The Goofy Game of Golf Searching for the Answer

The blog is back after about 3 weeks and today we are going to take the wrists from the top of the swing to impact. I did not try to get into gray areas when it came to the position at the top. I judged the player to be open, square or closed. I would not argue that some players that I called open or closed, somebody else may say they were square. The two extreme positions of open and closed at the top are club face pointing to the sky when closed and the toe pointing to ground when extremely opened.  The model golfer swing is square throughout and that is what I used for a comparison.

Of the 61 swings I looked at, there were 31 that were square, 15 that were open, and 15 that were closed at the top of the swing. If the players maintained that position all the way through impact then the players that were open and closed would wind up hitting big right to right slices or big pull hooks. Obviously this is not what pros do. There is manipulation of the club head to produce a good shot. The players that are closed at the top have to rotate the toe of the club in a clockwise direction to begin to square the club head. The opposite is true of the open at top. They need to rotate the club head in a counter clockwise direction in order to square the club head. You can open the club more  than you can close the club at the top of the swing, so there can be even more manipulation club head from the open position. These are the elements of what the wrists are doing during the golf swings of professional golfers. I will go into specific examples in future blogs. I haven’t drawn any conclusions because I haven’t been able to take much of this to the golf course, because of the holidays and I have been felled by a mild cold. Even though the weather has not been too bad, when you get to my age you don’t take any chances with the weather, when you are feeling a little under the weather.

Speaking of the holidays, which were great, I must relate two stories. First I was in San Diego for one week, from Dec. 22 to the 29. With the exception of one day, it was warmer in Pittsburgh, than in San Diego.  That may never happen again.  My grand kids got the X box for Christmas. One of games they got was the PGA tour one with Rory on the front. That’s the answer to golf, just put the game on the easy mode and you will be shooting in the 50’s for 18 holes  every time. My 6 year old grand son hit ball extremely well. The game can be set up for a Tour event. Here is what he liked to do. Even though he could hit the ball well, his favorite thing to do was to hit the ball on purpose into the crowd. On the game this would send people ducking and the ball would hit people in various places. He would get the biggest kick out of this and just laugh and laugh. A new perspective in golf. In future blogs I will be looking at some individuals players and try to make sense out of those very interesting wrists.

The Goofy Game of Golf Searching for the Answer

Only got in one round this week, as the weather turned colder after Thanksgiving. Wednesday was a nice day in the 50’s, and for the fifth straight time I played Scenic Valley, and for the fifth straight time did not break 80 as the putter was bulky for an 83. The only good thing about this scoring stretch, is we are past the time we are supposed to post scores so I don’t have to look at these scores for the next fifteen rounds.  I thought I would have a little fun with this blog and go through the 10 worst experiences we have had on this 86 golf course trek so far. With fourteen courses to go I thought it would be unfair to rank the best 10 experiences because there might be better ones in future days. Hopefully, there won’t be any worse than these 10. Even some of these weren’t too bad because you can’t have a really bad day on the course. Some of these near the bottom came close. Here are the 10 worse experiences over the last 2 years.

10. Blackhawk July 20 2011 Not a bad course but after playing the front nine in 1 hour and 29 minutes they told us we would have to speed up so we wouldn’t hold up the women’s league. They also stopped us twice to tell us which nine to go to. They have 4 nines which they call, are you ready 1,2,3, and 4. This golf course should have a sign in front saying Keep Out.

9. Moon Township. May 12 2011 Just not in very good shape and maybe looked worse because we had played similiar smaller courses that were in very good shape.

8. Westwood.  November 3 2010 The greens were bad the price high no hot dog at the turn and an attitude.

7. Lindenwood September 17 2011. Real pricey, the greens were slow and no service at the snack area even though people were calling anybody back there. Unfriendly starter.

6. Hickory Heights September 15 2011 Not offered senior rate even though on their web site they said they had one. Poor designed course and sullen pro shop staff. Prozac anyone.

5. Strawberry Ridge July 11 2011 Crazy course only in fair shape Take used balls because you are going to lose some.

4. Roseridge July 2 2012. Even though this course made me think of playing in the 60’s the greens were slow not even a 4 on the stimp. Just in bad shape.

