what is neuro learning?

Neuro learning is a brain based approach to learning golf as opposed to teaching golf applied by Michael Hebron after working with students at every level of the game.

Michael Hebron has been coaching students and golf professionals for over 40 years.  The first 20 years of his coaching was focused on traditional teaching methods which include technical advice, video analysis, use of drills, swing aids, etc.  Using these teaching methods, he became and was recognized as PGA National Teacher of the Year in 1991. 

After teaching all types of students and receiving national recognition, Michael was fascinated on why some students did not excel in golf as much as others. This led to a search for answers on how students learn.  Michael began to research the brain's connection to learning with the brightest minds in neuro science and other fields of study.  Research was done with breakthrough medical technology such as MRIs during the 1990s which was called the decade of the brain.  Through this process, Michael discovered that his nationally recognized teaching methods were not as effective as once thought after understanding how the brain processes information.  Thus, the birth of Neuro Learning for Golf which uses a brain based approach that challenges today's conventional golf coaching.

Michael Hebron's approach causes us to rethink many commonly held "golf truths" which have been found to be myths and incompatible with how the brain learns.  The following information will sound unconventional and even counter-intuitive.  However, the following are informed insights about how the brain learns from respected research into learning, development, and performing.


golf myths vs. neuro Learning

  • Myth 1: Use a one-two motion when swinging the golf club.  Not so. The golf swing is not a one-two motion, but has one continuous pace.  A one-two motion creates an over acceleration through impact. The golf swing should be seen as a whole, with a beginning and an ending, and nothing in the middle.  
  • Myth 2: Golfers should have a consistent golf swing. Not so. Many golfers strive to build a consistent golf swing.  However, golf is about adapting to the inconsistency that the course presents.  We never have the same shot twice, therefore the goal is to have a flexible and portable swing. If you just had a consistent swing, you could only play one shot.
  • Myth 3: To learn, develop, and perform, you must practice hours on the range. Not so.  When golfers practice for long periods of time pounding balls at the range, they are not playing golf.  Playing golf requires a variety of different shots.  Research shows that practicing the same shot over and over leads to the brain getting bored and losing attention which results in very little learning.  The brain likes random training.  On the golf course we never hit the same shot twice.  On the range, change your target, size of your swing, speed of your swing, and also create different ball flights.  If you choose to train one component of your game such as alignment, learning will be enhanced by changing your target and club selection frequently.  
  • Myth 4: The ideal swing model is based on a tour players swing.  Not so.  Keep in mind that every tour player's swing is unique as they respond to the ever changing conditions that the golf course presents.  This reality defines the most useful swing model which is the golf course.  The course is the most useful swing model because it tells you what club to use, what ball flight to create, posture, alignment, where to position your ball, and size of your swing.
  • Myth 5: Grip, Alignment, Stance, Posture are golf fundamentals.  Not so.   Traditional instruction puts over emphasis on these "non motion" elements of playing golf.  On the other hand, a brain based approach to playing golf would pay more attention to the motion of the golf club.   No accomplished golfer, including professionals I have spent time with has had the exact same way of holding the club, standing to the ball, or aligning their bodies. Ben Hogan, Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Lydia Ko, Inbee Park, Stacy Lewis, Michelle We, Lexi Thompson, all have their own way of holding the club, and standing to the ball.  They all use personal fundamentals that fit who they are as golfers.   Grip, Alignment, Stance, Posture are personal choices.