Friday, June 04, 2010

Golf - Some progress is happening slowly

Play Your Best Golf - Break 90 Vol 1
Jun 02 2010  The last two days have been spent practising and getting a semblance of effective consistency with the driver and irons in my bag. The driver did not require much to improve and get the result I am after. It has been a lot of fun the past couple of months hitting booming drives off the tee. I am not a big hitter of the ball, never had the physical conditioning or swing dynamics to get the long metres off the tee. With that in mind it was my decision to wallow in the ability to drive 250-270 m for a few weeks. It was not a waste of effort, learning to control your drive and deliver the ball as accurately as possible is crucial to improving your handicap. Having never been in the position before and have a reliable drive technique to practise this with has been another distraction in my game of late.

For those of you are not aware, I have been back playing golf a little over a year now. That means there is a long way to go to reach the various stages of lower handicaps. The transition from low 20’s to the teens is where I am at now. Where as previously my handicap had several holes giving two strokes added on to par now it is three (21Hcp). I can play bogey golf and plug along easily enough, it is more enjoyable to grab the moment and see how well I can play and win competitions though. Getting my drive on par 4’s to the 150m marker or closer to the green has been achieved. The accuracy was not there and this week I have corrected the fault in my set up that seems to have been the cause. I was concentrating during setup on the tee in my body alignment. Changing the focus to the club head during set up courtesy of advice from Billy Dunk and Kel Nagle (yes been reading Golf Porn again) has delivered accuracy. Apart from the accuracy, the most noticeable change has been that I am standing a lot closer to the ball on the tee and the club feels more comfortable in my grip not being stretched out so far to reach the ball.

Next up in the improvement list was the irons, been getting too much height and some atrocious pulled and sliced shots of late. This was compounded with the 3 changes in clubs of late. Two of the sets were too short in the shafts, plus being older clubs have more loft than newer models. Having the reshafted clubs available to use again since last Friday has been an improvement in the equipment. The shot execution was still below average until yesterday. The crux of the problem was that for some reason I had started playing the ball closer to my front foot. This resulted in me scooping the ball up and not having the loft of the club doing the work. It was as simple as that, moved the ball back in my stance and the accuracy and distance returned to the iron shots. All of them that is, from 3 iron to Wedge iron, I use all of theses clubs from 170m in to the green.

Proof is in the playing though and this morning I had to rush out early and get 9 holes in to see if the practise had delivered. Early start as it is ladies day and the course is full from 10am onwards. The results were 5 greens hit in regulation, a 42 off the stick, all drives on the fairways and a very enjoyable morning hit. My putting was very ragged, only one birdie but that was not a concern it was the long shots I wanted to see the results from. Past few weeks pitching and putting has been no fun at all as these shots have all been the make or break strokes trying to scrape home bogeys after my erratic drives and fat second shots. No matter what my goals are in golf, having fun and enjoying playing are always the most important ones.

Thankyou for your time and attention, Hit ‘em straight all.

Thankyou for your time and attention, Geoff

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