I always tell my pupils: "Swing within yourself." Power is not the avenue to good golf. It is much better to hit a ball smoothly and firmly than to try to power it along. This advice applies whether you are driving, playing an iron from the fairway or putting.
For these reasons I advise golfers to take one club longer than the shot appears to call for. If, for example, the golfer, studying the shot to the green, decides a 6-iron is the club required, he should use a 5-iron instead. By choosing a longer club than the shot appears to call for, he has conquered the desire to overpower the ball. Consequently, he eliminates jabbing, pushing, shoving and a thousand other errors that a golfer falls into when he tries to force a shot. No more power can be wrenched from a club than the manufacturer has built into it. That's why he made 14 of them. No medals are given, anyway, for getting maximum distance out of the club you may be using. So forget about that business of pressing for distance, make certain you take plenty of club and then concentrate on a smooth, controlled club-head swing.
from HOMER HERPEL, pro at the Algonquin Golf Club, Webster Groves, Mo.
By playing the hot with enough club, a golfer (left) avoids all the strains that accumulate when he tries to force a shot (right) beyond the natural range of the club
NEXT WEEK: RIP ARNOLD ON KEEPING THE HEAD STEADY