Golf Books: Great Books that Change the Way You Golf

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If you love golf, you will love golf books.

Reading about how different golfers approach the game can be an eye opening experience. There are always new perspectives, techniques, and mental tips that you can add to your game.

Reading about a sport you love can be an enjoyable experience, too. Try reading some golf books if you need a book to read while traveling, or if you just have some time to kill.

Why You Should Read Golf Books

There is an absolute wealth of information in golf books.

It’s unreasonable to incorporate everything you read in a golf book, but you may just find one big thing that moves your golf game forward.

I remember struggling with my golf game for a few weeks in a row. Someone in my group asked me: “have you tried reading any golf books?”. I had never considered it. I didn’t even know golf books were a thing.

Let me tell you, golf books can really help you. Especially with your mental game and strategy.

Here are my favorite golf books. This list is not comprehensive, nor does it cover all the great golf books out there.

1. Ben Hogan’s Five Lessons

Essential Golf Reading
Ben Hogan's Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf
$30.19

Ben Hogan, one of the greatest golfers in the history of the sport, believed that any golfer with average coordination can learn to break eighty.

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07/16/2024 06:46 pm GMT

With over one million copies in print, Ben Hogan’s Five Lessons has stood the test of time for a reason. It remains one of the highest rated golf books even though it was published in 1957.

Hogan’s analysis of the golf swing, grip, and arm movements are second to none. It’s rare to have one of the all-time greatest golfers write a detailed book about the golf swing. Hogan does the entire golf world a favor by sharing his unique knowledge on the subject.

The content is rich but not overwhelming, which makes for an easy read.

You should give this book a try if you have an analytical mind that obsesses over every part of your golf swing.

2. Harvey Penick’s Little Red Book

Harvey Penick's Little Red Book: Lessons And Teachings From A Lifetime In Golf
$14.66

The most beloved golf book of all time, Harvey Penick’s Little Red Book has become required reading for all players and fans of the game, from beginners to seasoned pros.

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07/16/2024 06:14 pm GMT

Undoubtedly the shortest book on this list, Harvey Penick’s Little Red Book is packed with wisdom.

Harvey Penick was a legendary golf instructor who coached Ben Crenshaw, Tome Kite, and many others. It’s fascinating to view golf from the perspective of a professional instructor.

Penick takes on about 90 problems that plague golfers. He addresses the problem, gives a solution, and suggests a long term plan.

His advice is incredibly valuable and easy to understand. It’s the perfect book for the struggling golfer or for the golfer trying to make the leap from good to great.

3. The Inner Game of Golf

The Inner Game of Golf
$14.76

The Inner Game of Golf delivers strategies to achieve potential—both in the crucible of competition and in everyday life.

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07/16/2024 07:02 pm GMT

W. Timothy Gallwey explores the mental side of golf, focusing on how to overcome mental obstacles and improve your performance with mental strategies.

I have a friend that always says golf is “80 percent mental”. At the highest level of golf, I believe this to be true. The mental toughness is what makes winners and losers.

Sports phycology has become more popular over the past decade or so. More and more professional golfers meet regularly with sports phycologists to keep their mental game sharp. Full Swing 2 on Netflix documents the struggles of Wyndham Clark before he starts seeing a sports phycologist.

Most of us aren’t professional golfers that need a sports phycologist. If you feel your mental game is struggling, this book could help you.

4. Golf is Not a Game of Perfect

Golf Is Not a Game of Perfect
$9.34

You cannot hit a golf ball consistently well if you think about the mechanics of your swing as you play.

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07/16/2024 07:34 pm GMT

Dr. Rotella, a sports psychologist, discusses the mental aspects of golf and how to achieve a winning attitude.

Golf is different than most sports. There is no team (mostly) and it solely depends on your individual performance. That pressure can lead to overthinking, fear, and doubt.

Dr. Rotella dives into how to manage expectations and relax your mind. Our minds want to hit the ball flawlessly every time, but you don’t need to be flawless to be a winner.

Golf is Not a Game of Perfect is a fascinating dive into the world of golf psychology. Try giving it a read if you are trying to improve your mental game.

5. Zen Golf: Mastering the Mental Game

Zen Golf: Mastering the Mental Game
$13.99

Zen Golf helps eliminate the mental distractions that routinely cause poor shots and loss of concentration, allowing golfers to feel in “the zone” that professionals have learned to master.

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07/16/2024 07:50 pm GMT

We all know Zen.

If we could only reach that state of Zen on the golf course. It would be amazing to feel “one” with the game and not be fighting against it.

Dr. Joseph Parent combines Zen with golf psychology, offering insights on how to achieve a state of mental calmness and focus during play.

If you struggle to keep your emotions in check during a round of golf, Zen Golf is the ideal book for you. It takes patience and discipline, but reaching a state of Zen is possible on the golf course.

6. A Good Walk Spoiled: Days and Nights on the PGA Tour

Much like the documentary Full Swing on Netflix, this book provides an inside look at life on the PGA Tour.

Golf fans don’t see the struggles, the emotions, the disappointment, and the triumph that occurs on the PGA tour.

John Feinstein travels with the golfers on the PGA Tour and attempts to understand what creates the game’s greatest golfers and what causes the biggest losers.

If you are a fan of the PGA Tour, this is a must read. If you aren’t as interested in the world of professional golf, you could pass on this one.

A Good Walk Spoiled: Days and Nights on the PGA Tour
$11.99

Traveling with the golfers on the PGA Tour, Feinstein gets inside the heads of the game's greatest players as well as its struggling wannabes.

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07/16/2024 08:29 pm GMT

7. The Match: The Day the Game of Golf Changed Forever

This book is such a fun read. It has less substance about the golf swing or overcoming mental obstacles. It’s a feel-good story about a great day in golf history.

It delves into the famous match between Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson against amateurs Harvie Ward and Ken Venturi, showcasing a pivotal moment in golf history.

It is full of emotion and intrigue. It is inspiring for the any amateur golfer who wishes they could compete with the all-time greatest golfers.

The Match: The Day the Game of Golf Changed Forever
$15.99

n 1956, a casual bet between two millionaires eventually pitted two of the greatest golfers of the era -- Byron Nelson and Ben Hogan -- against top amateurs Harvie Ward and Ken Venturi.

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07/16/2024 08:42 pm GMT

Conclusion

These books cover a wide range of aspects in golf, from technique and strategy to the mental game and the history of the sport. Depending on your interests and what aspect of golf you’re looking to explore, any of these books could be a great addition to your reading list.

This is not a comprehensive list of the golf books you should read. If you find other golf books that look good, give them a try!

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