Friday, July 24, 2009

7/18/09 Round

Finally got to play some golf with my brother and good friend Jason. It has been way to long since I golfed with Jason. Boy was I surprised at his improvement. He hit almost every drive right on the button. His improvement was impressive. Needless to say my play was awful. I could not hit the ball straight to save my life. It was fun however because my daughter and Jason's daughter went with us for the front nine. The were very well behaved and made me laugh. We did have something interesting happen however. As we pulling up to the 8th tee box along comes a skunk. I should have known because that is how bad my game was that day. Actually the skunk probably smelled better than my game. That is ok though because I love the game and will be back for more. Hope to get to play with Jason again before the summer ends.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Playing Lesson with the Pro.

Well it finally happened. I played a round with my teacher yesterday. Man was it hot!. We worked on course management and he also pointed out the things I need to watch for as far as falling back into some bad habits. He was pretty quite for the first few holes, however after seeing my inconsistency with the driver he pointed out that I need to keep a wider stance and also make sure and keep my knees flexed more than I had them. That along with a minor adjustment with my alignment, I was aiming way to far right, allowed me to start hitting some really solid nice drives. He also added to my already large list of things to keep in mind to keep the hinge in my wrist on the downswing as long as possible. This will help me to not swing with my arms and to swing more with my lower body. This accomplishes two things, one much solider shots and two more distance as the power is held until the last possible second before being unleashed. It was a very interesting afternoon and it also helped to gain some confidence and he reiterated all the things that I do correctly which in turn narrowed down the stuff I need to work. Our last lesson will be with their new teaching tool which involves video. I am really looking forward to this as he will be able to e-mail me my swing and really point things out more specifically that need corrected. All in all it has been money well spent and has also rejuvenated my passion for this wonderful game.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Family Reunion July 4th, 2009

Well I am finally back with some golfing news. Went to Nebraska for a family reunion and saw people I haven't seen for 7 years. Was able to get a round in with a couple of cousins who only took the game up with in the last 10 years. We actually played on the 4th in the morning which was nice. We played 18 before our big party. Needless to say the scores could have been better. I was happy to be able to implement some of the chipping knowledge I have learned and am happy to say that I chipped better than I have in a long time. Chipping and putting were not the issue with me that day. I shot an 85 with a 45 on the front and a 40 on the back. I am looking forward to my playing lesson with the Pro and hope to get that in this weekend or next week for sure. I will let you know how that goes. Until then it is practice and hopefully some more trips to the course.

Monday, June 15, 2009

TPC Southwind Memphis, TN

Man what a day. I got to attend the St. Jude Classic in Memphis, TN this Saturday. It was very cool. I started the day by watching the players on the driving range. I could not believe how crisp they all hit the ball. It became very apparent to me why the pros boil down to the short game and that is what determines who wins the tournaments. I stayed between 10 Fairway and 11 green the whole time. I got to see all the groups come through and I have to tell you that Phil and JD's groups had the biggest followings. I was most excited to see Camilo's group however. The pros obviously do not miss by much any time they hit the ball. I thought that Southwind's grounds crew did an awesome job preparing the day especially after the storms came through on Friday. The course was in beautiful shape. All I can say is it must be a huge undertaking to not only set up for the tournament but to run it as well. After attending a Pro Golf tournament you gain a whole new appreciation for what the PGA Tour does week in and week out. After this weekend I swore to myself that before I die I have to attend a major championship some day. Well this week I am looking forward to my playing lesson with my instructor. I will let you know how it goes after I play. I hope everyone has a wonderful week and Happy Father's Day to all the dads.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Playing with the Pro!

I'm most excited today. My next lesson is a round with the pro. Looking forward to seeing how I fair on the course. I hope to play next Tuesday if possible. Of course work will dictate that as it does most things during the week. Oh to not have a boss. I'm excited to implement what I have learned in my lessons and take them to the course. I'm shooting for a score of 80 or better. Will let you know how it goes. Look forward to seeing my score card after I play. Have a great weekend and hope ya'll get in a round this weekend.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Chipping Tip!

I found this little tip on-line today and wanted to share it. Enjoy the tip and practice.

