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Which instructor?

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Hi, I'm new to the forum and this is my first post. I'm looking for an instructor to start a long term coaching relationship with. I haven't had a handicap in probably ten years or so, but when I did it it stayed at 1 or under with most of my play on the same 3 or 4 courses. I don't play as much now as I did then and I don't score as well consistently, but I'm currently hitting the ball as good or better than I've ever hit it. I'd really like to get my game in shape over the next couple of years to be competitive in state level tournaments or better. I've been exposed to a lot of instruction due to an addiction to golf books, DVDs, training aids, etc. and at one time I studied TGM heavily. I'm mostly self taught with a lesson or two here and there with local pros, but I have attended one of Lynn Blake's first schools and a school with Geoff Mangum. I've recently become interested in MORAD and S&T; via forums, YouTube, and the S&T; book. I've grasped the concepts easily and I've had some great range sessions working on left side tilt and an inward hand path. I'd really like to pursue this path, but there are no instructors near me that I know of. Through Internet searches I came across John Dochety who is about 4.5 hours from me, Nick Clearwater who is about 6 hours from me, and Golf Evolution (awesome looking indoor studio setup) which is about 6.5 hours from me. I'd like to make trips once every month or two to one of these places and set up a 4-6 hour block of time to work on my game. I know Golf Evolution has a connection to this forum in some way so most should be familiar with them, but I'd like to hear from someone who knows or has had some exposure to a couple or all three. I'm really trying to make the best decision because I plan on dedicating a lot of time, money, and effort into this. Obviously John Dochety is the most attractive choice just due to easier travel, but that is not the only factor I want to consider. Any input, advice, or suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks.
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In general I'll recuse myself, except to say a few things.

  • John Dochety is good. We've talked with him at length several times, he knows his stuff, and he's a good guy too with lots of great stories.
  • We've had a lot of students make fairly long trips to see us, for a day or two or even a week, and that is often tremendously successful and relatively inexpensive.
  • We have our irons in lots of fires, and that's not to say we're "jack of all trades, master of none" but we can teach you short game, full swing, putting, and even the stuff in Lowest Score Wins , using everything from SAM PuttLab, SwingCatalyst, FlightScope (X2, Xi, Xi+), high-speed cameras, BodiTrak, AimPoint, and more (Edel fitting systems). Since we're indoors (we can go outside of course to a few nearby courses) and balls are "free" you're also given a lot of time to practice, both putting, short game, and full swing, and you can often stay right across the street if you're staying over (recommended after more than a 4-hour drive).

I'm not really into trying to hard to "sell" myself or Golf Evolution as a whole, so that's about all I feel comfortable saying. If you have any direct questions, I'll answer them, but there are a few people here who can speak to whether it's "worth the trip" or not, and I'll let them answer that themselves.

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Hi, I'm new to the forum and this is my first post. I'm looking for an instructor to start a long term coaching relationship with. I haven't had a handicap in probably ten years or so, but when I did it it stayed at 1 or under with most of my play on the same 3 or 4 courses. I don't play as much now as I did then and I don't score as well consistently, but I'm currently hitting the ball as good or better than I've ever hit it. I'd really like to get my game in shape over the next couple of years to be competitive in state level tournaments or better.

I've been exposed to a lot of instruction due to an addiction to golf books, DVDs, training aids, etc. and at one time I studied TGM heavily. I'm mostly self taught with a lesson or two here and there with local pros, but I have attended one of Lynn Blake's first schools and a school with Geoff Mangum.

I've recently become interested in MORAD and S&T; via forums, YouTube, and the S&T; book. I've grasped the concepts easily and I've had some great range sessions working on left side tilt and an inward hand path. I'd really like to pursue this path, but there are no instructors near me that I know of. Through Internet searches I came across John Dochety who is about 4.5 hours from me, Nick Clearwater who is about 6 hours from me, and Golf Evolution (awesome looking indoor studio setup) which is about 6.5 hours from me. I'd like to make trips once every month or two to one of these places and set up a 4-6 hour block of time to work on my game. I know Golf Evolution has a connection to this forum in some way so most should be familiar with them, but I'd like to hear from someone who knows or has had some exposure to a couple or all three. I'm really trying to make the best decision because I plan on dedicating a lot of time, money, and effort into this. Obviously John Dochety is the most attractive choice just due to easier travel, but that is not the only factor I want to consider. Any input, advice, or suggestions will be appreciated. Thanks.

I think if you are looking for highest level of verifiable correct knowledge I have seen coupled with the ability to communicate effectively what you need to change and make it happen, well Dave and Erik at Golf Evolution are your guys.  Personally I have, will continue to drive 8.5 hours to go see them and work with them.  Maybe I am a bit biased as part of this site, but the changes in my swing are not biased at all.  That is all I will say.  The other guys I am sure are solid, I just don't know much about them.

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I've made the trip from Chicago (8 hours) out to the golf evolution 4 times now (plus Dave came to Chicago once to do a 5sk school we put together). I'd highly recommend it. They have helped me develop a great short game (pitching and putting) as well as improve my ball striking. My first trip out there was 3 years ago and I was a 20 handicap then. As of June 1st I am down to 4.7!

Between their Aimpoint/Edel (putting), pitching, 5sk (full swing), and lowest score wins (strategy), they are the only instructors I know of teaching every aspect of the golf game.

I've heard good things about John Dochety. