Positive Impact Golf – The Easiest Golf Swing for Seniors?
Have you tried Positive Impact Golf? What have been your experiences? What tips do you have for others trying it? Respond in the comments below the article. . . . Ross Reinhold, guest author.
Brian Spark’s videos and methods (that he calls Positive Impact Golf and maintains it is the Easiest Swing in Golf for Seniors) were first recommended to me by Scott Starks in 2016. I watched a few but put it aside as I was concentrating on other methods. But in the spring of 2017 I found that over the winter something had changed to affect my iron play. I couldn’t hit my mid-length irons much further than my nine iron. I was also spraying my iron shots left and right.
So I took another look at Brian’s videos. Studied a few of them, did some of his recommended practice exercise sessions – what he calls La Danse du Golf – in my living room. Then I went out to my home golf range with my 5 iron. I took a very relaxed swing and the ball traveled 150 yards straight out, at least 30 yards longer than I had been able to accomplish earlier when my effort to swing the club was much greater. Wow, I think I may have found the Holy Grail!! (article continues after the video)
So I bought Brian’s book, Positive Impact Golf, and studied a few more of his online videos and that of one of his associates, Julian Mellor (some are cited at the end of this article). Brian and Julien’s methods are definitely body-friendly; their golf swing is effortless and uncomplicated. The PIG method is based on a set of 6 principles that are as much mental as physical: turning, weight shifting, rhythm, balance, coordination, and souplesse (supple and relaxed).
Brian also identifies 3 “deadly don’ts”- commonly held golfing ideas which complicate the golf swing: keeping your head still and eye on the ball; keeping your left arm straight; and keeping your left foot firmly planted in the backswing.
Brian’s book probably ought to be sub-titled the Psychology of the Golf Swing. While I found Brian’s book interesting and somewhat helpful on the mental side of my game, I found it too short on details of how to engage his 6 principles in my game. Part of this fits Brian’s Easiest Swing in Golf method in that he feels people over-think their swing. His top ten swing thoughts are no swing thoughts! The book and his videos are also light on swing mechanics details. Brian explains his lack of “how to” details because he believes in customizing his teaching to the student. For example, the particulars of the best grip that Brian or Julien might advocate to one golfer may be different to another.
I also think Brian wants the emphasis on your body, not your mind. He wants your body to learn the 6 principles and naturally avoid the 3 deadly don’ts. Doing daily exercises such as La Danse du Golf and a few others he illustrates in his videos go in that direction. Ironically his book, though, focuses on the mind. Because he believes our minds most often interfere with a balanced, natural, rhythmic, and easy golf swing – basically the mind most often prevents application of his 6 principles. Tension and negative thoughts are the enemy.
Brian’s videos and his book hit home with me. I get what he is trying to do. I also recognize I am a particularly hard case to correct. As a senior golfer, it is difficult to break lifetime habits that in other spheres have been part of my success: analyzing and thinking; attending to details; learning through reading, watching, and listening; expending maximum physical and mental effort, never giving up; concentration and focus; and the list goes on. I am guilty of all the sins he lists as blocking a natural golf swing.
I am finding these lifetime habits very difficult to change. Sometimes I’ll make a relaxed, balanced golf swing that sends the golf ball far and straight and I think “I’ve got it” but then later I lose it. And then I start thinking “what happened” and begin making adjustments and I’m down the primrose path to a bad round. Maybe I am not doing the La Danse du Golf often enough or doing it correctly. Maybe there are habits in my swing I don’t realize. I need coaching but to date no one in the USA is teaching using Brian’s golf coaching methods.
Have you tried Positive Impact Golf? What have been your experiences? What tips do you have for others trying it? Respond in the comments below.
Some links to more videos:
Brian Explains Rationale for La Danse du Golf
6 principles of Positive Impact Golfing – Julien Mellor
Transferring weight in the Golf Swing – Julien Mellor
Slow-Motion Analysis of Brian Sparks Positive Impact Golf Swing
BTW One helpful thing you can do to more easily implement Brian’s methods is to have your golf clubs custom-fitted to you and your natural swing.
