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Video Tip from Coastal Golf Academy: Deconstructing a Big Golf Advice Myth

Scott Tanguay of the Coastal Golf Academy at Whispering Pines Golf Course in Myrtle Beach, S.C. is here to dispel one of the most common instruction myths in all of golf. Check it out in this video tip!

Scott Tanguay:

Hey, everybody. Scott Tanguay here at the Coastal Golf Academy at Whispering Pines Golf Course right across the street from Myrtle Beach International Airport. Come by and see us any time. What I want to talk to you today about is this classic myth that everyone comes to me for help for: “keep your head down.” We’ve got to get rid of this thought, okay? We don't need to keep our head down.

What happens when you keep your head down, you got your buddy on the range, he's telling you, “Here, Johnny, keep your head down.” What happens is, we get a swing like this where you're just staring at the ground, nothing else is moving. You end up kind of scooping up your arms even worse. If you try and keep your head down for too long, you end up running into more problems than less.

This would be an example of that shot. I come in, everyone's telling me to keep my head down. Then we get that, right? You're going to top a lot of shots, chunk a lot of shots, and it just feels uncomfortable. What we want to do is get a little bit more athletic and not worry so much about keeping our head down, but worry more about, “Am I turning my body and keeping my arms extended?”

A good drill to do with people is, you throw the alignment stick in your belt here. When I'm coming down to the ball, if I'm not turning my hips here and keeping my arms nice and straight, we're probably going to miss it anyway, right? The whole “keeping your head down,” see how that doesn't allow me to turn and extend my arms? Again, here's the bad one. If the stick doesn't move, right? I kept my head down, but I got the same topping result.

Now here's the good one, if I turn my lower body. Imagine if you were throwing a baseball, would you throw it and then turn? No, that would look crazy, wouldn't it? We step into it, then you throw it. We're here. In slow motion, it looked like this. We're turning, getting my lower body out of the way. Bam. We hit that golf ball and now that I'm out of my own way, right, I can kind of extend through to the finish. It looks something like this. All right.

Don't worry about keeping your head down. Watch this. I'll even pull my head up before I hit it and it'll still work. Watch. This time I'm going to lift up, but it'll still be a good shot. All right.

Don't worry about keeping your head down. Worry more about, am I turning and am I extending?