When it comes to golf what should you rely on most — intuition or analytics?

At no point in time has golf had the diagnostic resources it commands today.  Every aspect of a player’s swing can be exposed.  Every aspect can be compared & analyzed.  The ultimate question is if all of this techno voodoo trumps a player’s intuition as it pertains to learning.

The question can be answered in a myriad of ways.  It seems as player’s age their appetite for analytics increases.  Kids are great imitators.  Demonstrate the golf swing for them and they’ll stand up and often swing their club without a problem.  As a result they don’t ask a bunch of questions as to how they should swing. They just make it happen.

Adults tend to venture into the how and why arena.  They also dive into the “what did I do wrong” pool. Ahhh, so many misdirected questions.

Eventually something has to give once a player walks to the first tee.  Again, kids just play.  They don’t want a checklist running through their minds.  See it, hit it, find it, repeat.  It’s that simple.

The playing process fir an adult is usually more complex.  An errant shot leads to questions which in turn leads to analytics, checklists, perceived corrections leading to a busy mind.  There are enough physical distractions on a golf course to deal with.  Add a mind that is constantly searching for answers rather than paying attention to the playing process, we know the result.  This type of golf is a mess.

It is often said the hardest move in golf is from the practice tee to the first tee.  Players dragging their analytics behind them as they prepare to tee it are at a disadvantage.  After a solid round players often say their mind wasn’t preoccupied with a bunch of thoughts.  They’re in “kid-mode.”  See it, hit it, find it. They rely on their intuition as well as what they see.  Good players know what to focus on.  They play the game which is simply get the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible.

Intuition always plays the most important role on the course.  Sure, analytics matter.  Experienced players know how to balance the two.  The best environment for learning is the golf course.  I remember good shots I’ve executed on the course.  That’s not the case on the practice tee.

If your goal is to improve your game, trust your eyes and your intuition.  If you only want to improve your swing, feel free to digest all of the analytics available.  Good luck with that most important move in golf.