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Dlow206's Quest to Break into the 80s


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I've heard that Bryson practices with a yardstick while doing putting speed drills to to measure back swing length to reinforce the feel of his stroke.  

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2 hours ago, dlow206 said:

I don't have a system or anything like that for controlling the distance, so all by feel i guess. 

I definitely should have the speed figured out. Somehow, my playing buddies and I are always amazed at how fast the greens are sometimes, but we should all know better. I think for us here at my club, we start to adjust better once the weather is consistently dry in the summer. 

What is your pre-round routine in terms of hitting some warmup balls on the ranges or chips and putts in the short game area?

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3 minutes ago, BMart519 said:

What is your pre-round routine in terms of hitting some warmup balls on the ranges or chips and putts in the short game area?

A little bit rushed, hitting some irons, driver, and then a short amount of time on chips and putts. 

For context, i try to get the first tee time in the morning, so the practice area opens 30 minutes before that. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

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44 minutes ago, dlow206 said:

A little bit rushed, hitting some irons, driver, and then a short amount of time on chips and putts. 

For context, i try to get the first tee time in the morning, so the practice area opens 30 minutes before that. 

I would use time after the round when possible to take advantage of the short game area and do focused work on speed control for putts and hit 20-30 yard chips with all wedges (even on range). For full swings, you should be hitting the clubs used on par 3 tee shots and finish with your 1st tee club going through your full pre-shot routine for the first tee. 

When I am in a time crunch (15 min or less) this is my go to on the practice green: 

- 1 putt from 20, 40, 60 feet lagged within 10% of start distance or 3 feet (whichever is farther)
- Mickelson clock drill with 4 balls, except at 3, 4, 5 and 6 feet instead of the same distance. Move back 1 putt each time you miss, keep going until you make the 6' putt. 
- finish with your full routine on random putts to different holes 15-30 ft. (don't expect to make them, putt out for 2 putts)

- bump and runs greenside from 2-5 yards off green - assess the carry vs run out on chips with your most lofted wedge and your bump and run club (9 iron for me). Is my 9 iron running 2x or 3x as long as it carries? Is GW carry equal to roll out? 

***

In my opinion, short game warm-up is more important to dial in touch for your hands to make finesse shots. I can take 10 swings with an orange whip and 5-10 driver swings without a ball and get around on the course fine (not to mention courses with no range where it isn't an option). I don't want my first putt of the day to be an 8 footer for par (or 50' lag) or need to get up and down greenside from a downslope to be my first chip. There's value in seeing your ball flight with irons and drivers on the range so you can play for it, but that is also something you need to adjust as the round goes on regardless. 

If you average 2 shots to get out of any sand trap, that's not acceptable. Set aside 30 min, watch a couple Youtube vids on technique then go hit 30 shots out of a practice bunker and it will be taken care of. You won't execute every shot perfect, but anything more than 1/10 shots being left in a bunker is cause for alarm and can be easily fixed. 

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11 minutes ago, BMart519 said:

I would use time after the round when possible to take advantage of the short game area and do focused work on speed control for putts and hit 20-30 yard chips with all wedges (even on range). For full swings, you should be hitting the clubs used on par 3 tee shots and finish with your 1st tee club going through your full pre-shot routine for the first tee. 

When I am in a time crunch (15 min or less) this is my go to on the practice green: 

- 1 putt from 20, 40, 60 feet lagged within 10% of start distance or 3 feet (whichever is farther)
- Mickelson clock drill with 4 balls, except at 3, 4, 5 and 6 feet instead of the same distance. Move back 1 putt each time you miss, keep going until you make the 6' putt. 
- finish with your full routine on random putts to different holes 15-30 ft. (don't expect to make them, putt out for 2 putts)

- bump and runs greenside from 2-5 yards off green - assess the carry vs run out on chips with your most lofted wedge and your bump and run club (9 iron for me). Is my 9 iron running 2x or 3x as long as it carries? Is GW carry equal to roll out? 

***

In my opinion, short game warm-up is more important to dial in touch for your hands to make finesse shots. I can take 10 swings with an orange whip and 5-10 driver swings without a ball and get around on the course fine (not to mention courses with no range where it isn't an option). I don't want my first putt of the day to be an 8 footer for par (or 50' lag) or need to get up and down greenside from a downslope to be my first chip. There's value in seeing your ball flight with irons and drivers on the range so you can play for it, but that is also something you need to adjust as the round goes on regardless. 

