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Everything posted by JMiller

  1. I wasn't even going to make another post. However, I didn't want to leave on a bad taste. I'm moving onto bigger and better things, maybe you have read my status update, maybe you haven't. I'm not an ignorant person, I have educated myself and try to educate other so I can help them improve. I try to give references to my thoughts for the underlying ideas. Part of me hopes that people will learn to educate themselves and learn more about themselves as a Player. I'm not an agent person, I wasn't intending in the past 3 months to write anything that was directed towards anyone only myself. I gave people the benefit of the doubt that they are smart enough to take things they like about the mental game and my PSR and toss out the crap they don't. I hope that my writing and thoughts on things the past 3 months of posting all a little more often has helped someone. For anyone that wants to bounce something off of me, you can feel free to contact me via PM here at MGS, PutterTalk or the "Other" site. My username is the same on all three websites. I'm branching out to increase my knowledge and hopefully keep improvising my game. I wish the best for everyone and hope more of you make it to single digit handicaps and keep getting better: Best Regards, JM
  2. I agree 100% with this statement, this is very important also. I just write in a lot of detail, so it sounds like a lot more effort then what is really happening. I write in that much detail so that I can be specific and people can pull out what they like and toss out what they don't easier. Majority of the time I'm at the course I'm not actually doing physical activity. For the 20 minutes on the putting green ,I'm actually putting about 10 of that. I spend time and take breaks to rest my mind and body. For 40-45 minutes on the range I hit 25-35 balls, I clocked my Pre-shot routine at 45 seconds (decision, club pull finish more like 25 seconds after club pull), about 26 minutes of actually hitting shots. ~ That comes to a total of around 36 minutes of physical / mental golf activity. --> I'm taking mental and physical breaks, talking to people a lot of times that are also taking breaks around me, light conversation smiling and making jokes. When making my posts, the only reply I even read was the last one that Kenny B wrote that had my name in it. I was talking about what I personally do and didn't once say someone else was wrong in my posts. i used the statement "I can't stress this enough" because that part of the material is important to me. The above quote is a backhanded statement or call it a passive aggressive statement if you want. If I take out the first part of you statement and only read "I'm just pointing out the differences between us and the fact that we are each individuals and therefore might prepare differently.". That sure sounds demeaning in that context doesn't it? You pointed out my age before making a negative remark about my thoughts. It isn't the first time you have pointed out that I am younger then you prior to making comments about my thoughts that you don't agree with them. I'm not sure how my age has anything to do with my knowledge about a subject. Then you make the statement "I'm just pointing out the differences between us and the fact that we are each individuals and therefore might prepare differently". To me that sounds like because you are older then me you feel it gives you more authority on the subject and gives you the right to try and teach me some sort of lesson. In fact I take that part of the statement as you believing I'm some kind of idiot and don't realize that everyone is an individual and likely will build their own preparation techniques. So let me get something real clear: ~ Your age alone doesn't give you more authority / knowledge then anyone reading this thread about golf. ~ I don't appreciate backhanded comments and/or passive aggressive statements. Just say what you mean, I'll respect that more. ~ This situation is a perfect example as to why I just don't post and interact anymore. I don't like having to explain myself to anyone. I don't really care what other people's opinions of me or my thoughts are. Like I said in my previous post as a polite way of saying hope that helps GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE
  3. Here is the reason that I take things slower the day of an important round. ~ If I feel "rushed" then my tempo speed increases. ~ My tendency is to be anxious about the round, i want to play well (think that's common). For golf the reaction to feeling "rushed" or "nervous" is to speed up my tempo. ~ Nervous I want to get the situation over ASAP. ~ Rushed I just feel like I'm going 100mph in everything I'm doing. So because my tempo speed increases (gets faster) it will cause issues in my timing ~ Timing is developed from the practice of mechanics plus natural tempo --> Timing = Mechanics + Tempo Like I said i really can't stress the pre-round warm-up enough for a round that means something. ~ I need to take things slow and relax to get my tempo where it needs to be to hit good shots. --> I have to force myself to feel that I'm already in my process of playing golf before I step on the first tee to hit a shot that actually counts. Good luck everyone
  4. Thanks for your kind words, I'm glad I could help you improve your mental game. I'm really big on focusing on the things that you can control mentally and repeat consistently from a physical stand point. This is exactly what I do for ANY round in which I really want to play well posting my best score. It doesn't have to be a Tournament, maybe for you it is a cash game with friends. Maybe you are taking your significant other to the golf course and want to play well in front of that person. Bellow is what I use for Tournaments or Cash Games. This is going to be long winded and a lot of information, i warned you Pre-Round Research (If i haven't seen the course yet) Use the golf course website / internet to find scorecard, yardage book, flyovers anything that you can find to get a better idea mentally how the golf course is going to look. If i have never stepped foot on a golf course before I like to use Google Earth to take a look and get a general idea. Type in the course name and then you can sort of work you way around the 9 holes based on the scorecard provided on majority of golf courses website. How-to Use Google Earth ~ Use the ruler tool set to Yards (Meters if not in the USA). Draw lines from the center of the tee to obvious things (doglegs, bunkers, trees, etc). Know your yardages off the tee for a Driver & Fairway wood bigger hitters should add in a hybrid / long iron. Draw the line to these different distances that will hit the fat part of the fairway and eliminate the trouble. --> This process will give you a rough idea of what club is going to be optimal for that hole off the tee box to keep it in play. ~ Now draw a line from your tee shot distance to the green, taking notes on the Front, Middle, Back of the green. Take notes of anything that might need to carry (bunkers, water, etc). If it is a par 5 make sure you figure out how far you can go to layup to a good wedge number. --> The idea here is to get a feel for what irons you