Monday, September 24, 2012

Golf Fitness Tips For Getting You And Your Golf Game In Shape

Mike Pedersen is a golf swing biomechanic, and fitness expert, as well as the founder of his golf swing training site over at

I believe in Mike's principles and that is why I am excited to have him as a guest author on The Golf Swing Genius Website. Golf fitness is a very relavent and important component of playing great golf so Mike will share some of his insights and ideas on how you can get your body and your game more in shape for improved performance on the course.

Golf Fitness: Why You Need To Read This
By: Mike Pederson

If you haven't been under a rock for the past few years, you'll know that golf fitness is a topic mentioned during every televised tournament.

The modern golfer is fit, strong, lean and mean. Long gone are the days of the out-of-shape golfer winning tournaments. No matter what the level.

The recent winner of the Masters, Bubba Watson, like most of the PGA players has a fitness trainer who travels with him when they are on the road playing tournaments.

When you hear the term golf fitness tips, I don't want you to think about the "muscle heads" in the gym, lifting heavy weights, and sweating all over the place.

Instead, I want you to think of simple, easy-to-day, home golf exercises that can be done in a matter of minutes with just a few pieces of affordable equipment.

All you need is some exercise tubing, a pair of dumbbells, and an exercise ball and you're good-to-go!

Another very important facet of fitness for golf is stretching for golf. The senior golfer has lost so much flexibility, they must stretch to regain it if they want to hit it a decent distance as they get older.

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Career Success Tip: The Zen Way

Many young executives like to ask for career success tips. I usually start by saying career success doesn’t come in a day. Yet, day-in day-out I see young people entering the working life pushing themselves as if they will make CEO in a year. They have a tendency to compare their progress with their contemporaries. You should not and must not compare your career success to your contemporaries.

If you ask me, “What is career success?” I don’t have the answer. But, I can give you a career success tip that works for me. However, ultimately only you can answer, “What is career success?” only you can seek. No one can do it for you. It is to be defined by your own values and principles in life. You would have to define what is career success for yourself. It means different things for different people. And it is your career goals.

The first step is to ask yourself, “What is career success?” It is not a question you should mull over daily. You will have to spend time thinking about this. The answer will not come easy. Ask yourself that question, and then let it float in your mind for however long it takes – never force the answer.

Remind yourself this – if your career is a marathon, then it includes the preparation for the race – the warm ups, the stretches, the strength exercises, the stamina building, the constant practice runs. Constant effort is what will eventually get a positive response. And that response is success.

My biggest fear looking at many young first job executives is that a lot of them embark on this marathon and end up hurting themselves. They hurt themselves because instead of warming up and stretching, they sprint. Eventually they end up injured, taking months and years to recuperate.

This is an important career success tip. Your career like many things in life cannot be rushed. You succeed by not rushing nor lazing off. Your career success comes to you when you do not rush yourself through it. But this also means you do not laze off. When you rush you start to be careless.

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Golf Psychology Tips: The Secret to Your Success

So here’s the article you’ve been waiting for – I’m finally going to tell you the secret golf psychology tips you’ve been looking for all this time… Actually, no, sorry, I’m not. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s just I’m not the expert you need. You see, I don’t know how you like to learn best or prepare for your best rounds. I don’t know how you like to play your best golf. I don’t know what makes you happy or confident or focused. I don’t know how you experience riding your “zone”, churning out great shots. I don’t know what you do to get there either. I don’t know how decide on your shots and to them through the shot. I don’t know how you picture shots, the clarity or content of those pictures. I don’t know how you speak to yourself or in what tone of voice when you’re on top of your game. I don’t know where in your body, the size, temperature, or anything else about the feelings you get when you’re “on it”. I don’t know how you best or recover from frustratingly poor shots. In fact, I don’t know much about your success at all!

I could end the article there, but fear you might simply carry on looking in the wrong places in search of other experts to tell you the real “secret”! But then, would they know how you do success any better? Be patient though – there is one expert I recommend you get in touch with.

Fortunately as a coach I can use some good generalizations about success that are common for everyone. For example,

Zen Buddhism teaches us of the importance of living in the present

Ever since I was a child, I have been acutely sensitive to the idea – in the way that other people seem to feel only after bereavement or some shocking unexpected event – that the human intellect is unable, finally, to make sense of the world: everything is contradiction and paradox, and no one really knows much for sure, however loudly they profess to the contrary.

