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jclark

Bad golf instruction???

14 posts in this topic

First off, is there a difference between a "teaching professional," and a golf pro? I have taken lessons under a golf pro named (name drop) Rick Grayson :) and had good success and have had instruction under other people with no success at all! Some of the instruction I got seemed counter-intuitive. I was wondering if there is different credentials for each. No offense to teaching pros but in my experience they sucked!
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I doesn't matter what his credentials are, if you understand the your swing enough you will be able to dismiss the teachings of who you take lessons from. According to your 13 handicap you should "own" your swing one way or another. So, if a instructor is telling you things that are countering your swing you can let him know. If he insists on working on his theories, i would get another opinion.

I myself had 4 instructors in total, and i come to the conclusion that they didn't do sh*t for my swing (I'm lefty), and because i really go past parallel, not like Daly or Watson, so whenever a instructor saw that they always insisted i stop doing that. I now have a golf coach, he plays rounds with me and helps me score, and position myself on the fairways. He never brings up my swing, or stance, unless its noticeably different than normal. Its what my game needs.  I'm a feel player, swing thoughts inhibit my ability to put the ball in the hole...

Got any friends that are good golfers? if so, ask them some of the same things you would ask a teacher, and see if they can help!

Good luck!

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Rick Grayson at river cut in Springfield mo? If so I would like to pay him a visit.
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There are no credentials unless they use PGA or some association in their title. Anyone can call his or herself a teaching professional or golf pro if they run a course. (Although pro is a bit misleading in some instances) I had a teacher who played well but was horrible at teaching the swing. Nice guy, baaaad teacher. I learned way more watching pros in slowmo and using tst
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Yes h[quote name="castlerockmo" url="/t/64370/bad-golf-instruction#post_801921"]Rick Grayson at river cut in Springfield mo? If so I would like to pay him a visit.[/quote] Yep, that's him
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Thanks guys. Some of the guys I had were trying to train me on their swing as opposed to my own. When I questioned one of them they got irritated. Knowing what I know now, I will approach my next lesson with a little more confidence and purpose, and probably go to a PGA Pro.
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Even still, not all pga pros can teach well (my pga pro knew how to swing but not a whole lot about how it worked) i would try to find some info online if you can about a pro before you take lessons, or try a few out before you start taking regular lessons from one.

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Is Rick any good? I heard he is expensive. I also heard his assistant his just as good and lot cheaper. Any truth to that?
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Is Rick any good? I heard he is expensive. I also heard his assistant his just as good and lot cheaper. Any truth to that?

I can't speak for Ricks pro since I have never used him. Rick is expensive but he is very knowledgeable. I would suggest being fairly fundamentally sound in your swing before you go. My first lesson with him didn't make it past the takeaway. He will only work one thing at a time with you. If it were me I would try his assistant first.

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Originally Posted by jclark

Thanks guys. Some of the guys I had were trying to train me on their swing as opposed to my own. When I questioned one of them they got irritated. Knowing what I know now, I will approach my next lesson with a little more confidence and purpose, and probably go to a PGA Pro.

This is what would bother me. A good instructor should be happy to answer any and all questions that you have. In fact, a good instructor would encourage you to question. It helps you the student to get a better understanding of the information. If he/she got defensive when questioned, that should throw up a red flag that this instructor is either unable or unwilling to explain his/her position to you.

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The Professional Golf Association (PGA) offers certifications in different areas: teaching pro/course manager, larger facilities managers, club repair, college coach, among others.

This thread seems to focus on the teaching pro areas. To become a PGA certified instructor, a person must:

  • Achieve a certain score level on the Playing Ability Test (PAT). The PAT process is quite complicated; see panel on PGA site.
  • Complete a PGA golf management academy, OR, do a PGA apprenticeship. (The apprenticeship includes correspondence study of certain materials covered in class at the academy)

Along with Academy/Apprenticeship completion, the person must gain 36 points of employment activity to become a full member. (You get one point per month of employment in golf; also, a 4-year college degree can get you 12 points). Once certified, the pro must then "stay current" through employment patterns and continuing education. Experience, PAT score and more training helps you move up the certification ranks.

Here's the PGA Education site: http://pgajobfinder.pgalinks.com/helpwanted/empcenter/pgaandyou/universities.cfm

Some people without certification have a knack for teaching, and do a good job of introducing beginners to the game. You'll often find them at smaller public courses. One capable guy at a local golf shop who helped me was a retired HS physics teacher and golf coach. He was popular for combo club-fitting + swing lessons at the shop.

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Thank you WUtiger. Good info!
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In my experience, I found that instructors who teach a method are not always familiar with other patterns. When I began asking questions, they offered a questioning look or a laugh.

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It's almost like they look at you like, "why are you sharpshooting me? Just do what I say because I know more than you!"
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