Bubba Watson recently won the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club. This was his third victory at Riviera, and his tenth PGA tour victory.
This most recent victory further illustrates the depth of talent that we currently see on the PGA Tour. Watching Watson play golf is not quite the same as watching many other touring professionals.
Watson’s golf ball almost never flies straight, which can be quite entertaining.
Watson plays golf the way many of you ought to attempt to play.
He uses his imagination.
His imagination not only frees up his mind, but it also frees up his golf swing.
I first learned to appreciate the imagination of Watson while watching him win the 2012 Masters in a playoff on the 10th hole at Augusta National.
On that hole, Watson hooked his tee shot deep into the trees to the right of the fairway. His next shot is legendary, as he hooked a pitching wedge nearly 20 yards around the trees and onto the green. The shot played perfectly into his hands…literally.
Your hands are the key to learning how to use your imagination on the golf course. You must feel the type of shot you are hoping to hit.
That’s what Watson does better than anybody else in the world.
A great way for you to work on developing better feel in your hands is to practice hitting short pitch shots.
You can use whichever club you like, but a pitching wedge is the club I would recommend.
As you begin hitting these pitch shots, you should focus on the direction of the spin you are attempting to put on the golf ball.
In other words, you should focus on trying to put hook spin on your ball, and the focus on putting slice spin on your ball.
For right handed golfers, you should feel your right hand and forearm rolling over the top at impact.
This is similar to a tennis player attempting to hit a top spin forehand.
To place the slice spin on your ball, practice striking some shots with your right hand and forearm staying more underneath at impact.
This is similar to a tennis player hitting a drop shot.
Above all else, the most important lesson to learn is that using your imagination on the golf course is an awesome way to play the game.
Challenge yourself to try hooking the ball, slicing the ball, hitting the ball low, and hitting the ball high.
You may not have the hands that Watson is blessed with, but the more you practice imagination, the better the feel in your hands will become.