Can You Learn Golf From A Book?
Golf is still one of the most popular sports around the world, it is only natural that there are always large numbers of people looking to learn the sport as well. With books, videos and even articles freely available online it is just a matter of time before many people try to turn to these methods alone to learn golf. Yet this can be a very huge problem that is quite complicated if you do not already have a good set of foundation skills in place. Learning to balance instruction books and golf lessons is important.
The number of people who turn to books each year to learn a new skill is quite large, and while there are plenty of books available that will allow you to improve your golf skills there are actually very few books that can give you the good, solid foundation skills that you need. This is because there is no physical way possible that a book can teach you everything that you need to know about your stance, and even the proper way to swing.
While a book can be useful to help you diagnose any problems that you have with a swing, such as your ball hooking, or even not traveling far enough, no book will be able to physically look at your swing and determine what is wrong. If you are working with an instructor, then using a book to help learn some of the other finer details of the game can be very helpful. It is important to realize that you can learn some advanced skills from reading the books, but only after you have had the lessons to master the basics.
The number of books that are available is actually quite large, probably because we are all looking for the magic bullet to make us play better. With a bit of patience you are certain that you can find the exact book that you want, without having to stress and worry about missing most of the key points to golf.
From books that focus mostly on giving tips, to those that are designed to help you troubleshoot problems that you have, to even those that help you learn all of the appropriate golf terminology there are plenty of options that you have and can explore.
The best time to use a book to learn golf is when you are just looking for tips that will allow you to improve your skills. Working towards skill building once you have the foundation is quite easy to do and using books for this purpose is a wonderful idea. However, you should always take a few lessons with a good golf instructor before you start trying to improve your skills further by using a book.
There are numerous books available, both in print and even in eBook format that will allow you to choose the best way that you can learn. If you are most comfortable reading a print book there are plenty that you can choose from, just as there are plenty of great eBooks that give you the same options as well.
Always look carefully at the information that is included in the book before you purchase. Many books are not that well written and do not include a lot of good information to help you really learn. Many are nothing more than merely fluff, which result in being a waste of money and you feeling rather frustrated with the lack of results.
Always skim over the book a bit before you purchase to ensure that you can see exactly what is included and what you can expect to really learn. If you feel that the book does not offer enough good information feel free to pass and find a different book that will suit your needs better. Finding the book that works best for your needs will likely be a personal decision, but do not be afraid to take some time and ensure you find the best book for your exact needs.
Can I Teach Myself Golf?
While it is possible to teach yourself golf it may not be the quickest way for you to reach your full potential in the game. Solid fundamentals such as grip, aim, stance and posture are an important bedrock of any golf swing. It will probably surprise many people as to how much time tour professionals spend working on the basics.
Being self-reliant is probably more important than being self-taught. If you can afford a few lessons at the outset to get you started in the right direction it will probably pay dividends in the long run.
Top 5 Golf Instruction Books
Here are some of the golf books in my own personal instruction library that have helped my game over the last quarter-century.
Golf Is Not A Game Of Perfect by Dr. Bob Rotella.
Golf psychology is still a relatively new phenomenon. Dr. Rotella is one of the most famous exponents of the craft in the world of golf.
Particularly at the elite end of the game the mental ability of a player is often what sets them ‘sapart.
As Bobby Jones said “Competitive golf is played mainly on a five-and-a-half inch course … the space between your ears”
Working on your mental game can reap great dividends.
In this book he uses a mixture of observations and anecdotes to help you understand the mental processes that could improve your golf.
He particularly talks about focusing on the process rather than the result since worrying about results is often what gets in the way of your peak performance.
The Inner Game Of Golf by W. Timothy Gallwey
The author had already produced a book on the mental game for tennis. He decided to apply those principles to his own golf game and managed to knock 15 shots off his regular score.
The Inner Game of Golf was the result. The main thrust of the book is trying to teach you how to get out of your own way so that you can perform at your best.
A Swing For Life by Sir Nick Faldo
Sir Nick Faldo, the six time major champion takes you through all aspects of your golf game. Starting with the basics such as grip and stance all the way up to shaping your shots.
She shares his thoughts on putting, chipping, pitching, irons and woods along with plenty of drills for you to work on to improve your golf.
Dave Pelz’s Short Game Bible
Dave Pelz turned his analytical mind onto the game golf to come up with some excellent ideas on how to execute and practice your short game shots.
The former NASA employee spent years researching with tour players to prove his methods would work under the highest pressure.
One Putt by Ken Brown
The former Ryder Cup player and BBC commentator was always renowned for his excellent putting during his professional career.
In his book he covers every aspect from buying putter through to grip, stance and posture. He shares with you some advice on reading greens before giving you a number of practice drills that you can work on to improve this part of your game.
Can You Learn Golf From A Book: Conclusion
I for one am proof that you can learn golf from a book since that’s exactly what I did when I took up the game.
I think the ideal combination however would be to get a solid grounding by taking a few initial lessons with a professional combined with working on some of the drills in some of the books listed above.
Eventually you should be at a point where you only need lessons to tune up or make sure you are still on the right road.