“If my friend who has been playing golf for 25 years said it, it must be true!” I’m not sure which is worse – believing in golf myths or believing in golf advice from a friend!
Yes, they all mean well and some are true and do work but let’s go over some common golf myths and what they were derived from. Here are some random myths to discuss.
Golf Myth: I’m Losing Distance Due to My Old Age
I hear this from my first time students when they explain they need lessons and can’t hit the ball as they once did. I always take this as a challenge to improve their swing fundamentals to get their distance back or even hit the ball farther than ever.
Fundamentals will always trump age to a certain extent. If you consider yourself in average shape where you can still move decently well, that means you can still take advantage of your entire body to help your distances. I usually work on fundamentals to start using their lower body in ways to create more clubhead speed. Most times they feel that they can only use their upper body when they reach an older age.
Also keep in mind that 50-year olf Phil Mickelson won the 2021 PGA Championship with an average drive distance of 302.5 yards (tied for 48th of the 216 competitors). The 2021 Champions Tour Driving average distance: 276 Yards.
Golf Myth: Longer the Driver Shaft, the Further the Ball will Go
It’s not how long it is, it’s how you use it. Not referring to life itself but it’s all about getting the timing right when you make impact with the golf ball. If you create the proper lag and shaft bend you may have a better chance to take advantage of a longer club.
Being taller can help by giving you more time with a wider radius to take advantage of the length. But being taller could also make you lose accuracy because the sequence is longer and can be harder to time. Either way, your swing and timing means more than your height.
Golf Myth: Playing Best-Ball is a Faster Way to Play
I love debunking this myth and explaining that the format is always named improperly. Best-Ball is the format where you play your own ball and take the best score of the hole. Everyone confuses this as they should be calling it a Scramble. This is when you choose the best shot among your team and repeat it until the ball is holed.
So in a scramble, one player hits from the same spot as the other stand and watches for each shot. This means that only one player can hit at a time. If you have experienced golfers, playing your own ball can be faster as players can hit right after each other or even simultaneously when they are spread out on the hole. So depending on the situation, scramble is not always a faster format to play.
Golf Myth: I Play Faster with My Own Golf Cart
This is true if you are allowed to take your cart onto the fairways and rough. However, if you play a course that is not allowing your cart off the cart paths, it is faster to share a cart with another. This way, when one jumps out to play their shot, the other can always drive up the cart as the other plays. It’s almost like leap-frogging. Both are always moving forward and helping each other out to move the cart ahead and to bring each other clubs if needed.