Well I’ve had a busy couple of weeks. I flew out to my old stomping ground in Los Angeles to try and qualify for the Northern Trust Open. I played in a North Texas PGA event here in Dallas as well as conducting a few lessons in the cold and a whole lot of mobile lessons inside the academy at

I missed qualifying for the next stage of the Northern Trust Open by a couple of shots. I shot 70 (-2) and 68 (-4) made it through to final qualifying. I was 3 under playing the last hole and bogeyed it so as you can imagine it left a rather dissatisfying taste in my mouth. I headed back to Dallas after spending a few days working with John Beliakoff on his game out in the desert. Look out for John in the near future, he’s trying out for Canadian Tour and monday qualifying on the and PGA tours this year.

I also played in a northern texas pga event at Las Colinas CC in Dallas last week. I shot rounds of 73, 74 to just put me outside the money spots. The funny thing is I didn’t play to badly at all. My putting however, is still a little stale after the winter break and I’m spending a lot of time working on it on the putting green up at Stonebridge CC in Mckinney, Texas where I’m based.

On the playing side, I’ll be working tirelessly on my game (when I’m not teaching) during the next few months as there’s qualifiers for the HP Byron Nelson, Shell Houston Open as well as the WNB Classic on the tour.

I realised a long time ago that I can’t only be a teacher of the game. My competitive nature has to be out there pegging it up against all these other great players around the country.

Don’t worry though – I take my laptop everywhere I go. So if you send me your swing I’ll send you your mobile lesson back that evening.


I’ve read a lot of books over the years and none have made more sense than the one I’ve recently finished called “swing the handle, not the clubhead” by the little pro, Eddie Merrins. I wrote a blog about it here.

I love coming across books like these because they reconfirm in my mind what’s important in the golf swing. Mr Merrins thoughts throughout the book are all about paying attention to the hands and forearms during the swing.

Probably my favorite quote in the book goes as follows.. “It is handy to look at the golf swing as being a three-part-affair. (1) The backswinging of the arms, (2) The lateral thrusting of the legs, (3) The forward swinging of the arms. The co-ordinating of parts (2) and (3) the thrusting of the legs and the forward swinging of the arms – represents “timing”. It will suffice at this point to stress that your leg-thrust should terminate your backswing and preceed your downswing. This is commonly termed “The move into the ball”.

I highly recommend this book. It’s not that long and you could probably get through it in a couple of hours. It’s now out in ebook format so that’s why I downloaded it. Although originally written in 1973,  Mr Merrins clearly had the swing figured out.

The more I read about the swing the more and more I’m convinced that many of the secrets are found in the hands. It’s very easy to get bogged down with what the body is doing for example during the move but nothing will ever replace a trained pair of hands.


Yes, it was a super cold winters day..

I’ve recently started teaching my wife out at Stonebridge CC and the first couple of things I’m coaching her on are keeping her weight forward and how to move and control her hands.

Granted I’m not allowing her to swing much more past half way back and half way through but she’s starting to pick it up a lot sooner than someone who spends hours perfecting his/her setup and posture etc.

I’ll get her balancing on her forward leg and simply controling the clubface with her left wrist. One of the first things I taught her was to make sure the back of her left hand was facing towards the target at impact. This combined with getting her hands down under her left shoulder at impact makes it easy for her to digest the movement. The hands should be under the left shoulder at impact because the left shoulder is the center of the swing.

Naturally she started off by moving her hands back and forth a little straight and not in a circular fashion. But after a short while she was making nice contact with the ball after I told her to hover the club over the ground and not fully ground it.

This is also an excellent tip for any level of golfer. When the club is grounded at address you lose the counterbalancing feeling of the handle in the heel part of the left palm. This is an essential angle that we have to produce in the setup to allow the hands and wrists to hinge and function properly in the swing. If you do ground the club on the ground, make sure you’re only lightly tapping the ground with the sole of the club. This will help the feeling in your hands and also promote the correct amount of squeezing, which should be mainly in the last three fingers of the left hand.

I often make notes as I read though great books. While it’s fresh in my mind, here’s a few other great tit bits from Mr Merrins..

– “The way you setup to the ball largely determines how you will swing”

– “During the swing your wrsits should hinge and unhinge at the base of the thumbs”

– “I personally do not feel that stance alignment has much effect on shot direction, which is determined by the arms and the path along which they swing the club”

– “Women who wear high heeled shoes, who tend to force weight forward onto their toes, must make special effort to offset this tendancy during their golf swing”

– “To offer relexation and minimal tension to the swing, all joints of the body – knuckles, wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, knees and even toes knuckles – should be completely free, unlocked and unstiffened, both at address and thoughout the swing”

– “Setup practice drill – Curl your toes back and up as you set up to the shot during your next practice session. Then actually swing from that position. Continue swinging until you can maintain balance throughout your stroke. This drill will force you to set up with your weight properly distributed onto the balls and heels of your feet and will offset any tendancy to shift it forward onto your toes during your swing”

– “You should always retain a mental picture of the target in your minds eye as you setup to address the ball”

– “You may concentrate on your mechanics, and learn to execute them perfectly, but you will never advance beyond the elementary grades of a golfer until you learn to hit shots a pre-determined distance, in a pre-determined direction, on a pre-determined trajectory, with a pre-determined shape, to a pre-determined target”

I don’t know about you but I’m off to practice those last two quotes..

Feel free to leave a comment or question below and I’ll get to it when I can.



P.S. If you’d like me to help you with your game and can’t get out to see me at Stonebridge CC, Join my online academy and let me show you the light with mobile lessons. Join up here if you’re interested.