to test this theory and was nutting it all the way around.  Really solid strikes in a stiff breeze with cold temps and I was sky high at the finish.

Been around long enough to understand that momentum in golf is fleeting.  But what’s wrong with thinking, “I finally got it!”  Have you ever “got it” from a golf magazine tip?

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About Brian Penn

Avid sports fan and golf nut. I am a lifelong resident of the Washington D.C. area and love to follow the local teams. Also worked as a golf professional in the Middle Atlantic PGA for several years and am intrigued by the game to no end. I love to play and practice and am dedicated to continual improvement.
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13 Responses to Do Tips in Golf Magazines Work?

  1. photosbyandy says:

    I would like to think so…but sometimes it is very overwhelming

  2. Brian Penn says:

    Andy, I’ve actually seen tips in magazines that give opposite advice for the same kind of shot. Ridiculous, thanks!

  3. That girl on the cover definitely speeded up my swing. I wouldn’t care what I shot if I was playing with her.

    • Brian Penn says:

      Vet, I think Golf Digest may have tried to sell a few extra issues this month by putting Holly Sonders on the cover. The Get Fit sequence inside is not too bad either 🙂

  4. pete says:

    I will check out my left arm position tomorrow, and see if I need an adjustment. It worked well for G-Mac.

  5. Definitely had a few “aha” moments in my short time with the game. The trick is making it last, which we both know is incredibly difficult. I have never had that moment from a golf tip in a magazine thought. It is normally from a long range session or lesson with an instructor. Good luck and I hope you are finding some form before your trip.

  6. Fred says:

    I know what you mean about your head exploding from all the tips in the magazines. Early on when I started playing I could hardly hit the ball because of all the “tips” buzzing around in my head about how I should swing the club. Fortunately got past that stage even tho I can still barely hit the ball.

  7. A few months back in GD I found some putting tips from Steve Stricker that has helped transform my putting game. Though right handed he grips the putter tighter with his left hand and uses his right hand more for stability and control.

    • Brian Penn says:

      That’s funny, I’ve found the exact opposite. When I loose feel for distance on the greens, I’ve been able to regain by taking my practice strokes with my right hand only and then featuring a right hand dominated stroke, even though I try to keep both hands soft on the putter grip and control the motion with my shoulders. Putting is very unique in that what works for one player may be totally opposite for another. Thanks for the look!

  8. Kurt S says:

    What works for me with the driver especially, is to line up your body and feet to centerfield and then swing like you want to hit to rightfield. The golf ball will usually, ( USUALLY), go right down the middle. If you struggle with hooking the ball try this one.

  9. Brian Penn says:

    Looks like a good tip for those that pull and slice (come over the top). Thanks Kurt!

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