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Takeaways from 2018 Season Looking to 2019

Discussion in 'General Golf Talk' started by thegolfclubdoc, Nov 11, 2018.

  1. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    Now that we have snow on the ground here in Illinois, the golf season is officially over. This season was one of the most interesting that I have had since my first year playing this magnificent yet penal sport. Over the winter months last year, I had finally decided to change my swing. The rationale behind changing was a little misguided, but it was my goal. Changing my swing motion stems from buddies/playing partners telling me about my"swing flaws". I have a flying right elbow, bent left elbow, 10- finger grip with both thumbs right down the middle of the grip, left foot flared and right foot square, all clubs played just in the inside of my left heel about 3-4 inches. I'm not a long hitter, 7 iron goes around 150. My strengths: iron play, short game, and I am best at putting. However, because of my "flawed" full- swing motion, I'm always told that if I improved my technique I could finally shoot in the 70's. So, I took the bait, and took to YouTube to develop a technically sound swing. I practiced all winter and finally got the new swing to feel natural. It looked fantastic. My first round of the season, second hole, I hit a 9 iron five inches away from what would have been my first hole-in-one. My first impression, I have done it. At 40 years old I have mastered the full-swing. That day I drove the ball very straight and my irons weren't spectacular, but they were straight. The ball flight was a lot lower than what I was used to, but very decent. However, I ended up shooting around the same score I have always shot. As the season moved ahead my scores got worse until one round I shot a 101. I couldn't believe it. My final round of the year I decided to go back to my original swing. I felt defeated. I played nine holes on a par 34 course. First round back to the old swing and I shout a 36. Irons were nice and high again. Short game was better. It just felt better. Bottom line, I need not listen to my friends. Swing my way and be comfortable and have fun. BTW, they make fun of my "vintage" equipment. I play Ping Eye 2 irons, a Ping Zing blonde driver, and Ping B60 putter. They have tried to get me to upgrade my equipment for a long time. I have tested the waters numerous times, but I just can't.

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  2. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    Great narrative of your season. I played over 150 rounds this year. Got the handicap down into the 9 range only to see it balloon up to 10.3 this past month or so. I understand most of the reasons... reasons, not excuses... for the 'cap creeping up.
    I'm looking forward to continued play through the winter. That will depend on Mother Nature. Hope to be ready to kick the handicap back down a bit when the 2019 season officially begins.
    The most rewarding/frustrating part of golf this past year was my first sitting on the Board of Directors at our course. We have an excellent staff that has worked their fannies off to get/keep the course in pristine condition. Yet, we have members who will gripe and complain about anything and everything. Our course is finishing the year in the black with some good reserves back for the "rainy day".

    As far as your game, sir, there has not been significant technological changes in irons since the Eye 2's you now play. If they fit you and your swing and you are confident with them... keep them happy and they will keep you happy. Same with the B60. I would highly recommend finding a new metal driver and fairways. Find a used 460cc driver with a shaft that fits your swing. Most shops will let you demo their used clubs. Take a few out and play two or three rounds with each. They may not send the ball farther down the fairway. But, they will be significantly more forgiving and allow you to find more fairways. "Never belittle a ball in the middle!"
    Whatever you do decide... keep playing the Game. Golf can be a cruel mistress. Still, the opportunity to enjoy a round with good friends, experience a well struck shot, and see a putt take the bend you thought it would as it falls into the hole is fantastic.

    Have a great 2019 golf season!!!!
     
  3. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    I like modern drivers but I feel more comfortable with my maple laminate for some reason. Thanks for the encouragement.

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  4. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    Nice classics! I have a clean set of Eye 2 irons, green dot and a Maple ZING driver with graphite. It is a solid unit and goes almost as far as the moderns stuff. Own you swing - the one YOU built, the one that works!
     
  5. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    I try to tell myself that regarding my swing, but I let people get in my head because my swing doesn't look like the pros or what an instructor would teach. I need to be happy with how I hit the ball because I'm really a decent ball striker.

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  6. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    How your swing looks is of no consequence to the scorecard. Ball control is what this game is about.
     
  7. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    My swing looks like a sack full of cats, all trying to find their way out!!! I ain't kidding!!! It's a combination of Jim Furyk and Ray Floyd. I took one golf lesson. They guy I went to shrugged his shoulders and suggested it would take months of work to get me where I could play this game. Instead of spending that time and money, I've enjoyed this game immensely for many, many years.
    Today's mindset is that everyone must have a picture-book swing. 99% of the pros out there are just mirrors of each other. The self-taught swings are a thing of the past... other than maybe Bubba Watson. Go back and watch Palmer, Trevino, Floyd, Dent, Thompson, etc. These guys didn't have million dollar paydays. How they got the ball from tee to green was what they ate and lived on the next week depended on. They learned to work with what the Good Lord gave 'em.
    The Good Lord only put a certain number of swings in this old body. I have no idea when that number will expire. I'm not going to waste a single one of them on a driving range, practice swings, or lessons from a pro who would only screw up what I've used for years. They don't draw pictures on a scorecard. Hit it. Go find it. Hit it again!!!
     