It is an uncomfortable mindset, and as a result I have always felt the need to build a conceptual box in my mind big enough to fit the world into. Most people seem to have a talent for denying or ignoring life's contradictions, as the demands of work and life take them over. Or they fall for an ideology, perhaps religious or political, that appears to render the world a comprehensible place.

I have never been able to support either strategy. A sense of encroaching mental chaos was always skulking at the edges of my life. Which is perhaps why I fell into an acute depression at the age of 27, and didn't recover for several years.

The consequence of this was my first book, a memoir called The Scent of Dried Roses. While I was researching it, I read the work of psychologist Dorothy Rowe, a quiet, almost secret, follower of Buddhist philosophy.

Through Rowe's writing I first came across Alan Watts, and he sounded like an unlikely philosopher. His name evoked the image of a paper goods sales rep on a small regional industrial estate. But through Watts and his writing, I was exposed directly to the ideas of Zen Buddhism. I was suspicious at first, perceiving Zen Buddhism to be a religion rather than a philosophy. I wasn't interested in the Four Noble Truths, or the Eightfold Path, and I certainly didn't believe in karma or reincarnation.

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Fred Couples: defined by cool, now also as a Hall of Famer

If you were to take a tour of Fred Couples' palatial residence near Los Angeles, you might deduce that he is a sports junkie. He owns framed jerseys from pals like George Brett, Dan Marino, Wayne Gretzky, Michael Jordan, Steve Larmer and Nolan Ryan.

But, unless you know him, you would probably struggle to find clues as to what Couples lists as his occupation. Surely he didn't build this beautiful home by watching ballgames from the couch.
"The TV remote, I know where that is at all times," Couples says. "My trophies? They're in boxes. Not sure where exactly, but they're safe. I do have some things from Ryder Cups and Presidents Cups, smaller things. You can see those. If you didn't, though, you would have no idea what I do. Some guy came over the other day and asked me if I was an entrepreneur. How about that? Me, an entrepreneur. He had no idea I'm a golfer. Which is fine."

Come next March, Freddie will secure another item for his non-existent trophy case. To tee off THE PLAYERS championship week, he will be inducted as a member of the Class of 2013 into the World Golf Hall of Fame. He won THE PLAYERS twice, in 1984 and 1996; he won the 1992 Masters; he won 15 PGA TOUR events; and at age 52, he's still winning.

"Surprised? Yeah," Couples says. "I had no idea I'd be voted into the Hall of Fame. I don't know how it works. Who votes? Have I been a great player? No. A good player, yeah. Did I get in because I'm 2-0 as a Presidents Cup captain? I don't think so, but I'm excited about it and really thrilled. I hope to play a few more years on the Champions Tour, but it's nice to be honored like this when I'm still alive and well. Do you vote?"

This is vintage Freddie, understated and easy going. He can recite last weekend's NFL scores and...

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Golf Fitness Stretches and Exercise Tips

Any preconceptions that golf conditioning means hours on end in the gym lifting heavy weights until you can’t lift any more are wrong as it doesn’t! Simple exercise and fitness tips can make your golf a whole different game.

Did you know that 20 years ago the average handicap for both men and women was exactly the same as it is today? Golfers are having more lessons than ever before and are buying more new equipment which hits the ball both further and straighter, so why have they not improved?
The answer is that they have not improved the most important piece of equipment…… themselves!

Have you ever wondered that when you’ve had a golf lesson and you’ve been told to go away and practice a new movement, why it was that when you’ve gone back for your next lesson, your pro has told you that your swing hasn’t changed enough yet and you have to go away and practice it more?
The reason for this is that although you know what you need to do you may not be strong or flexible enough to achieve it. Gone are the days when doing what we’ve always done is enough and we need to do more to achieve the results we want.

If you are serious about improving your game then try employing the exercise techniques of a golf fitness trainer and link their knowledge to your golf lesson. You might be surprised at how much quicker your golf game can improve!

Remember, you’re only as strong as your weakest point and that can have a huge impact on your golf swing!!

There are many different things that contribute to playing an enjoyable and successful round of golf. There is the need for supple muscles and joints and physical fitness.