If you average 2 shots to get out of any sand trap, that's not acceptable. Set aside 30 min, watch a couple Youtube vids on technique then go hit 30 shots out of a practice bunker and it will be taken care of. You won't execute every shot perfect, but anything more than 1/10 shots being left in a bunker is cause for alarm and can be easily fixed. 

Regarding the bunker, going to ask my new in-person instructor for some help. He has a pretty cool teaching area at the back of driving range that includes a practice bunker. I have watched so many bunker shot videos and it hasn't helped because I am not executing correctly. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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24 minutes ago, dlow206 said:

Regarding the bunker, going to ask my new in-person instructor for some help. He has a pretty cool teaching area at the back of driving range that includes a practice bunker. I have watched so many bunker shot videos and it hasn't helped because I am not executing correctly. 

100% I was going to say, see if you can go for a full playing lesson so he can check out your shots around the green and anything under full swing. 

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2 hours ago, BMart519 said:

100% I was going to say, see if you can go for a full playing lesson so he can check out your shots around the green and anything under full swing. 

He has a really cool setup so I can do a decent amount of short game lesson in his lesson area. This is all his lesson area, at the back of the range, so no one else is there except you and him. I was really impressed with his setup. 

image.png.d0bf44e09efb5385a1f91bf67cf50168.png

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Haven't posted in a while in this thread because i have been out with an injury. First time back out was today. I drastically need help with chipping. Losing quite a few strokes with bad chipping. I struggle with learning to chip based on videos because I am not executing correctly. I have a lesson scheduled with my in-person instructor later this week and am planning to ask for some help with chipping. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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Had a lesson today. Didn't get to working on short game yet. Focus was on first and foremost grip. My grip slightly strayed from the first lesson, but Tom gave me a good way to remember how it should feel. Just properly gripping the club made my swing feel much more stable. We also worked on a few drills for impact and path, but none of it was explicitly trying to swing the club differently, but by performing the drill, it naturally improved path. My strike with my irons was much better, really compressing the ball well and taking a fairly neutral small divot. Recently, I had been hitting irons pretty well after my first lesson, but was taking almost no divot and more picking at the ball. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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Few days after my lesson on July 1, i went on to shoot a 93, which is my best round ever, but was really good about the round was the 43 on the front 9. Was on track to break 90 but had a few blow up holes on the last few holes. 

I attribute the sudden improvement to the 2 lessons that I took with Tom Sovay. The grip change has been the biggest factor, i am striking my irons so much better and more consistently. Its really crazy how much grip matters.

I have committed to exclusively working with Tom for in-person lessons, no dabbling with other instruction. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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6 minutes ago, dlow206 said:

Few days after my lesson on July 1, i went on to shoot a 93, which is my best round ever, but was really good about the round was the 43 on the front 9. Was on track to break 90 but had a few blow up holes on the last few holes. 

I attribute the sudden improvement to the 2 lessons that I took with Tom Sovay. The grip change has been the biggest factor, i am striking my irons so much better and more consistently. Its really crazy how much grip matters.

I have committed to exclusively working with Tom for in-person lessons, no dabbling with other instruction. 

Do you have a before and after pic of the grip change you can post?  It's very cool you immediately saw results, a grip change can take some time to get used to because it just doesn't "feel" right and that makes it hard to stick to.

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Modern Bag:  Ping G410+ 9*, Accra TourZ X265 M5;  Snake Eyes 15*, 18* & 23* Hybrids; Mizuno JPX 900 Forged 5 - PW, PX LZ 6.0;  Cleveland Tour Action 49*, 53*, 57*; PX LZ 6.5 ;  Ping Heppler Fetch;  Ball - Snell MTB-X; Bag - Sun Mountain H2NO 

Classic Bag:  Driver - Wilson Staff Persimmon; 3w - Hogan Speed Slot; 5w - Wilson Staff Tour Block; 3 - pw - Staff Dynapower; sw - Ram Tom Watson;  putter - bullseye standard or flange.

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8 minutes ago, Shapotomous said:

Do you have a before and after pic of the grip change you can post?  It's very cool you immediately saw results, a grip change can take some time to get used to because it just doesn't "feel" right and that makes it hard to stick to.

Hard to take a before and after pic and it can also be a bit hard to see in pictures. Also, im not good at describing the various parts of the hand, but the best way that i can describe it is the pad of the left hand more on top of the grip and then my right hand was too under, even with the V looking fairly neutral. I am probably butchering the description. Previously, the V's, knuckles, etc., could look neutral or whatever, but the way the grip was held in my hands was incorrect.

