Written By Ben Maher
Presented to the PGA September 2002
Submitted to be published in 2003
Teaching the Game: Where we are and where we need to go.
My area of interest, quest and passion has been a search for truth and fact in regard to the mechanics of the full swing and short game, and how this game and the information and instruction that goes along with it is integrated into our students and for that matter our games as well. How do we get our students and our games to improve more rapidly and allow all of us to recognize our full potential as players?
I believe I have identified the challenge and created an educated, well thought out response to the challenge. As the title indicates I took the liberty of identifying the PGA professional teaching body as a whole and to look briefly and holistically at where we currently are as teachers of the game. I would then like to show you some cutting edge research that may give us more information and ideas as to how we are going to respond to the challenges and demands of our student body and take our pursuit of excellence to the next level and improve the way we teach and the playing ability of the golfing populace, which as we all know will lead to more people having more fun (you have to admit that when we play better we have more fun).
The challenge is how do we become better instructors when so many variables exist, not to mention that this is the most difficult game on earth. Take a look at this brief description of golf written by a Professor of Physics: During the golf swing the head of a golf club travels approximately 27 feet in less than two seconds. The path of the club and the precise orientation of the club determine the outcome of the shot. Proper decision making and the consistent execution produce a successful score. Not only are the complexity and precision of the golf swing difficult to master, but also, these challenges are compounded by the requirement to control the...