Why are golf teachers, golfers and broadly the greater golf community so obsessed with the idea there is a “method” of how to swing the golf club better than another? Recently, I was browsing a social media channel and I came across a post from @MaxHoma who I believe is a recent winner of the State Farm PGA Tour event. The post was from a respected teaching professional and spurred a debate among several teaching professionals on his swing characteristics and the somewhat obvious changes, some would say improvement, and some would say not, but both sides of the debate would say that the “swing technique or method” in which his working on was the reason he won. Now to be fair, the comparison to be fair was of Max from a few years ago to Max in 2023. For you amateurs and future great players, I would debate the real reason Max may be playing better golf, contending, and will win more often is not as tangible as his swing path or mechanics of his golf swing, which in short term is to be continued. I would ask that you look more at where Max has actually grown as a performer and his knowledge of being in the hunt for titles. He has spoken much about his advanced training physically (obvious in photo as well) to prepare himself better, his work on his mental game (experiences being a big part of this), and his ability to absorb the moments in moments of uncomfortableness. At the highest level he has challenged himself to improve for greater success.
It could be argued that there are many ways to hit the golf ball, hence why we see or hear about so many different teaching/coaching professionals pontificating about how their particular method works over another for their players. But I ask, look at the players most of these teachers are working with. In most cases these players have already or did already possess a high level of experiences, knowledge of their games as juniors; they are golf athletes competing at the highest levels and could read or follow nearly any method and become better or win. But what are the real factors of their success? I do not know this but from listening to interviews after Max’s win/s or any other great performers often they will speak about how they succeeded due to follow their process, or it was great to win because of all the hard work that went into their preparation over the past years to get to a point where winning was possible. Tiger Woods once said, “I didn’t put all of this work in over the years not to come out here and not win. I want to be the best so I have to work hard on all of the parts of the game, mental, physical and my golf technique, you gotta be able to hit all the shots in the most extreme conditions and when it counts.” There have been a few coaches that Tiger has worked with and he has won with them all. Was it method or a motivated athlete being able to incorporate technical coaching into his system of learning to control the golf ball? (Which by the way is the very best way to shoot lower scores.) As so often, it is easier to improve when you as a golfer are willing to accept the challenge to improve, being open minded to understand the variables that actually contribute to greater gains, short term and long term.
If you want to be like many of the great players, it first takes close examination into what is contributing to your alleged bad shots and scores. At The Golf Performance Center, we make it our priority to take every player through a complete Player Development Assessment and a 5 Elements of Success Evaluation. The assessment helps a player understand what their skills are, how well they move, short game skills, long game skills, ability to control the golf ball, and mental skills. Then we have players go through the 5 Elements of Success Evaluation. The Evaluation gives us the “MRI,” a deeper dive into understanding why you may be coming out of posture, or not consistently hitting 300 yard drives. Once we have the information, it becomes much clearer to you as a golfer where you should focus your efforts for greater improvement. The “method” of the interventions or coaching drills etc. is the art, but without having a solid understanding of what is happening and why it is happening for better or worse, a method goes without accountability. So if you want to follow a “method” I would recommend a resource for accountability, The Golf Performance Center of Excellence can help you as a coach or player to better understand which method may work for a given athlete or situation.
A method is not philosophy, it can be a part of a philosophy, but in order for it to work over time, having a view of the 5 Elements of Success philosophy may help you better with understanding as it takes all of the Elements to support the actions of a human performer. The performer must have the desire to improve, to be coachable based on science and knowledge from real data, to be physically able to perform high intensity work over long periods of time, mentally able to know how to deal with adversities and have a growth mindset to stick with it long enough, and without the right equipment even the greatest performers will be hindered.