Jimmy Ballard, one of golf's most accomplished instructors, is coming to St. Louis in mid-July. If you are student of the golf swing, or more importantly looking for a way to improve your game you can't miss this opportunity. On Sunday, July 15, WingHaven Country Club and the Gateway PGA are hosting a 5 hour golf clinic with Mr. Jimmy Ballard.
I had the pleasure of having Jimmy Ballard on The Back Nine Radio Show last Saturday to promote his visit to St. Louis. During our conversation, he shared what it was like working with many of golf's greatest players and the obstacles he had to overcome in teaching these elite players. Jimmy also shared specific fundamentals he considers absolutely necessary for the player to execute a consistently good golf swing.
I consider myself a student of the golf swing. I watch golf on television and DVR every round I watch so I can go back and replay specific golf swings by players in different situations. I'm always interested to replay a swing when the player doesn't execute the shot he intended to understand what went wrong. I especially like to compare how players function when under the extreme pressure of closing out a golf tournament, compared to their front nine on Thursday. It's amazing how much you can learn by studying the mistakes of others.
Over the years I've come to appreciate the different ways the best players in the game move the golf club. As we, as golf fans, have had the opportunity to listen and learn more about the teachers working with these elite players, it's been fascinating to learn more about how these celebrity coaches interpret the motion of the golf swing and share their knowledge with their students.
Interestingly enough, Jimmy Ballard's name seldom comes up in a discussion with the average golfer when talking about the games top golf instructors. Butch Harmon, Hank Haney, David Leadbetter and of course Sean Foley dominate these conversations because of the high profile nature of the players they call students. Not surprisingly, Tiger Woods has worked with three of the four names listed. But over the years, it would be hard to argue that any instructor has impacted more major champions and tournament winners than Mr. Jimmy Ballard.
Jimmy's approach is surprisingly simple. In a culture of high tech video analysis and varying swing theories, Jimmy has stayed true to his approach and beliefs. Spend just a few minutes with the man and you'll quickly realize you are among golfing genius.
I left the radio station on Saturday after interviewing Jimmy Ballard and went straight to WingHaven Country Club, the golf course I call home. On the range, with a former college teammate, I shared my conversation with Jimmy and what I had learned about his swing methodology in preparation for the interview. Together, we began to implement the ideas and fundamentals Jimmy teaches. In a matter of just a few swings, I realized why Jimmy Ballard has enjoyed such a long and successful career.
I'm a scratch golfer who has enjoyed the thrill of competing and winning amateur golf tournaments. Because I haven't worked with a dedicated instructor for quite some time, I seldom make material changes in my golf swing. That being said, I'm in the process of making a comeback, or that's what I call it at least. It's been several years since I've been able to compete at the level I was accustomed. In 2009, I began what I thought was a simple battle against Cancer. As is often the case with Cancer, nothing is simple. Multiple surgeries and years later, I'm just now feeling like I can physically do the things I used to be able to do in the golf swing. But it's taken some time to gain the consistency and competitive edge I once had.
I fully dedicated myself on Saturday to the ideas Jimmy shared only hours earlier on The Back Nine Radio Show. Surprisingly, it didn't take long at all to feel comfortable with the move Jimmy asked his students to make. I couldn't wait to get back out on the course again Sunday morning.
It's not often we, the average golfer, get the opportunity to interact with someone of Mr. Ballard's teaching experience. Maybe all great instructors are able to simplify things the way Mr. Ballard did, but for some reason I doubt it. Based on what I've heard and seen, I think those attending the golf clinic on Sunday, July 15th at WingHaven Country Club are going to be enlightened in a unique and special way. I've had only a few minutes on the phone with Jimmy Ballard and spent a few hours studying his beliefs of the golf swing and I already feel like I'm a better golfer.
Are you looking to take your game to the next level? Are you tired of the same old, tried and true tips and tricks to fix your slice or soften your hook? Take five hours out of your day on Sunday, July 15th and absorb the knowledge shared by a legend in golf instruction. Sign up today - Space is extremely limited.