Over the past 7 1/2 years of my time learning, and now teaching the Moe Norman Single Plane swing to golfers worldwide, one of the most common frustrations that arise is the difficulty of making a change in the mechanics or movement. Through years of observation, I’ve found that it’s not due to a lack of desire to make the necessary change(s), nor necessarily from a lack of effort.
Sometimes, I’ve seen making changes be difficult due to lack of flexibility or mobility in a necessary body part, however, those things can be overcome a majority of the time.
I’ve always found it fascinating that when a golfer is presented Moe Norman’s Single Plane swing, and understands the golf swing as a motion to achieve an ideal impact position, they’re desire to use and match Moe as the ideal human model is very, very high. I mean, the Single Plane swing just makes sense.
But the question still remains, Why is changing, or making changes to the golf swing, difficult?
To shed some light on the answer to this questions, I want to take you back to your childhood. The first question I have for you is this: How did you learn to tie your shoes?
Funny questions, I know, but think about it for a minute. Tying your shoes today is a mechanical process that you don’t even think about to accomplish. You just tie your shoes, right?
As the father of a 7 year old boy, this story is current for me, as we’ve been working with him to teach him to tie his shoes for about 9 months now. (Maybe he’s just a slow learner, or maybe he’s more interested in wearing shoes now with velcro, but I digress).
When you learned to tie your shoes, you had someone show you how to do it. You watched as an adult demonstrated how to tie the shoelaces. Then, maybe they took your hands and tried to guide you through the process. And then you tried it on your own, and although you likely can’t remember, you probably didn’t ace the tying on your first solo try. As time passed, and you continued to practice the task of tying your shoes, you first were completely incompetent at completing the task, then you gained some competency, then, with practice, you gained mastery.
Now, thinking back on learning to tie your shoes, do you still tie your shoes to this day exactly like the person who showed and taught you? I’d be willing to be that you do.
So let’s bring that story into the context of our golf swings. As we do, let’s first think about the process you went through as a child learning to tie your shoes.
- First, you had a model. Someone showed you how to do it.
- Second, you watched the model demonstrate the task, likely over and over.
- Next, you tried to imagine yourself completing the task
- You then tried the task by yourself, and likely failed miserably
- And you continued to practice the task, failing, correcting, and failing, until at some point, you were able to accomplish the task.
- With more repetition, you then mastered the task, and it became a subconscious habit.
When it comes to the golf swing, my belief is that we can have no better model than Moe Norman. The greatest ball striker to ever live is a pretty good model in my book. Many reading this will have watched Moe’s swing, or even purchased instruction from us about learning the swing, like the Single Plane Solution. And if you’ve watched Moe’s swing, have the instruction, you likely have tried to implement what you’ve seen, and this is the point that most golfers get stuck.
Some of the most comical comments I get from golfers go something like this; “I purchased your DVD’s, watched them yesterday, and tried Moe’s swing on the course today, and it just didn’t work.” The unfortunate and sad part of that comment is that the golfer skipped about 4 steps in the learning process, and made a judgement on those results.
Changing any dynamic bodily movement must go through the learning process, and in my years, this is where most golfers cheat themselves; they don’t submit themselves to the learning process, and lose any chance of making truly significant and positive changes to their games. It’s a sad reality of this game, however, for those who understand that there is a process of learning and submit themselves to that process, the rewards are great.
In conclusion, in order to get past the difficulty of making changes that most golfers have, you simply have to return to your youth, and understand that you must crawl before you walk, and walk before you run. The process of learning doesn’t exempt us because of age, experience, or wealth. It must be adhered to, and for those that do, regardless of age, experience, or wealth, the rewards they reap are worth the effort and time that the process requires.
To your success,