might be hitting your 2nd shot with if the tee shot goes well. By the end of this process you will have a general plan for playing the golf course without ever seeing the course in person. For example: Hole 1 Tee Shot :: stay short of 260 yards longer then 240 yards (250-255 is ideal) Approach Shot :: 159 back edge, 150 middle, 142 front edge. carry left bunker at 155 Practice Round (Most valuable for information gathering) You want to have seen the golf course at least one time before the round. For larger tournaments a lot of times the tournament organization will use there own tee and pin locations. They end up painting "dots" on the course so that the maintenance crew of the course knows where to cut pin locations and place tee markers. You will want to take notes about where the tee markers are located and especially pin locations. ~ Tee markers may not be on the same tee box that you charted using Google Earth, they might be longer slightly or on a shorter tee box all together. Figure out how to change the tee shot so that you optimize keeping the ball in play. ~ Pin locations are super important, place a tee into the dot and make 10 foot putts from around the tee in all directions (short, right. left, long) take notes on how the ball breaks towards the tee. I take it a step further for pins that are tucked to one side I make putts from the center of the green to the tee and see how that breaks. I basically want to chart the breaks on the green as much as I possibly can given I know exactly where the pin is going to be located there is not a good excuse for not knowing the break. I would rather learn break from trial and error rather then "read" it on the fly. Up to this point we have looked at optimal play. None of us are perfect so lets look at Proper misses ~ Tee shots :: What side of the fairway can you miss on and still have a good chance at making par? ~ Approach Shots :: What side of the green should you miss towards so that you don't short side yourself to the pin locations? Post Practice-Round (Know the plan, study the plan) Draw up a round strategy based on the things you have learned in from Pre-Round Research and Practice Round(s). --> Maybe Hole 3 the tee box was painted 50 yards shorter then what you had it on Google Earth, you feel that Driver is no longer the play and a hybrid is now the play to eliminate trouble. Study the pin locations and the breaks, sure you can take your notes to the course with you but its best to use them as a fast reminder. ~ I don't suggest not looking at it at all and taking long periods of time to read your notes and study the greens again when it is your turn to putt. --> Majority of tournaments have a 40 second "undue delay" shot timer, if they get a complaint or you fall behind they may put you on the clock. Pre-Round (Process, get ready mentally, loose physically) I can't stress this part enough, this is probably the most important thing you will read in this post. Allow yourself plenty of time to make it to the course and not feel rushed. It is very likely you will be anxious (excited or nervous). You have to get your mind in a more relaxed state. If you don't get some kind of anxious feeling then you don't care about playing well. It is okay to be anxious in some form, even tour pros get that feeling, we just need to deal with it. ~ Leave a little earlier then normal drive at a comfortable pace, I don't suggest speeding if that's your habit. ~ Get to the golf course early, I prefer 1.5 hours. This allows me to slowly walk get checked in, slowly start my warm-ups. --> If I make it to the course 1.75 or 2 hours early I tend to grab a bit to eat in the grill relax and have a drink of water with the meal. Warm-up routine (1.5 hours ahead of the tee time, I start) ~ I hang out at the practice putting green for 20 minutes, hit 5 putts, take a break maybe talk to someone I know, light conversation. --> I repeat the process hitting some long putts, mid range putts, short putts. I focus on 3-6 footers mostly as I know for sure I'll see of lot of them for pars. ~ I then slowly walk over to the range (lasts about 40-45 minutes) --> I hit 1/4 wedges, 1/2 wedges, 3/4 short irons, Full Mid irons, Driver (about 20 balls 5 each), I pick targets, distances, shot shapes for each swing full Pre-shot routine every time taking 45-60 second breaks between shots. I take a mental note on how my swing feels and my typical miss. By taking into account my swing feel and typical miss it MIGHT adjust my aim points for tee shots and approach shots, It is called Pre-round strategy for a reason, you plan based on your typical swings and feels for aim points and distances. --> I then go into a mental visualization of playing my first hole on the range, has my pre-round changed due to wind or how I'm striking the ball? The idea here is to trick your mind into thinking it has hit that first tee shot 100 times before. You want to make sure when you step on the tee so that it feels like a continuation of your round. This helps calm down the anxious feeling that can occur. ~ As soon as i hit my approach shot into Hole 1 on the range, I head over to the nearest putting green. I hit a mid range putt and if I miss the clean up putt. --> In my mind I am completing Hole 0 (Range Tee Shot, Range Approach Shot, Pratice green putting) ~ I then walk over to the my first tee (It could be Hole 1 or Hole 10). By telling myself I'm between Hole 0 and Hole 1 I trick my mind into thinking I'm already in my round and in the process of playing each hole as I planned. It tricks my mind and reduces my anxiety feelings heading for the first tee shot. In The Round (Process, stick to the plan) Make sure to go through your PSR and the process of visualizing the shot, recall how it felt to hit this same shot on the range less then 5-10 minutes ago. ~ Commit the the shot you are attempting to play, address the ball, waggle glance at the target, fire. Spend less time over the ball. I suggest pulling the trigger within 10-15 seconds of getting over the ball. This will cause your brain less time to let doubt creep into your mind. Dealing with awful shots, they are going to happen, no one is perfect. ~ There will be times you end up in jail, play for the lowest number you can safely make.There are such things as great bogeys, if you find yourself hitting 3 from the tee play for no worse then double bogey. If I snap hook my 1st tee shot OB for example I'll go back to my bag mark up a new ball with different set of dots, tells my playing partner(s) the difference. Club down and make sure i get the ball in play. To get your best results you most play with the 5" space between the ears. After The Round (Acceptance of results) Your score is your score this is nothing you can do differently it is in the past. Accept that you played by the rules, carried yourself with class and gave it your best shot that day. The hardest thing to deal with is the near misses (2nd place, missed cut by 1 shot, etc). --> The really bad rounds, reflect on what you did well and what you didn't mentally and physically. Then forget about the round focusing on your weaknesses to improve for next time. --> The really great rounds store those in the memory bank of playing well under pressure so that you can access it in the future. Good luck everyone.
