Professional golf coaches' perceptions of the key technical parameters in the golf swing

Aimée Smith, Jonathan Roberts, Eric S Wallace, Stephanie Forrester

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Assessing a coach’s technical knowledge of a sporting technique can reveal measureable biomechanical parameters associated with successful performance. This assessment can provide new insights into technique, enhance a coach’s technical knowledge or assist in optimising performance. Despite numerous golf instructional books, no scientific study has assessed a golf coach’s technical knowledge of the golf swing. Therefore, the purpose of this study was toidentify the key technical parameters that professional golf coaches associate with a top level golf swing; with the intention of using the results to guide future golf biomechanics research and coaching technologies. Initially, sixteen professional golf coaches were individually observed coaching a highly skilled golfer after which they participated in a semi-structured interview regarding their technical analysis of the golf swing. QSR-NVivo analysis software was used to inductively analyse the data using the grounded theory approach. Line-by-line coding was followed by comparison of ‘meaning units’ to form a coding hierarchy with several key technical parameters identified. A successful golf swing was defined through three elements, with “body motion” affecting “club motion” and resulting “ball flight”. Several terms described these parameters including “consistent”, “powerful”, “accurate”, “simple” and “controlled” with the most prevalent being “repeatable”. “Body motion” was influenced by five intrinsically linked key technical parameters: “posture”, “body rotation”, “sequential movement”, “hand and arm action” and “clubparameters” which were further sub categorised. To conclude, the key technical parameters have been identified which will be used to support future biomechanical research in this area and to be used to direct new technologies to aid golf coaching.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)224-229
JournalProcedia Engineering
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 2 Mar 2012

Bibliographical note

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  • Golf swing
  • coaching
  • qualitative analysis
  • technical parameter
  • biomechanics


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