During my first lesson with Tom, he didn't have me hold the club or take any baseline shots or anything. The very first step was showing me how to put my left hand on the club and then him correcting me, and then how to put my right hand on the grip and then correcting me. He was and is very particular about how the club is in my hands and then i can adjust to be stronger or weaker. 

The grip change made a positive difference from the first swing. When i start hitting bad shots, many times i notice my grip getting sloppy. Also, i didn't feel like i needed to get used to the grip change, because it just felt much better than how i used to hold the club. Everything felt more stable.

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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  • 2 weeks later...

i have finally figured out what is going on with my grip that causes me issues vs. when i am gripping properly. My problematic grip is when the grip gets too much vertically in my fingers in the left hand. This causes my clubface to generally be too closed, so i either pull it left or try to hold it open on the downswing and push/push slice it right. 

i have come up with a couple of things i can easily key in on to ensure i am properly gripping the club. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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36 minutes ago, dlow206 said:

i have come up with a couple of things i can easily key in on to ensure i am properly gripping the club. 

What are they?

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4 hours ago, russtopherb said:

What are they?

One is the logo on the glove (how much of it i should be able to see). The second is if i hold the club only in my left hand at address and just hinge it straight up, the clubface should remain relatively square (when i hold improperly with my left hand the face closes when i hinge). 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Been suffering from the blocks lately with irons. My instructor said i am sliding in my downswing, so we did some drills to try to work on that. I am also not releasing the club correctly, sort of holding on.

Going to work on the sliding first. I remembered something Monte had mentioned a while back that during the backswing I basically never move pressure to the right side so i stay on my left side. So what I believe is happening is I stay stacked on my left side in the backswing and then just slide even further left on the downswing. Going to work on the drills my instructor mentioned and also some work with the Downunderboard that i have. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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Ok, you guys might think i am nuts, but I have decided to give a variation of the one plane swing a shot. What I have come to realize after many different lessons is that there is a specific set of root cause items that i struggle with. Some days I can compensate ok, other days are completely terrible.

I have done a lot of research on the Kirk Junge method (also have a subscription to his online membership) and a lot of what is included in his method eliminates many of the variables in the two plane swing that i typically struggle with. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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And if you think I went off the deep end with the one plane swing idea, just know that the Kirk Junge system is not as radical of a change as the Moe Normal swing. There is no standing super far away from the ball, etc. Still many elements of the standard swing, with some setup changes that are not super radical. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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2 hours ago, dlow206 said:

And if you think I went off the deep end with the one plane swing idea, just know that the Kirk Junge system is not as radical of a change as the Moe Normal swing. There is no standing super far away from the ball, etc. Still many elements of the standard swing, with some setup changes that are not super radical. 

Good luck with the changes. I find I play best closer to a single plane that two. At biggest just a slight plane change. Just have always struggled to lay the club off and no time to commit to a swing change personally. Looking forward to hearing about the progress.

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2 hours ago, ejgaudette said:

Good luck with the changes. I find I play best closer to a single plane that two. At biggest just a slight plane change. Just have always struggled to lay the club off and no time to commit to a swing change personally. Looking forward to hearing about the progress.

I've been taking some practices swings with the new method and it feels great. my problem (or one of my problems) with a standard swing is taking the club back too much to the inside, then trying to take it more outside to compensate, etc, and then somehow my clubhead ends up always closed at the top. With the Kirk Junge method, I feel like there is minimal clubhead rotation in the swing, which i like. I've never fully wrapped my head around why clubhead rotation is a good thing in the golf swing. 

I also made a putter grip change a few rounds ago, changed to left hand low. That one felt natural from the start and i have been putting better than ever. 

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Follow my golf journey to break into the 80s

Current tester for the Titleist TSi Driver

Spring 2020 MGS Tester for the Fujikura Motore X Shaft

Updated 4/27/2021
Driver:titelist-small: TSi 2 - Graphite Design AD-XC 6S
Hybrids:taylormade-small: SIM Max 3H, 4H - Matrix Ozik 85S
Irons:srixon-small: ZX5 5 - PW - Accra 95 icwt S
Wedges: :cleveland-small: CBX 2 54, CBX Full Face 58 - Nippon Modus 105 Wedge
Putter:  :odyssey-small: Two Ball Ten S Tour Lines - 31"
 

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