Posts Tagged ‘Golf’

Putting Drill — The Little Hole

September 11, 2008

I went to the driving range today and the wind was just howling.  To make matters worse it was coming directly into the range so every ball I hit had to battle straight into the wind.  Not good for the ol’ self esteem.  The ball even blew way off course on the putting green.  I did find one simple putting drill that seemed to redeem my visit.  The putting green has a little hole just bigger than the golf ball with a sign for the “little hole drill” just like this one.  Basically, you start at one foot away and don’t progress to two feet until you’ve made two putts in a row, and so on.  I got stuck at four feet for quite a while.  This drill really increased my focus and it felt like I honed in on where to aim in a way I hadn’t managed to do with the regular-sized holes.  The regular holes seemed like huge targets when I moved back to them.  This is such a simple drill, but I think it could have a big impact if done consistently.

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Gone Fishin’

August 12, 2008

Well, after a week in the Adirondacks, we have yet to play golf. It’s been raining just about every day and when it stops, we hop in the boat and go fishing. We’ve had some pretty good outings including my husband bringing home an 8-lb., 35” Northern Pike. Today we caught six bass (largemouth and smallmouth) and three nice pike. If this keeps up, I’m not sure if we’re going to make it off the lake to the golf course.

Blister Buster

August 4, 2008

In spite of my best efforts to fix my grip, my thumb blister keeps reappearing.  This gets to be pretty annoying and painful out on the course.  My golf coach let me try the “miracle product” he found and it’s been the best thing I’ve tried for dealing with this.  It’s 3M Nexcare Absolute Waterproof Foam Tape.  The tape stayed on for 18 holes in the heat and was totally comfortable over the blister.  It adheres to itself and forms a good protective layer, but stays flexible, so it’s great for finger issues.  I love this stuff.

“Regression Analysis” — Putting

July 26, 2008

Have you ever had the feeling that you’ve suddenly gotten worse at something you could do decently at one point? My putting has totally fallen apart. What used to be a somewhat smooth stroke has become a choppy, stop-start motion and I can’t seem to aim anymore. On the last hole of 9 this morning, I found a clue about what the problem is when I accidentally touched my ball on my practice swing.  (Yikes.)  It seems I’ve been setting up too close to the ball. This has been crowding my arms and not allowing for that pendulum-like motion I was trying for.  I’ll have to get out on the course tomorrow to see if my initial assessment proves correct.  And a putting lesson might help.

About That Thumb Blister…

July 26, 2008

Very, very bad says my instructor. I should not have a blister on my right thumbprint area if my grip is where it should be. I’m not sure why I started putting my thumb flush against the grip of the club – I think because it seemed to add stability to my wrists. I felt like I was hitting the ball more solidly, but I also had a death grip on the club, hence the blister. So now I know… just a small part of the edge of the right thumb should be touching the grip. I have adjusted my grip accordingly and the results haven’t been half bad.

Four Buckets is Too Many

July 24, 2008

Today I attempted to try figure out my range with the various clubs in my bag. An hour and a half and 3.5 large buckets of balls later, I learned that less can be more when you’re trying to accomplish a goal on the driving range.

“Range” as I defined it was how far I hit the ball making good contact with somewhat decent form – not swinging like the Incredible Hulk or counting the several horrible shots that didn’t really go anywhere. All the while I tried to stay focused on controlling my backswing and keeping my left arm straight. I started through my irons and used about half a bucket each on my pitching and sand wedges, aiming for the flag on the driving range 106 yards out. I used my iPhone to make a note of what I was seeing…

SW — 75 yards
PW — 105 yards

I picked up the pace on my second bucket and made it through my 8- and 9-irons and 7-hybrid. The results were more frustrating than satisfying because I can’t seem to get close to any kind of consistency as far as where the ball goes. I found that when I relaxed and stopped gripping the club so hard, my shots often improved. I took some more notes….

9-Iron — 110 yards
8-Iron — 105 yards
7-Hybrid — 120 yards

At this point, my body was starting to feel a little tired and my hands were a little sore. But I still wanted to get through the rest of my clubs, so I took a quick break to buy two more large buckets of balls. When I started into the fourth bucket of balls with my 5-wood, I began to question how much progress I was really making – I couldn’t seem to hit the ball any farther with my 5 than with my 7…

6-Hybrid 145
7-Wood 150-155
5-Wood 150-155

By now I had developed a large blister on the pad of my right thumb and it was making squishing noises with each swing. But I was so close to finishing… stubbornness prevailed and I asked the nice guys at the pro shop for some Band-Aids so I could get through my 3-wood and driver.

Looking back, the sun must have gotten to me – I have no idea why this seemed like a good idea. I flailed my way through have a bucket with the 3-wood and the situation degenerated beyond repair. I was hitting all grounders, trying not to touch any of my blisters, now numbering three. If you’ve seen the episode of The Office when Andy flayed his hands raw practicing for a round with a big customer, you’re starting to get the picture. (See the whole episode here – it’s really funny. http://www.hulu.com/watch/19502/the-office-job-fair)

A couple guys had started hitting balls next to me in the last five minutes or so. I gave them the remainder of the balls and was about to stagger home to nurse my wounds, but I hear a “Wait. Can offer you just one tip, just one?” I know the guy was trying to be nice, but I was already well aware that those last few swings were horrendous and not much he could have said would have made a difference. “You need to keep your wrists straight – that’s why you have blisters.” I just said thanks and trudged towards home… the wrists and the blisters were both products of the rookie mistake of staying way past any window of productivity. Lesson learned – golf takes patience and the investment of practice over time. Hopefully these blisters won’t take long to heal.