Top 9 Training Aids For A Successful Golf Game
Ever feel like you’re not doing enough to help your game? That there might be a better, easier way to improve than countless hours beating bucket after bucket on the range? Well, of course there is. And right now, while much of the country is still gripped in the throes of winter, we asked our Facebook Nation what instruction/training aids they thought were the best to help their respective games. The answers poured in.
We eagerly acknowledge that nothing takes the place of great instruction from a PGA Professional (and some quality time on the range) but you did provide a great look at some of the best learning tools that are accessible and affordable to the everyday golfer. So without further ado, here’s their top answers on what you need to get your swing or stroke fine tuned for the best golf of your life.
9.) Mirror – Something so simple can provide a large amount of feedback. Most players have no idea how they look at various points in their set up and/or swing. This most common aid can help you see and improve a wide variety of flaws in your setup and technique.
8.) Greg Norman secret – This tool forces your hand to stay in the correct positions throughout the swing. The idea being that enough repitition will train your hands to repeat those positions when you take the swing out onto the course.
7.) Impact bags – A pretty simple concept that has helped so many golfers. You swing your club (irons) at the large bag which will teach you to hit the bag with a square clubface, solidifying your impact position with your irons. There are several manufacturers with their own versions, but the concept is pretty much the same.
6.) Tour Striker – A special club that has a small face that is higher up than any regular/normal golf club. What does it do? It forces you to swing down on the ball and creates a smaller impact area (so when you use your actual clubs, the sweet spot seems HUGE.) I’ve seen these on a number of ranges and tradeshows – the golfers who have them do love them.
5.) Benderstik – Developed by famed instructor Mike Bender, this aid provides instant feedback on your swing. The large rod and foam ball can be positioned in a variety of ways that allow you to take your normal swing and will immediately tell you if your swing is on plane, your hands are in a proper position or if your head or body are tilting incorrectly.
4.) Medicus – The famed dual hinging golf club has enjoyed a long run of success. The club breaks down on it’s dual hinges when not positioned correctly at various points throughout the swing. Jim Furyk will probably never benefit from it – but tens of thousands of amatuer golfers have.
3.) Putter Wheel – Perhaps the “hottest” aid at the 2014 PGA Show, the Putter Wheel is so simple and yet, so effective. The wheel looks like a the middle third of a golf ball, but with special color codings on the side to improve your eye positioning and the weighting will let you know if your stroke is making flush, flat contact with the ball.
2.) Alingment Rods – It’s straight sticks, right? But it provides a world of information about your swing. Check out virtually any top instructor or Tour pro. They’ll have some in there.
1.) The Orange Whip
– I’ve heard from PGA Professionals, Tour players and many amateur golfers that this is their favorite. It improves your swing, your fitness and your strength. And it fits easily into your golf bag. Hard to beat that.
What makes a great training aid? It’s intuitive, it’s original, and it gets results. We picked this year’s best in three categories—Full Swing, Putting and Mental Game—based on those criteria, along with value and usage by the game’s best players and teachers.
Enduring training aids give great feedback and aren’t complicated to use. That’s part of what has made the Orange Whip line so successful. It has a weighted ball on the end of a flexible shaft, which promotes an active pivot and arm swing. The wedge version adapts the weights on both ends to mimic an ideal swing with a lofted club.
When golf instructors find a training aid that works quickly and effectively (among the sea of over-hyped, too-complicated ones), they don’t hesitate to get them in the hands of their students. That has certainly been the case for the Impact Snap—a deceptively simple combination of grip, guide rail and sliding internal weight that reinforces the right motion of the club through impact and the correct release timing. Invented by a well-respected teacher, the device makes good impact dynamics something a player can immediately feel and hear. Make a good swing, and the internal weight clacks forward by the ball, and the guide rail bumps against the inside of your forearm. You can use it at the range or in the comfort of your living room, and it costs less than two dozen Pro V1s.
The Visio Mi mat was developed by Phil Kenyon (who works with Henrik Stenson) to place on the grass under your putter. You make swings matching the size and shape of the arcs on the ground. (Shooting 63 in the final round of the British Open is optional.)
The FocusBand has gotten attention because of its use by Jason Day—and because it looks a little strange. The neoprene headband goes around your forehead and holds three sensors that measure your brain’s electrical activity. The band connects to your phone wirelessly, and you can monitor your brain’s physiological state. If you’re tense, the avatar on the screen changes to red. If you’re in the zone, it moves to green. A series of games and drills helps you move intentionally into the green.