The first step in preparing the body for an enjoyable, worthwhile practice session or round of golf is to stretch the muscle groups that work during the golf swing.

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Simple Scientific Meditation for Happy and Successful Life

All the research reports on the meditation have proved umpteen times that meditation is extremely helpful for us to enjoy a healthy and successful life. Meditation is equally beneficial for housewives, pregnant woman, working persons, students, or retired persons. You will rarely find a man now-a-days who doesn’t experience a daily dose of crushing tension. But neither money nor the doctors can make you free from this biggest disease of modern civilization. Only meditation can rescue us and the happy news is that it is easy and totally free, and without any side-effects.


Meditation is an ancient Indian art (called ‘Dhyana’ in India) whose magical effect was known to the Indians thousands of years ago, and they taught it to the whole world. Unfortunately further research on the art was not carried on in India to simplify it and use it as an effective treatment for various ailments. Although research continued to be conducted by Western psychotherapists and saints of Indian origin living there. Various methods evolved time to time to maximize the benefits and simplify the art.


Before evaluating the health benefits and effectiveness of meditation we have to explore the reasons behind illness. Modern life style is taking us away from the nature and disturbing natural rhythm of communication between mind and body. This rhythmic disturbance creates hindrance in the functions of our body, causing a situation, which becomes a breeding ground for bacteria and diseases. In addition, lack of physical exercise encourages such a negative process. If we are able to evolve a procedure that can help us to restore healthy communication between our mind and body it will strengthen the immune system of our body and make us healthier.

Meditation is the best antidote to the unhealthy process. It harmonizes the communication between the various parts of our body, especially the mind and the body, bringing a natural rhythm in them.

10 Best Swing Tips Ever!

1. Keep Your Hands Low

Limiting the height of the follow through will effectively reduce the height of your shots. The lower the hands, the lower the ball flight. Moving the ball back in your stance or choosing a stronger club and trying to swing easy are other ways to accomplish the same thing, but they’re less reliable and more difficult to execute. Instead, keep your hands low in the finish (compare the two photos at right), and the trajectory of your shots will be lower.

2. Give Your Spine The Forearm

Make sure you’re on-plane at the top of the swing to guarantee solid ball striking and increased accuracy. Notice in the photo at left how my right forearm is parallel to my spine, my left wrist is flat and my elbows and arms form a tight triangle. These are indications that I’ve rotated my shoulders into the back swing perfectly.

3. Use Your Body For Power

Every good golfer knows that power comes from the body, not the arms. To learn to power the club with your body instead of your arms and hands, put the club behind the ball at address, with your body in a dead-stop position. Without taking a back swing, try to drag the ball into the air. If you’re a player who uses his or her hands to control the club, you’ll probably struggle at first. However, you’ll quickly find that once you start moving the club with your body, you’ll begin to get the ball in the air more consistently. This helps you turn fully through the ball on the downswing.


7 Zen Habits of Highly Efficient Minds

Zen habits are simple lifestyle habits that have the potential to radically alter the efficiency of our minds and the potential of our lives.  We can easily integrate these habits into our daily routines to keep our minds sharp and efficient for years to come.  Here are seven ways to keep a great head on your shoulders:

1.  Challenge your mind with new activities, skills and information.

The primary function of the human mind is its ability to absorb information and adapt to challenging unfamiliar environments.  Do you remember the old saying ‘use it or lose it?’  Nothing could be closer to the truth.  If you don’t use your mind, you will lose your mind.  So broaden your horizons, learn new skills and challenge your mind every single day.

2.  Your mind is part of your body.  Fuel, exercise and rest your body properly.

The human brain accounts for roughly 2% of the total mass of the human body, yet it consumes over 20% of the oxygen and nutrients the human body intakes.  Therefore, it makes sense to fuel your body with healthy food and keep your blood oxygen levels high with regular exercise.  Also, a tired mind is rarely productive, so get yourself enough sleep every night.  For a practical guide on maintaining a healthy, fit body I recommend The 4-Hour Body.

3.  Pay attention now.  Concentrate on the present.

People often obsess themselves with the past and the future.  But life is happening right now.  You can’t learn something or remember something that’s happening now if your mind is stuck in another time.

