Brain, Motor Learning, Podcast

Should you TRY to hit it farther? or TRY to hit it straighter?

We’ve all stood up on the tee-box of a hole with a tree lined fairway and tried to just hit that accurate controlled drive. On the opposite end of the spectrum you have a wide open fairway and it’s “bombs away”. THE QUESTION – do those mindsets coming into those tee shots help or hurt you?

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Steve Buzza gave elite level golfers (under 5 handicap) 3 different cues before hitting. Below you can see the illustration he used to help them understand what he was looking for.

After having students hit blocks of balls in a random order he found some interesting results when giving students different cues before shots…

So we’re seeing that actually TRYING to hit it farther helped people gain some distance and it didn’t mean that they increased their lateral dispersion.   And trying to hit that “accurate” shot didn’t have the benefits that you’d probably hope for.

The best thing for you is to go the range and give this study protocol a test and stick with it.  After a few sessions you might find yourself hitting the distance drive more accurate and becoming more competent with the test.


Steve Buzza is a golf professional and sport scientist looking to answer your questions to help improve your golfing experience.

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Founder and chief curator of the Golf Science Lab. Documenting what's going on in the world of research and beyond that can help you play your best golf on the golf course (when it counts). Join the movement of researched based coaching over trusting beliefs and what worked for one person a few decades ago. Follow on Twitter