How Golfers Improve

The Challenges Facing Golfers:
  • Limited experience participating in complimentary sports   
  • Physical limitations – possible limited ability to practice and play due to injury   
  • Practicing with misconceptions – leads to engrained bad habits   
  • Inefficient kinetic sequencing  
  • Attempting to make too many changes in technique too quickly   
  • Natural intuition of how to play many shots often leads to frustration and poor play   
  • Mental obstacles  
  • No instruction or inappropriate instruction  
  • Equipment which hinders improvement   
  • Minimal knowledge of how to develop sound playing and practice strategies

The New Approach to Golf:

In the past, golfers have focused mainly on technique and equipment as the primary factors leading to improvement. Similar to other sports it is now accepted that there are five main components that contribute to a golfer’s performance level. These components are technical, physical, tactical, mental conditioning, and equipment. For all sports, the modern approach to coaching is to provide the athlete with highly individualized evaluations and targeted functional training.

Key Factors Leading to Learning and Improving Skills:
  • Instruction which clears up misconceptions  
  • Skills learned one at a time, from simple to complex  
  • Physical screening and personalized fitness programs  
  • Focus on Kinetic Sequencing  
  • Instruction covering all aspects of the game, including strategy and mental skills  
  • Knowledgeable coaching which accelerates skill development  
  • Individual advice on the best equipment configuration and type  

New Technology Assisting Player Development:

  • 3D swing analysis systems (K Vest, AMM, ZenoLink)  
  • Launch monitor and ball-flight analysis (Foresight, Trackman, FlightScope)  
  • High speed video cameras (allows for clear slow motion video analysis)

Physical Conditioning and Injury Prevention:

  • Modern sport science has strengthened the evidence correlating the ability to produce an effective golf swing with a golfer’s physical condition. The golf swing is stressful on the body and injury promoting. Being in better condition and knowing how to use the body efficiently not only leads to lower scores but will also help prevent injuries.  
  • There are many ways to swing a club to achieve the desired results. But for all golfers there is an efficient way to swing based on what they can do physically.

The Physical Keys:

  • The priorities – balance, mobility, stability, posture – which are the pillars for – coordination, endurance, speed, strength and power  
  • For more information on golf conditioning, visit the Titleist Performance Institute (
  • Or read ‘Golf Anatomy’ by Craig Davies (an outstanding book to better understand swing mechanics in relation to physical abilities, and training methods)

  • Good daily dietary habits  
  • Intake before, during, and after golf  
  • Sufficient fluid intake

Kinetic Sequencing:

The kinetic sequence can be summarized as the body’s ability to create speed and power by transferring momentum from large body segments to smaller extremities. Research has shown that although the swings of elite golfers may appear to be quite different when viewed on video, they are consistent in the way they efficiently transfer energy through their body to create clubhead speed at impact. By analyzing the kinetic sequence using 3D motion analysis systems the efficiency of the swing can be evaluated.

Mental Skills:

  • Managing focus  
  • Managing negative anxiety  
  • Goal setting – outcome and process goals; short and long term goals


  • Due to new technology and design, modern equipment is more forgiving  
  • Having the most appropriate combination of clubs to suit your game is a key for scoring 
  • Properly fitted clubs are a benefit for all players not just elite golfers  
  • Golf ball fitting is often overlooked but can make a significant difference in ball flight and the short game  
  • New technology is assisting in the club fitting process