It takes about eight seconds of intense focus to process a new piece of information into your long-term memory.  So don’t let your life and your mind slip away.  Instead of dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, practice being and living in the present moment.

Monday, September 17, 2012

15 Golf Tips from the Professionals

Don't tell unless asked is an unwritten rule of golf etiquette when it comes to offering swing tips.
However, when the advice comes from a golf instructor, a person who knows every facet of the game - from what club to use to the importance of the mental game - we'd be foolish not to accept it.
Following are 15 tips from golf professionals who work from Santa Barbara to San Diego. While the tips range from putting and driving to flexibility and mental preparation, they have one thing in common: follow them and you'll lower your scores.


Most people have one complaint when it comes to practicing: they don't have an extra half hour a week to go to the range. While there is no substitute for an effective practice session at the range, it's possible to practice in your back yard or living room, says Justin Stotts, manager of Golftec, a Woodland Hills indoor instructional facility.
"The hardest thing when it comes to golf is muscle memory," Stotts said. "But that can be worked on just about anywhere. You try to create the swing wherever you're at - maybe holding a club or even a fork in your hand. The thing is, you have to know what you're working on, and that's going to take a lesson from a pro who will show you what you should be concentrating on."


Fitness and stretching are key to improving golf performance, with the core - abdominal muscles, lower trunk, legs and shoulders - being the most important areas of concentration.
"That's where the power of the swing comes from, and those are also the parts of the body that give you endurance," said Eric Horve, director of golf instruction at Tustin Ranch Golf Club. "Most people start to lose focus after 14 holes, and strengthening their core can help them stay focused."
But leave the heavy lifting to bodybuilders. Golfers should concentrate on more repetitions with lighter weight to build endurance and retain flexibility, Horve said.
Yoga also is becoming a popular way for golfers to build core strength.
"It's all over the golf industry right now," Horve said of golf-specific yoga exercises. "It's unbelievable how effective it can be."


Like the swing, pre-shot routines require practice.
"You practice it on the range and it produces a high probability" that the shots you make are the shots you want, said David Wurzer, director of instruction at Westridge Golf Club. "A solid pre-shot routine gives a level of consistency that will help any golfer gain a higher probability of success in their shots."
The essential components of a pre-shot routine include: thinking (gathering information, such as the lie of the ball, distance from the hole and wind); sensing (imaging and visualizing the shot); and commitment (trusting that the cognitive and intuitive parts of the routine are where they're supposed to be).


One of the quickest ways to lower your score is improvement on the greens. John Francis, a teaching professional at Westridge Golf Club, recommends the quarter drill.
"Take two quarters and place them about a foot from each other," Francis said. "Get five balls and putt the ball from one quarter to another quarter. Try to get the ball to die on the face of each quarter. When you've hit five in a row, go to 2 feet apart and then 3 feet apart."
The quarter drill is "multi-beneficial," Francis said. "It teaches you to perfect your small backswing, which is the hardest one to perfect in golf. It also gets you in the habit of pinpointing your putt, since a quarter is one-fifth [the diameter] of a hole. It also teaches you to get the ball online the first foot of the putt, which is very important."


Most golfers dream of career rounds while driving to the course. But, let's be honest, it's probably not going to happen.
"If you're a 20-handicapper who hasn't played in a few months you best not head out to the first tee thinking you're going to shoot under 80," said Eric Lohman, director of golf at Black Gold Golf Club. "You have to give yourself a few holes to warm up and you have to have patience through the entire round."
Realistic expectations also provide an opportunity for positive reinforcement that all golfers need in order to to improve. If you've never shot under 100, try to make par twice during a round rather than beating yourself up for posting an 8 every now and then.


One of the best ways to improve golf performance is proper posture at address, which includes a straight back in order to achieve proper turns in the backswing and follow-through. To achieve this, flexibility in the hamstring is critical. Jeremy Klinkhamer, who works with the San Diego Body Balance for Performance Center, recommends a hamstring stretch that can be performed in a doorway.Lie on your back with one leg on the wall and the other leg through the open doorway. The leg that is up should have a straight knee with the foot in a neutral position. The leg through the door should be bent to alleviate back tension. Move closer to the wall for more stretch and away from the wall for less stretch. The stretch should be gentle enough to tolerate for three minutes.


