Tuesday, 6 September 2011

In Thy Hands.

Hands are the chief organs for physically manipulating the environment, used for both fine and gross motor skills. The finger tips contain some of the most densest areas of nerve endings on the body, are the richest source of tactile feedback, and have the greatest positioning capability of the body; thus sense of touch is intimately associated with the hands. Like other paired organs (eyes, feet, legs), each hand is dominantly controlled by the opposing brain hemisphere, so that handedness, or the preferred hand choice for single-handed activities such as writing with a pen, reflects individual brian functioning.

So the hands have the lead role in pretty much all physical activity known to man, lets all agree to that. With this in mind, why do so few people when taking hold of the golf club actually appear to fully appreciate their vital role in the successful execution of the golf swing?

Because they hold such dull and uninteresting appeal.

They fail to provide any real fancy topic of thought or marketing makeup.

In short, the hands when initially applied correctly are the most uncomfortable element of all golfing fundamentals. With this horrid sense of initial touch in mind, lets all agree their role in the effective execution of the golf swing is without doubt the most influential. Think back to when you first laid hands on a golf club and recall the immediate sense of control you strived. This simple human instinct was born out of fear, fear of failure, embarrassment and negative feedback and forced you into a grip of the golf club that would intuitively prevail with some perceived notion of a finely controlled swinging motion. No doubt ones positioning of the hands on the clubs handle resembled something close to that of a child hanging like a monkey from a climbing frame whilst realising their shorts are about to fall to their ankles! You're gripping for your dearest life and could not give two hoots how well formed your pair of white knuckle hands are, let alone how well positioned and pressed with pressure they are.

All you care for is your dignity.

Your shorts are gonna fall down anyway so best let go of the bar and huddle into the smallest ball!

Why grip it so tight?

Why take such little time, spend such ineffective attention and be so quick to overlook the great power and potential source of feedback the hands have to offer?

The answer is really quite simple, you care more for the control of the flow than the flow of the control.
You, like any other intuitive human spend the greatest part of your thought process thinking about what might go against you rather than laying bare your utmost trust in what could potentially go for you.

'The finger tips contain some of the most densest areas of nerve endings on the body, are the richest source of tactile feedback, and have the greatest positioning capability of the body; thus sense of touch is intimately associated with the hands'.

Sense of touch, not sense of security!

The great painters, sculptors, musicians and artists from history would never be as close as ok let alone known and hailed as greats had they applied the grip of their fingers across the depth of their palms to the creative process. Each and everyone of them relied on an acutely trained sense of touch at the tips when gracing the boundless landscape of creativity before them. While Picasso claimed the secret to his creativity was born and eternally maintained through his affection of a childlike mind state, he would of never inspired the slightest bit of interest had he not taken a sensitive adult touch of the brush.

So lets take a look into the hands of a true great, a player of exceptional grace, a self taught and potential golfing genius, the late great Sam Snead. Now here is a man who came from nothing, the son of a poor Virginian backwoods farmer, 'Slammin Sammy' Snead was admired for having the so called "perfect swing." Now this writer has little to no affection for such a comment, as Im sure Sam would of agreed, the notion of such possibility is both hilarious and humanly impossible! But lets not be so haste in our dismissive response to such a bold quote, lets be more than certain that this dude had quite possibly the purest swinging motion of all the games greats, of all the worlds lifelong sporting heros who ever swung a stick, crushed a bat and swung an athletic arm. He quite simply oozed all fine elements of individual flair, flamboyant pace, grace and force feeling flow to create the most complete free wheeling golf swing the world has ever seen. 

It was purity in motion and with it he was able to consistently create a golf swing that would power his golf ball up to distances of 350 yards! For a period of four decades from 1935 to around 1975 with equipment seen today as ancient and way off the title of technology, this hillbilly was able to drive the ball long and accurate with nothing more than a deep appreciation for what made it all so fun and free flowing. Thats right, he took a hold of the golf club with a sense of touch, a sensual nurturing of the golf clubs handle so as to fully absorb the clubs weight and so ultimately feel its full potential force when propelled from one side of the golf ball to the other. 'Slammin Sammy' undoubtably took pride in his relationship with that golf club, he took care of it like he did his winnings and undoubtably his good lady. But unlike the tight sleeper hold he adopted with his cash prizes, the hand of his good lady wife he more than extended into his golf clubs. Much has been written and quoted from this great players wisdom when holding the golf club, most notably his most enduring belief that one should hold the golf club as if holding a small bird, being so very careful not to harm though not allow to fly away. How beautiful and eloquent an impression this is, and how perfectly this description fits the point of this piece. 

Holding nature, nurturing force, and feeling freedom before allowing it to fly.

Enjoy the game...../

No comments: