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NUance

Hittin' the links: Golf talk

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I've been bitten by the golf bug lately. I'd really like to step my game up to the point where I can count on playing a respectable round, say, in the mid 80s on the course where I regularly play (par 70 with a 70.7 course rating and a slope of 123). That means I'll need to get to a handicap of around 14. Right now I'm probly around 20. (There, I said it. My golf game is in the shitter right now. Oh the shame! LOL) The best I've ever been is around 16.5, and that was several years ago.

 

Anyway, this thread is for discussion of your own endeavors with the small ball. Golf talk. Bragging, lamenting, tips and soliciting advice about your own golf game. I know there are guys on this board that I (and maybe others) could glean advice from. QMany is quite an accomplished golfer. And I suspect there are other ball strikers on this board who could help to straighten out us poor, struggling duffers.

 

 

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I actually became a member at the local course this year. Now I can tell my wife that I have a financial investment in me playing more. The more I play, the less each round costs.

 

My goal is to actually go out and play over my noon hour some some days. Yesterday I actually played 9 holes in about 50 minutes. Hopefully just being out there and having a club in my hand will help me improve in certain parts of my game.

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I always enjoy our golf discussions, NUance.

 

I've been bitten by the golf bug lately. I'd really like to step my game up to the point where I can count on playing a respectable round, say, in the mid 80s on the course where I regularly play (par 70 with a 70.7 course rating and a slope of 123). That means I'll need to get to a handicap of around 14. Right now I'm probly around 20. (There, I said it. My golf game is in the shitter right now. Oh the shame! LOL) The best I've ever been is around 16.5, and that was several years ago.

 

How much do you get to practice? More than any other sport, golf takes a good amount of time and discipline. A lot of people complain about lack of time, but I think it is more lack of discipline when it comes to practicing. Everyone wants to hit the driver. From my time at the range, I would guess most bogey golfers spend 75% of their time with driver in hand when they go to "practice." I would tell them to spend 75% of the time on the putting/chipping green. The best part, it is free!

 

I am certainly not implying that is your issue, NUance. I don't mean for it to come off that way. I think you would need to play a few rounds and take an honest assessment of your game. Don't only keep track of your score. Keep track of whether your hit the FW, had a "good miss," or had to take a penalty/punch out; keep track of putts, including how far your first one was; keep track of how many balls were hit in the hazards. That quick exercise, which can be easily tracked on the normal scorecard, will give you a ton of information that will help focus your practice.

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I actually became a member at the local course this year. Now I can tell my wife that I have a financial investment in me playing more. The more I play, the less each round costs.

 

My goal is to actually go out and play over my noon hour some some days. Yesterday I actually played 9 holes in about 50 minutes. Hopefully just being out there and having a club in my hand will help me improve in certain parts of my game.

 

Joining a golf club helped my game immensely. I love being able to go hit a small-medium bucket over my lunch out. Usually, I will just take a LW, PW, and 8i. It has really refined my game with a "scoring club" in hand. I also try to make it out after work as much as possible. It is great to be able to get to the course around 6:00, hit a few balls, and go play 6-9-12 holes before dark. Usually no one is out there!

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I always enjoy our golf discussions, NUance.

 

I've been bitten by the golf bug lately. I'd really like to step my game up to the point where I can count on playing a respectable round, say, in the mid 80s on the course where I regularly play (par 70 with a 70.7 course rating and a slope of 123). That means I'll need to get to a handicap of around 14. Right now I'm probly around 20. (There, I said it. My golf game is in the shitter right now. Oh the shame! LOL) The best I've ever been is around 16.5, and that was several years ago.

 

How much do you get to practice? More than any other sport, golf takes a good amount of time and discipline. A lot of people complain about lack of time, but I think it is more lack of discipline when it comes to practicing. Everyone wants to hit the driver. From my time at the range, I would guess most bogey golfers spend 75% of their time with driver in hand when they go to "practice." I would tell them to spend 75% of the time on the putting/chipping green. The best part, it is free!

 

I am certainly not implying that is your issue, NUance. I don't mean for it to come off that way. I think you would need to play a few rounds and take an honest assessment of your game. Don't only keep track of your score. Keep track of whether your hit the FW, had a "good miss," or had to take a penalty/punch out; keep track of putts, including how far your first one was; keep track of how many balls were hit in the hazards. That quick exercise, which can be easily tracked on the normal scorecard, will give you a ton of information that will help focus your practice.

 

Joining a golf club helped my game immensely. I love being able to go hit a small-medium bucket over my lunch out. Usually, I will just take a LW, PW, and 8i. It has really refined my game with a "scoring club" in hand. I also try to make it out after work as much as possible. It is great to be able to get to the course around 6:00, hit a few balls, and go play 6-9-12 holes before dark. Usually no one is out there!

 

 

Yeah, I'd say you hit the nail on the head. I've been a member of a golf club for 6 years now. But up to this point I've only played five or six rounds per year. Last summer I joined a weekly scramble league. But I injured my foot in July and missed the second half of league play. That, and playing in a scramble isn't really like playing a round of golf for score.

