NCGA Golf

Spring 2019

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I N S T R U C T I O N 56 SPRING 2019 | NCGA.ORG We do. But it's become clear after 46 years of coaching that the 'inner' shift—transformation of our beliefs, cultural assumptions, habits—comes before the outer shift. The word 'secret' gets tossed around so often that it's a cliché. Suppose there was a secret to transforming your game, but that it resides outside of our cultural beliefs. Would you explore it? The secret is that we already have a swing, one that's innate and unique to us. We already inhabit an efficient swing model waiting to be uncovered and revealed. If each body is unique, how can a formula or method be the same for two people? Suppose golf lessons, practice and play was about discovering our unique design? The starting point of this transformation would be for someone to realize that they already have a swing. "Let me find out what's innate to me and what gets in the way of me expressing it. Let me discover how my body is designed to swing a club, coach!" No one's ever made that request. It's always, "Something's wrong, fix me." But suppose you're not broken. Suppose that all that's missing is knowing how to tap your dormant resources and bringing awareness to that process? There' d be no formula to remember, no method to follow. So how do you go about discovering your unique design? Let's pretend you're here taking a lesson, in real time. Your job is to be present to your body and curious about how it's designed. Your body speaks a language called 'awareness', not English. It learns through its senses, so just watch. Observe. E ver notice how difficult it is to change someone – yourself even? If you're really honest about the results, you've probably seen incremental shifts at best. Why would it be any different in golf? Yet, my work as a professional is about change—transformation—in swings, in tension levels, in attitudes and habits. Do golfers have the right to aspire to anything but a slow incremental evolution of their game? For more than 40 years, Fred Shoemaker, a former UC-Santa Barbara golfer, has been quietly transforming the way the game is thought of and taught. Golf Magazine named his golf school, Extraordinary Golf, one of "America's Top 25 Golf Schools in America." Shoemaker is the author of Extraordinary Golf: The Art of the Possible and teaches at Carmel Valley Ranch Golf Course. He has given instructional seminars on his unique approach to teaching the game across the United States and around the globe. He lives in Carmel Valley. The Model We Inhabit We're all capable of extraordinary golf, says instructor Fred Shoemaker. Here's his simple method to be extraordinary. BY FRED SHOEMAKER with Adam Schupak PHOTOGRAPHY BY ROBERT KAUFMAN The Model We Inhabit

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