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Simple, Specific, Slow, Short, and Success - The Five "S"s of Great Practice - Page 3

post #37 of 89
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bunkerputt View Post

Awesome.  One question.  How do we speed it up?  Does it just happen?  I struggle because it feels like praticing at speed is a qualitatively different rep than practicing slowly.  Certainly haven't mastered slow practice, so maybe this is a cart before the horse question.  Or maybe it's rocking the apple cart some.  Then again, maybe a cart isn't involved at all.


I think the answer is this: always strive to operate at the edge of your capability. As you improve and can do the motion at, for example, 25% speed you can move to 30% speed. Make - and immediately correct - the small mistakes that appear at 30%, and then eventually you'll get to 35%. And 40%. And 70%. And 100%.

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post #38 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 


I think the answer is this: always strive to operate at the edge of your capability. As you improve and can do the motion at, for example, 25% speed you can move to 30% speed. Make - and immediately correct - the small mistakes that appear at 30%, and then eventually you'll get to 35%. And 40%. And 70%. And 100%.



Thanks.  That explains why the LM says I'm currently swinging driver at 85mph.  It feels like 40%.  I'm just not anywhere near full speed right now.  I'll keep telling myself "slow is fast", in terms of improvement that is.

post #39 of 89

I've been working on this since around Christmas.  One thing I've noticed is that on the slow swings the ball rockets off the club head with good contact.  It is almost surprisingly hot off the face.  It is a bit of an epiphany to me.  I am swinging slower (or have the feeling I'm swinging slower) but the ball speed seems higher.

 

I've only been working with the 6 iron and occasionally a 3 iron into a net (indoor range), so it is not an objective measurement.  But it is really changing my approach.  I've had maybe 8 sessions and really try not to swing fast during the session.  I start very slow and rehearse the swing, then do perceived 25% swings and move up to 50%.  At the end, I may do one 80% swing.  Each session the focus has been on one thing at a time, mostly hip position at impact and getting my weight forward consistently.

 

I haven't had a chance to film my swing indoors because it is difficult in the space I have or crowded.

 

Thanks again Erik and Mike.

post #40 of 89

I appreciate this greatly. I am not a disciplined practicer. Just yesterday I hit a bucket of balls, and since it was the first time I had practiced in a couple of weeks (not proud of that stat), my only goal was good contact. I went thru my setup checklists, but the swing itself was just, tempo. Which I guess isn't too bad for the first time in two weeks. But I am looking for how to improve the quality of my practice routine. You gave me some real good insight, Erik.

 

I was also thinking about the analogy of a musician. I came across this vid of the great Roy Clark playing a tune. Note a couple of things: First off, he prefaces it with 'I can't wait to get into it cuz I know all of it' - he's basically saying that he put in the work to get it right, and is now at the point of doing it publicly...like a pro working on a certain move countless hours at the range ready to use it in competition. Secondly, check out the look on his face as he starts into the guitar solo in the middle - he's concentrating, turning sort of inwards to be sure he is recall his training.

 

And, of course, he nails it.

 

 

He even missed a couple of notes, but the 'work' he put in, ingraining all the required moves, resulted in a great work of art with fantastic results.

 

Just like the golf swing, right Erik?

 

post #41 of 89

I love this thread.  I am currently working on getting my shoulders turned down in my backswing.  I haven't made too many full swings in the last couple of weeks due to this thread.  I'm just going to the top and checking my shoulder position while maintaining my right elbow position tucked and close to the body.  It's amazing how much you can see when you take a slow and specific approach to each and every part of the golf swing.  Thanks guys.

post #42 of 89

Thanks Zip.  That explains why my guitar playing has gone to the crapper since I started hanging out on TST.

post #43 of 89

Great thread and idea. 

 

For humans (most) this is a really hard thing to do.  It is hard not to see or care where the ball goes.  Most of us don't have this inate confidence (what does that mean) that we can not hit those horrid shots when we are playing.  It isn't violin where we have a concert in 3 months.  We have a show in front of friends this weekend.  No one wants to be imbarassed when they are playing.

 

If I are working on something and hitting it really bad, just not finding the ball, my confidence is going.  Then taking that mental state to the course that week is not going to be good. 

 

My idea with this isn't so much slow but about what club to practice with.  Let say (this is true for me) this year I want to have two things improve.  First I want to have my hips move forward to get the bottom of my swing in front of the ball and consistant divots to help consistancy.  I can do this right now with a sand wedge, but start losing that with a pitching wedge.

 

So I go to the range to work on this one thing.