  5. Let me toss in some extra information here. Brad's takeaway is that way because of his weight distribution being too far forward. The weight is too far forward due to the fact the posture is incorrect at address. --> So Brad moves his arms / hands independent of the body in the takeaway as a reaction to improper balance. If Brad rotates his shoulders from that start position two things will happen: 1) He will fall forward on his face being way out of balance 2) His body will correct and his weight will shift backwards more towards the center of his feet or heels. --> Brad later in the swing when his shoulders do turn his weight shifts backwards naturally finding a balance not to fall over. Just look act the lower half and you see the rock backwards in weight distribution. Part of giving recommendations is finding the root cause of a problem, also understanding the why part of what you are going to recommend. We can slap on a bandage for Brad's takeaway, but it might only be temporary fix and 3 months he finds new problems because we never looked any deeper then the surface. Like I said before it is my opinion that the Posture is the root of the issues and the swing is reactionary due to the posture at address.
  6. It was only at my old club that I was using the suggestion I have for a 5minute straight to the tee box warm-up type of thing. My new club I have a range plan per year so my value is better to get a bucket and not worry about hitting 10-15 out of 30 balls. The shag bag idea isn't bad but if you play 9 holes 5 days a week and hit 10 balls a day out of your shag bag you will blow threw those 50-60 balls fast. Given I walk 99% of my rounds that I play and I play 9 holes M-F and at least one 18 on the weekends, drinking alcohol would be a bad idea. I could see myself getting super dehydrated and passing out during the summer. Not everyone has a lot of money to toss around, so I am going for long term cost effective in my suggestions
  7. Brad, markb was on the correct track here in my opinion. I just might word this a little differently. Posture ~ You only need around 30-35* of hip bend, you have what appears to be 45-50*. Where the back is flat you still are just too bent over. --> When the shoulders get out past the toes your weight gets forced onto the balls of your feet or into the toes, this can cause rotational problems later in the swing. Try This Without a club stand straight up with your arms to your side, palms facing your hips. ~ Slightly bend forward from the hips allowing the arms to swing in front of you and then add a little knee flex for balance. --> The weight distribution in your feet should be centered, not out on the balls of your feet / toes, or back in the heels. Visual Reference :: You will need to learn correct posture without the club first as a club is just a distraction. ~ Once you are conferrable with proper posture without a club, add in a club with the grip pointing down at the ground. --> Your posture shouldn't change with the club in hand then it was without it. ~ After you are conferrable with proper posture with the grip towards the ground, then and only then add the club into the sequence with the club in a normal playing position. --> You shouldn't be changing posture from the first two steps in this step they should all match. As for anything in the swing it looks reactionary to the poor posture at address. This is just my opinion take it or leave it.
  8. I know that a lot of people here just don't have time for one reason or another. I figured it would be a nice topic of conversation for anyone not in snow / ice or anyone that takes a winter golf trip to escape the snow and is pressed for time. Most of this developed over the last 3 years, simply because I'm getting older and can't go 100% out of the gate like I used to back in college. ~ I wanted to come up with something that was legal mid-round in a tournament if there happened to be a long wait time and I felt myself getting a little stiff. Stretching out my arms, legs, back, wrists, etc quickly before I make a single swing started in 2012 as I started getting older I felt stiffer after sitting in my desk chair all day. --> If someone wants exact details I can give that also. Swinging my two heaviest wedges held together started back in college, I never had an artificial weight to toss on a fairway wood or driver. --> This is legal to do mid-round where using an artificial weight mid-round it will get you a DQ from the tournament. Swinging a fairway wood through the rough came from reading one of the vision54 books early 2014 --> It was talking about there warm-up routines if only given 5 minutes to practice, I think it was in the book "The game before the game". Swinging the club at 3/4 and 70-80% tempo was developed by experimentation form 2012 to 2014 ~ It was me reflecting on my 9 hole rounds and noticing a pattern. I realized that most my bogeys or worse were in the first 5 holes, I would attempt to do too much and try to get too much out of a club (not a good thing anytime, but especially bad when coming out cold). So when I started using extra club, playing for the middle the the green on front pins and leaving my scoring chances to the back pins in the first 5 holes it lowered my scores a lot. --> I would probably shoot 39-42 coming out cold on a par 36, with a 36 being my best on a good day. Then I changed strategy to take it more easy first 4 or 5 holes and then adjust based on how I felt about my striking and game on the 5th or 6th hole. I lowered my scoring to 36-39 (3 strokes) and on a good day have some scores of 34 or 35. Using the 3/4 swing method into greens, things to understand: ~ The ball will come out lower and with less spin. --> Carry the ball front green to a middle pin location --> Carry the ball middle green to a back pin location --> Worst case a front pin you end up middle green and make a two putt par. Easier par then getting up and down short sided. So lets assume that you get to the 6th tee box and you are still not feeling 100% about your control of your full swing. I just limp my 3/4 swing from holes 6 through 9 and then just call it a day when I am done. It can't hurt to keep going with the concept if it is working on 10 through 18 if you happen to be playing a full 18 holes and coming out cold. Good luck, I hope this might help someone with course management as well as getting warmed up within 5 or 10 minutes before the tee time.
