Golf is a complicated game.
During a round of golf, a golfer is required to swing a 45” driver over 100 miles per hour in many cases and then find a way to hit a delicate 60 degree lob wedge from 75 yards over a bunker without hitting it too far.
Add to the mix the rounds where your swing feels awkward, weird or a bit off and one can see why golf scores can have a 15-20 stroke swing from one day to the next.
We have all experienced the rounds where the swing feels very good and on the right plane, we play some quality golf and might even have the thought, “I got this figured out!”
Until the next time you play and all of a sudden your swing feels awkward and almost like you have never played the game before.
But why does this happen?
Why Does My Golf Swing Feel Awkward?
The golf swing is an intricate athletic movement where a golfer might swing over 100 miles per hour with the driver. From day to day, a golfer might have different feels that work or escape them on that day. There are a number of factors that could influence this: current body state, a change in setup, a change in intent, nerves or tension, and visuals that impact the swing.
Below, I will give an overview of each of the potential reasons and include some solutions to help you navigate this awkward or weird feeling during a round or post round.
At the end, I will also provide some skill based drills you can utilize to continue to build your skill and your swing to help you become more consistent in your golf journey.
Reason #1: Current Body State
From day to day, our body can feel different. There are days when we might feel loose and flexible and then days where our body is tight and not as responsive. Factors such as sleep, activities during that day or workout schedules can have an impact on how we feel when we are out on the golf course trying to hit a variety of shots.
Solution: If you want to play your best golf, track your sleep patterns, workout schedules and consider adding a stretching routine to your daily routine. See if there is a pattern between the different routines and patterns and the scores you shoot or simply how good your swing feels from round to round.
Even if your swing looks weird, you can play great golf!
Reason #2: A Change in Setup
When a golfer completes his or her setup, there are several things that could go wrong that can make the swing feel awkward that day. Here is a quick list:
- Did your grip get weaker or stronger without awareness?
- Did you start aiming further left or right without awareness?
- Did your stance get more narrow or wide without intent?
Solution: Have some checkpoints! I would recommend taking a video of your golf swing when the swing is feeling good and producing the shots you want. When things start to get a bit off, go ahead and record your swing again and put them side by side. Start with the grip, alignment and stance width before getting too far into the weeds. There might be a quick solution that you spot right away.
Reason #3: A Change in Intent
There are times when a golfer is playing and can be focused on the shot they want to hit and the target they want to hit it towards. And then there are times when the golfer becomes golf ball bound. They are simply focused on trying to make solid contact and lose sight of the actual shot they want to hit. This can result in early casting of the club or hitting shots off line since the main focus is quality contact.
Solution: Go ahead and make sure you are target focused in the golf swing. When a golfer becomes golf ball bound, they are going to struggle. Pick your target, select your shot and activate the artistic side of your golf brain to produce a shot that you need.
Reason #4: Nerves or Tension
This has happened to every golfer out there. There are rounds where you want to play really well. Maybe it is a tournament, a round with a buddy that you want to impress or there is some money on the line. The experiences and feelings that can flood a golfer can be overwhelming and the golfer feels awkward over every shot due to nerves or tensions. It can feel weird, but many of us have been through this.
Solution: Focus on sticking with your routine and maintaining a focus on the target. Swing towards that target and allow the body and brain to take over. In many cases, you might be trying to control everything in the swing vs letting the swing happen. Take a deep breath and let the training and system you have take over. You can’t control everything in a 100 mile per hour golf swing!
Reason #5: Visuals
We could hit 11 perfect drives that day and you get to the 12th drive of the day and there is out of bounds on both sides of the hole. You see the white stakes as your step to the tee and that is all you can think about.
Or maybe there is a water hazard on one side of the hole and those red stakes and the water stick out in your mind. Somewhere you fear the results of a shot that is hit out of bounds or in a hazard and your swing tenses up, your swing feels awkward and you hit a poor shot.
Golf architects are great at messing with golfers and providing visuals that are meant to be intimidating and bring some fear into your golf swing!
Solution: Stay target focused in your approach and don’t try to control your golf swing. Pick your target, commit to it and make a tension free swing! Live with the results and don’t play golf in fear! Remember that golf is supposed to be fun! Enjoy the challenge and embrace it!
Next Steps: Build Skill!
Below, we will dive into the following drills/training protocols:
- Low Point Control Drill
- Stock Shot Drill
- OverSpeed Training
Ultimately, golf comes down to three basic skills that every golfer should be working on on their journey. The adjustments to the elements listed above should be with the goal of improving in one of these three areas:
- Low Point Control: This plays a major impact on the quality of the strike. The best golfers are able to control their low point over 99% of the time, while the weakest golfers struggle to control the low point even 50% of the time.
- Start Line and Predictable Curve: The best golfers are able to start their golf ball on the intended start line a high percentage of the time and have confidence that the ball will have a predictable curve (draw or fade). This is often referred to as a stock shot.
- Distance: The golfer must have enough swing speed to play the course.
Drill #1: The Low Point Control Drill
- Take some yard paint and paint a 1-2 yard long line.
- Setup with 55% of your weight on your front side.
- Try to hit the target side of the line and see how many times out of 10 you can do this successfully!
- Repeat this drill every day for a month, tracking your progress and your ability to do this successfully in trials of ten.
- You may need to start with half swing and progress to full swings.
If you are struggling, put more weight forward and work on keeping your head still to help control the low point in the swing.
Drill #2: Stock Shot Drill
- At the driving range, set up an alignment stick about 6-8 yards in front of you, straight down your target line.
- If you have a second alignment stick, set the stick 3-4 feet right of the first stick (for a draw) or left of the first stick (for a fade).
