1st Edition

Routledge International Handbook of Golf Science

Edited By Martin Toms Copyright 2018
    492 Pages 48 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    490 Pages 48 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Golf is one of the world’s major sports and consequently the focus of world-class scientific research. This landmark publication is the most comprehensive book ever published on the science of golf, covering every sub-discipline from physiology, biomechanics and psychology to strength and conditioning, youth development and equipment design.

    Showcasing original research from leading golf scientists across the globe, it examines the fundamental science underpinning the game and demonstrates how it can be applied in practice to improve and develop players. Each chapter provides a definitive account of the current state of knowledge in a particular area of golf science, addressing the limitations of existing research, presenting new areas for development and discussing the implications for coaches, players, scientists and the wider golfing public. Truly international in scope, the variety of topics explored include:

    • biomechanics and equipment
    • skill learning and technology
    • performance development
    • psychological techniques for success
    • the golfing body.

    This is an essential reference for any student or researcher with an interest in the game, or any coach or professional looking to improve their knowledge.


    [Martin Toms]

    Section I: Biomechanics and Equipment

    Section Introduction

    [Sasho Mackenzie]

    1. The Golf Coaching-Biomechanics Interface

    [Andrew Morrison and Eric Wallace]

    2. Ground Reaction Forces and Pressures During the Golf Swing: Understanding and Implementing this Information

    [Scott Lynn and Will Wu]

    3. The Sequence of Body Segment Interactions in the Golf Swing

    [Peter Lamb and Paul Glazier]

    4. The Kinematic Sequence: Achieving an Efficient Downswing

    [Rob Neal]

    5. Inter- and Intra-Individual Movement Variability in the Golf Swing

    [Paul Glazier and Peter Lamb]

    6. How the Shaft of a Golf Club Influences Performance

    [Sasho Mackenzie]

    Section II: Skill Learning and Technology

    Section Introduction

    [Sam Robertson]

    7. Is Technology the Saviour or the Downfall of Modern Golf Instruction?

    [Aaron Pauls, Chris Bertram and Marc Guadagnoli]

    8. Optimizing Golf Skill Learning

    [Gabriele Wulf, Steven Orr and Guillaume Chauvel]

    9. Putting Implicit Motor Learning into Practice

    [Jamie Poolton and Richard Masters]

    10. Factors Influencing the Effectiveness of Modelling Golf Technique

    [Bob Christina and Eric Alpenfels]

    11. The Stages of Learning and Implications for Optimised Learning Environments

    [Chris Bertram, Mark Guadagnoli and Ronald Marteniuk]

    12. Skill Testing in Golf

    [Sam Robertson]

    13. Designing Optimal Golf Practice Environments

    [Sam Robertson and Damian Farrow]

    Section III: Performance Development

    Section Introduction

    [Marc Lochbaum]

    14. Putting; a Direction and Distance Problem

    [Matthew W. Bridge and Nicholas Middleton]

    15. The Beginning Golfer: Psychological Techniques and Constructs Impacting Putting Performance

    [Marc Lochbaum, Zişan Kazak Çetinkalp and Landry Actkinson]

    16. Perceptual-Cognitive Expertise in Golf Putting

    [Laura Carey, Robin Jackson, Malcolm Fairweather, Joe Causer and Mark Williams]

    17. Positive Psychology and Golf

    [Sandy Gordon and Jay-Lee Nair]

    18. Refining Motor Skills in Golf: A Biopsychosocial Perspective

    [Howie Carson and Dave Collins]

    19. Golf Analytics

    [Richard Rendleman]

    Section IV: Psychological Techniques for Success

    Section Introduction

    [Kieran Kingston]

    20. The Quiet Eye in Golf Putting

    [Sam Vine and Mark Wilson]

    21. Golfers' Imagery Use

    [Jennifer Cumming, Elliott Newell and Fredrik Weibull]

    22. Developing and Maintaining Motivation in Golf

    [Kieran Kingston]

    23. Masters of the Game: Goal Orientations of Recreational Golfers

    [Dan Sachau, Amy Harris, Luke Simmering, Max Adler and Warren Ryan]

    24. Individual Differences in Cognitive Processes and Golf Performance

    [Patrick Thomas, Andrea Furst and Gerard Fogarty]

    25. Golf and the Promise of Mental Health and Well-being for the Elite and Professional Player

    [Kitrina Douglas and David Carless]

    26. The Psychophysiology of Golf Performance

    [Debbie Crews and Amanda Cheetham]