  9. I completely recommend coming to the course early hitting some putts, chips, pitches, full shots in the practice areas before you tee off, but there are some situations where time is limited and you have to go from the parking lot straight to the tee. For me I tend to start a range practice session with 1/4 wedges, 1/2 short irons, 3/4 mid irons, full swings on a 4w / driver. So when I can't come out and hit a few balls I have to find my tempo and get my muscles lose on the course. My routine when I have to go form the parking lot to the first tee: 1) Stretch my body some (lower back, arms, legs, abs) 2) Swing two wedges together (my 60* and 54* the heaviest two in my bag) at 40 and 60% speed to get a tempo feel for the day. 3) Take out my 4w and swing it through the rough trying to get a feel of the face at impact due to the resistance of the grass. So the process I do on the first 3 to 5 holes of actually playing: 1) Slowly work into my normal tempo at full length. My first tee shot is a 3/4 length swing and a lot of times as smooth as I can make it. >> I take one extra club (4w over a 19* hybrid), choke down a little, swing 3/4 in length and focus on a very smooth tempo (about 75% my normal tempo speed). This will give me the same distance as a full 19* would when warmed up, but gain me control and let me blend into my round better. --> You can do this with a Driver even if that's the club you normally hit off the first tee at your course. Just make sure to understand you are after control not distance trying to get a feel for tempo. 2) On the approach I use the same concept hopefully with the above tactic I'm playing form the short grass. >> When doing this just remember that taking extra club and swinging at 3/4 will produce less spin, so play for more roll out. --> This strategy is great for middle to back pins, land it a little short and let it release back to the pin. I employ it a lot in my rounds even when I warm-up. 3) About the 4th tee I am able to feel physically loose enough to swing full, so I will increase the length of my swing while still focusing on a smooth tempo. >> Now you might be swinging full length but your tempo is around 80% or 90% of a typical tempo so you might only carry the ball 5-10 yards shorter then normal. Most people might even find that they score better with this strategy as they already swing too hard at the ball. --> Whatever the case, this is your last step getting into the flow of the round. 4) By the time you get to the 6th tee you should be 100% ready to go with a nice tempo built into the round and a flow. >> You don't need to swing out of your shoes at this point that is also a bad idea, but if you have a tempo and swing length that gives you typical good results then go ahead and employ it if the situation calls for it. --> For example on a front pin, I will tend to take a full swing club that carries to the pin and make a good solid release, up to this point I haven't done that playing for middle of the green while getting loose. I developed the above approach from playing at my old home course where i had no range plan. I didn't want to pay for balls that I'd only hit 15 out of 35 for $5. So I had to figure out a way to make pars in the first 3 holes and get into my rounds smoothly. For me I always found that if I had a blow up hole coming out cold it was ALWAYS in the first 3 to 5 holes. If you don't have a strategy for coming out cold, why not give my approach a try? Let me know what you changed if anything, let me know if it worked or didn't work for you. If you do have a strategy, then what is it maybe others can benefit from more perspectives.
