I’ve been playing golf for quite some time and have met a lot of people on the golf course. Some are young, some are middle-aged, and others are seniors like me (soon enough). And mind you, the older players are sometimes better than the younger ones even if they started playing late in their lives.
How did they do it?
I'll share with you some of the proven and tested golf tips and techniques which are based on science, observation, and from the seniors themselves.
Golf Tips for Senior Golfers
First off, here are some tried and tested senior golf swing tips from experts:
1. Grip harder on your club. This is a little uncomfortable, but this manifests better results. Your swing would be more powerful by having a firmer and harder grip on your golf club.
If you’re right-handed, you just have to rotate your hands a little to your right. And if you’re left handed, do otherwise.
2. Narrow your stance. Most of us players over 50 find it hard to deal with our range of motion due to ageing. And for some reason, we just can’t swing our golf clubs properly.
If you have the same problem, you may try narrowing your stance. Position your legs farther from each other. It would make it easier for you to turn your hip.
Doing this would make it easier for you to perform your swings.
3. Watch your feet. Prevent swaying by turning your right foot out.
This tip is specifically for those who tend to be very stiff while playing golf.
When I started to feel uncomfortable, what I first did was I checked my flexibility level and my current ability to do the swings.
The best thing to do it is to perform a backswing with your foot facing forward. As your foot stays in this position, your hip will remain neutral. After raising your club, allow it to stop over your head.
Check if you’re swaying. And if you are, then it means that you have stiff hips.
You won't be able to perform the ideal backswing if that’s the case.
That is when it’s best to try to turn your right foot out before swinging.
NOTE: If your hips are already flexible enough, you don’t need to do this. This will only affect your swings.
4. Move the golf ball back slightly from you. This is kind of common advice, and you have probably heard this before.
You need to move that ball back from your stance for a better chance at hitting your ball. However, this would only work effectively when the ground is in a good condition. Make sure that it’s warm, dry and hard.
5. Slow down your backswing. Don’t get too excited to hit that golf ball! Most of the time, the faster you try doing your backswing, the shorter it will be. This is advice from golf hall of famer, Lee Trevino.
6. Flex Your Knees. There are seniors who make swinging so hard by straightening out their knees. Don’t straighten out your knees. You'll just have a hard time turning your hips and shoulders while executing your backswing.
7. No Lifting Your Arms. One problem you may encounter when you do not flex your knees is you just lift your arms, since you cannot turn.
Bad chain reaction.
Instead of being relaxed, your arms become too stiff while your clubface points on the ground. This error causes the club’s reroute at the top. When this happens, you won't be able to square the clubface during impact.
8. Consider A Senior Flex. Just because you're a senior golfer, does not mean you have to use a club with a senior flex.
But, if you're still using a different flex and haven't had your swing evaluated in a while, it's worth considering.
9. Know Your Handicap. Playing with an outdated handicap is never good for your game, whether you're playing under or over your real handicap.
You can read our guide on how to calculate your golf handicap.
It helps if you enroll in programs made especially for senior golfers. I’ve seen other seniors who still become better in spite of their age.
But if you don’t have enough time, you can practice alone, read blogs and books about it, and watch videos at home. I especially recommend you to check out My Golf Tutor’s videos on YouTube for more golf lessons. They are very helpful.
You can also watch this video to improve your golf swing grip:
Also, you can watch this video of World Golf Hall of Famer, Lee Trevino where I also got some of the tips for seniors to gain more distance that I have given you:
There are so many ways to be better, but it all starts with effort.
Staying Consistent As You Age
There are days when I feel so lucky in swinging my club, that I can execute a lovely swing and hit on the greens perfectly. But it’s even more amazing because I am now able to do it even on not-so-lucky days.
How? It was actually not that easy.
It takes practice to get used to golf, its rules, the course and the art of swinging. And it feels good when you become familiar with these things.
Sometimes, being too familiar with our mechanics and techniques in swinging and hitting the ball has disadvantages, too. Sooner or later, we might be missing those greens using our learned ways. We now become inconsistent.
I notice that it’s difficult to be consistently good in this sport. And it’s even harder for us seniors.
It’s a common myth that we have to practice our usual swings over and over again to be consistent. I used to believe in that, too.
But let’s face it— we grow old and our bones get brittle over the years. We can’t use the same mechanics we did when we were 20 once we turn 60.
The problem is, golf is a sport that requires us to have flexible hips for a good golf swing, sturdy legs, and strong arms and hands for a firm grip.
And maintaining our bodies’ good condition forever is never possible. We aren’t as fit as we used to be.
One thing I learned through the years of playing golf is, this sport could either be won by luck or by being consistently good at it. And the key to consistency is, you should never stop learning.
Now, let’s discuss some issues you need to address for you to become more consistent in playing the sport, and some ways and tips on how to resolve these issues.
Learning how to relax.
Take my advice, don’t become agitated trying to get the ball in the hole. Learn to relax your wrists, hands and elbows.
Also, don't have unnecessary movements when playing. As much as possible, learn how to control yourself because your own movement may distract your strategy.
Don't have super active legs. I’m telling you, they’re going to ruin not only your tee-off, but also your consistency. Remember, this is one of the best ways to save a bad game.
"I'm not flexible enough."
I have read and heard about this same complaint countless of times already. It's really difficult for senior golfers to be consistent with their range of motion because we have to stretch.
This is a big issue for us golfers over 50 because we somehow struggle with bad posture.
To deal with this, you can do some stretching at home where you can bend your knees, stretch your arms forward (make sure your back is straight), sit on your heels. What I do is, I hold that position for 30 seconds, then move from left to right.
Wrist position is being taken for granted.
You really have to be mindful of the way you hold your club. Your lead wrist should be flat, and your trail wrist should be bent or cupped. If this is not the case, the odds would be, you could probably hit the ground before you could even hit the ball.
Again, do not take the position of both your lead and trail wrists for granted. This is a crucial factor when we are talking about golf consistency.
Where your weight is distributed should matter.
The problem is, sometimes, we don’t mind where our weight is supposed to be centered.
You should position your weight forward. This is as important as knowing the proper wrist positions because both can affect your consistency.
Aside from these things, make sure that in your mind and heart, you are ready to unlearn myths and learn new things. Especially the tips and rules that are and are not applicable to you.
There’s nothing wrong with becoming a student again. It’s kind of thrilling to know that we still need to learn new things after all these years.
It’s Not Too Late To Improve Your Game
Us, senior golfers, especially those who have been playing golf for so many years, have read more books and blogs about golf, gained more knowledge and understood the sport by heart. We have acquired a lot of skills, too through the years. However, as we age, we would need to adjust as well, depending on the adjustments our body requires.
There are things that we could do when we were young, but now, we can’t.
Be honest with yourself.
And that’s the first way on how you can improve your game.
Get ready to accept your current reality.
It was hard to swallow my pride at first. But what I understood was, I have to accept the truth that I’m not ageing backwards.
I hope you do the same. You have to be true to yourself. You will never solve a problem if you don’t have the guts to identify it in the first place. Be open to identify what’s hurting in the spine or on the knees. Be open for the changes in your body because you are not getting any younger.
A lot of senior golfers feel disappointed with themselves because of the inevitable. I used to be one of them, too. If you’re one of them as of the moment, cheer up and get ready to make more adjustments!
Get Ready To Improve Your Golf Swing.
You need to not just be open for physical changes. You also need to be open to shift your focus. From focusing on the long shots, go nearer by hitting on the holes by the middle, to practicing your short shots.
Senior golfing wouldn’t be fun without a little thrill. Aside from modifying your swings, let’s modify your lifestyle a little bit.
Do some stretching.
Maybe exercise is not your thing, but you need to maintain your muscle strength. It will help you have proper posture, good stance and the balance that you need when swinging.
According to Stan Geer, a golf professional from North Naples, you should use a good 10 minutes of your time to practice your swings and stretch before your game.
Senior golfing really requires you to be more critical. And it may affect your finances a little bit...
Equipment Modification (If Necessary).
You also need to check if your equipment is still okay for you.
If not, try using hybrids that are easier to hit. Your clubs have to match your ability to swing and hit a ball.
And last but not the least…
Keep these tips in mind, don’t waste time and practice.
Now that you’ve read my tips, it’s time to grab your golf bag and drive to the golf course. Though you know the mechanics and technicals, practice still makes things, if not perfect, acceptable and consistent.