Improve The Fundementals
By GolfSmith7 on 10/12/10
We asked for readers to send in blog posts- and Gio Marin didn't disappoint. These articles continue to keep coming in and I want to encourage you guys to keep writing! The feedback and new perspectives are fantastic. I'm sure Gio would love the feedback so let him hear it!

I have a love affair with the sport of golf and I realize you do to and I am constantly being bombarded by advertising of the latest equipment. This "new" drive will hit it "longer and straighter." This "new" putter will role "smooth and true," these are the "longest" irons, or this is a "better ball" blah, blah, blah. The truth is that proper fundamentals is what I need in order to improve my game. It’s the simple things in golf that make the difference not equipment.

I am not trying to minimize the importance of having the right flex and shaft for your equipments but they alone won’t magically improve your game. Furthermore name brand equipment is not a "magic" pill either. For the record I play with clubs from from my drivers to my wedges. My only “name brand” equipment is my Scotty Cameron putter and I love it. Yet my bad scores are due to me, not my equipment, in other words “don’t blame the arrow blame the Indian.” Let me explain what I mean.

I struggled with greens in regulation and for the longest I couldn’t figure out why. I would tend to pull my ball to the right, a dead pull. For months I thought it was my balance so I spend time transferring my weight back on my heels and for months I worked on my balance but that didn't fix the problem, still pulling. Then I realized that my weight on my feet wasn't wrong but rather my tempo was too fast. My quick back swing and even quicker down swing would throw my balance off, so I slowed my tempo to finish balanced upon release. By now having yet to fix the problem I thought about getting new blade irons because despite all my swing improvements I still kept pulling the ball. Frustrated and looking to blame my equipment I nearly dropped $1000 on Mizuno blades, then I had an "aha moment," "check your shoulders."

I had been using my feet to align myself to the target yet I was misaligning my shoulders I was always slightly open but the ball square to my open stance, hence the constant pull regardless of what else I did. Now it feels like I am aiming way right yet the results are “oh so sweet” and I didn’t need to drop $1000 on new blades, my “no name” brand are just great. That revelation got me to view other problems from a different perspective and I found an easy cure for my slight fade on my driver. No, I wasn’t swinging out-to-in hence coming across the ball, the simple solution; I was griping the driver too loosely, firmed up the grip and now I have a slight draw. What improved my lag putting? Was it my new putter? No it was firming up my right hand and the joy of sinking putts has my confidence sky high and my enjoyment of golf even higher.
So what is moral of the story is that “new equipment” to improve your game is a myth. All that does is have you fighting with your spouse, spending money you do not need and deflecting the blame on your equipment rather than in improving your fundamentals. The solution is in the fundamentals; review the simple things over and over again, your grip, your stance, your shoulders, your tempo and keep tweaking them until you realize there is a better golfer in YOU and not in new equipment. Your game will improve and the love affair will continue.

This was written by Gio Marin, a reader/follower/fellow oober and the opinions are 100% his and do not reflect those of oobgolf in anyway. Enjoy! I'm sure he's ready for your feedback.

photo source

[ comments ]
Kurt the Knife says:
they use arrows in India?
rmumph1 says:
I am having the same problems now. I pull my irons. I will have to look at my shoulder alignment. I also hit behind the ball to often. Any suggestions? I worked on transfering weight sooner, ball position, anything else to look at?
bkuehn1952 says:
Well said, Gio. Equipment often is not the root cause of our golf-related problems. A good instructor and proper practice will typically solve most issues.

I would say more but I am in a bit of a hurry. I seem to be losing distance on my drives and I need to go pickup my new $500 driver.
tcjonny says:
yeah, we have a misnomer about buying and tweaking our equipment i think. would it make a difference if i put down my $2400 set of clubs and went out and played this afternoon with my buddy's starter set provided the lofts and lie angles were the same? yeah, probably, maybe 4 strokes or so. I'd lose some distance in my drives and such. But, at the end of the summer I started working with a pro and spending 6 hours a day hitting balls, my 100% new swing will save me a heck of alot more than 4 strokes. I'm learning a TON about the biomechanics of the golf swing... yea golf!!
falcon50driver says:
Fundamental, like spelling.
Kurt the Knife says:
Yo, word up tcjonny!
I had a set of ol' wilsons.. all bent bad. I had a hard time. bent 'em up for me. had a hard time.
practiced with 'em with a couple instructors... got better. Practiced more with same instructors got a little mo' betta.
left the instructors. got new(used clubs) got wayyyy bad.
Bent up the new clubs, got a little betta.
Met up with instructor with bent up clubs... got wayyyy betta.
swing is da thing i reckon.
Bryan K says:
I've had two opportunities to experiment with equipment this year. I think there is something to it, but obviously the fundamentals are more important.

When my Ping G15 snapped its shaft, I had to play a cheap Orlimar driver for a couple of weeks while Ping honored their warranty. I lost a good 40-50 yards on that Orlimar, and it curved more than the Ping.

But the biggest change was with the Big Bertha wedges I played with for about six weeks. They just didn't feel right, and I had no consistency with them whatsoever. I went back to an Adams set, and all that was good with my chipping and pitching returned to me.

I couldn't tell you what the difference was. It could have been nothing more than confidence.
stedar says:
I had a Calaway Biggest Big Bertha for 15 years or more. Great club, never thought I'd need to change it. Went to a Golf house, tried some new drivers and got a reading on their high tech machines. My old driver was hitting approx 220 yrds consistantly. I tried a few other drivers (R9, Ping, Calaway FTiZ and Diablo Tour. All new drivers were hitting further by a good 40yrds. I settled on the Diablo Tour, it was comfortably hitting 275 yrds with no extra effort and heading straighter than the others.
Putters were the same. I tried many, from basic to mallets. I've been playing a standard putter for 15+ years and didn't think a change would make a difference. Wrong was I. If you have a good putter and Driver, you can be more confident.
My old Irons played same as the new, don't need to change as they go the right distance, just need the direction/tempo sorted :-)
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