  10. When editing the field in the Profile Edit section the field is limited to 3 characters. Can you make the field have a maximum length of 4 characters? Anyone that has a handicap of 10.0 or higher could be listed as 4 characters. ~ 10.1, 16.4, 20.1, etc Anyone that has a plus handicap could be listed as 4 characters. ~ +0.1, +1.1, +3.7, etc
  11. Golf in my opinion mentally is very simple when it comes to the course in theory: 1) Pre-shot routine ~ I have two sections to this "Think Box" & "Play Box" see Vision54 for more information on that concept. 2) Post-shot routine ~ Once the ball leaves the face it is out of your control where it comes to rest. The how & why it got there is a waste of mental energy to contemplate in my opinion. --> That would include making practice swings to correct a mechanical mistake now you waste mental and physical energy both doing this. I'm not sure why Jim Furyk does it but I think that is more a recent development I don't recall him doing that back when he won his US Open back in 2003. 3) Downtime ~ This is where majority of players will really screw themselves in terms of mental energy management. A ton of players start thinking about the HOW & WHY or how unlucky that bounce was that they just got. It is all negative self-talk in some form and getting the mind more focused on the past then just being present at the current moment. --> Just turn your brain off once you know where the ball came to rest in regards to golf. Light conversations or enjoying being outdoors helps keep you positive and reduces mental energy towards golf in general. If the three general steps sound really simple, that is because it is a simple concept. ~ Pre-shot routine is something you need to give your 100% attention for the current shot / situation. ~ Post-shot, well if you came into the shot prepared it is easier to accept whatever happened. Look at where the ball is now when processing the shot as a new challenge. ~ Downtime, is about mental energy management. No golf related thoughts at all. The less you think about things probably the better. For me my process is this in a nutshell Pre-shot Routine ~ "Think Box" (behind the ball) >> The Data (lie, wind, ground conditions, etc). Club selection, trajectory, shape based on "the data". Trust in my decision on what I think will best suit the situation. One practice swing at 40% speed feeling tempo and release. Visualize the ball flight and pick an initial target line. --> My shot selection is based on the following: Keep it in play (no penalty strokes), A miss should give me a easier shot, A well execute shot places me in prime position. ~ "Play Box" (over the ball) :: Once i start my walk toward the ball for the set-up I'm committed, unless something drastically changes. >> I aim the face to my initial line, I take my grip, I aim my body to the face, look up at the target with a slight waggle to reduce grip pressure, re-set the club and vision, think a tempo / feel thought and just swing. --> The worst thing anyone can do at this point is think mechanically or have doubt. If either of these things get in your mind back off the shot, retreat to the "think box". Post-shot routine ~ Once the ball leave my face i already know roughly where it is going based on my body position and release timing. I simply watch the ball to get a more specific idea where it came to rest. >> There is nothing I can do about the result of the shot, I came into the swing fully prepared and now I see a new challenge in front of me. --> Again the worst thing you can probably do is get hung up on the result, wasting valuable mental energy on how & why the ball got to the point it did and how to fix that on the next shot. Downtime ~ This is the in-between shots, where you have time to sit and wait on a group in front of you or as you are walking / riding up to your next shot. >> This is the most important thing to not think about golf and save that energy / focus for the pre-shot routine needed for the upcoming shot. For me I used to do the same things as you getting my mind stuck in the past hung up on why the shot went where it did rather then just rolling with the punches. ~ It helped me a lot to spend more energy in the pre-shot process and a lot less in the downtime thinking about a golf swing / shot. The post-shot routine is about transition to the downtime and acceptance of a result you can not control that is in the past. Hope that helps. A note where this all links together: ~ The most important shot is the current shot setting yourself up for the next shot. --> You can control the current shot before it is struck not after. Once it is struck then you have a new challenge awaiting ahead of you.
  12. I have over the years tried just about every premium ball. I use the ball that gives me the best performance. For me that happens to be the Z-Star currently. If you want to send me the Z-Star you find I'll be more then happy to take them
  13. If you get behind the Duke University Men's Golf team in a practice round, they will leave ProVs all over the place because the team gives them the balls. It is not too terribly uncommon to find a few mixed into the range bucket because the Golf Team shares the range with everyone else. When you get the balls for free, guess it doesn't really matter what you do with them
  14. The only other thing that I have to say about playing tournaments in general is bellow. 1) Have a base-line / tee shot strategy for every hole. (Par 3s what club gets you to dead center green). ~ If they have the tees painted (normally a white or yellow dot on each side of the tee box), then it becomes easy. If they have the pin locations painted (normally a very very small red dot of paint) then you have even more information make sure to stick a tee in the ground at that spot and make putts from 20 foot and in from different angle to that pin. --> Normally they only paint locations the day before an event, sometimes they won't paint them at all. But if it is painted this makes the strategy and homework a ton easier on you. 2) Show up early the day of the tournament and study what your body has to offer that day. ~ I normally show up about 1.30 hours head of a tournament and spend 30 minutes putting, 20 minutes short game, 20 minutes range, 5 minutes putting again, off to the tee 5 minutes before my tee time. It is much much better to be early for the tee time then late. In a lot of tournaments within 5 minutes is a 2 shot penalty. 5 minutes & 1 second DQ. --> Just figure out what works for you to take your time and not feel rushed to the first tee, i probably take more time then I need just to make sure i slow things down a lot help keep the anxiety in check of the first tee shot. NOTE :: The last thing I do on the range is hit the club and shot I want off the first tee box visualizing it and executing. If I screw up the first time. i do it again to get positive ball flight I want in my mental picture when I need it for real. 3) Focus on only what you can control. Here is my process setting on the first tee: ~ Pre-shot routine & Execution (Data collection, Shot Selection, Visualization, One-practice swing, commit, alignment, target, fire) ~ Post-shot routine & acceptance :: This just means that you accept the results good or bad and then move on. ~ In-between shots :: I put my mind on "vacation" as much as i can thinking of things that make me happy in life, anything but golf related things. >> Once I get back up to my next shot, I repeat the pre-shot routine process giving it my 100% attention for the 20-35 seconds it takes me to execute the shot. For me, it helps keep me small picture, focused only on the task that is directly in front of me. Trying to make Pars, no worse then Bogey and hopefully drop in a birdie or two. ~ I write the score down between holes, know where i stand in the round then just forget about it as soon as I reach the next tee. Just keep on grinding regardless of the current score. There is a saying "Tournament golf is played out in front of you not behind you." ~ Forget the past, stay in the present and don't worry about the future of what might be IF you do something. --> You only control the current shot / situation nothing else so that's your focal point like I have said. It is a s*** ton easier to write about then execute though, but with practice everyone here can accomplish this. 4) Post Round, hang your head high regardless of the results. ~ You didn't cheat obviously, you didn't quit because of poor performances on a hole, you can learn from the mistakes and move forward. --> Like i said before, a golf score NEVER defines the person, the way they conduct themselves defines that for them. A score is just a way to judge performance on that particular day in a silly little game we call golf. If you practice the way that you want to play in tournaments then it becomes easier, you only get the anxiety on the first tee then it becomes more routine feeling. Fairways and greens JM
  15. When I was 4 or 5 years old (A long time ago now) ~ Slight dogleg left downhill par 4. Driver, mid-iron, 3 foot putt (playing the Junior / Ladies tee). I gave up golf around 6 to 8 and played ice hockey 8 to 18 came back to golf at 22 or 23.
