Why Muscle Memory Boosts Golf Performance

By Dr. Fran Pirozzolo

Why Muscle Memory Boosts Golf Performance

There is a lot of marvelous golf instruction today that urges player to be more athletic and more natural as opposed to players who in recent times have become a little too technical and mechanical. One of the things that I see traveling in professional baseball circles, for example with the New York Yankees, is that it is always easy to get a professional baseball player to use an existing motor program, that is to do something that he already knows how to do.

Is the Golf Swing Really Like a Baseball Swing?

It was the immortal Ben Hogan who talked about the mental model of the golf swing being like a second baseman or shortstop making the short throw sidearm or underarm to second base. For me as a golf teacher of professional athletes in other sports like baseball, I often tell them when they are confused to feel like they are making that short throw from short stop to second base.

It is remarkable how great athletes can make that feeling work in their swing. The lesson is that we all have existing programs or motor programs running through our heads and that under pressure we should do what we know how to do rather than trying to fix our swing with mechanical thoughts and positions. I believe that we will all play better under pressure situations if we go to what we know how to do, an existing motor program.

Category: Practice
Sub-Category: Fitness, Psychology
About the Instructor
Dr. Fran Pirozzolo
Dr. Fran Pirozzolo
Woodlands Sports Medicine Centre
1441 Woodstead Court
The Woodlands, TX 77380
fpirozzolo@aol.com

Fran Pirozzolo is the mental coach to many PGA Tour Pros and is a performance coach for the New York Yankees. He is also the author of The Putter's Pocket Companion.


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