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Deege And The Little White Ball


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#1 Deege

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 08:42 AM

Okay, so it is time to start a new thread rather than continuing to hang out in that 2013 thread.

 

And a good time, because I had a bit of a review lesson yesterday with my coach.  We talked about how I thought my golf was going and my goals etc.  I told him that it has been pretty frustrating of late - I have felt like almost every area of my game has improved over the last year or two, but after reaching my best point playing off 17 earlier this year, I just haven't been able to score well enough to continue the improvement.

 

My round yesterday was a good example.  We were playing par and the conditions were pretty heavy, as has been the case for a few months now.  It was just the two of us in our group and I felt like for most of the day I was hitting the ball well, chipping reasonably and basically accomplishing what I wanted to.  The putting was doing well - consistently picking a good line but just not quite making the putts that mattered.  I walked off with a -8 which felt like a big waste.  My playing partner hacked it around the course for most of the day and couldn't find her golf game with two hands and a flashlight but walked off with the same score as me.  Ouch,

 

While this is frustrating, it does give me encourage to feel that most of my game seems to be on track to come good.  I feel like if I continue the way that I am, and particularly if I continue to work on my game, it is only a matter of time before the improvement starts to show on the scoreboard.

 

With my coach, we discussed what our medium term plan is.   Together we agreed that my long game was in pretty good shape and basically has never been the problem for me.  I will continue to get some improvement in my consistency with those clubs (which might make me more comfortable taking on a long water carry for example) but isn't going to significantly improve my length and accuracy with those clubs so as to put downward pressure on my scores.  

 

Even with some long game improvement, there are still probably 9 holes on any of our courses which will be out of range for me in regulation.  So if I am going to get some real improvement in my scores, it will be from getting the ball closer to the hole from inside about 60m.  

 

So for our lesson we worked on a new technique for bunker play with less moving parts that should enable more consistent results even on the weeks that I can't get a practice session in.  And then he said "we can use the same technique with your pitching".

 

It was at that moment it occured to me that I never pitch the ball.  I basically treat those shots which are less than a full wedge as long chips and try to run them up to the hole, and now that I think about it am terribly inconsistent with.  He pointed out that in doing so, I bring into play all of the false fronts and mounds around the greens as well as any number of other irregularities that will mess with my results.   So, looks like I have to learn how to pitch the ball.  After a bit of practice I was getting the hang of a nice technique and optimistic about what we will do with this from now on.

 

In the short term, I will try to get some practice time in a bit more consistently to work on these weak spots in my game.  I have the semi-finals of a 4BBB match-play event in two weeks.  Once again I am going 1 on 2, this time against a team that features the current club champion.  After that I have a month before club champs and mixed foursome champs.  I want to try and have my game in good enough nick to be competitive in those competitions.

 


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#2 Toph

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 09:43 AM

Hi Deege. I share your pain. Though a significantly higher handicap and less experience than you. I too have improved all aspects of my game but have not seen the scoring improve as it should. With me it's in part just not playing regularly.
In my thread I've just posted a short game handicap test. May be useful for you to see which parts of your short game are at what level, and also to track improvement.
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#3 RJP9.4

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 11:13 AM

am in the same boat deege got down to 9.4 cant go that next step , have been working on my pitching from 100 mts out ,now carry four wedges , need to get it to where from 50 mts out i get it up and down more than not .My coach has been getting me to turn hips shoulders and hands all in unison/together ,have to have a rag under each armpit and not let them fall in a shot , this has improved my bunker play immensely as well 


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#4 *Mouldy

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 11:39 AM

Whilst in Singapore we had a large empty block which allowed me to hit up to 100m without any fear of damaging anyone or anything.  Being bored I used to get out for an hour every Saturday and Sunday and practice with my 4 wedges.  I hit 10 balls at a time to a target at a measured distance.  I learned what distance was attained with what length of backswing with each wedge.  All of this was out of Dave Pelz's Short Game Bible

 

When I got back to Melbourne my first few weeks of golf were sensational from 80m inwards.  Then the lack of practice killed off that form.  You can't do that at the range due to the balls and shortage of targets.  I would love to find somewhere to be able to regain that form.  If you have a useable facility (the practice fairway to yourself) I strongly recommend it.  You don't need a green just a towel for a target and pace off the distance.


