Why Is It So Hard To Hit A Golf Ball?


Have you ever thought, why is it so hard to hit a golf ball?

Trust me, we have all been there.  If you are a beginner hang in there and check out our tips below to get you started in the game.

Golf is a difficult game, even for those that have been playing 10, 20 or even 30 or more years.  It takes a great deal of skill, but it is possible to build the skill over the years.  

In addition to the tips, we are going to provide you some awesome online golf instructors to follow with some amazing tips to get you started!

Frustrated with your golf game? Check out our 5 tips below!

Why Is It So Hard To Hit A Golf Ball?

Ultimately, there is a great deal of speed and different angles involved that take a high level of skill.  When you consider that the golf swing can be around 90 to 100 miles per hour and all of the variables involved, one can start to understand why it is so difficult. 

Consider the Ball Flight Laws below to understand the difficulty in hitting a golf ball.  However, make sure you stay around to understand how you can control these with some amazing instructors below.

Why? If you understand the ball flight laws you can start to become your own swing instructor and make corrections on the range or the course by reading the flight of your golf ball and also understand why the game of golf is so difficult.  

Too often golfers turn to the video of their swing when everything you need to know can be read off of your ball flight.  Did you know that your ball flight can tell you the following:

  • Where your club face was at impact.
  • If your swing path was left or right of the club face.

Once you know these two items you can make the corrections by checking out our 2nd Tip on understanding what swing thoughts can help you get the proper matchups.

So let’s dive into the ball flight laws:

  • Generally speaking, the golf ball will start where the club face is aiming.
  • The golf ball will then curve away from the swing path.

There are two different lines that we must understand.  The target line and the start line.  The best golfers start the ball left or right of the target line and then curve the ball back towards the target.

Let’s go over some examples to help you better understand the ball flight laws.

Example A:  Let’s say that the club face is 3 degrees right of the target line and the swing path is 5 degrees right of the target line.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start right of the target line and draw back towards the target.  This is known as a push draw.

Example B: Let’s say the club face is 3 degrees right of the target line, same as in example A, but the swing path is only 1 degree right of the target line.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start to the right of the target line and will fade to the right.  Keep in mind that the ball will curve away from the swing path.  In this example, both the club face and the swing path are to the right and the ball will curve away from the path.

Example C: Let’s say the club face is 3 degrees to the left of the target line and the swing path is 5 degrees left of the target line.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start to the left and curve to the right.  This would be a pull fade or pull slice.  Keep in mind that even though the face is closed to the target line, it is open to the swing path and the ball will curve away from the swing path.

Example D: Let’s say the club face is 3 degrees to the left and the swing path is only 1 degree to the left.  What will the ball do?

Answer: The ball will start left and curve left.  This shot would look like a pull draw. 

Hopefully, these examples help you understand the club face and swing path correlation and how they match up.  Once you understand these ball flight laws, it will help you read your own shots and possibly make in round adjustments.

5 Tips and Instructors To Help You Regardless of Experience

  1. Understand the Fundamentals of Golf
  2. Utilize Your Athletic Ability
  3. Utilize Vision and A Natural Motion
  4. Try An Alternative Method
  5. Have Fun!

Tip #1 – Understand the Fundamentals of Golf

The Stack and Tilt Instructors said it best when they described what they believed were the fundamentals of golf.  They explained it somewhat similar to this:

  • The first fundamental is the golfer’s ability to control the bottom of the golf swing.  The best golfers will hit the ground in the intended spot, close to 100% of the time.
  • The second fundamental is the golfer’s ability to control the curve of the golf ball. The best golfers are able to start the ball to the right or left of the target line and have the ball curve towards the target without the ball over curving past the target.
  • The third fundamental is the golfer’s ability to have enough power to play the golf course.  This means they are able to hit the ball far enough to play the course in regulation.

They explained that among the greatest golfers of all time there were different grips and different aim points. The fundamentals in golf are not grip, and alignment. 

Ben Hogan played with a weak grip, while Lee Trevino had a strong grip.  Lee Trevino and Fred Couples aimed way to the right, while Sam Snead and Arnold Palmer aimed well to the right.

Drill:

A key is to control your start line and your curve, which is the 2nd fundamental in golf.  I would recommend the stock draw shot.  Here is a drill you can practice at the driving range:

  • Setup an alignment stick about 7 to 10 yards in front of you on the target line. 
  • See how many shots out of 10 you can start to the right of the target.
  • Track this data over time and continue to work on your start line.