Go the Distance — Eddie Merrins
The average player approaches chip shots like he does putts. He's more concerned with line than speed. That is the opposite of a pro's thinking. To chip like a pro, focus on sending the ball the right distance. Start by picturing a distance target -- a line about a foot behind the hole that extends a few feet in both directions. You can stick tees in the green to represent this line. Don't worry about the length of your swing -- focus on the force required to get the ball to the line. With practice, you'll start leaving chips closer to the hole. And that means more tap-ins for par.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Chipping and Putting

Finally got another lesson. Boy was it fun! I desperately needed a chipping lesson as this area has been costing me at least 6 strokes a round. What did I learn? Well what finally clicked was that I have been standing to far from the ball at address. No wonders my back would hurt. I took the pros advice and stood closer to the ball and what do you know I started to hit some very crisp chips and believe it or not even got some spin on range balls. He suggested that I pick a club to chip with 90% of the time and stick to it. I have chosen the 60 degree for my weapon. Can't wait to practice as it was a lot of fun to hit chip after chip nicely. He suggested having my feet very close together and playing the ball back in the stance. After I got there it was basically just a matter of hitting it with my hands and arms like a putting stroke. I could of chipped for 2 more hours easily it was much fun. After the chipping we moved to the putting green. Picked up a couple of great practice tips this time. First we did some short puts, 4 footers, and put two tees in the ground a little over a balls width apart in front of the hole. I then hit puts never looking at the hole and keeping my head down for a three count. We also did a little drill that requires a right handed putter to look away from the hole after hitting the ball. Amazing what that does for you as far as keeping your head down and still. Great drills! Next we worked on reading greens. This was what I was really interested in. He tahgt me to visualize a big wall clock around the hole. Then look at the put from both sides and behind the hole for sure. From there he said to pick a time on the clock where I wanted to start the put. It worked very well and as long as I had the speed right the putts were very close. We probably putted 40 balls from about 30 feet with that drill with both left to right and right to left breaks. Very fun practice again. All and all I would have to say this was my favorite lesson to date. Next I get to actually play a round with him. To finish it off I will get to have my swing taped with the brand new machine they are getting in about two weeks. Will update again after my round.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Another Lesson

Well I think I will finally be able to get the chipping and putting lesson in. The driving range has finally resurfaced from the depths of the water. I can't wait much longer as I crave another lesson. Especially one as important as the short game. I will tell more later after I have taken the lesson. Hopefully this weekend.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sunday Outing

Well the sun finally came out and the rain stopped. We got to play 18 holes on 5-17-09. I was able to work on some of the stuff I learned from my lessons. It took some holes but I definitely started to hit some quality shots. I shot an 84 and that was do to my putting. I still hit some fat iron shots that cost me strokes. The cool thing about it was I didn't get mad and knew what the cause was. I'm looking forward to my next lesson this week and can't wait to get back on the course again. For anyone who is feeling frustrated with the game and almost like you want to quit I highly recommend lessons. Not only will it start to build confidence it will make you love the game like you did before.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Taking Lessons

Well I finally took the plunge. I received golf lessons for my 42nd birthday and have started them. I found out that all along I have been going about this game the wrong way. My instructor has taken me back to the basics. So far I have learned that posture and balance are 2 very key elements to a sound swing. He has given me some very good training tools that I will share. First for the distance to stand from the ball. Stand upright with your knees locked and hold the club in front of you. From there lower the club until it sits on the ground naturally. From there bend slightly at the waste and make sure your stance is wide enough to feel well grounded. PS: remember to stick your behind out as that helps to keep your hands up high enough. This is especially important towards the end of the round when we have a tendency to get tired. The next lesson I learned was to be patient with the swing. For some reason we think the harder we swing the farther the ball goes. Quite the opposite is true I found out. The easier we swing the better we hit the ball and the farther and starighter it goes. He has also worked on my take away. Great tip when taking the club back try and drag it backwards about 6 inches. This keeps the left arm straight and gets the club properly on plane at the top. Once you get to the top with the club on plane correctly you can then use your lower bady and swing as hard as your little heart desires. The last note is what side to play from. If you are right handed play from the left side. This means make sure on your downswing that you release the club and turn your body to the left, don't stop. Just the opposite if your are left handed. All for now will touch base after the next lesson. Looking forward to the rain stopping in Arkansas so I can take one.