    Section V: The Golfing Body

    Section Introduction

    [Andrea Fradkin]

    27. Physiological and Musculoskeletal Characteristics of the Modern Golfer

    [Sean Horan]

    28. The Importance of Individualising Exercise Testing and Prescription for Golfers

    [Kerrie Evans]

    29. Strength and Conditioning for Golf

    [John Hellström]

    30. The Older Golfer

    [Anthony Vandervoort, David Lindsay and Scott Lynn]

    31. Golf Injuries

    [Andrea Fradkin]

    32. Nutrition for Golf

    [Graeme Close, Jamie Pugh and James Morton]

    33. The Science of the Yips

    [Robert Wharen, Debbie Crews and Charles Adler]

    Section VI: The Golfer in Context 

    Section Introduction

    [Martin Toms]

    34. Understanding Golf and Health

    [Andrew Murray, Evan Jenkins and Roger Hawkes]

    35. Young People and Golf

    [Martin Toms]

    36. Women in Golf: A Critical Reflection

    [Niamh Kitching]

    37. The Move from Coach Centred to Participant Centred Golf Coaching

    [Jonathan Wright and Martin Toms]

    38. Social Interactions Between Coaches and Players: It Really Is a Laughing Matter 

    [Charles Fitzsimmons]

    39. Expertise in Golf Instruction

    [Paul Schempp, Bryan McCullick and Collin Webster]


    Martin Toms is a senior lecturer in the School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation at the University of Birmingham, UK. He has a PhD in Youth Sport and Developmental Socialisation from Loughborough University and focuses upon the youth sport and talent experience. In golf, he has worked across the world in golf education and has been involved in European projects exploring occupational standards within the golf industry, as well as teaching and researching talent development in the game. He has been working with the PGA (GB&I) since 2000 on their education programmes, and currently has over a dozen postgraduate students researching social scientific aspects of golf. Martin is a board member of the World Scientific Congress of Golf and a regular speaker at academic and golf-related conferences. He is also involved with universities across the world in the development of academic content and golf-related courses linked to PGA programmes. He is currently Editor-in-Chief of The International Journal of Golf Science. His PhD (Loughborough University) is in the field of youth sport.

    Sasho MacKenzie is an associate professor in the Department of Human Kinetics at St. Francis Xavier University, Canada. He holds a PhD in biomechanics from the University of Saskatchewan, which focused on 3D forward dynamics simulation of the golf swing. His research focuses on golf biomechanics, equipment optimisation, and the most advantageous training techniques. He consults for several entities in the golf industry including Ping and FootJoy.

    Sam Robertson is head of research and innovation for the Western Bulldogs Australian Football Club and an associate professor in sport science at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia. He is also the leader of the Analytics and Technology research group within the Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living.

    Marc Lochbaum is a professor of sport and exercise psychology at Texas Tech University, USA, and studies elementary school physical activity programming, achievement goals in sport and physical activity, and meta-analyses in sport and exercise psychology. He maintains a visiting position at the Olympic Research Institute in Jyväskylä, Finland. To date, his research funding totals over four million USD. He is an avid golfer.

    Kieran Kingston is a senior lecturer in sport psychology and research methods in the Cardiff School of Sport at Cardiff Metropolitan University, UK. His interests in teaching and research are in the development and maintenance of confidence and motivation in sport and their links with psychological well-being and performance. He has worked as a consultant with team and individual athletes, and as a category 1 golfer for the past 30 years, he has a particular interest in the psychology of golf.

    Andrea Fradkin is an associate professor at Bloomsburg University, USA, and has been researching golf for 18 years. She received her PhD in epidemiology and preventive medicine at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research is an amalgamation of epidemiology, injury prevention, performance improvement and biomechanics.

    ‘Over the last 20 years, golf at the highest level has moved from a game to a sport. The highest standards of preparation and the professionalism of the athlete have become increasingly important determinants of success. Today you hear far more emphasis on preparing to succeed and performance development than technical coaching. This is more apparent now than at any time in the history of the sport. The margins between success and failure are becoming finer and so understanding the "science" of golf is key to anyone involved in playing or developing players - as this outstanding book explains.’ - Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive, The R&A

    ‘The Routledge International Handbook of Golf Science provides an extraordinary perspective on our sport through 39 separate research papers. By covering biomechanics, participation, skill acquisition, performance and the health benefits of golf, this is a valuable, data-driven resource.’ - Steve Mona, CEO, World Golf Foundation