Golf Game Management XI: Fix
Your Game in a Weekend?
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XI. A misleading title in the
Oct/05 issue of Golf Digest.
topic of this this series is Golf Game Management. Can
you shoot lower scores without physical improvement? The
answer is a resounding, YES! Not that I'm
advocating not improving your ball striking and short
game skill level.
When I pulled
the latest Golf Digest issue out of my mailbox and
read the front cover title, I quickly felt a surge
of anger. "Fix Your Game in a Weekend.?" You've got
to be kidding. One of the most complex games on the
planet? The title makes it sound very inviting. Another
quick, easy cure to your golfing woes. A title grabber
to sell more copies.
article is written by Hank Haney, a well respected
Teaching Professional. So, I had to sit down right
away to find out if there was any truth to this madness!
Haney claims that if you shoot in the low or mid-90s,
one weekend can see an improvement of at least 5
shots. What he offers as advice does have some credence.
In this newsletter, I'll comment on some of what
= More room for improvement
He touches on one principle of golf
improvement. The higher your handicap, the easier
it is to improve your score. Dropping your average
score by 5 shots as a 25 handicap, although challenging,
is achievable in a short time. That's one of the
things I've been harping on in my past newsletters
about golf improvement: focus on the short game;
that's where more shots can be saved.
Haney's major point is that lower handicappers
manage their games better; they don't necessarily
have better golf swings. I agree.
Take more club
than you think
One of Haney's tips is to simply hit
more club on the weekend. He's dead right here. Most
golfers underclub. They club themselves based on
their "best" hits as opposed to their "average" hits.
Plus, there is tendency to want to be able to say
you hit a 7-iron instead of a 6-iron, especially
when one of your partners hits an 8-iron.
One of the services I offer golfers
is an analysis of their true, shot
their clubs. One of the polls questions on my website
asks golfers how often they come short. Of the over
600 golfers that have responded, over half of them
say they come short on over 50% of their iron shots.
Given that most trouble is short of the green, hitting
an extra club would, on average, produce better results.
Golfers, especially these days, are
too obsessed with distance and being able to "brag"
how little club they hit. The only true measure of
how good you are is your score, pure and simple.
Your goal should be to manage your game to produce
the lowest possible score on any given day. For most,
hitting more club is an excellent start.
Check Your Ball
Haney emphasizes the quickest way to
make solid contact with the short irons is to move
the ball back a little bit -- to center or just back
of center of your stance. My experience has been
way too many golfers pllay the ball far too forward
in their stance, making it very difficult to hit
down on the ball. Playing the ball too far forward
increases the tendency to hit fat iron shots. If
you haven't done so already, take a look at a great
ebook written by Clive Scarff, CPGA Professional,
This is one tip that Hank Haney does
not include in his article, but I think is essential.
A significant number of golfers misalign on most
of their shots. If you don't aim at your target,
how do you expect to hit it. This was the topic of
my last newsletter. Take a look at that newsletter
Misalignment gives you totally wrong
feedback about your golf shots. If you're not aligned
correctly, and you miss your target (which is highly
likely), then you blame your swing or execution.
Improving your alignment on all golf
shots can significantly lower your score in the long
At the Canadian Open at Shaughnessy
GC in Vancouver, I watched a number of pros hit shots.
I even followed Mark Calcavecchia for 4 holes during
his first round. On one tee shot, I thought he was
aimed a little right of the fairway. He hit a very
solid shot directly into the right rough. I don't
know what he thought the cause was, but I know what
it was. He may have thought he pushed the shot slightly.
Even the pros make alignment errors.
So, "Fix Your Game in a Weekend?" No,
that's misleading. You can, however, make improvements
in a weekend that will lead to significantly lower
scores, especially if you're a high handicapper.
It all comes down to managing
your game. Please keep in mind,
however, that longterm improvement to your game
takes time and energy. There are no quick fixes,
unlike what golf magazines would lead you to believe.
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Take a look below the suggestion box for
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A list of resources that have been used to produce
this newsletter can be found on my web site here.
The focus of my
site is to utilize science and math to lower your score.
New technology is one way to achieve this, but to be
honest, the technology is one small piece of the
To actually improve
significantly, we all need to:
1. Improve our swings
using CD Interactive, Hit
2. Learn how to swing
simpler like the Iron Byron with the great coffee table
3. Improve our physical
fitness and strength.
Golf Trainer Power Performance Programô and Ultimate
Golf Fitness Ebook
4. Improve our mental
5. Improve our Probable
Golf games. Learn how to make better choices on the
course through knowing how shot patterns and reading the
elements and course better.
Click on the links above
to take a look at ways that I personally use myself and
recommend you try as well.
Hope I provided some useful ways for to
become better prepared for you best golf season
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