5.0 étoiles sur 5
If they ever award a Nobel Prize in golf ..., Dec 11 2002
This is a long review, but I hope you hang in there.
Just to put everything in context, I've bought the
following golf books in the last few months:
How to Break 90 (Tomasi, et al)
The 30-Second Golf Swing (Tomasi)
Five Fundamentals (Hogan)
Five Fundamentals (Elkington)
Plus I've flipped through dozens of books in the
store. And I've visited every golf site know to man.
We're talking minimal improvement after 2 months
of hard work -- and I'm a fairly gifted athlete, modesty
Minimal improvement and not much joy. And this is
a game I used to LOVE in my teens.
And just in case you thought I was looking for instant
mastery, I'm not. There's no such thing anyway.
But I WAS looking for a ray of hope. A ray that says,
"If you stick to this general way, improvements and
a sense of accomplishment WILL come with time."
Enter "Extraordinary Golf."
Read it a couple of days ago with a growing sense
This morning I tried some of Shoemaker's
awareness/concentration exercises down in the
basement for 45 minutes. (Then started making up
some of my own!)
Was CONSISTENTLY making 30-foot chips to within
about 18 inches of the "hole". And sometimes IN THE
I'm talking about 95 out of 100 very very good shots,
(to within 2 or 3 feet) simply by PAYING ATTENTION
to what was going on, NOT trying to fix anything, and
simply having FUN.
I know you may think you're a technique player, but listen
I started playing shots leaning waaay forward, waaay backward,
on my left leg only, on my right leg only, holding the club miles
from my body, in too tight, up against the wall, with the left hand
only, with the right hand only, all sorts of crazy contortions --
AND WAS STILL KNOCKING THEM CLOSE TO THE HOLE!!!
Simply by paying FULL attention to what I was doing (primarily
the FULL arc of the clubhead) in an easy, free-spirited way.
Shoemaker is right. Most players DON'T concentrate for the full
2 seconds it takes to swing. Their minds are filled with all sorts of
distractions and FEARS. Especially the fear of looking bad.
But when you just step up with full awareness in a spirit of inquiry,
open to any possibility, not fixated on results, it is remarkable what happens.
This stuff actually works!
I discovered that I "lose" the clubhead near the top of my backswing.
I suddenly lose awareness of it. But when I calmly maintain focus on
where the clubhead is THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE SWING and
FORGET ABOUT THE RESULTS amazing things happen.
I also found out I"lose" the clubhead when I putt.
So I decided to line up a 35-foot putt while MAINTAINING AWARENESS
in the clubhead.
The FIRST putt ended up ONE INCH from the hole.
The SECOND putt ended up TWO INCHES from the hole.
The "trick" if there is one, is to FORGET about FIXING and start
OBSERVING what you're DOING.
Even if you miss every putt and every chip while you practice, even
if your shots miss by a mile, THE MAIN THING IS YOU STAY AWARE
OF WHAT YOU'RE DOING FOR THE ENTIRE 2 SECONDS.
That should be your only concern. "Can I track the cluubhead
throughout the entire swing?"
Even if you try hitting the ball backwards through your legs, if you
pay full attention to the clubhead you'll putt it or chip it pretty close.
The technique therefore is how you use your brain! How you pay
attention. And how you let go.
I demonstrated this morning that where you place your foot, where you
place your weight, where you grip the club, etc. is NOWHERE NEAR
AS IMPORTANT AS BEING AWARE OF WHAT YOU'RE DOING.
1. Try Shoemakers mesmerizing "club-throwing" technique (you'll
discover your natural timing this way) ...
and also try:
2. Paying full attention to, say, the full arc of the clubhead
paying NO REGARD WHATSOEVER to where the ball goes.
Just observe your awareness with the clubhead.
Shoemaker is operating in a field of elite mind/body practitioners,
a field of geniuses who know true power lies in the STUDENT'S
HANDS. These coaches/artists include Lorin Roche (grab all his meditation books) and George Leonard (grab all his books) and others.
You won't regret it.