Titleist, Callaway, Taylor Made……What!!!! There are so many choices out there these days. It is very hard for any golfer to make the correct choice. Let me help you out!
As a beginner golfer, truly it doesn’t matter, yet. The cheaper the ball maybe the better for a little bit.
But then, all of sudden you turn a corner and start to say to yourself “Why does my ball always roll past the pin and over the green?” This is the point when you must start to look at what a golf ball can do for you. Now, I can’t tell you brand or kind because truly most of them out there are great golf balls. I am going to be very basic here. Most companies have three lines of golf balls with three different price points. You can go on their websites and read all the information they have. But to tell you the truth it can be a little overwhelming with all the technology out there. But again it is good to do. Another great place is to look on the package of the golf ball. Most of the time the package can give you the basic attributes of the golf ball. But reading and learning about the golf balls can only go so far. At best it can only get you to the point where you are looking at a couple companies or one specific ball category……
But now you have to try them out. It is just like a science experiment. Pick three different golf balls (brand, category, price etc.). Go to the practice green. Chip all three to the same flag from the same place. What happened? Did one feel better than the next? Did one react better? Go get them and try it again? What happened?! Next do a different shot, maybe a longer or shorter chip. Then try a pitch. Spend about 20 minutes just trying all of them out. At the end, what do you think?
As your game improves, so should the decision you make when buying golf balls. If you are playing a distance golf ball and can’t hold a green. This could help you out. Yes, it might be the golf ball.
Now, remember what a Chip Shot is: a ball that hops and rolls! Once you have practiced your basic chip shot and have the stroke fairly comfortable and “consistent”. It is now time to go practice your distance control to get the ball can get close to the hole. There are three ways to control your distance when you are chipping:
1. Length of swing: Remember the chip shot is using just your shoulders. So therefore you can only swing as big as your shoulders can take you which is about 1/4 of a swing or less. This is meant to be a small precise swing – so make sure to keep it this way!
2. Club Selection: I would personally only choose 2-3 clubs to provide accurate distance length. More than this can be quite confusing. My suggestion is:
- Sand Wedge: Short shots with the littlest amount of roll
- Pitching Wedge: Medium Shots that will provide more roll
- Longer Iron such as a 9 or 8 iron: Long shots that will provide a lot of roll
3. Ball Position: Changing ball position can help with getting the ball even closer to the hole when the first two options aren’t quite getting you close enough
- Middle Ball position will give you loft and roll
- Back Ball Position will give you less loft and more roll
- This ball position is basically what we know as a Bump and Run Shot
**Check out my previous blog about Back Ball position for more information
After you have understood how all three of these things. It is time to go to the practice green and try it all out. My suggestion on practicing is grabbing 3-5 golf balls and pick one flag on the green as your target. Take the first ball and go with your first instinct. What club, what length of swing, and what ball position – then execute the shot. Take a minute after you hit the ball and check it out. Where did it go? What can you fix: stroke, distance, direction. Then take the second ball, change something and see if it worked. Grab the third ball etc. After about 5 balls, you should have a good idea on what worked and what didn’t. Go pick them up and go to another spot or another hole. What we are trying to accomplish is working on your first instinct and choosing the proper tools first to get it right next to the hole to walk away with a one putt! Practice Practice Practice!
The dates are out for my Women’s Fall Mini Golf Escapes. Mini Golf Escapes are a great way to spruce up your game, meet other amazing women who love the game of golf, and enjoy a great relaxing weekend at Kiawah!
September 13 & 14
October 18 & 19
Each day encompasses not only instruction on the range but also on course instruction as well! The maximum number of students in each Escape is 12 woman with a 4:1 student to teacher ratio. This lets us really excel and personalize instruction to each student!
9am-11:45am: Driving Range Instruction
* 1st Day – Focus on Chipping, Pitching, and Bunker
* 2nd Day – Focus on Full Swing, Full Swing Video, & Putting
1pm: 9 hole playing lesson with instructor (you may continue playing the back 9 if you like)
Please email me or call the Tommy Cuthbert Golf Learning Center (843-266-4030) for more information or if you have any questions. Hope to see you all this fall!
Distance is one of the most important parts of putting. It is actually more important than having proper direction. If the ball isn’t coming close to the hole…your direction is going to help that much. Therefore practicing your distance can be extremely important.
Here is a great drill to practice. Walk off 3ft, 6ft, 9ft, 12ft, and 15ft. You can place tees in the ground to mark these distances (see pic above). Now practice putting each distance. Concentrate on how far your putter is going back at each distance. Use your feet as a reference point. Most of the time for myself around 15ft I am taking my putter toe to toe. Therefore when I get on the golf course I have a reference on how big my stroke should be according to the distance away from the hole. Practice and then as a challenge you can play this game to see if you have improved. The game would be two putting from every putt. If you miss one, you have to start all over again: closest to longest. This way you get to practice the short putts even more! Also, you can change the distances of the tee such as every 6ft!
**Greens differ with different courses so make sure you are practicing this drill on the green you are playing or at least changing your distances if the greens are faster or slower
Making solid contact at impact is so amazing for golfers. I think that is what the true addiction for a golfer is! But this concept is very hard to us. First, you can always practice chipping or putting. This swing can be easier because it is less moving parts and we are not working on so much power. But as we move to a bigger, fuller swing things can be come erratic. Here is a way to practice and understand how your clubface is coming through contact.
Take a tennis racquet or a badminton racquet (we put an extender on it to make it feel like a full length golf club), practice swinging and concentrate on how the head of the racquet is coming through at contact. At first it might move around like crazy, but with a couple practice swings and concentration you should start to feel those good muscles such as shoulders and hips moving the club face through a lot straighter.
What is a chip shot: this is a shot that has a small hop and runs! This means
Why do we use a chip shot: for a shot that is
- needs little loft
How is it done: only use your SHOULDERS. It is a pendulum of your left arm moving back and forth in a straight line! This means
- Clubface moves back and forth straight
- Left arm stays Straight
- No transfer of weight is needed because we do not need the distance
Happy New Year! Along with the new year comes people making resolutions for 2019. Maybe even a resolution to improve your golf game by practicing more! That’s great! But we have to remember good practice is not about how many hours you put in on the range, or how many golf balls you hit, or even playing 5 days a week on the golf course. These things are great and might make you feel better, but this is not the way to gaurantee improving your golf game.
Here are a couple tips to improve your practice.
1. Only take two or three clubs to the driving range. Don’t get stuck hitting the same favorite clubs all the time. Rotate them every time you go.
2. Don’t keep track of how long you have been at the range. Pick a goal: how many up and downs till you can leave, how many fairways you can hit with your driver out of 5 balls, hit the green 3 consecutive times with your 7 iron.
3. If you practice 30 minutes on the driving range, go to the practice green and spend the same amount of time.
4. ALWAYS HAVE A TARGET ON THE DRIVING RANGE. It doesn’t always have to be a green with a flag, but maybe a hill, a hole, hit in between two trees, or pretend the green is a pond and you have to hit over the pond. Be creative, try to make it like the course with boundaries and obstacles!
5. 10 minutes is better than nothing. Grab a wedge and putter. Try to make 3 up and downs from 3 different places and leave. Next time just take a 7 iron and work on controlling your distance at a target. Sometimes one small goal will improve your game more than trying to do 5 goals all in one session.
These are just a couple good pointers. Let me know if they help!