  16. You need individual stroke play tournaments. ~ I personally avoid Net only tournaments, I like playing gross within flights. --> The CGA (Carolinas Golf Assoc) One-Day events that I tend to play in a lot have a Gross & Net competition within each flight, it is a good set up given there are two flights 7.9 or better & 8.0 or higher. I normally cut off my travel time to 1 hour for local tournaments. ~ The exceptions would be what you think, larger tournaments on a State (NC), Multiple State (Carolinas) or National Scale. The problem with Scrambles / Best-Ball tournaments give you a false impression of your tournament ability. ~ You can lean on your teammate(s) if you have a poor hole in a best-ball / scramble format. --> Post a big number in individual stroke play you feel very alone. It is learning to deal with adversity individually that will help you improve mentally.
  17. In tournaments you need two signatures on the card. The Markers (your opponent) and yours (the player), in this case it happened to be that guy that was your marker. He might have just been asking to make sure he didn't get anything wrong. When we play Carolinas Golf Association (CGA) events there is a tear-off on the bottom of the cards where you keep your own score to compare to what your marker wrote down. That way you can never get the score wrong before it gets posted on the leader board. That's fine, you'll just have to learn to smile at them and know that you are a better man / person then them as you don't show bigotry towards others due to social status, race, etc. Using the experience as a motivating factor to improve your game and work on things is the perfect outcome for the situation. Just realize that yes you will have poor holes / scores we all due including Tour players. Heck Rory had two 4 putts at the BMW and his world number 1. Just to sort of get the point across that I'm not the best Tournament player in the world always here are some of my biggest single hole numbers in tournaments over the last two years. I have learned from trial and error, taking poor performances in events badly and moving forward. Par 4 -- 8, Par 4 -- 9, Par 5 -- 11, Par 5 -- 13 You can dig through the bellow link if you want and look at some of the scores posted in this NC Mid-AM Qualifier that I played in late August. This is a field of guys that are 30+ in age and hold a 5.4 handicap or better. Hit the smaller + symbol to expand the cards. Highest score 97, single hole biggest score 13 on Hole 18 a Par 4. http://www.ghintpp.com/carolinasgolf/TPPOnlineScoring/ResultsStroke.aspx?ID=653 Yes, I missed by 1 stroke that's a hard pill to swallow. However, I played poorly from a physical stand point didn't have my A game more like my D game. Mentally it was a great tournament for me minus two holes. I just wanted to learn from it and move on improve for next year. I know your feelings from experience, that's sort of why I decided to give you my advice on the subject. There is no better practice for tournaments then more tournaments. Good Luck
  18. This goes back to controlling only what you can and focusing on that. You can't control the tee time, the tee you start on, the weather, the course conditions, the pairing you get, etc. ~ You can control how you approach the round based on the above factors to still play good golf if you get something "unfavorable". I personally will walk whenever the rules allow for it. I find in tournaments riding in a cart is a lot of hurry up and wait. With walking it slows me down enough so that once i get to my ball there isn't as much of a wait time to hit my shots. ~ If the rules let you I would personally just walked if they had a problem riding in a cart with you. That sounds stuck up as hell to me personally, so I would taken the higher road and purposely tries to slow them down by walking and getting them mentally frustrated at what I decided to do You can be more of a gentlemen even if they are D-Bags by acting with class and ignoring them rather then being frustrated or pissed about their opinions. it makes you the better man anyways. I have much more respect for a hard working honest man then a snobby prick that thinks they are better then others because of money / status. In fact I like making those types of people you describe skin crawl by being a gentlemen and not getting upset with their gossip. Normally, if you beat guys like that that have huge egos that's how you hurt them the most. If your family laugh at you that's just flat out wrong, family should be supportive not the opposite. Again, a golf score / result doesn't matter truly in life anyways and the people that fell it does are pretty shallow people anyways. There is not really a need to negatively want to get revenge. Like I said, I don't care if you don't have a nickle, my opinion of someone comes from how they carry themselves and there personality as a person not their accomplishments. If they are honest and play by the rules, never rude to me then I have MUCH more respect for that person then the guy that cheats at a game or lies to me about stupid things, is rude to me or thinks they are better then me due to materialistic s***. Honestly, it sounds like you would be better off saving some money and golf course shopping around your area. With golf in recession a lot of clubs are running deals to gain new members. It might be a good idea to know some people at other clubs and have them introduce you to the other members. I'm more into the golf the the socialization aspect of belonging to a club. Look for that quality in the members and how the club runs. You get different atmospheres from different memberships 1) Public :: Normally they won't run a club championship, it is more a favor for the locals that they offer yearly passes for unlimited golf / range. 2) Semi-private :: You get the benefits of a private club a lot of times but they allow public play to help reduce the cost of the membership in terms of monthly dues. I belong to a semi-private club after years of belonging to public clubs. I love the semi-private club personally. It has given me a mix of White collar, middle class, blue collar members. A few D-Bags but not really any of the guys my age mostly the "old money" older retired members might stick their nose up to me but none of them know me so whatever. 3) Private :: You really need to figure out if the membership is more about golf or socialization. It sounds like your club is a lot of "old money" and is more about socialization and you don't exactly fit into their circles. It sounds like you need a club more about golf and less about the "status". Again, don't worry about it, forget the carp. Take the positives from the ROUND of golf and improve from there. EDIT My club does several divisions: Men -- Under 55, 5 or better handicaps automatically put into this flight. Men -- Under 55, above a 5 handicap that opts out of the Trophy / Parking spot competition (Champ Flight) --> Technically event the 55+ guys could opt into this if they wanted. Senior Men -- 55+ Super Senior Men -- 65+ I know the Women have at least one division not sure if they have a split on age or not.
