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Handicap Index

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  1. Over the last few months, I have developed a major problem in my game. I tend to get frozen over the golf ball, and it feels like it takes FOREVER for me to be able to pull the trigger to start my swing. I have been taking lessons since mid November, and I believe they may be the cause of my issues. Don't get me wrong, I am extremely happy with both my instructor and the results I am seeing. My distance is up between 1.5 and 2 clubs, and my shot shape/trajectory/consistency/etc is far and away better than it was prior to lessons. I think my issue is that I am running too many thoughts through my head when I set up. It feels like I am conducting a pre-flight checklist every time I address the ball. I know this is making me a slow player, which I hate, and I'm sure drives my playing partners nuts. This seems to compound the mental pressure I put on myself before each shot. I make it a point to get my club selection, where I want to hit the ball, etc taken care of before it is my turn to hit, so that when I'm up I can do my pre-shot routine and hit the ball without even more delay. My preshot routine is as follows: 1) Take one practice swing 2) Stand behind my ball and lock in my target, club in left hand. 3) Sole club behind ball, and step into address. 4) Take one look at my target, and then look down to the ball. I tend to waggle the club while I do this. This is where the wheels come off... Instead of looking at the ball and then starting my swing, I get frozen. In my mind I start with the checklist, "right hip up and back, arms straight, extensor action, right elbow tight, ball first". Sometimes I can get this list down to one or two items, but it doesn't accelerate the process. While I am thinking of these things, I am setting my grip, and I wiggle my feet to get comfortable. It feels like I have to wiggle my feet about 20 times before I feel set. That part is extremely frustrating. This is driving me absolutely nuts. I just wish I could hit the damn ball instead of standing over it like a doofus for what feels like an eternity while I wiggle my feet like I'm standing on an ant hill. Have any of you had an issue like this, and if so, how did you overcome?
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