“Training players to be their own coach”
Matt’s mission is to help every junior reach their absolute potential not only in golf, but in life. He believes that juniors need to be coached holistically and set short, middle, and long-term goals to ensure their visions comes true. The principles that can be taught to improve at the game are very applicable to doing better at school and preparing for a successful college career. Golf is a very complex game as is life. He firmly believes to reach an elite level players need to become “efficient” and “aware”. The elite level players are very well versed in multiple areas and don’t only work hard, but work hard the right ways and in the right areas. They also understand their golf game and are very aware of what causes missed versus great golf shots. After initial evaluations, Matt customizes plans for each golfer to help them set realistic goals, and provides the tools, resources, education, and feedback to make sure that every minute spent training is as efficient as possible.
Goal setting is the most important piece to efficient improvement, yet many juniors neglect to take care of this step. From Technical to Performance Skills we can visually and statistically measure baselines and track improvement. Matt reviews short, middle, and long-term goals with the juniors frequently to ensure each are being challenged appropriately and progressing forward.
Lowering a juniors handicap and shooting better scores is Matt’s highest coaching priority. Matt uses the FlightScope Combine to measure the juniors swing performance. He also uses Performance Drills for each area of the game and records their best tournament and casual rounds to help set stepping stones and consistently challenge the golfer.
Technical Skill Development is essential to reach a peak level. Each golfer must use each club efficiently for the different type of situations that arise. This would mean that they need a repeatable/predictable swing that will hit the golf ball a reasonable distance. The amount of technical development implemented in the coaching depends on the competitive situation and skill level of each junior.
Matt’s goal with coaching is to have his students rely less and less on him and work towards becoming their own coach. Every junior needs to be able to self-diagnose pieces of their game so they know what they can change or alter when they are on the course or playing in a competitive situation. Matt’s players are all educated on their tendencies and “why” the ball is reacting the way it is based on their golf swing.
Golf is a game where we need to have very clear and decisive thoughts so that the mind can efficiently control the body to execute a desired thought. Teaching golfers when to focus internally vs externally, as well as when to be thinking and when not to be thinking is a large piece to reaching a peak level. Matt bridges mental training from the practice tee to the course so that each player is thinking and training the same way they play on the course.
If your junior is serious about playing at an elite level, then playing in tournaments is imperative. From local, to regional and national, you need to find a circuit and design a schedule that best suits the needs of each golfer. Matt consults with his students on a frequent basis to not only debrief after tournaments, but also understand what season they are in to tailor the training to maximize performance.
On top of being a golf coach Matt is a fitness and health enthusiast. He is Titleist Performance Institute certified and understands how physical limitations can effect the golf swing. Matt works hand in hand with Physical Therapist and Fitness trainers to help players who may have physical limitations or are injury prone. Preparing the body and taking care of the body can not only maximize performance and distance control, but prevent injury as well. An athlete is going to be able to reach a higher level in the sport than a non-athlete so it is important that we train like athletes.
Being able to see the junior play on the course is very important to Matt. In each lesson pack Matt reserves time to go on the course with the juniors. Transferring what is being worked on to the golf course is key to success, and if Matt could teach on the golf course 100% of the time he would!
If it works with Matt’s schedule he also Caddies for his junior players upon request.
Matt uses a shared Online Lesson Notebook to ensure that parents, coaches, and the junior can have access to all lesson notes. Matt does a summary of each lesson and places screenshots of FlightScope data as well as High Speed Video in each notebook to compliment the notes. This allows the junior to understand what they need to be working on in between lessons. Matt also sets up Tournament Scheduling/Tracking and assembles the baseline numbers to track improvement in the notebook as well.
Matt does an Initial Evaluation with each student to measure where they are currently with their golf game. Matt does follow-up evaluations to test the juniors and track improvement. All data is stored in the shared Online Lesson Notebook. (See Initial Evaluation information below).
1. Measure Performance
2. Set Goals
3. Begin Training
4. Remeasure Performance