3. The Phoenix at Buffalo Valley. September 9 2012. Again just in bad shape and an overpriced hot dog at the turn.

2. Foxwood Acres August 31 2011. No sign, no hot dog, no nothing, terrible condition. Could crabgrass be the new po

1 Kennsington August 12 2010. By far and away the worse experience of the trek. Nine greens were completely burned out, and the fairways weren’t much better. We were not told this and the price was not discounted. No hot dog at the turn, even though we made the turn at 11am. WOW.

I gave the dates if you want to read in more gory details these wonderful experiences I had playing these courses. It looks like the golf will be few and far between now, but you never know. In the next few weeks I will start to discuss the new swing thing I have been doing the past year. See you next week.

The Goofy Game of Golf Searching for the Answer

No new courses were added this week, but a busy week none the less. I played solid if not spectacular golf all week with scores of 77, 77, 73, and 75. My swing is slowly getting back to the feel of mid summer. This week I would like to write about what I feel is the real key to having success with the less than full swing  game and putting. This has nothing to do with technique or a certain method. The key to success in both areas is to make sure that you do not look up to see where the shot is going until you can focus on the spot where the ball use to sit. You do not too be overly conscious of the ball, just the spot after the ball leaves.  In the case of putting you should clearly see the blades of grass that were underneath the ball before you look up to see where the ball is. In the case of the less than full swing you should clearly see the grass that was disturbed by the shot before you look up. In the case of 40 to 80 yard pitch shots you should clearly see the divot before you look up to see where the shot went. Besides seeing a big improvement in the results of your shots you will discover one other amazing thing. Despite not looking up until you focus on the grass where the ball was, you will still see about 75 to 80 per cent of the shot. For example on a putt about 20 feet, you stroke the ball, focus on the grass, then look up and you will still see the ball about 14 to 15 feet from the hole.  On chips and pitches you will notice the same phenomenon. What this means of course, is this really doesn’t take very long. Like a lot things in golf this sounds easier than it really is but if you consciously try this you will see  a great improvement in that area of the game . Like everything else, this is a process and will take some time but if you really do this, the results will come. What’s great about this is you will improve with no change in your technique. I do not recommend for the full swing because it will restrict your swing too much. Try it you’ll like it see you next week.

The Goofy Game of Golf Searching for the Answer

Played course number 84 today as we went to the Phoenix at Buffalo Valley. I had thought that I had never played this course before but when we pulled into the parking lot, I was beginning to recognize some things  and sure enough I had played it once before about 5 or 6 years ago. Another senior moment had occured. I did remember the holes as we played them, but I still don’t remember driving there.  This course is located in Freeport, Pa., about a 60 minute drive. The course played about 6400 yards from the tees we played from and can be stretched to amost 6800 yards and plays to a par of 71. This course is pretty narrow and has a good variey of holes with water and lots of trees. The course is very hilly with some blind tee shots. Unfortunately the course was in just fair shape to say the least. The fairways were really bad and the rough was ok but had many bare spots and weird grass growing in some spots. The greens were slow barely make a 4.75 on the stimp. They putted smooth enough but at times they seemed that they needed rolled because a lot of putts really seemed to wiggle back and forth. The hot dog at the turn was pretty good but overpriced. This course was the 84th course we played and that is pretty close to where it will be ranked at the end of the trek in the bottom 20. Obviously this course is not worth the trip. The group had a so so day as Tony and I shot 79,  and Pete and David had 87 and 88 respectively. On Monday and Wednesday I shot 79 and 81 and did not have a lot of confidence going into the South Park Senior Championship. But some conservative thinking and a white hot putter (25 putts ) helped me stagger in with a one over 73 and a top 6 finish. This is why I call this game goofy. Needless to say I have not fixed what is ailing my game lately. Other than the tournament I have not broken 79 for about 6 or 7 straight rounds. I will be adding some more courses this week and hopefully can start to play better. Eighty four courses down and sixteen to go.

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