 

I go, hit sand wedges, 3/4 hitting it the way I want.  Then I move to pitching wedge, I loose the consistant contact I had, move back or take a more abriated swing until I have the same result I want, then move on.  Lets say one week I can only get to the 9 iron, then the next the 8, then the next the 7.  For me that is a big deal and seems like a smart way to go about.  I've never been able to take a divot with anything longer than a 9 iron. 

 

So pretty much the idea is you perfect one part until you move on.

 

Seems very smart and a way to actually improve instead of just hitting the same old loosy shots.

 

 

post #44 of 89
Thread Starter 

Time to revive this thread with a video and a post I made in my own "My Swing" thread:

 

http://thesandtrap.com/t/43987/my-swing-iacas/100_100#post_807071

 

Me practicing:

 

post #45 of 89

Yep great example of HOW to practice when trying to change the picture or motor pattern.  Lots of practice swings, slow, purposeful.  Hitting a bucket of balls and "trying" something isn't going to change things very much.

post #46 of 89

This is GREAT stuff! I'm new to the Sand Trap as well as a relatively new golfer and really love the material talked about here.

 

I've spent years in martial arts when I was younger and was fanatic about practicing (maybe my avatar gives that away a3_biggrin.gif). One of the things that we're taught in martial arts is practicing each movement slow and with purpose making sure that you get into each posture, stance, and movement correctly. If done properly, we start slowly adding speed and power. I love this about martial arts because if you spend the time doing the movements slowly, you KNEW that you were improving and that the speed would just come with time. One of the frustrating things about learning golf for me was that I felt I have been just hacking at the ball hoping that I would find the right positions, despite receiving good instruction on what to do. I've tried slowing down my swing, but I haven't had any instructors emphasis this and haven't really spent that much time slowing down the swing or working on shorter swings. I'm going to start practicing like this!!!! Thanks for the tips!!!! 

post #47 of 89

How people learn a skill is something I know since it is in my field of research.  Golf--I know little about.  So, I'll keep my comments focused on

how people learn , and with some interpretation for golf.  Yes, some people

learn to play a musical instrument as Erik wrote in  his original post, starting slowly, hitting the correct notes, and picking the tempo until

they get up to speed.  Their emphasis is on the correct notes first; correct tempo/rhythm second.  They are said to focus on details first; holism

second.  When looking at a painting, their eyes zoom in on the details first, and the overall overview second.  Others, though, have an opposite learning

style--they look at the holistic image first, like stepping back and getting an an overall impression of the painting before looking at the details.

When playing a musical instrument, because of the necessity of hitting the correct notes, they may start of being concerned about the  notes,

but they quickly transfer their attention to the correct tempo.  If you talk to professional musicians at the symphony level, they will probably tell you

that someone at that level needs to have a desire to play at the right tempo, with correct notes second (but they have to be able to play the right notes

also).  The reason for for the importance of having a tempo preference is that concert level musicians need to be able to read several measures

beyond the note to be played--they cannot read the music in sync with the note being played.  If they are willing to slow it down in order to hit the

right note, they will not be able develop the ability to sight read fast.

 

Here's what little I know about the relationship between these two learning styles and the golf swing.  The first group (note preference) wants to know

all of the details--position of the various parts of the body at different points in the swing, often to an extreme.  They can look very mechanical, but the

talented ones can also look very smooth. This smoothness can come for coaching, or it could come from talent.  The second group would prefer to focus more

on tempo and rhythm first and the correct details second, but traditional coaching is based on details, so they see the details quickly.

 

When you hear a competent musician you can't tell which came first--a desire to hit the right notes or a desire to play a the right tempo and rhythm

with artistry.  When you see a competent golf swing, you can't tell which came first, the details (positions) or the tempo and rhythm.

post #48 of 89

Well stated Chipandcharge.  But I also think the two methods go hand in hand and people can learn using both.  I taught myself guitar and became quite proficient.  But I used both methods.  Learn the fingering and proper hand positions slowly, and learn the rhythm at speed along with a recording.  When performing, keeping rhythm is more important because a missed note hear or there can go unnoticed.

post #49 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by chipandcharge View Post

How people learn a skill is something I know since it is in my field of research. 

 

Great topic on practicing correctly.  I see poor practicing in the other sport I participate in, as well as poor practice at the driving range.

 

I also think each person should get to know what type of learner they are.   

 

Some learn better by watching someone else, some learn better in a group, some learn better by themselves.   Some need to know EVERY LITTLE DETAIL and every inch of position in the swing.   Some just need to know an overall goal and will choke on too much detail.   Some people LOVE drills and really benefit from them, some just cannot do a drill by themselves unless they have video and/or coaching enforcement.

