Tiger Woods is today's pre-eminent golf pro legend, amassing a number of championships, titles and records in his field. Woods started learning about golf at the age of two, when he saw his father practicing his chipping in their yard. When he himself hit the ball impressively, his father allowed his to learn the sport at that young age. Woods won his first tour victory in 1996 during the Las Vegas Invitational, then continued on win the Green Jacket in 1997, 2001 and 2002. One of Tiger Woods' strengths is his golf swing, which can propel the ball far into the green consistently. This is no surprise: his average driver head speed is 122 mph, much faster than most of his rivals can generate during any given tour.
Here are some tips for swinging a golf club like Tiger Woods.
- Take up weight training. Woods’ secret is that he goes to the gym to lift weights using bench presses, shoulder presses and squats. He makes the time for six days a week warming up, stretching his body, performing core exercises and endurance runs lasting 11 kilometers. What’s more, he does exercises and poses which imitate golf swings. It is no surprise that Woods can hit farther and last longer on the green than most of his competitors, during different seasons and on tough terrain. For him, golf isn’t just a way to relax, but a full commitment on his part.
- Visualize your swing. After reviewing videos of Woods’ swings, it’s time for you to see yourself doing the same thing. Imagine your form at the start of the swing to the follow through, from where your feet should be to the place where your club head will end up. Allowing your brain to visualize this excellent swing will let your body somehow find a way to execute it.
- Grip your club properly. A firm but not rigid grip will allow your club to swing slightly in your hands, preventing slight tremors from your arm muscles from influencing your shot. If your grip is rigid, not only will you tire yourself more and worsen your performance, but your club will not properly follow through and may send the ball to places you don’t expect.
- Assume the proper stance when you swing. Your feet should be at the same distance as the width of your shoulders with the tip of your right foot, left foot and ball following a straight line. Your spine should act as the axis of rotation for the entire swing. Your extended arms should form a triangle with your chest.
- Begin your backswing. Maintain your chest-arm triangle as you turn your shoulders slowly to deliver the full power of your upper body.
- Unhinge your wrists just prior to hitting the ball. Twist your hips and use your right knee when striking the ball then follow through. Let the club stop by itself after following its full arc. Your navel should be directed towards the ball by the end of your swing.
- Avoid an attitude that prevents you from thinking like a Tiger. Clear your mind with every swing and do not hesitate in your action. Perform all your analysis and checklist during practice but once you are in an actual game, your mind must be focused only on your swing. Over-thinking can lead to minute, disruptive changes in your performance, further leading into a worsening game. Analyze your swings at the end of the day by reviewing videos of your swings.
Remember, Tiger Woods started practicing golf at a young age, spending more than a decade honing his skills. His abilities don't only lie in his swing but in handling other golf challenges with aplomb, as well.