  19. No problem. To add to it just for GP, Trust me when I say that I have learned this the hard way. What changed it around for me lately is the following: 1) The concept of "Vision54", it is a thought process. --> Every Shot Must Have a Purpose 2) Evaluating my mental state before each shot & the process more then the results of the shot. --> I have found for me personally my bad swings are almost always coming from poor decisions or a lack of commitment to my shot selection.
  20. There is absolutely no reason to feel ashamed. EVERYONE, at some point in their lives has shot an awful tournament score that is way above there normal ability. Pressure / tension is a killer to a golf swing and you have to learn to deal with that over time. If anyone is actually laughing at you then you belong to a club with a bunch of D-Bag members that have forgotten what it was like in there first few tournaments. You should ALWAYS hold your head high that you didn't cheat and didn't quit because you were playing bad. I never learned one damn thing from my great rounds of golf only the bad ones and the near misses in tournaments. It is so easy to be negative but you can't be positive, reflect on it and learn from it then forget about it. It took me 5 to 10 tournaments to feel "normal" in a big event. I ALWAYS get a little anxious on that first tee, you never get over that, you just learn to deal with it focusing on your process and understanding how the pressure effects your swing. There is absolutely NO substitution for Tournament golf then tournament golf. It is a different beast. Money games help simulate pressure but at the same time you have other chances to make money. You get one chance to perform well in that specific tournament. This brings up a point I made to someone at my club after we both played in the NC Mid-Am Qualifier. He started 5 over (Hole 10) Quad Bogey (Hole 11) pure nervousness went on to shoot a 89. This is a 4-6 handicap player on his own course (we hosted the qualifier). ~ It was his first ever stroke play tournament round in 10 years, you don't just walk into these sorts of things without some experience on how to handle them and play well. I would almost use the bad score as a motivation to prove everyone wrong if they form an opinion on me about my abilities as a golfer by a single score. Just spin it into a positive whenever possible. My advice Focus on only what you can control. ~ Process is HUGE, pre-shot routine only giving your attention to the current shot / situation. >> Forget about a previous shot / hole, don't worry about where the ball will go or an upcoming hole, only the current task. --> With process it forces your mind into feeling like the shot is just "routine" and you have practiced it and done it 100s of times on the range / course before. Know how the anxiety / tension effects your swing and figure out a way to negate tension. ~ Tension is a swing killer, you can't move the club the same way if you have more grip pressure / tight from nervousness. --> A lot of people might grip the club tighter or increase there tempo during the swing to be faster. Neither is going to result in a good swing. Play more tournaments and don't be results oriented or worried what people think about you as a player. ~ A golf score DOES NOT define you as a person. --> Only how your actions are on the course defines you, that points out the personality not the score, handle the bad moments and good ones with class.
  21. This is not to sound like a broken record or say that any one persons thoughts on putting are wrong. ~ Leadbetter and Pelz have there thoughts on what works best most likely because it is the method that they used when they played. Examples of successful putters with very different strokes: Tiger Woods -- Right arm dominant, inside to down the line, full release Rory McIlroy -- Left arm dominant, down the line to inside, blocked release Stan Utley -- Arms independent of the body Sergio Garcia -- Shoulders around the spine (he is a better putter then the media gives him credit for) Steve Striker -- Shoulders rock vertically (I'm not 100% sure on that, just looking that way when I saw it on video last) Lee Trevino once said "I have never spent a minute looking for a perfect method. I spent all my time perfecting my own." ~ That holds true for the full swing as well a lot of times once you get to a point that the swing is predictable / repeatable. I really can't say much more then what I already have. If you fight your tendencies in putting you will never become a great putter.
  22. The reason I said that the lie angle should be flat is because like in an iron, the ball can start on the pull side (toe up) or push side (heel up) of the intended line. Now that's not to say that you can't adjust your aim for that tendency, I find it easier to have it flat on the ground and use the putter as my yard stick to get into a consistent posture. A lot of players do tend to "peak" early looking for the ball roll and will steer the putter head in the process just before impact to the cup instead of focusing on the initial line.