Chip Boldin, director of golf for Pro Kids Golf Academy in San Diego, says playing mini-rounds within a round will lead to improved scores.
"You play the course three holes at a time," Boldin said. "When you're done with three holes you fold the scorecard over and then play the next three."
The method not only prevents players from getting down on themselves after a stretch of bad holes, it also prevents players from getting too comfortable.
"The worst thing for some golfers is to make three birdies in a row because then you start pressing and start giving it right back," Boldin said. "Using this scoring trick you're able to get a clean slate six times during a round. It helps you deal with the bad bumps and prevents you from getting too comfortable when things are going well. It also gets you focused on the immediate shots at hand."


There's no way to overestimate the importance of the short game in lowering scores.
"If people are looking at lowering their scoring they have to spend equal, if not more, time on every phase of their short game, including putting, chipping and pitching," said Greg Hood, general manager of the Jim Mclean Golf School at PGA West. "The average golfer misses a lot of greens in regulation, and if you can develop a positive chipping and pitching technique you will see great improvement in your score."
Good instruction will lead to proper technique. Then it's a matter of "trying to make sure to control the trajectory and spin of the ball, knowing what club to pick, knowing how long each shot will fly and how long it will roll. That all comes through practice," Hood said.


To be more consistent with your tee shots, follow these three simple steps, courtesy of David Emerick, director of instruction at the Hodges Golf Center.
Tilt: Set up to play a tee shot with the ball lined up with your left heel, then tilt your upper body so the right shoulder is in line with your right knee. (Your head will be behind the ball). Tilting will help you make contact with the ball at an ascending angle.
Turn: This involves the core muscles of the body, where a good golf swing is centered. Use your core muscles to move the arms and swing the club. By relaxing your arms, you can make a good turn and stay behind the ball.
Swing: Golf pros make the swing look easy because they swing easy. Hitting through the ball instead of at it will produce a controlled swing.

10. TAKE YOUR TIME (click here to continue reading)

Friday, September 14, 2012

10 Tips For A Successful Meditation

You’ve heard of all the benefits to meditating but have you ever given it a try? When I first tried it I failed miserably. My first attempt was to sit there for 15 minutes while trying to “think of nothing.” I could probably only pull off around 5 seconds of thought free time before I was thinking about what’s for dinner, I should call my mom, I need to get the car serviced, etc. I would then get annoyed for losing focus and force myself to think of nothing again. And so the cycle continued.

What worked for me was a much easier way to get started meditating. These are the tips I’ve learned:

  1. Find Quiet. Turn off the TV, radio, cell phones, sign out of messenger, mail, and any other thing that can interrupt you.
  2. Start with 5 minutes. I found a 15 minute meditation a little too long to start off with. Instead I backed off down to 5 minutes and found that a much more manageable starting point.
  3. Sit Comfortably. I made the mistake of sitting cross legged on the floor without cushions. My ankle put pressure on my other leg’s shin bone which was a small ache to begin with but eventually grew into a nasty pain. I now sit naturally on a chair (trying not to slouch) or cross legged on the floor with some pillows.
  4. Adjust if Uncomfortable. Trying to ignore a small ache until it grows into a pain is just pointless. The pain will scream for your attention and continually interrupt your concentration. So instead, adjust your seating. After you’ve meditated a few times you’ll learn how to sit in a way that will keep you comfortable for the duration of your meditation and so you won’t have to adjust any more.
  5. Loosen Up. I sometimes carry a lot of tension that I’m not aware of until I focus on relaxing. I wear glasses and I’ve found that I have tension in my ears to hold my glasses in place. Weird! To relax, I scrunch up my shoulders to my ears and then slowly let them fall down. I feel the muscles in my face relax. I relax my cheeks, my mouth, my shoulders a little more. Loosen my arms. Feel my hands get heavy. Oh, and I also take off my glasses. 
  6. Close Your Eyes. I find closing my eyes entirely works for me. Others have had success with keeping their eyes half open but I find that I just end up thinking about what I’m looking at.
  7. Don’t Think of Nothing. It’s a mistake to try and fight thoughts and force yourself to “think of nothing”. If you haven’t meditated before you may not be aware that you’re not really in control of your thoughts. If you’re not in control you’re going to have a really hard time trying to control your mind by thinking of nothing.
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