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#5 GPJ_Longdriver

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 02:10 PM

To be good at those less than 100m distances, eg pitching ........ you've got to know your numbers, as Mouldy alluded to.

 

If you know your "less than full swing wedge distances" Deege, then you will be chock full of confidence when you find yourself in that specific distance on course.

 

You will also be able to reproduce those swings from memory and do it without stress if you have those shots well grooved.

 

What I find really helps with those less than a full shot wedge distances ...... is to try and keep the "arms fairly quiet" on the downswing, and just use "the speed of your pivot" to power the shot the required distance.

 

Because I don't use the arms much on those shots, its much easier (and more consistent) ...... to power the shot with the bigger muscles of the rotating torso .... and just try to keep the arms in front of the torso as you rotate thru. (pretty much what I do with chipping too)

 

If I was to just use an arm swing instead on those pitch shots  ....... I wouldn't get the same consistent distances I reckon, as the arms would feel disconnected from my body, and would be either too fast, or too slow etc.

 

So  ... backswing lengths .... hands to waist level ...... hands to chest level ........ hands to shoulder level, then just use the pivot.

 

If you've got 3 wedges ........... you've now 9 distances etc.

 

And because none of those shots are full swings ........ you can practice grooving your "pivot" without a ball .... in the loungeroom (so long as you don't have a chandelier).

 

Quiet arms, and a nice smooth pivot ......... tis pretty much all you need from 100 and closer in, I reckon.

 

And ........ you do have a pretty good start on it too Dan, as you naturally have a nice smooth swing .. so just work out the distances, and think "smooth". .......... :)


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#6 RJP9.4

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 07:16 PM

GPJ exactly what my coach has been saying to me almost word for word .I was very arms/hands orientated and would pump a ball 10/ 20 mtrs further unexpectedly 



#7 Deege

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 08:59 PM

am in the same boat deege got down to 9.4 cant go that next step , have been working on my pitching from 100 mts out ,now carry four wedges , need to get it to where from 50 mts out i get it up and down more than not .My coach has been getting me to turn hips shoulders and hands all in unison/together ,have to have a rag under each armpit and not let them fall in a shot , this has improved my bunker play immensely as well 

 

Ray, this is exactly the move that my coach wants me to work on - trying to make both pitching and bunker play about shoulder rotation rather than arms/hands.  He says that even my long game can benefit from more shoulder/torso rotation, so working on this should help all aspects of the game.


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#8 Deege

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 09:01 PM

Whilst in Singapore we had a large empty block which allowed me to hit up to 100m without any fear of damaging anyone or anything.  Being bored I used to get out for an hour every Saturday and Sunday and practice with my 4 wedges.  I hit 10 balls at a time to a target at a measured distance.  I learned what distance was attained with what length of backswing with each wedge.  All of this was out of Dave Pelz's Short Game Bible

 

When I got back to Melbourne my first few weeks of golf were sensational from 80m inwards.  Then the lack of practice killed off that form.  You can't do that at the range due to the balls and shortage of targets.  I would love to find somewhere to be able to regain that form.  If you have a useable facility (the practice fairway to yourself) I strongly recommend it.  You don't need a green just a towel for a target and pace off the distance.

 

The interesting thing about this is that the way that I improved my bunker play to start with was just practising, and doing much the same sort of idea that you have (out of the Pelz short game bible). But my coach pointed out that when I do that, my action was all about moving my arms and hands more than moving my shoulders/body.  He said that this requires a lot of practice to keep in good nick. HOwever, if you focus on the rotation, then the movement is more natural with less moving parts and therefore doesn't break down as quickly when you aren't practising as much.


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#9 Deege

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 09:04 PM

To be good at those less than 100m distances, eg pitching ........ you've got to know your numbers, as Mouldy alluded to.

 

If you know your "less than full swing wedge distances" Deege, then you will be chock full of confidence when you find yourself in that specific distance on course.

 

You will also be able to reproduce those swings from memory and do it without stress if you have those shots well grooved.

 

What I find really helps with those less than a full shot wedge distances ...... is to try and keep the "arms fairly quiet" on the downswing, and just use "the speed of your pivot" to power the shot the required distance.

