Top golf instructor and Scottsdale native Hank Haney recently spoke at a golf show in Indiana and shed a little light on his approach to teaching golf to both PGA pros and amateurs. Haney spoke about the mysteries of the sport and the honesty in his coaching, which may take you by surprise.
One of Haney’s biggest takeaways is that there is no set rule to correcting golf fundamentals, like a bad swing. If you’ve delved into golf instruction, you know that some camps suggest hitting 10,000 balls or more before a correction can take place.
Haney was quick to note that everyone and every swing is different. Someone may change their stroke quickly while others take more time. Of course, there are some mistakes that are much easier to fix than others.
“I wish you could say, you need to swing this many times to get it, and then be able to get it,” Haney said.
“It doesn’t work that way. It’s hard to change. If you knew after 10,000 swings you’d have it, everybody would suck it up and make those 10,000 swings.”
Perhaps the wisdom of Haney’s instruction methods is that he knows that there is no perfect, cookie-cutter fix. But he stresses the importance of working on the right things, in the right order, to improve your golf game. Haney likes to have his students work on just one thing at a time. It’s that laser focus that likely earned his last PGA students some of their top titles.
In Hank Haney’s 39-year golf career, he has worked with some of the best in the game, from Tiger Woods to Mark O’Meara. Over 200 PGA players have worked with him, many of whom went on to win the U.S. Open, the British Open, the Masters, and the PGA Championship.
Haney has retired from working with pros and now prefers helping people who are just getting into the game. Golf Magazine actually ranks him as one of the top 100 instructors in the country. He runs hankhaney.com and oversees a talented group of instructors looking to maintain that top tier instruction status. He also hosts a daily show for PGA Tour radio (on SiriusXm) and has been featured on the Golf Channel’s “The Haney Project.” Oh, and he also designs golf courses!
At age 60, Hank Haney’s passion for golf is clearer now more than ever. There is a lot we can learn from Haney’s teaching approach, especially the principle of keeping it simple. Even with advancements in technology and coaching gadgets, this principle is still one of the most important parts of improving your game.
“At the end of the day, you still have to communicate and be able to put things down into a concise plan that people can understand,” Haney comments.
“Without a doubt, the game is hard. My philosophy is make it as easy as you can.”
In addition to private instruction, Hank Haney has become a popular keynote speaker and holds clinics throughout the year all over the country.
Hank Haney may not be a local instructor here, but luckily you can improve your golf game with the pros that populate our special, scenic golf courses all over the Valley. Try the programs at Desert Mountain and Troon North for a taste of experienced golf instruction in a luxurious setting!
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