"Keep your eye on the ball" has so long been a maxim of golfers that it is now on its way into grade-school copybooks. What is the first thing you are told by friends or caddies if you flub a shot off tee or fairway? You took your eye off the ball. Maybe you did and maybe you didn't. Like all good things, this business of keeping the eye glued to the ball can be overdone. Concentrate on it too much and all sorts of trouble starts. For one thing, your head may stay in a too-fixed position as you hit the ball and follow through, thus preventing you from completing the proper hip turn on your stroke. At the finish of their necessarily constricted swings, many overintent ball watchers are bent over and off balance instead of finishing straight up with the body weight on the left leg. On the putting green, too, ball gazers are apt to stifle their feel of putting plus their sense of distance and direction.
Of course, every player should be conscious that the ball is there but not overinterested in its presence. Treat it like an ordinary pedestrian you see approaching—don't stare at it as if it were Marilyn Monroe or you may fall flat on your face, which renders a service to no one.
from HAROLD CALLAWAY, Pinehurst CC, N.C., Skytop Club, Sky top, Pa.
NEXT WEEK: ARNOLD BROWNING ON SIGHTING THE ROLL