Old School Golf Instruction


I recently overheard one of my students telling a newer member that I provide “old school” golf instruction. I didn’t know if this was an endorsement or what as I never had really thought about “old” or “new” unless we were talking about a car. As is usual, I turned to Google for an answer and after reading a dozen or so articles and discussions, determined that I was not using“old school” or “new school” golf instruction but was somewhere in the middle.

There is little doubt that seeing the numbers on a monitor showing club head speed, ball speed, launch angle, spin and exact distance with a certain golf club or a different shaft flex can be of great benefit when deciding what golf club to buy. The computer and camera can also show the student how much their club head path is off or how much their clubface is open or closed at impact but it doesn’t tell them how to correct the problem or in some cases several problems. The student can also wear a “K Vest” or other contraption like an EKG machine to monitor what every muscle and nerve in their body is doing while trying to swing a golf club. I’m not sure if the real purpose of all this technology is to really help the student or just to try to impress them with our knowledge.

What seems to be lost as we improve our ability to read a graph or understand a bunch of numbers is the old art of communication. There is the danger that pleasing the graph or trying to perfect the numbers will become more important than developing the feel and rhythm of the golf swing. Is it more important to measure the problem or try to find a way to fix it?

I’m still waiting for a machine that can tell a student just how tightly they are gripping the golf club, how much they are allowing their wrists to flex on their backswing, how long they are watching their divot after they have made contact with the golf ball, how much they are swaying back to their right foot on their backswing or how to feel where their golf club is through their golf swing.

When or if these programs are developed, I will probably lean more toward “new school” but for now, I will stay somewhere in the middle or maybe tilted a little more toward “old School.” It seems to be working for my students.


Think less-Play better

Jack Gibson


“Top 100 Teachers in America”

Golf Instruction