  23. This is not to give RK flack about his opinions, what he writes about is what works for HIM. BIG STU probably has similar thoughts about what works for HIM. Putting is very individualized, what works for one person is not likely to work for another. The bellow information is based on things I have learned from my instructor Bruce Rearick (bargolf, Burnt Edges Consulting) ~ He has a section at puttertalk.com called "Bruce's Corner" and MGS has done a review on his teaching --> MGS Blog :: http://www.mygolfspy.com/bruce-rearick-putter-fitting --> PutterTalk Link :: http://puttertalk.com/community/index.php?board=125.0 Some keys to finding YOUR best method: NOTE :: I am not yelling in typing in all caps, I am doing to to signify the importance of the line that's all caps. ~ Find the position in which you visually best see the intended line of play over the ball. >> This could mean eyes are outside the line, on the line, slightly inside the line, or drastically inside the line. --> NO POSITION OF THE HEAD / EYES ARE BETTER THEN ANOTHER, IT IS WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. ~ Measure the length of your wrist to the ball from the position you best see the intended line >> This will be the length of the putter you need to play, adjust the lie angle so the putter sits flat on a level lie to the length and posture. --> NO LENGTH / LIE FOR THE PUTTER IS BETTER THEN ANOTHER, IT IS WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. ~ Your posture will determine the amount of arc your stroke has, you DO NOT get to pick. >> Using a SBST literal stroke with the posture of setting up to the ball like a 7iron is going to be a manipulated stroke and thus streaky / non-consistent. --> NO METHOD IN MAKING A PUTTING STROKE IS BETTER THEN ANOTHER, IT IS WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. ~ Find a source of motion that works for you >> Shoulders are spine, shoulders vertically, left arm, right arm, arms independent. --> NO SOURCE OF MOTION IS BETTER THEN ANOTHER, IT IS WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. ~ Find the directional bias of your stroke path (left, right, none) >> Down the line to inside (Left), Inside to down the line (right), none would be in-between --> NO DIRECTIONAL BIAS IS BETTER THEN ANOTHER, IT IS WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. After those things it gets more detailed in fitting a putter for a player but that's the basic concept. I'm not here to give instruction on how to go through the above processes of finding out what work for YOU. Hope that helps someone get on the correct path to putting better, If you are struggling that badly with putting then i would recommend contacting Bruce via referral for his online consulting program.
  24. Just to state some obvious things that haven't been talked about yet. 1) It is a possibility that your two driver heads have drastically different lofts 2) The same shaft installed in different positions in the same head can feel different to a player 3) Every shaft has a different profile and specs, there is no good or bad shaft, just ones that fit and don't fit. Exampling on point 1 Make sure to actually measure the driver for loft / face angle. ~ The loft stamped on the driver is not the true loft, normally the true loft is higher then the stamped loft. --> I have seen an Adams Speedline F11 stamped 10.5 measure to 11.2 ~ The CG placement will move the true sweet spot a little higher then the dead center of the club. With the roll of the face from sole to crown you are likely going to get a higher loft reading at the true sweet spot then you will at the center. --> This starts to matter more the higher swing speed / ball speed of a player that is getting fitted. Expanding on point 2 The same shaft can have different CPMs in a 360* circle. ~ Example :: 246 at the horizontal plane (target line) in the head, 253 at vertical plane (ground / sky)... If you turn that shaft 90* then it feels differently to the player. >> This is where Flat Line Oscillation (FLO) can play a big rule in getting shafts consistently feeling the same between heads. --> Te one exception I have experience with of not having drastic changes in CPM in a 360* circle is a shaft company called RT Technologies. The owner hand tests all shafts before they get sold and makes sure they come out to 1 CPM within a 360* circle, I guess that's why the RT part stands for "Rigorously Tested" Expanding on part 3 The "stock" shafts tend to be designed to fit average swing speed and average golfers tendencies. ~ The manufacturing process is also a bit cheaper to help profits on the club, normally the wall thickness on a "stock" shaft will be thinner then the same shaft in the "aftermarket" version. --> That just means the "stock" shaft will deform and twist in the swing easier when someone is swinging it creating more inconsistencies. You will need to find a shaft that fits your dynamic loft and spin for the ball you normally play to maximize the control & distance of your tee shots. ~ There is no right or wrong, just what is good for you and your swing currently. To better find this out find an experienced club builder and get fit. --> In general, stay away from big box stores and places that employees work off commission.
  25. Yes, it is something I consider and worry about. Yes, there is a too light / too heavy point. ~ D0 is way to light, D2 I can play it but don't prefer the feel, D4/D5 is my target weight, D7 and heavier is too much. Well my set up is goofy and nothing close to OEMs "standards". I have a driver that is D4 @ 44.50" with 65g shaft. The head has hot melt in it to bring the total head weight up for swing weight reasons. If you looked at my set you would laugh, its not pretty at all. ~ I have lost count how much lead tape is on my irons (3-9) and the 48* / 54* to get them to D4. ~ I have two tungsten swing weight squares on my 2h to bring it up 2 points from D2 to D4. ~ The Driver has hot melt in the head to swing weight it to what I wanted to feel, D4. ~ The 4w is D4.5 but has a 85g shaft in it, so no tape / dots. ~ The 60* is D5.5, we actually had to drill it out because it came out to D7 originally. I only did swing weight after I found the shaft length, shaft bend profile, grip size / material that I like to feel and see in my ball flight as well. ~ Swing weight for me was fine tuning club face control by pure feel of where the head was in the swing.
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