 

That foot injury last summer may have actually helped my golf game out. I couldn't take a full swing for about six weeks, so I spent much of that time messing around the practice greens. I've actually developed an interest in my short game, and I spend a lot more time chipping, putting and practicing short pitch shots than I used to. Really I have no excuse for not practicing. The course is four blocks from my house. It has two practice greens, and a free driving range with unlimited balls. (Irons only. The range is only about 200 yards long.) :lol:

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I actually became a member at the local course this year. Now I can tell my wife that I have a financial investment in me playing more. The more I play, the less each round costs.

 

My goal is to actually go out and play over my noon hour some some days. Yesterday I actually played 9 holes in about 50 minutes. Hopefully just being out there and having a club in my hand will help me improve in certain parts of my game.

 

I love that idea! I could probly pull that off toothe occasional noon nineif I was a bit more disciplined with my time.

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Solid advice Q. I'm not even close to a good golfer, but my game has improved tremendously over the past year with increased play and self assessment. I started with my drive, and have been able to eliminate my slice the majority of the time. Now I need to focus on not dipping my shoulder from time to time. My intermediate game is pretty good, it just needs consistency and better accuracy. But like you said the short game is the most critical part of any game. Last time out it cost me about 3 or 4 pars. Of course my excuse was it's hard to get a feel for putting when the grass is all dried out from winter.

 

Any advice on chipping? That seems to be where I struggle the most.

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If you guys have an open course and are playing by yourself, play two balls for every approach and play them out. Say you have a par four, hit one drive. If you have 150 yards left, hit a full 9i and a knock-down 8i, and finish those out for a score. You're game will improve drastically, it takes little extra time, and you might find you strike the ball better with an abbreviated swing.

 

An even more sadistic game is a "worst ball scramble" by yourself. Hit two from every location, but play the worst one. Basically, the opposite of your charity scramble, by yourself. Even if you hit a 30 footer for birdie, you have to make it again! Tiger would play that against Hank Haney when they would play together. Tiger would routinely beat Hank, who said we was at or just over par. That is insane! I don't recommend that for everyone! :ahhhhhhhh

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Last time I played, last season, with my back issues the torque from my swing really caused me some serious back pain. By the time I finished the 18 holes I couldn't swing like I'd like to so I have some perspective where Tiger is coming from and his torque and club head speed are way more than mine. And it'll sound like I'm talking myself up and that's not my intention, but as I've gotten into more serious weight lifting the muscle mass I've put on through my chest, shoulders and arms has caused my golf game to go the wrong way. It's damn near impossible for me to keep my arms in the position I want them to stay in due to muscle mass. Another problem that some of the experts have said that Tiger should've never gotten into weight lifting as heavy as he has and this has caused issues with his swings. I use to be a low 80's to mid 70's player, now I'm more in the 90's with an occasional mid to high 80's round. But, I'll admit I don't play/practice as much as I should so that could very well be my problem as well.

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If you guys have an open course and are playing by yourself, play two balls for every approach and play them out. Say you have a par four, hit one drive. If you have 150 yards left, hit a full 9i and a knock-down 8i, and finish those out for a score. You're game will improve drastically, it takes little extra time, and you might find you strike the ball better with an abbreviated swing.

 

An even more sadistic game is a "worst ball scramble" by yourself. Hit two from every location, but play the worst one. Basically, the opposite of your charity scramble, by yourself. Even if you hit a 30 footer for birdie, you have to make it again! Tiger would play that against Hank Haney when they would play together. Tiger would routinely beat Hank, who said we was at or just over par. That is insane! I don't recommend that for everyone! :ahhhhhhhh

Thats a great idea. Problem is, if I hit a 9 iron from 150 out, I would then still need a wedge into the green from 20 yards out. :facepalm:

 

It's a great idea if you have time. When I go out at noon I do what I call speed golf. I'm the only one on the course, when I hit I put one club in and take one out. I know the course well enough to pretty much know what I will need. Usually I don't need to change when I find my ball. Then, if it's within 5 feet it's a pick. Doing that, I can play a par 4 in about 5 minutes. I don't keep score other than just think in my head of what I got on that hole.

 

What I do find by doing that every once in a while is it actually helps my game. Sometimes I find that I over think shots. If I get in a tempo like I described, I don't over think and just step up and hit the shot.

 

Then, when I actually play a normal game, I think about that and try to use that tempo and sometimes it helps me score better.

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Solid advice Q. I'm not even close to a good golfer, but my game has improved tremendously over the past year with increased play and self assessment. I started with my drive, and have been able to eliminate my slice the majority of the time. Now I need to focus on not dipping my shoulder from time to time. My intermediate game is pretty good, it just needs consistency and better accuracy. But like you said the short game is the most critical part of any game. Last time out it cost me about 3 or 4 pars. Of course my excuse was it's hard to get a feel for putting when the grass is all dried out from winter.

 

Any advice on chipping? That seems to be where I struggle the most.

