Learn­ing is like read­ing a stock chart, trend is key.

New Zealand Golf Magazine - - PGA OF NZ -

Fred Fruisen on learn­ing and im­prov­ing your golf.

Most peo­ple who take golf lessons are im­pa­tient. They be­lieve that their in­struc­tor has a magic wand and can fix their swing flaws in an in­stant. This is a myth.

I am not aware of there ever be­ing a case where a stu­dent has had their hand­i­cap go from 15 to scratch af­ter a sin­gle les­son.

When you have a golf les­son you will get solid in­for­ma­tion from your in­struc­tor on why your shots are do­ing what they do and then you'll get equally good ad­vice on how to fix the prob­lem. Af­ter that it's up to you. Are you will­ing to change and put in the time and ef­fort? If you hit a few bad shots and re­vert back to your old bad habits, you won't im­prove. If the only time you prac­tice the new tech­nique is when you have a golf les­son you won't im­prove very fast, if at all. If you only play rounds of golf and don't spend time hit­ting balls on the range, change is not likely to hap­pen. It is proven that it takes 28 days of prac­tice for a new motor skill

to feel nat­u­ral. That means you need to prac­tice away from the course so you won't be in­flu­enced by out­comes like score.

When prac­tic­ing you also need to be pa­tient with your­self and your progress. You must have faith in the process and have even more for­ti­tude to stick with it.

As I tell my clients when frus­trated while at­tempt­ing to learn a new skill, “The old you is fight­ing the new you and one is go­ing to win. If you al­low the old you to win, this is as good as you will ever be. But if you stick with it, the new you will even­tu­ally win out and then you'll go to an­other level. But it will take time an pa­tience.”

The other thing I im­press on my stu­dents is that learn­ing and im­prove­ment is not a con­stant. There will be ups and downs. The anal­ogy I use is a stock chart.

The stock I will use to il­lus­trate my point is Ap­ple. Per­haps the best com­pany in the world.

As you see in the chart, even Ap­ple doesn't go up every­day. Each lit­tle spike on the stock chart rep­re­sents a day. Learn­ing works the same way. Some days its easy, oth­ers are a strug­gle. The rea­son be­ing is what you are do­ing is un­com­fort­able and/or you just don't trust the new tech­nique yet. This will es­pe­cially be the case on the golf course. These “dips” in your learn­ing are learn­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties. Wise in­vestors don't panic and sell when this hap­pens. They un­der­stand that this is com­petely nat­u­ral and if they stick with the stock, over time they will see a tidy profit. Also, you can be as­sured that fol­low­ing the dips, as shown in the chart, the stock rises to new heights as new skills are in­grained.

That be­ing said, no­tice the TREND of the stock time. The trend is very pos­i­tive and if you were in the mar­ket for a good stock, this be a BUY!

You need to look at your­self and your progress in the same phil­soph­i­cal way. Progress may not be hap­pen­ing as fast as you would like, but it is hap­pen­ing.

If you im­proved only 1% ev­ery­time you prac­ticed then af­ter 20 prac­tices you'd be 20% bet­ter. That is enough to see sig­nif­i­cant im­prove­ment.

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