I have used the last couple of posts to begin teach you, the fine art of centering. As I wrote earlier in this project, I’m a fitness consultant who specializes in conscious movement and medical exercise. In the gym, I teach my clients to center during our very first session. When teaching a new exercise or movement the first instruction is always to ‘find center.’
To be centered is to be balanced. Balanced in mind, body, breath and heart. To be centered is to be whole. Wherever you find yourself reading this, take a moment to find center. Take a couple of breaths, feel the breath rise through your body. Now that you’re centered, let’s talk about a centered golf swing.
The Centered Golf Swing
Center. Begin by relaxing your feet and slightly raising your diaphragm. Take a nice easy breath from the bottom up. Notice your breath as it rises through your body. Now, focus your exhale down through your body into the ground. Breathing in this manner helps to ground you physically and enhances your feeling of being balanced.
Before we talk about gripping the golf club, grab the club you feel most comfortable using while playing.
Center. Let’s begin by taking your normal grip and taking a centered breath. Does your breath rise? If it does, you’re perfect! Don’t change anything. If you find that your breath catches and doesn’t rise freely, begin by relaxing your hands. Take another breath. Does it rise? If it does, notice where your hands are located on the club and the pressure in your grip. Practice holding the club in this manner.
If not, begin slightly repositioning your hands until you find a grip that allows you to breathe fully and easily. Once you have a grip that allows for an open flowing breath, practice gripping your clubs in this manner. This will be your new grip moving forward.
Addressing the ball:
Center over the ball with your new centered grip. Take a couple of nice open breaths. Are you relaxed standing there? Do you feel balanced and centered? If so, you’re ready to start your swing. If not, re-adjustment until you’re comfortably centered.
When addressing the ball you should be fully relaxed with an open flowing breath. If you have tension in your body or your breath doesn’t rise, take a step back and re-center. The quickest way to a consistent, reproducible swing is to start it from center.
Between now and my next post, practice the components of the swing that I have addressed this week. Before we begin talking about the rest of the swing, we need to be comfortable at address with a consistent grip.