The Stack and Tilt method is method that creates a system and utilizes a weight forward system that controls fundamental 1 and 2 and different levers for fundamental 3.  

To fully understand the Stack and Tilt approach, check out this post.

Tip #2 – Utilize Your Athletic Ability

Golf doesn’t have to be difficult.  There are some impressive instructors that promote the use of your athletic ability.  Many people played baseball as a youth and can tap into their ability to control the clubs with their hands. 

Overthinking the golf swing and trying to get into different positions can make the golf swing very difficult.

Instead, let’s focus on making an athletic motion and start to train your hands to control the club face.  Thinking back to the ball flight laws, being able to control the club face is the ultimate keep to hitting the ball somewhat straight.

Mike Malaska is one of our favorite online golf instructors and is very good with former athletes.  A former baseball player himself, he spends a great deal of time talking about training the right hand and directing the momentum in the golf swing.

Full review of Mike Malaska and further insight into his swing philosophy.


Here is an excellent video by Mike Malaska:

Tip #3 – Utilize Vision and A Natural Motion

Our next online golf instructor that can really help your game is Shawn Clement.  He spends a lot of time discussing allowing our body and mind to tap into the gravity geniuses that we are all as humans. 

He shows movement after movement that is natural and that our body is designed to do.

If you are someone that is always worried about positions Mike Malaska and Shawn Clement can truly help you.  I think one of the most frustrating things about the game of golf is over thinking about how to move a club or your body or trying to hit key positions. 

The teaching of these two instructors is special and great for those that have struggled to figure out this game.

Clement also helps us setup to hit a draw or fade to control the ball flight laws.  This is all done in the pre shot setup and encourages us to make a natural, throwing like motion.

If you have never hit a draw, he has some excellent videos to teach this simple motion, once again based on the ball flight laws above.  The more we can understand the ball flight laws the better chance we have of understanding why the teaching of Mike Malaska and Shawn Clement is helpful. 

Back in the day, people had to rely on the same old teaching found in golf publications.  Now we have access to some of the best in the world.  

Full review of Shawn Clement further insight into his swing philosophy

Shawn Clement on Making a Natural Swing:

Tip #4 – Try An Alternative Method

If you have the attitude that you have been there and done that with all of the traditional method golf swing, then maybe it is time to try the Jim Venetos approach to golf. 

Or if your body is at the point where you can’t make the movements necessary to generate enough speed.  

Jim Venetos promotes an approach where you preset into a closed position with a significant amount of weight on your front foot.  You then stay still in your backswing and follow your closed body alignment to create an in to out path that produces a beautiful slight draw.  

The swing truly is easy to do and you might be surprised at the speed that is created.  Also your compression of the ball and clean contract (fundamental 1 and 2) are enhanced by not trying to add a bunch of extra movement to your swing.

Many golfers play for years trying to open their hips or move their shoulders in certain patterns only to discover Jim Venetos and find out how simple the golf swing truly can be.

To read a full review on Jim Venetos, check out this post.

Jim Venetos Talk You Through One of His Swings:

Looking to gain more Speed and Distance in your swing. Two Options:

SuperSpeed Golf – Read our Full Review

Gain 30-40 yards in 30 Days – Swing Man Golf

Tip #5 – Have Fun

ONe way to have fun is to play different sets of tees.  I would recommend playing the shortest tees and learning how to score.  Make some pars, gain some confidence and then progress back to further tees. 

Don’t stand there and try to conquer the 6500 yard course and shoot 100 or higher.  Instead focus on making some parts even on 300 yard holes.  This will help you learn to score, have some fun and build some confidence.

In the game of golf there are many different ways to learn to score, but the quickest way to improevemnt is with the short game.  Practice chipping and putting around your house and become skilled in these ares.

Here are 22 practice games to make your practice more fun!

Regardless of your current level, check out our series on getting to the next level.

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.

One last thing that has helped me gain significant distance is the SuperSpeed Training System.  This overspeed based system where you train every other day for about 10-15 minutes with different swing sticks can help you increase your swing speed by 5-8% which can be 20-30 hards.  Who wouldn’t want an extra 20-30 yards. 

Plus it helps improve your mechanics.

SuperSpeed Golf – Use Discount Code Golfjourney365 for some savings!

Some direct links to Rain or Shine Golf for pricing and financing:

Take Action – What You Can Do Today to Get Better

A Golf Simulator is a game changer. Check out our links above to Rain or Shine Golf!

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:

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