As the title of this volume of the New Horizons Golf Approach Pocket Coach Series implies, the topic of
this book’s concern is playing golf athletically. Since I was a boy I’ve always considered golf a sport,
and like all other sports, I’ve treated golf as an athletic endeavor.
It seemed to me that the strength, flexibility, and eye-hand coordination necessary to play sound golf
was no different than those needed for tennis and baseball. Of course, tennis and baseball required
that you run and golf doesn’t.
However, golf is more of an endurance race. It requires the type of stamina that comes from walking
the course while carrying your golf bag and managing the course. So, even though the game of golf
may have a slower pace than other athletic games, it is still a sport, and therefore can be pursued
Now there are many who might argue that golf is not a sport and is therefore not an athletic game.
They may try to convince you that the use of golf carts in the modern game reduces golf to simply a
They argue that the lack of speed also diminishes the game’s athleticism. However, a brief
comparison between golf and baseball will show that baseball has more downtime for each player
than golf does. It will also show that golfers make more swings in a round of golf than baseball
players do in 9 innings.
Finally, the speed of the golfer does not lay in the swiftness of his run it shows up in the swiftness of
his clubhead speed.
Thus, I once again contend that golf is an athletic endeavor. What other qualities point to the
athleticism of a game or sport? As with tennis, balance, rhythm, and timing are required for precise
eye-hand coordination. The ability to rotate your body and shift your weight as a means of producing
power, as in throwing and batting. The type of dexterity needed for controlling the spin on a ball, as in
pitching a baseball.
If you think about it, balance, rhythm, and timing are the cornerstones of a sound golf swing. Rotating
your body and shifting your weight are the basic motions used to generate power, and the dexterity
needed to control the spin of the ball is used in all shots from putting to drawing and fading your
With all this in mind, I am going to introduce an athletic approach to the game. So, if you now believe
that golf is a sport, and if you want to play golf athletically, then this book is for you.
One last note before we get started, I am going to describe all the physical actions in terms of being a
right-sided golfer. I apologize to the left-handed golfer, but the condensed format of this Pocket
Coach book makes it too difficult to describe all actions from both sides of the ball.
This is the table of contents from The Athletic Golfer. It may give
you some insights as to the topics covered in the New Horizons
Golf Approach Pocket Coach Volume Three.
Table Of Contents
Part One – The Approach
The Golfer’s Ideal
Part Two – The Process
The Basic Motion
A Natural Progression
Part Three – The Practice
Weight Shift Leads the Dance
Finish The Turn
Developing Good Feel
Train, Train, Train
Let’s Play Golf
Let’s Play G-O-L-F TM
Playing for a target score is only one way of implementing an on course strategy. I believe to truly
play the game you cannot worry so much about your scoring strategy. I think everyone is aware of
how well they are scoring, and they know they need to score as low as they can. So, since the idea
of scoring is always present you do not need to focus on it. Instead, focus on playing the game.
Truly playing the game involves feeling a game that fascinates you. It involves striving to play the
type of game you usually dream of playing. It’s about finding out your potential and
manifesting it in your play. It’s about engaging yourself in the ongoing drama of sport. It’s about
absorbing yourself into the possibility of expressing your true potential.
It’s about Gaming Out Life’s Fascinations.
So, when you walk out on the golf course, I’m inviting you to take the plunge, to go for it. I’m inviting
you to play golf without putting so much emphasis on scoring low. Win or lose, score low or high,
enjoy the adventure, keep a good attitude, and take something away from every round that makes
you a more accomplished golfer.
|New Horizons Golf Approach
I n n o v a t i v e C o a c h i n g F o r G o l f e r s