 

Video, no matter who the student is, will help with "Perception is not Reality" problems.   They think they are doing something, yet the coach is saying they are not, and the argument could go on and on.  A quick video review proves the point in question.

 

So getting a student to "practice the right way" according to their learning skills, should also be part of the "S's" - just cannot think of an "S" word to put here LOL  :)

post #50 of 89

Hopefully this is on topic.

 

I started practicing the 5 Simple Keys tonight. I had already been incorporating a couple of the keys since learning about them earlier this year. As a result, the swing had become repeatable and relatively consistent. But after working on a couple of 5sk drills from the videos, I now realize the transition between the old and the new won't be as smooth as I had hoped.

 

My dilema is that I can't take what I'm learning out on the course yet (unless I use 60 yard partial swings to get through the fairways). And playing golf with my old swing will undoubtedly inhibit any progress on what I'm trying to learn. Has anyone else ever decided to drastically modify their (not so bad) swing in the middle of the season? 

 

Let me add that I am a very slow learner when it comes to developing a new swing. So the thought of just practicing without playing any golf for a while is not really an option.

post #51 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by JonMA1 View Post

Hopefully this is on topic.

 

I started practicing the 5 Simple Keys tonight. I had already been incorporating a couple of the keys since learning about them earlier this year. As a result, the swing had become repeatable and relatively consistent. But after working on a couple of 5sk drills from the videos, I now realize the transition between the old and the new won't be as smooth as I had hoped.

 

My dilema is that I can't take what I'm learning out on the course yet (unless I use 60 yard partial swings to get through the fairways). And playing golf with my old swing will undoubtedly inhibit any progress on what I'm trying to learn. Has anyone else ever decided to drastically modify their (not so bad) swing in the middle of the season? 

 

Let me add that I am a very slow learner when it comes to developing a new swing. So the thought of just practicing without playing any golf for a while is not really an option.

 

Swing changes take time but you can still improve your ball striking and scores as you work on stuff.  It doesn't have to be perfect in order to play better.  Do the work on the range, do some practice at home, but when you're on the golf course, just try and play golf.  Big thing to understand, if you have a bad day, don't think, "This stuff isn't working", you just need to keep at it.  Golfers will regress and blame it on something new they're working on, when in reality they're not doing it enough.

 

If you have a high handicap, I would focus on Keys #1 or 2.  Haven't seen your swing, so I'm not sure what Key is the priority.  For any golfer I would recommend focusing at max on one or two Keys, never more than that and never more than one Key at a time.  It's about finding that priority piece that will "clean up" a few problems at once or the piece that will have you playing better now.

post #52 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post

 

Swing changes take time but you can still improve your ball striking and scores as you work on stuff.  It doesn't have to be perfect in order to play better.  Do the work on the range, do some practice at home, but when you're on the golf course, just try and play golf.  Big thing to understand, if you have a bad day, don't think, "This stuff isn't working", you just need to keep at it.  Golfers will regress and blame it on something new they're working on, when in reality they're not doing it enough.

 

If you have a high handicap, I would focus on Keys #1 or 2.  Haven't seen your swing, so I'm not sure what Key is the priority.  For any golfer I would recommend focusing at max on one or two Keys, never more than that and never more than one Key at a time.  It's about finding that priority piece that will "clean up" a few problems at once or the piece that will have you playing better now.

 

Understood. Learn to walk before I run.

 

I am committed to learning this. I believe compressing the ball and taking a divot - something I'm not doing presently - is the only way I'll add distance.

 

Thanks.

post #53 of 89

Much better practice tonight. Decided to take some of the advice given in this thread. Worked mainly on weight shift and making clean contact (ball first, then turf). When swinging 25 - 30%, had very good success. I didn't worry about direction as much (that'll come later with keys 4 and 5)  but that went well for the most part. When I increased my backswing, I'd start to run into timing issues so I backed off a little. Couldn't help but work on the followthrough because that seemed to have a profound effect on the quality of contact.

 

One thing I noticed is that even though they were slow, half-speed practice swings, there had to be a level of commitment towards each swing in order to make clean contact. I know that probably seems obvious, but I don't know how else to explain it.

 

Thanks to everyone.

post #54 of 89

Anyone have any advice to this on some practice drills or things to focus on?

 

This thread is absolutely right, but part of the difficulty is knowing what to focus on or what kind of drills I should be trying. Can someone really know without getting advice from a pro?

 

I'm not as good as the guy mentioned in the first post of this thread, but I'm definitely like him at times. I'm the exception (maybe? I'm not sure if a lot of people are this way) that I tend to hit the ball way better on the course than at the range. Probably need some tips on how to get more out of my practice.

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