The BIA™ Way: The Brain Learns the Habit, not the Body! Part 1

By Dr. Matthew M. Rosman, GSEM
Director, The Golfing Machine Division of Biomechanics and Sports Science

Information goals for this series:
  • Defining: Incongruity, Congruity, Learning, Wisdom, Feedback, Habit, Pattern, Skill, Motor Learning, Sensory and Motor Function, and TGM-BIA™ Fusion.
  • Understanding the brain-body relationship.
  • Understanding how a habit is formed.
  • Applications to the Authorized Instructor and Golfer.
In this continuing education series of articles a key goal will be to help increase the understanding of the BIA™ methodology.  It is clarity after all that leads to absorption and benefit not only for our golf clients but for the educator as well.  The process of moving from intellectual understanding to skillful replication of a lawful golf stroke requires a seamless communication stream of data from brain to body.  The development of a near automatic mechanical action as seen in a “lawful” golf swing can only occur when the golfer can navigate motions without incongruity. 

Incongruity means that thought or command from the brain is not “echoed” with the exact and precise physical duplication by the body.  Therefore, the ultimate “student” as well as ardent and ever eager “learner” is the brain.  The brain “expresses” motor function or choreographed physical movement in a manner similar to a construction worker operating a large crane.  The construction worker has a task to complete such as lifting a heavy steel beam. The application of mental and physical dexterity by the construction worker operates levers and buttons which directs mechanical equipment to locate, grab, lift, deliver, lower, and detach the steel beam. This construction example is similar to Mr. Kelley’s five step sequence of operation described in The Golfing Machine, 7th Edition, Chapter 6 (Power Package): “Accumulate, Load, Storage, Delivery and Release.”

The mental and physical dexterity of the construction worker “mirrors” the sensory and motor functions of the Brain and Nervous System.  Thinking, absorbing, understanding, and applying provide the flow of information which will produce an outcome.  Sensory information provides the “in-take” aspect of the equation as information is collected and delivered to the brain for data processing.  Motor expression is the “output” part of the equation which in the case of voluntary or willful motion involves choreography of movement by which goal-oriented activities are achieved.  

Learning is vital to the process of improving accuracy, dexterity, and proficiency of golf performance so that the degree of error with repeated applications is nearly undetectable. Learning involves the acquisition of knowledge through education, insight, review, recognition of significant constructs, and adjustment to contribute to the development of performance wisdom.   Performance wisdom occurs as the application of knowledge and information gained through education, insight, pose choreography patterning, and experience positively impacts present and future consistency of motor expression.  Learning’s greatest tool is accurate and personalized feedback.  Feedback occurs when sensory information is evaluated and compared with all accumulated knowledge about a particular subject with the purpose of determining the efficiency, effectiveness, and development of useful refinements or modifications by which a goal oriented motion can be more congruent with the desired movement or defined Concept Map golf science technique pathway of movement (route).  

Congruent which is the opposite of incongruent is defined as having thoughts and actions relative to goal that are not in conflict with the required technique or motions by which a lawful golf stroke is conducted. In the BIA™ Way this means that pattern(s) of choreographed poses are executed in the proper sequence and manner that complies with the G.O.L.F. technique pathway(s). 

If the brain participates in constructive learning, uses feedback, develops wisdom, and participates in a congruent fashion the pattern executed by the golfer will comply (through pose choreography expression) with the required G.O.L.F. technique pathway.  Mr. Kelley offers a vibrant and dynamic description of these functions in The Golfing Machine, 7th Edition, Chapter 14 (The Computer) as his prose blends most synergistically with the BIA™ Way.  The careful and deliberate building or construction of a habit must occur and this construction occurs in the brain and “flows” to the body!

A habit in this context is defined as a pattern of movement that is executed from an accurate blueprint that is performed with ever-increasing accuracy with each successive execution reaching such a reliable rate of consistency that the pattern is deemed to be repeatable and identical to its predecessor (BIA Pattern Lock™).  This is the TGM-BIA™ Fusion function and goal!

In Part II we will discuss the meaning of the terms skill, motor-learning, and introduce the BIA™ definition of performance as it relates to G.O.L.F.

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