There are many theories on how to become a chipper. Some say to use the same club for every chip, and you just develop the touch needed with that club. Others say to take a lofted enough club to just get the ball on the green, and let the ball roll like a put the rest of the way. Also, a great way to become a better "chipper" is to become a better "putter". If you can start making more putts in the 5-10 foot range, it will put less pressure on yourself to get the chip within tap-in range.

 

I guess I am lucky in that I actually have a decent short game. I don't play enough rounds per year, so my ball-striking is is pretty inconsistent. This causes me to scramble quite a bit around the greens.

 

Also, an very key part of having a good short game is the type of ball you play. If you play cheap balls like Top-Flites or Pinnacles, those balls are like rocks and you aren't going to have good touch around the greens. The more expensive golf balls generally spin more in the short game and are easier to control with chips and pitches.

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My game has been very interesting for me the last couple years. Had shoulder surgery in Nov. 2013 and when I was recovered from that found that I had lost about a half club of distance from each iron in my bag. That doesn't bother me at all. But I did find that my short game was way out of tune when I came back. I didn't get to make it to the course as much as I would have liked to last summer.

 

This year had shoulder surgery (same shoulder) in January and I'm really wanting to get to the practice greens to help myself out. Always been a pretty strong putter just have never been good from 20-50 yds out. Course I grew up on you were able to hit a regular lofted chip into every green because they were so slow. I've had a hard time picking up how to hit the bump and run or the low pitch shots that take 1-2 bounces and stop.

 

Always had a classic "baseball" player swing too. So while things may look ugly from the tee/mid iron shots that's one area that I usually don't struggle with.

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I use a 56 degree sand wedge up to 90 yards out for all my chips. Why? Because it seems when I use a pitching wedge I have a tendency to top it and scorch across the green. I may not get as close with the sand wedge as I'd like, but with the height I get with my shot I can get a little riskier with things and know I'll probably be okay because I'm not going to have much travel. This is where I make up my shots that I'm screwing up in the fairway. Don't ask me to hit a fairway wood anywhere, but off the tee. I'm so inconsistent with those damn things it's irritating. If I'm not hitting my driver well in the first few holes I put it away and grab my 3 or 5 wood and I usually hit dead straight with those. 3 or 4 iron in the fairway, I'll usually hit those 200 + yards without much problem and usually hit those pretty straight. It's hard not to take risks out on the course, but I'm trying to get smarter as I age and play.

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My game has been very interesting for me the last couple years. Had shoulder surgery in Nov. 2013 and when I was recovered from that found that I had lost about a half club of distance from each iron in my bag. That doesn't bother me at all. But I did find that my short game was way out of tune when I came back. I didn't get to make it to the course as much as I would have liked to last summer.

 

This year had shoulder surgery (same shoulder) in January and I'm really wanting to get to the practice greens to help myself out. Always been a pretty strong putter just have never been good from 20-50 yds out. Course I grew up on you were able to hit a regular lofted chip into every green because they were so slow. I've had a hard time picking up how to hit the bump and run or the low pitch shots that take 1-2 bounces and stop.

 

Always had a classic "baseball" player swing too. So while things may look ugly from the tee/mid iron shots that's one area that I usually don't struggle with.

It doesn't matter how you take a backswing. It only matters if the club is square at impact, and whether you can repeat that well enough with your swing.

 

I have never had a lesson in my life, other than a golf pro fixed my grip while I was in college. Other than that, I would call myself a "feel" player. I pick up things from TV shows and magazines and may try to incorporate it, but I really just swing the golf club how I like to swing it and how it feels good to me. I am not great, but I am not terrible. I am generally happy with the way I play, considering I don't play all that often any more.

 

I think so many golfers try to be too "technical" with their swing and they don't own their individual swing.

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My game has been very interesting for me the last couple years. Had shoulder surgery in Nov. 2013 and when I was recovered from that found that I had lost about a half club of distance from each iron in my bag. That doesn't bother me at all. But I did find that my short game was way out of tune when I came back. I didn't get to make it to the course as much as I would have liked to last summer.

 

This year had shoulder surgery (same shoulder) in January and I'm really wanting to get to the practice greens to help myself out. Always been a pretty strong putter just have never been good from 20-50 yds out. Course I grew up on you were able to hit a regular lofted chip into every green because they were so slow. I've had a hard time picking up how to hit the bump and run or the low pitch shots that take 1-2 bounces and stop.

 

Always had a classic "baseball" player swing too. So while things may look ugly from the tee/mid iron shots that's one area that I usually don't struggle with.

It doesn't matter how you take a backswing. It only matters if the club is square at impact, and whether you can repeat that well enough with your swing.

 

I have never had a lesson in my life, other than a golf pro fixed my grip while I was in college. Other than that, I would call myself a "feel" player. I pick up things from TV shows and magazines and may try to incorporate it, but I really just swing the golf club how I like to swing it and how it feels good to me. I am not great, but I am not terrible. I am generally happy with the way I play, considering I don't play all that often any more.

 

I have always had a problem with keeping the club head square at impact. I really have to focus on keeping my hips more still and almost over exaggerating getting my hands through impact. When my game is on I have a cut that I can pretty much hit anywhere and can control real nice. Never been able to hit a draw in my life.

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