Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Professional golf coaching is a good thing...

28/3/12 Wednesday. One advantage of having a plan of sorts with golf coaching and the resulting practice is the ability to isolate problems and target them in training. Instead of discovering new faults and fixes for faults through conversations with playing partners, a golfer must find a coach and listen to advice given. Then get to the range or backyard and practice what has been passed on. As with all advice given by other golfers no matter how well meaning it has been intentioned all that has been done is to store it away in my knowledge. What this advice has done is make it possible for me to understand what is being described and taught during coaching. I have always been a astounded to hear golfers critique professional coaches and using advice given by Billy Club-Golfer as the counter point. 

It has been apparent to me over the past three years that there is no problem with receiving coaching from more than one professional. In my instance this has never had any major differences. An effective golf swing, which is the core of anyone's game, is what is required to be established from coaching. What I do now is not perfect, yet it is 90% better than the one I began with. In 2009 my game did not include using Drivers when playing competition as there was no possibility of knowing where the ball would go off the tee. Putting and chipping was equally erratic yet I was practicing and getting better. Dropping 9-10 strokes from the 36 handicap when I began playing that first year.

That was improvement of course, but now I play of 13 having halved the handicap from then. Now playing with all clubs available and working on a consistent game to go the next level towards a single figure handicap. Still play with golfers who when I started were on the same  level as I and are playing off significantly higher handicaps still. The difference is that my planning and coaching has followed a designated path.  

Establishing and maintaining the practice schedule this week has been the focus. Beginning on Monday the short game faults which had been so destructive of late were concentrated on, with chipping and putting drills. Being satisfied with the results on the day is one thing, getting out and playing holes to see if the practice had a lasting effect would be the proving ground.

Added a little extra pressure during the practice rounds played by using the #2 hybrid off the tee on the par4 and 5 holes. This club needs some game time to get accurate and consistent off the fairway and tee block. With winter beginning to loom in coming months using long irons is a preference that has to be rationalized. I will lose a lot of game effectiveness in the winds that howl around the course sticking with irons. In tandem with using the hybrid this put my long to mid iron play into effect for approach shots and going for the green. Which meant that the need to chip onto the green was needed throughout the practice rounds.Still a long way to go in hitting greens in regulation. 

The practice so far this week has delivered improved chipping and there were no problems at all. The decision to extend the use of the 56 degree wedge to 50m in practice was a good choice. Not once did I even come close to playing the stabbing swing with no follow through, which caused so much damage to the weekend rounds. 

Putting always needs work, still messed up a couple of putts that went short or wide of the hole. Given that I do no pre-round warm up before playing that was acceptable. In the main it was all good confident putting with only one that was significantly short. Dropped some good long putts as well as consistent confident putting strokes on 9 out of the 10 holes played.
Thankyou for your time and attention, “Hit ‘em straight all.”