- Complete your initial assessment to see how many times out of 10 you can start the ball to the right or left of your target. Pick one side and measure your game at this point.
- The goal is to eventually complete this successfully 7 out of 10 times!
Training Protocol: Speed Training Drill With SuperSpeed Golf
The game of golf has evolved to where speed is important in the game of golf. The faster your swing, the further the ball flies and the more shorter irons or wedges you have into a green.
Training for speed is a great idea and one worth exploring!
If you are going to train for speed, I would highly recommend the SuperSpeed Training System.
Gone are the days of simply being content with the distance you currently hit your golf ball. Many older golfers have proven over the past several years that an increase in swing speed is possible.
There are training systems to help you get your game to the next level and distance is arguably the fastest way to make this happen!
My number one recommendation is to check out SuperSpeed Golf and their protocols to help you find a safe way to increase your swing speed.
I spent many years wondering how I can increase my swing speed. When I was playing junior golf, we weren’t fortunate enough to have some of the training aids and knowledge that is now available. Smart people have studied the golf swing and have created training aids and protocols to help all golfers increase their distance!
At around the same time, the statistics from the PGA Tour have become more clear and the importance of speed is acknowledged by many to be a key to being the best on the PGA Tour.
Within the past several years, there have been several products hit the market to make speed gains possible. While many people for many years waited for the latest driver to come out to gain an additional 5-10 yards, you can now do this even with your current clubs.
Did you know that with the SuperSpeed Training System you can gain 5-8% increase in swing speed as early as the first training session? This would allow you to gain somewhere between 10 and 30 yards depending on your current swing speed.
The SuperSpeed Training System is based on three different swing speed sticks all weighing at different weights. There is a green club that is 10% lighter than the average driver, the blue club which is 5% lighter and the red club which is actually 5% heavier!
Following their prescribed protocols the golfer completes the training every other day. The total time to complete most of their protocols is between 10-15 minutes. Most people can find the time to make this happen. The golfer will also need a swing radar to measure their progress.
The science behind the SuperSpeed Training System is based on overspeed training. Overspeed training has been around for several decades now and has been used by olympic athletics in the sport of Track and Field.
The science behind this overspeed training is based on the premise that your brain will only allow your body to move as fast as it feels it can stop safely! So, you get to work and swing the clubs as fast as possible, retraining your brain to allow you to swing your driver faster.
For more permanent results, the golfer should continue these training protocols for several months. The initial 5-8% is great and can become more permanent with the right length of training. The golfer can expect to continue to break down barriers every several months at a 1-2% increase.
My own experience has been an increase of 7-10 miles per hour on average from between 98-101 all the way up to 106-109. My goal is to hit the PGA Tour average of 113 mph in the coming months. I will continue to train every other day and watch in amazement as I am hitting drivers longer now than ever before!
Phil Mickelson (a senior golfer now) has been known to increase his swing speed in the past year or so and is close to 120 miles per hour in his swing speed. There are potential results for golfers of all ability levels and age!
|Original Swing Speed||After 4-6 Weeks||New Carry Distance||Total Distance|
Final Thoughts: Take Action
Let’s get to work! Find a way to get better and start building some skill. Go ahead and track how your swing feels throughout the golf season and see what you are doing on your best rounds and your worst rounds. Did your pre pre-round routine change? Did you lack sleep? Did you have a heavy workout prior to a round? Be aware of the different variables that could make your golf swing feel awkward and at the same time build skill!
My Secret To Golf Improvement
Let’s face it, in order to get really good at golf, we must practice frequently. About three years ago, I made the leap and invested in a golf simulator build for my garage. I went with a SkyTrak Launch Monitor and the TGC software and can now play over 100,000 courses including Augusta, Pebble Beach, Bethpage Black, Whistling Straits. St. Andrews and many other of the top 100 courses in the world.
This golf simulator setup, which is more affordable that you might imagine, has been a game changer. I can now play golf everyday of the year regardless of rain, snow, cold weather or time of day. I can practice or play rounds of golf. I can stand in the 11th fairway at Augusta and with the auto-rewind feature I am able to practice my approach shots from various differences.
It is worth checking out through Rain or Shine Golf as they offer some incredible packages along with financing offers that are difficult to beat.
Some direct links to Rain or Shine Golf for pricing and financing:
Take Action – What You Can Do Today to Get Better
What does this mean for you? I believe in the following recipe to get better:
1 – Improve your motion in the golf swing by identifying a golf instructor. Here are some options:
Here is a list of golf instructors that we have reviewed:
2 – Train to swing faster and improve your swing speed. Here are some options:
Looking to gain more Speed and Distance in your swing. Two Options:
3 – Understand course strategy and work to break through your next barrier. Here is a series on breaking through:
We have provided guides on how to break 100, 90, 80 and 70. Check out more below, if interested.
4 – Practice Frequently
Did you know that I build a golf simulator in my garage and have played over 500 rounds of golf on my SkyTrak system? It has been a game changer and one worth checking out. Here are some of my other posts on golf simulators frequently asked questions:
- Is a Golf Simulator Worth It?
- How to Build a Golf Simulator?
- What is the Best Golf Simulator?
- Golf Simulator Accessories?
- How to Build a Golf Simulator for under $7000
- Top 11 Reasons to Buy a SkyTrak
- How to Build a Golf Simulator for Under $1000
- Why Build A Golf Simulator?
- What Space is Needed?
- Can A Golf Simulator Improve My Game?
- How Much Does A Golf Simulator Cost?
- Don’t Forget to Check out our 15 best golf swings of all time.