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  8. sssmokin

    sssmokin Retired and loving it Supporting Member

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    All that matters is that the clubface is square to the target when it strikes the ball, and that you swing out to the target. How it gets to that point doesn't matter. I hate DeChambou's (spelling) rigid mechanical swing. My worst problem is overswinging. They try to put the "swing speed" is everything in your head. What puts the ball out there is hitting it in the sweet spot...……...period. When I can control that, I am a good ball striker, and I can still put it out there with the flatbellies.
     
  9. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    It's all a big scam. The equipment, golf instructions, training aids it's all a money grab. I know this. I've always known this. But, I fall victim to it from time to time. Going into 2019 I don't want to worry about my swing or my equipment. I want to just focus on my mindset. I want to be mentally and emotionally in a good place on the golf course so I can play freely. That's my goal.

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  10. MCDavis

    MCDavis The Plaid Duffer Staff Member Moderator

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    Oh crap...this guy talks as much as Limp!!!! ;)

    Nice post, and nice bag!
     
  11. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    I know it too and I remain a victim of it. Your post has inspired me. No more ho-ing for me...................again.:cool:
     
  12. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    That's what I said in the post above (in one short sentence). :p
     
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  13. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    The clubs I have are my dream clubs. I went out and bought exactly what I wanted. So really no need for me to switch to anything else. But it doesn't stop me from thinking about it

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  14. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    I'm with you.

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  15. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    Golf is 90% mental. The other 30% is all in your head.

    or

    The toughest yardage on any golf course is the 5 1/2" between your ears.
     
  16. BogeySwine

    BogeySwine Active Member

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    I absolutely agree with this! I don't drive the ball very long but sometimes hit 9-10 fairways. Greens, however are another matter. Four would probably be my average. I can chip and pitch the ball inside of fifteen feet quite often. My putting is always the determining factor! I rarely three putt and if a couple of those fifteen footers go in I can score very well.
     
  17. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    That's the funniest thing I've read today.

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  18. PaPaD

    PaPaD Club ho, geezer........ Supporting Member

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    Here's my Geezer Game. These are strategies and intentions. Only on good ball-striking days do they work.

    Play from Tees LESS than 6000 yards, preferably 5800 or less.

    1. Par 4s: Bunt the ball down the fairway - maybe 200 on a firm fairway. If I am less than 125 from the green (short par 4), I stand a chance for a GIR with an 8 iron. Possible par or birdie here. If I am 150 or more out, hit a straight shot towards the green in hopes of getting within green complex. Try to get up and down- mostly bogies here.

    2. Par 5s: Bunt the ball down the fairway. Hit my Perfect Cub down the fairway again hoping to get inside 125y - GIR with a short iron, possible par or birdie. I par more 5s than I do 4s.

    3. Par 3s - if they are short enough to reach with my 6h or less, I shoot for the center of the green. If they are longer than 150, I aim for the green but plan my miss to some part of the hole that gives me a chance to get up and down if I miss the green.

    On days were my ball-striking is on and the short game is sharp, I can break 80. Most of my scores fall between 75 and 85 on any given day. I try to keep the ball in play and use short game to score. Very conservative.
     
  19. thegolfclubdoc

    thegolfclubdoc Active Member

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    I'm going to attempt to focus on the positive things about my swing and my game. Even though my swing isn't picture perfect, I do like some things about it.

    My swing, starting with my grip feels really natural. Because of this, I don't have to practice as much or think about any mechanics, I just swing. My tempo is very deliberate so it's a very controlled swing. I never lose my balance unless I'm on an uneven lie. The best part of my game is my putter. On bad days, I'm slightly better than my playing partners. On good days, I'm walking everything in.

    What positives are you guys going into next season with?

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  20. limpalong

    limpalong Mental Ward Escapee Supporting Member

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    This is the "geezer game" that would help so many whose years are beginning the catch up with them. We MUST have a short game. I can reach most of our par 4's in two... if I keep it in the fairway. Three of them are impossible to do so. And, our greens are quite small. So, keep it in the fairway, even if the other galoots hit it further. On par 5's I will then decide whether to hit my 5-wood or 3 hybrid to advance the ball towards the green. If I am anywhere from 50 yards in, on most days I can get up and down. If that short game is off... too much coffee, mind playing games, etc... the game is in the tank.
    The short game is the advantage seniors have over the flat-bellies. Yet, we see so many different short games... most all quite good. One in our group does all his chipping with a 7-iron. Another, an 8-iron. Another with a chipper. Another will putt from almost 20 yards in. I use a 52 degree wedge. And, we all seem to end up close to the hole. I've tried to find a way to use a short iron, 7 or 8, and just cannot keep the ball close to the hole. Others will chunk a wedge.
    What has hurt me this past season is the putter. We've had some really difficult days in our relationship. It seems, though, going to the Lamkin Fat Boy grip has helped immensely.
     
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