The golf swing requires precise mechanics and movement, and the physical demands as we age get more and more difficult to deal with. As your physique and body change, in addition to adjusting your golf swing every couple of years, there are some things that can be done to help adapt to the changes, and keep your game on track.
Some simple setup tips and changes can make a big difference as our bodies slow down. Taking a firmer grip on the club, while maybe a bit uncomfortable, can manifest better results. Your swing will increase in power by having a firmer and harder grip on the club. For a right-handed golfer, rotate your hands slightly to your right, do the opposite if you’re left-handed.
You can also try narrowing your stance, as most of us who are over 50 have a natural reduction in our range of motion due to aging. By positioning your legs closer together, it can make it easier to rotate your hips, and perform an accurate golf swing.
On the Course
When near the green take the easier option and run the ball at the hole. Unless you have an obstacle to clear, the chip and run are much easier to control. Using a hybrid can make the clubhead a bit easier to control and provide consistent strikes. Remember hybrids are a bit longer than your mid-irons, so be sure to shorten up your grip.
Once you reach the green, there are some things we can do differently as we age. Adjust your posture to remain comfortable throughout your swing, and keep in mind most putts are missed due to misalignment. As our eyes age, one can become weaker than the other. Closing one eye, each, in turn, to work out which eye works best is a good idea. Also, be sure to make sure your shoulders remain straight as turning toward the hole can become a bad habit as we get older.
Grab an alignment stick, take a wedge and extend the shaft gripping the club with the extension against your front side. Swinging back, make sure the shaft doesn’t leave your side throughout the motion. This will help to make sure your hands stay ahead of the clubhead and your body turns correctly, keeping you from flicking the club at impact. Generally referred to as “the shanks”, this becomes more and more a problem as we lose our range of motion.
As a senior golfer, consider using a senior flex shaft. Just because you are a senior golfer doesn’t necessarily dictate the “need” to do this, but if you feel the difference and can improve your enjoyment of the game, why not? Also consider using a more forgiving driver, as the larger sweet spot and weight can also be a benefit.
Consider using more hybrids than those longer and middle irons. Not only are they much easier to hit, but they have many more uses.
Main photo: WalnutHillsGolf