While I profess that I’m a “feel” player, and go to great lengths in my teaching to ensure that my students see, feel and hear the ball through their eyes, hands and ears, I’m always intrigued by new ideas that can help them improve. As I wrote in The Art of Putting, I’ve long been an advocate of something I learned from Dr. David Cook…See It. Feel It. Trust It.
The brain is responsible for processing all these external signals, and while it seems overly complex to even talk about it, there’s something to be said for allowing the mental side of your game control the physical things that help us all be more athletic. Our abilities to see, feel and hear help reinforce some of the things that make a great putter: perception of distance, slope and breaks in the green; touch to “feel” the ball hitting the head of the putter, aural feedback of putter head striking the ball and the tactile feedback that goes from the head of the putter and up the shaft to your hands, and then up to your arms and to your brain; and your ability to trust what you see, hear and feel so that instinctively you KNOW the ball is going into the hole.
In this day and age of iPods, iPads and a host of other very small and portable devices, I’m certainly beginning to embrace the idea that visual learning tools can help with the interactive learning process. This is especially true if these visual cues are repetitive, accurate representations of what I believe makes a great stroke.
I recently did some work on a very intriguing new audio/video aid from a Phoenix-area company called seeitgolf that may benefit your putting stroke and hopefully help you get the ball in the hole in fewer strokes. Developed by Danny Orr, a former professional baseball player and major league scout, the aid is an app that will run on an iPhone 4, iPad and iTouch. Aaron Baddeley and I combined our efforts to include video and audio tracks for the app backed up by some pretty cool music. The longer-form 15- minute video and the shorter individual tracks captured from different angles, were shot with 4 “Red” cameras for an incredible lifelike feel. Danny’s team used super slo-mo effects in the app so you can literally see the dimples of the ball as it bumps and rolls successfully toward and then into the hole.
The app helps you create positive mental images so that you can not only see and hear what a great putt should look and feel like, but ultimately enables you to trust what all these outside signals are sending back to your brain. A lot of very scientific study went into the development of the app, and much of what Danny has produced is reinforced by Dr. Debbie Crews, one of Golf Digest’s Top 10 instructors, and a leading researcher recognized as well by Golf Magazine for her work.
You can find out more about the app by visiting the company’s website at seeitgolf.com. Or, if you just can’t wait to try out something new, you can visit the Apple iTunes App Store and purchase the app for download onto your Apple device.
If you try it, let me know what you think.