Should every golfer strive to have a repeatable golf swing? The answer might be “Yes” if golfers have the time, inclination, discipline and physical ability and stamina to dedicate a large portion of their life to the goal of a repeatable golf swing – as would a professional golfer whose livelihood is largely determined by having a repeatable golf swing. But, for most of us whose golf swing and golf score do not determine our livelihood, I would answer a resounding “No” to the question of whether the average golfer should strive to achieve a repeatable golf swing.
Let’s look at some of the words and thoughts that this question brings up. It brings up a striving for perfection. It brings up a fixed (and not adaptable) golf swing. Strive reminds me of trying and effort. Discipline reminds me of both effort and force. The words effort and force bring the word work to mind. A professional golfer may have to ‘work’ to achieve a repeatable golf swing in order to earn a livelihood via tournament golf. This brings up the question, “Do you want to ‘work’ in order to play golf?” I would not call it playing golf if it is actually ‘work’!!!
Repeatability of a golf swing seems to be related to performance, effort, trying, forcing and controlling. The word ‘forced’ is defined as “not natural, strained, contrived and compulsory.” Do we want to force ourselves to achieve a repeatable golf swing?!
These words of effort, trying, forcing and controlling are all words of the intellect……of the ego. They are all words of impermanence. Repeatability seems to be related to anti-creativity, not natural and not original. Repeatability seems to be the antithesis of FLOW! Don’t we want our golf swing to flow?!?! (See the Sept 2017 Instinctive Golf Blog, Trying vs. Allowing on this site).
Flow is related to creativity. Creativity reminds me of freedom, original, new, boundless, self-discovery, pleasure and satisfaction. Repeatability reminds me of imitation, limitation, boundaries, ‘bound up in box,’ regurgitation, judgment, stagnation and frustration. (See the September 2019 Instinctive Golf Blog, Golf Swing Mechanics vs. Freedom of Movement on this site).
Here’s a snippet from the July 2021 Instinctive Golf Blog, Trust on this site: “Rather than a regimented practice of trying to perfect a repeatable golf swing, I believe we are best served by cultivating trust in a flexible and adaptable golf swing. This can be done through a “variable practice,” exploration, experimentation, curiosity and self-discovery. This is the path of developing trust in our subconscious kinesthetic instincts.”
I guess it comes down to the questions: Do you want a repeatable and fixed golf swing, or a creative and adaptable golf swing? Do you want to work at playing golf, or learn to have fun playing golf? Do you want your golf swing to flow, or do you want to have to constantly strive to fix your swing while trying to achieve the unachievable – the goal of repeatable perfection?
Finally, has our creativity, adaptability and instinctive ability been hijacked by the golf instruction industry’s promotion of repeatability?!?