Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A new place

My friends

Thank you for reading my blogs here, but for now all future blogs will be be here http://blog.sportsperformancecenter.es/ please look under the GOLF COACH section.

This is the company blog for a new Performance sports and golf center based in Barcelona Spain. I have been given the role of director of Golf Performance. We will be utilising the latest and most modern of golf and fitness assessments systems to help golfer reach their potential.

I hope you wil continue to follow and read my blogs and I hope we can continue to have meaningfull debates about the great game of golf.

Thanks Andy

Saturday, March 26, 2011


Last night I posted a very simple question on my twitter page.

Do you think juniors would learn better scoring if they were only allowed to play golf from 100 yards and in until the age 13?

I have recently returned from a TPI junior level 2 education seminar. While there we spoke in detail about long Term Athletic Development plans for children. One of the main aspects of LTAD is to make sure that children do not early specialize.

In my junior days I was asked to have a certain handicap at a certain age to obtain regional coaching help, I was told I had to compete in various age groups events so "You will get seen by county selectors". How can this be right? I hope nothing like this is still in existence today.

I feel children being asked to compete in too many age group championships at a young development can be more harmful than good. Most of the winners of these events are the early bloomers, who are physically better adapted playing on a golf course.

Don't get me wrong I am not saying that competition is wrong, but when too much is made of the outcome of these events I have the issue.

Competing too young can have adverse effect as the winners love the winning and the losers decide to take on another sport.

Who cares what handicap you have at a certain age? I certainly don't. I would like all of the children I have coached to reach their potential. Thats it!

If all children were only allowed to play golf from 100 hundred yards and in up until the age of 13-14 would we end up with better young golfers that may have longevity in the sport?

I think it is accepted that if you want to play at an elite level of golf then you need to have a world class short game. So if the emphasis on learning was from 100 yards and in then they would learn to excel in this area. Suddenly early bloomers in terms of physicality do not have an advantage.

It was recently reported that Spanish children taking part in football are not allowed to play on full size pitches until 15 years old. Does this help and encourage them to learn to pass the ball with accuracy and have better movement and spacial awareness? Is it more important to learn to pass the ball to a fellow teammate in space than kick it as far as possible?

In golfing terms we could coach the young players to engage in speed training at a very young age. They will be able to learn rotation and explosive speed in a controlled environment of a driving range or practice tee. The young children can be taught to strike the ball with great accuracy once again on the practice tee. The players can be walked around the full length golf course to learn course management.

A lot of Spanish elite golfer are deemed to have excellent short games. Seve, Olazabal, Garcia. In my time here in Spain I have witnessed the quality of the young children's short games. Could this be down to the numbers and availability of pitch and putt courses. In most cases the pitch and putt courses are seen as inferior facilities to those with full length courses.

I think that LTAD will take a long time to be really accepted into golf, if the desire of many within the sport is to continue asking children to compete in competitions at too young an age.

Andy Gordon

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Being a golfing athlete

I think its been discussed many times on many blogs that there are now more great athletes in the game of golf than there ever has been. Many of today's elite level players spend as much time in the gym as they do on the practice tee.

For me as TPI Level 3 golf professional I find the Body/Swing connection a vital part of my knowledge and understanding. What is also vital is to get to understand where my player has come from.

What sports did they play while growing up?
Did they have variety in sport?
Did they play at a good level in those sports?

I think if you took a poll of all the players out there on the European or PGA tour the majority would tell you that they played multiple sports as juniors, played some at a decent level of competition, and most of the sports had great transfer of learning potential.

I was lead to a great article through a twitter post by Andy Griffiths

The article is here "The new breed of golfer"

So if you have children who wish to play golf gets them to participate in multi sports as children. As many as 5 different sports per week.

I hope you enjoyed the article

Andy Gordon

Friday, March 4, 2011

MYTPI Dr.Greg Rose & Dave Phillips

This is the TPI presentation on the body/swing connection at the 2011 PGA Golf show
Great information and knowledge of the body / swing connection by the co -founders of the Titleist Performance Institute.

I have worked with the TPI system for the past 5 years. I have to say it has helped my coaching and understanding of the body/swing connection more than any other learning source.

I would recommend all players search out a Qualified TPI fitness professional and start learning about what your body is capable of doing.


Personal Golf Instructions - The Nextmen

For all the golfers out there who love thier music, this is a mix that was commercially available from the amazing UK production duo. THE NEXTMEN. An amazing blend of music from every genre mixed with an Arnold Palmer instructional record. The Arnold Palmer record was found in a record shop in Melbourne, by Brad, one half of THE NEXTMEN.

Have a listen and enjoy.


More info can be found on THE NEXTMEN


Friday, February 25, 2011


Recently Ben Crane has been putting the finishing touches to a series of Golf work out DVDs.

These are without doubt the future of golf. If you want to improve your self both physically and mentally you have to watch these.

I hope you enjoyed them.
All i can say is watch out MYTPI , Coach Noss, and all the other golf fitness experts ;)


Thursday, February 3, 2011

Charlotte Pine lake CC 2011

TPI Golf Fitness Assessment Jauary 2011

After a few nervous days wondering If I would ever get to fly to Charlotte for my 10 day trip, it finally all worked out well. The snow storms that hit the east coast of the USA did not effect me too much. Just a 2.5 hour drive from Raleigh Durham as opposed to 20 minutes from Charlotte Douglas airport to my accommodation. My 10 day visit and 8 working days was an amazing experience and one I will remember for a long time to come.