 

Because I don't use the arms much on those shots, its much easier (and more consistent) ...... to power the shot with the bigger muscles of the rotating torso .... and just try to keep the arms in front of the torso as you rotate thru. (pretty much what I do with chipping too)

 

If I was to just use an arm swing instead on those pitch shots  ....... I wouldn't get the same consistent distances I reckon, as the arms would feel disconnected from my body, and would be either too fast, or too slow etc.

 

So  ... backswing lengths .... hands to waist level ...... hands to chest level ........ hands to shoulder level, then just use the pivot.

 

If you've got 3 wedges ........... you've now 9 distances etc.

 

And because none of those shots are full swings ........ you can practice grooving your "pivot" without a ball .... in the loungeroom (so long as you don't have a chandelier).

 

Quiet arms, and a nice smooth pivot ......... tis pretty much all you need from 100 and closer in, I reckon.

 

And ........ you do have a pretty good start on it too Dan, as you naturally have a nice smooth swing .. so just work out the distances, and think "smooth". .......... :)

 

Spot on, Gaz.  That is what I am working on, together with using the position of the ball in my stance to deal with the quality of the lie and the way that I want the ball to come out.  It feels a heap more natural than what I have been doing, and hopefully more able to be maintained rather than relying on being in practice and having good feel.  As someone who is going to play at most once per week and have at most one practice session per week for the foreseeable future, it's all about trying to find moves that are most repeatable and don't rely on heaps of practice to keep relatively okay.


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#10 RJP9.4

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Posted 17 August 2014 - 09:54 PM

Deege try putting a glove or hand towel under your armpits and holding them whilst you swing , shoulder and hip turn is only way you can do it

#11 ink

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 04:23 PM

Wat up...

#12 Deege

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 04:37 PM

Deege try putting a glove or hand towel under your armpits and holding them whilst you swing , shoulder and hip turn is only way you can do it

 

Will try that.  My coach suggested this to replicate the feel that you want to get in your shoulders/hips - hold the club normally then take your right hand off the club, and, keeping the back of your hand away from the target, place the right hand in front of your left hand ( which is still holding the club).  Then use your right hand to pull/push the club into your backswing.  Bit hard to explain, but you do really get the feel of your arms remaining stiff and your whole body turning.


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#13 RJP9.4

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 04:59 PM

deege your coach and my coach are singing from the same hymn book or they are same person , i go to rohan dummett at MGA



#14 GPJ_Longdriver

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 07:49 PM

Deege ...........

 

Once you get used to the feeling of your pivot powering your 100m and in ... pitch shots (and your arms just coming along for the ride ) .....

 

the next step is to try taking a much, much shorter backswing, and doing exactly the same thing... and there you will have ............ a chipshot ......... and a consistent one at that.

 

When I stuff up my chips and get a crap impact on the ball ....... it's because I've used my arms.

 

When I get crisp contact and predictable and reliable chip s... it's solely due to using "the pivot" to power the short shot. :)

 

Using your pivot to power a shot is an entirely different feel (if you've been using your arms) .... and its a feel you will recognise the instant you've either done it right .......... or done it wrong.


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Le Hole in 1 (#1) ..... Beaconhills 30/06/2013 6th Hole - Mizuno MP 68 7 iron / TM Lethal ball.
Le Hole in 1 (#2) ...... Beaconhills 09/08/2014 6th Hole - Mizuno MP 68 7 iron / TM Lethal ball.
Le Hole in 1 (#3) ...... Beaconhills 22/02/2015 6th Hole - Mizuno MP 68 7 iron / Titleist NXT Tour ball.

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#15 *Mouldy

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Posted 20 August 2014 - 05:28 PM

Deege ...........

 

Once you get used to the feeling of your pivot powering your 100m and in ... pitch shots (and your arms just coming along for the ride ) .....

 

the next step is to try taking a much, much shorter backswing, and doing exactly the same thing... and there you will have ............ a chipshot ......... and a consistent one at that.

 

When I stuff up my chips and get a crap impact on the ball ....... it's because I've used my arms.

 

When I get crisp contact and predictable and reliable chip s... it's solely due to using "the pivot" to power the short shot. :)

 

Using your pivot to power a shot is an entirely different feel (if you've been using your arms) .... and its a feel you will recognise the instant you've either done it right .......... or done it wrong.

Took these thoughts into my chipping today.  Much crisper contact and more consistent results.  Had been using the arms and wrists far too much.  Thanks Gaz


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