Golf can be hit and myth if you're getting friendly tips

KEVIN HAIME

, Last Updated: 9:12 AM ET

If you stand on a practice tee long enough, you'll hear every golf swing myth there is.

I hear the same bad thoughts every day. Well-meaning armchair golf coaches are doling out the advice, but not really helping anybody.

Husbands are giving their wives suggestions, parents are trying to help their kids and buddies are trying to help each other.

Unfortunately, nobody is getting any better because there are some real golf swing "urban myths" out there being passed down and around from golfer to golfer. Getting rid of them seems almost impossible.

No matter how many good books, videos and teachers are out there, the same old swing-killing myths keep being repeated.

It's like a "bad golf" virus that there's no antibody for.

If you're ever going to get better at golf, you have to eliminate the golf swing myths from your game and you have to be more selective with your learning.

Why anyone accepts advice from a guy who plays lousy golf himself is beyond me. Here are the top three swing myths that you have to eliminate from your game.

KEEP YOUR HEAD DOWN: Without question the worst and most common advice any golfer gets is to keep their head down. Plain and simple, you cannot swing a club if you keep your head down.

Your head should rotate with your shoulders during your backswing and it needs to rotate and release with your body so you can swing to a finish.

If you keep your head too still or tucked down into your chest, you'll have no chance of hitting a good shot.

A lot of swing flaws make it look like your head pops up and causes a lousy shot but it just isn't so.

You may be lifting out of your posture or you may have bad leg work but bad swings and shots have nothing to do with head lift.

If you want to hit the ball longer, stop pinning your head to your chest and start making sure you release to a full finish.

KEEP YOUR LEAD ARM STRAIGHT: One of the worst things you can do for your swing is to try and keep your lead arm too straight. As a matter of fact, overextending your arm can even lead to injury in the worst case and introduce swing killing tension in the best case.

Just think about it for a second. When you throw a ball, swing a tennis racket, or even sweep the floor with a broom, do you ever try to keep your arms dead straight?

It can hurt your golf to bend your arms too much at the top of your swing, but it's just as bad to keep your lead arm locked up like Frankenstein.

I like to tell golfers to try to maintain a little extension for arc size at the top of the backswing, but allowing your lead arm to bend a little into a crescent shape is just fine.

The bottom line: Folding your lead arm like a lawn chair is bad, but so is keeping it over extended and tense like a steel rod.

SLOW YOUR SWING DOWN: All the time, golfers tell me that they're trying to slow down their swing. Why?

The only thing you'll get with a slower swing is shorter shots.

Sure, you can compensate better at slow speed, but you're not really fixing anything.

Your shots may go a little less crooked, but it's a lousy solution to a swing flaw.

It's the same logic as thinking you're fixing faulty alignment on your car by driving slower. Sure, it may take you longer to end up in the ditch, but you really haven't fixed anything.

Do you really think Tiger Woods swings slow to hit the ball 300 yards? His club head is moving 170 mph!

Even sweet swinging Ernie Els or Fred Couples are swinging at tremendous speed.

Couples has terrific tempo and rhythm, but don't kid yourself ... he is really swinging fast. It's an optical illusion. When an athlete is in perfect balance, what he's doing looks easier and slower than it actually is.

If you want to hit the ball better and farther, work with a pro on your fundamentals, timing, and rhythm, but slowing your swing down will never help.


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