Golf is a hard game, mighty hard, if you have to learn all these little factors from experience, but if the player can get the right idea in his mind the shots are not difficult to play. That is why so many golfers in talking about the game keep saying, “it is all mental,” as though there was some mysterious gift which made a golfer of a man.
I never took much stock in any method of playing a stroke which could not be explained, and I think the average golfer is built the same way. Of course, after a thousand attempts with as many different schemes for playing a shot, and still without success, a player is apt to despair, but he should not.
Any man of average intelligence and physique can play shots as well as the best of them if he can get the correct basis to work upon into his head.
When you keep making a failure of a certain shot just stop and consider what you are doing and what you are trying to accomplish and don’t try schemes unless you have a definite purpose in using them. By referring to figure 1 you will understand why “keeping the head still” is the foundation of golf. If you move the head by raising up you destroy the whole plane upon which the swing is based and make the twist of the body act nearer the planes shown in figure 2.
If you try to use any lift at all in the stroke you can easily understand why you will be going over your ball, as any twisting motion that does not keep the body tilted is bound to be acting nearer the planes shown in figure 2.
If you attempt to gain power by using anything but the twist of the body, which you are forced to do when standing erect, or anywhere near erect, you can see that the twist will be wasted and you are compelled to use all your muscular energy to maintain your balance. If you attempt to strike the ball on any other plane or angle than the lower one, shown in figure 1, you will find that the club is not built to connect with the ball on such a plane.