Ross Reinhold, guest author
7 thoughts on “Positive Impact Golf Review”
Brian Sparks “Easiest Golf Swing” is the best thing I ever did for my golf game. I picked up golf late (my mid 30’s) and my lifetime golf goal was to hit a single digit handicap. After years of struggle with other swing methods, Brian’s swing finally made that happen for me last year when I finished the year with a 9.4 handicap. I’ve been using Brian’s swing for about 3 years now (I just turned 60). His swing is genius.
Thanks for your insights.
Being “in the grip” of golf sounds familiar here. In my case, getting rid of tension in my golf swing has been quite a challenge. Lately I’ve started using a waggle and just a touch and go to start the swing. Helps keep my arms loose . . . also no time to think standing over the ball. Best swing thoughts are no swing thoughts.
Keep on truckin’
Ross (creeping up on 76)
First of all, I am 82 years old. Golf has me in it’s grip and won’t let go. Day and night I think golf. I have a golf library of about 50 golf books. When I first broke 80 I read Bob Toski’s “Touch System to Better Golf” and had great success. The one outstanding lesson came when he drew a comparison between the way a elderly woman drives a car with both hands tightly holding the wheel at 10 & 2 and the way I or any experienced driver holds the steering wheel, barely touching the wheel except for a minor touch one way or another going down the road. No thoughts about the engine, the gas petal just letting nature take its course. From that point on my grip was very light and I got to an 9 handicap. I remember telling myself, this is the best I can do. And then that was the best I could do. How’s that for mental corruption? For years I tried to get to the impact position that every pro gets to. We’ve all scene it, hands over the left thigh, right heel an inch or more off the ground hips open (my great asperation)to no avail. Then many years later in early 2000 while playing 12 to 15 handicap, sicking, golf I saw a book by George Knudson, whom I had met in the 1970’s and read his book “The Natural Golf Swing” and made a great discovery not unlike, “Positive Impact Golf”. The discovery that the swing is there just let it happen. It really worked for a while but, as usual some where along the way I lost that too. I have great hopes for “Positive Impact” but, in my golf range work I keep hitting the ball off the toe and so far I have mixed results. Yesterday toward the end my 2nd bucket of balls I said the hell with it and really let go and hit one of my best tee shots in years, I won’t give up but, my journey thru this wilderness of golf has been filled with disappointments and I think “Positive Impact” is my last hope. Any thoughts?
Brian’s method is the best for me and that’s all that matters as far as discussions about what swing is best. The ideas are not new or earth shattering. Bobby Jones’ method was very similar as was Sam Snead’s and Payne Stewart’s. The first instructor to ever describe it was Ernest Jones in his book, “Swing the Clubhead” in the late 1940’s. It, to me, is the best golf instructional ever written because of its simplicity. I would say that Brian swings the club head but I can’t say if that is the way he feels it. However, his swing is so easy to understand if you just watch it and try to FEEL what he is feeling as he swings. When people take a “practice swing” is when they come very close to doing this swing but as soon as they step up to the ball everything goes to smash. Right away they start by planting their feet into the ground just so. Then the left arm goes straight as an iron rod and the chances of making any kind of loose swing is entirely gone. They did none of this on that practice swing. The “trick” is to make that practice swing and let the ball get in the way of the club head. I have been working on this myself for about 6 months. I hit about a hundred balls a day. Whenever I go astray the reason is always the same, like you, I think too much. Now I no longer think, instead I feel and that has made progress a whole lot easier. I’m 67 years old and I can smash it……with less than half the effort of my younger days. Swinging a club feels good. Levering a club is grunting and groaning.
In the videos I’ve seen by Brian Sparks and Julien Mellor, I don’t recall either of them talking about “grip.” Likewise in my reading of Brian’s book “Positive Impact Golf.” I would imagine Brian would feel you should just grip the club in a natural and comfortable manner. Set the club up square to the desired line of flight and grip the club in a comfortable manner. If in hitting balls with a reliable club path the ball tends to fly to the right or to the left, then consider modifying your grip to change the ball flight.
What is your recommendation for the most beneficial grip to compliment your swing method. Went to the range today and the results of your method was fantastic ( more solid contact with increase distance).
Thanking you in advance for your response.
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