Saturday, July 30, 2011

Slow steady progress in the week..

30/7/11 Have maintained the 9 hole rounds through the week just gone getting in 4 sessions playing the course instead of range practise. The downside is only the amount of time it takes to play 9 holes as opposed to hitting balls on the practise fairway. Fortunately my longer irons and drivers have a good quality about them at the minute thanks to the practise so far this season. I put in a lot more time with the short game as this is going to take the most adjustment while using the old set until the AP2’s turn up. The Bridgestone J33’s have been given a final clean and are now on the market. Unfortunately the MB pitching wedge in the set is very different from the Karsten look a like and it took a lot of practise to get some touch back by Friday.

"Golf Ethos". We all have one that is created from our experience in the game. Some people have a parrot fashion recital of a PGA Champions words, others have a short statement on the game and many have an unspoken opus in the mind every time the clubs are touched or the game is thought about.

Mine is simple to me as I have lived it and written it, yet to speak it is not a brief dialogue. The short version is , "I am not the best golfer, I am the best I can be."

In addition to the short game practise a lot of time was put into the exercise routines given in the coaching session last week. Spent some time on Monday making a short (1m) club to do the swing plane and wrist rotation exercise. Did this routine daily, as well as the hip rotation and leg follow through exercise. Created a few stiff spots on the ribs, the body was not used to the pure extension of the various muscles so often.

The return is in the game though and playing in the Friday, “Chicken Run” off a 10 hcp as opposed to my official 14, went out a stroke after the Lucindale CavPower Open last weekend. Finished with 18 points with 40 gross strokes and wiped one hole. I will take that score any day and being a very enjoyable social comp is an added bonus. The day was won by our club President who is in his 70’s (years) and played off single figures for 50 of them. At the minute off 13 he came in with 21 points. Playing in the same group it was a fun round and was a little surprised at the end to be complimented on the quality of my short game.

This got me thinking. There is a fault that can ruin many a golfers game, “blurring the line between expectations and capability”. In retrospect the very different feel of the old PW and the J33 PW distracted me from seeing the actual quality of chip shots played. Five were 2 m or less from the hole, no birdies in the round but some very good up and downs for par made easy with short putts. In essence the shots were very good, yet in a strange way I was so focussed on how the club felt in my hands than the shot results were lost on me. I did make some mistakes early in the round though that had my attention so narrow in its focus to avoid making them again.

I am still coming to terms with the change to an attacking game strategy from playing the percentage game strategy. Made one mistake in this transition which very nearly caused another wiped hole. Playing a 2nd shot from tight under a tree, tried for distance instead of clear and onto the fairway. Nearly an airy and topped the ball just enough to have a clear swing for the 3rd which made the green and a long putt for par. The wiped hole was on the 2nd one played and again tried too hard for the pin instead of making the green while under trees. Hit the ball thin and shot across the green like a rocket. It is very hard making the transition as I have not yet found my comfort zone with being aware of the best shot to play. attacking golf is about being clever not trying to shoot the lights out of every hole.

Out and hitting some balls later today, tuning up for the Kingston Open tomorrow morning. Thankyou for your time and attention. “Hit ‘em straight all”, Geoff