Prior to arriving at Pine Lake Country Club I had 30 players of varying levels booked in for TPI golf Fitness assessments. I have to comment on the fine work by Head professional and his staff Brian and Laura for filling out my days so well with enthusiastic players.The members at Pine Lake CC, who even though thoroughly depressed at not being able to play golf, where a joy to be around and help.I think it will be a long time til I visit a club where the members have such passion and desire to support a club in its entirety.

From the outset the members really did take on the TPI golf fitness assessments and concept very well, but it was a big surprise to me to hear how many of the players had very little or no idea of what TPI was about. I hope that in the future TPI and Titleist can make the awareness of the brand further reaching.

I had set up the member accounts 2 weeks before arriving in Charlotte. This allowed the players the opportunity to browse around the www.mytpi.com website. I think this really helped the players establish an idea of what they had signed up to.A few players who had not visited the site had pre conceived ideas that the assessments would be all about cardio fitness and a few thought it would all be weight machine and strength training. Wow where they wrong and pleasantly surprised.

The process of establishing a players golf fitness is though a series of assessments based around functional movement patterns and specific screen tests.I explained to each and every player that the screens would look at their Stability, Mobility, Balance and movement patterns. Through the assessments we could get to understand if issues the players where having in their techniques where based around physical limitations or purely about motor learning.As a full time golf coach I feel the TPI qualifications I have gained have given me the tools to offer a more efficient golf lesson. No longer will I ask a player to change a part of their technique without establishing if they are physically capable of making that change.

Throughout my time at Pine Lake I was keen to find out about the programmes that the members were already using if they were regular gym users. Many of the players who complete TPI assessments where so much happier that they now had programmes that would make their time at the gym more golf specific.
I quickly became aware that the members of Pine Lake where unlike a lot of players I had tested before. Their general levels of golf fitness where far and above what I had previously tested. There really was a stark difference in range of mobility and general stability between this group of American players and the Spanish and British I was used too. The majority of players where already undertaking some form of fitness work, and it really showed.At the end of each assessment the TPI system offers up a golf fitness handicap. 0 being your ultimate golf athlete and 36 being the worst. I have never seen so many players come out with handicaps within the 12 to 18 bracket. This was a great testament to the players.

Two area's that really stood out for me on a negative note firstly the poor glute stability of the players and secondly the numbers of players in 'S' posture.

Glute Stability
It got me thinking “ Why are these players so good in all other areas but poor in glute stability?”. I discussed the playing habits of all the players, were they riders or walkers? Did they walk the golf course or ride the carts? A big majority spent the majority of their golfing lives sat down in a cart. In Britain the numbers of courses that allow buggies are tiny in comparison to the USA. The way the modern courses are built in the USA with long walks between green and tee make riding important for getting players around the course in a good time, plus as I found out the carts bring in huge revenue streams to the clubs. Don't get me wrong this is much needed income for any facility. But all this riding in the carts must have a detrimental effect on the body and its efficiency for golf. 'The Glutes are the Kings' If the glutes are not strong enough to stabilise through out the golf swing many postural issues and swing faults can be seen. In Britain walking around the course is a common practice in the majority of clubs. Maybe the golfers in Britain walking the course and the Americans riding a cart is where the difference in glute strength comes from.

'S' posture
For those that don't know TPI's description of S posture is an excessive curve of the lower back caused by weak or inactive abdominals and an overly tilted pelvis at address. Now this position in the posture I have seen many times before, but mainly in young golfers and ladies.I saw more 's' posture positions than 'c' and neutral put together. In my experience the 's' posture mainly comes from 2 areas. As I said above above weak or non firing abs and maybe poor information from a coach. I will hold my hands up on many occasions in the past I have asked players to try and feel think they are sticking their butt's out to improve posture inclination and spinal neutrality. This can sometimes be mis understood by the payers and they end up tilting their pelvis too much at set up causing 's' posture. From this 's' posture set position the common trend was then to lose posture inclination in the backswing or early extend in the downswing. I think it is vital that all players when getting into the posture position begin by firing or switching on their core. This will help maintain a good neutral lower back position at address.

I would be really interested to find out from TPI if they have found patterns similar to mine through the data they receive from around the world.

At the end of the week I had completed 35 TPI golf fitness assessments. This was about 10% of the playing membership. I cannot thank the members for supporting me in my time at their club. Having the opportunity to assess so many players over a period like this and see the changes I have been able to make has really emphasized to me the benefit of the TPI system. If you don't have access to a professional who is certified with TPI. Investigate and find a highly qualified fitness professional who is knowledgeable or works with golf professionals on a regular basis. If you are reading this and have a gym programme that is not golf specific. I would ask, are you helping or hindering your golf progress? I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Pine Lake CC in Charlotte. I am already planning my trip back in December to see the progress of the players I hope I have helped.

If you have any questions about my work or TPI then please post up in the comments section

Yours golfingly Andy