Learning Golf can be as easy as PIE

Learning Golf can be as easy as PIE

How people learn and start to improve can be broken into three simple steps. Without this sort of structure to our learning process we can often encounter less productive and unsuccessful outcomes.

The first thing we must do is find the Purpose or intention. Sometimes we may need a little help in this area because quite simply we do not always do what we are think we are doing and self – analysis can sometimes be a little difficult, however the purpose or intention must be kept reasonably simple.

Our next step is Implementation. What should carry forward from the first step is the simple idea, this does not necessarily always mean easy to do so it may require a little bit of work on the practice areas.

Evaluation should follow implementation. This should be a way to understand if we are putting into place our purpose or intention.

Here is an example of it been put into practice. In previous articles I have mentioned that putting can be broken down into three controllable components, green reading, direction & distance control. So let’s say that a golfer has determined that they need a bit better directional control. The have established that they do not start the ball on line and this is down to poor  clubface control. They find a flat straight putt of about 6 feet in length and place a chalk line on the green to the middle of the hole. They also place a gateway (perhaps 2 tees about 3 inches apart) at 2 feet from the start point. By practising in this fashion the golfer can easily see if he is getting better at controlling the starting line of the putt. In this case it is useful to have the gateway as is gives better feedback about the start line than just using the ball going into the hole as the evaluation of successful direction control. Remember that the green is not a perfect surface so a small number of putts may still come off the line even if the stroke is a good one.

Easy as PIE

This structural idea may seem simple but it is often over looked when practising.


Paul Thompson has been the Fellow PGA Professional at Powerscourt Golf Club in Wicklow since 1995. In addition to providing coaching on-site he also is a coach with The Golfing Union of Ireland. Appointments with Paul can be booked via Powerscourt Golf Club Reception: Tel (01) 204 6033 or the Golf Shop Tel (01) 204 6031. Read more about lessons from Paul Thompson by visiting the Powerscourt Golf Club Website.

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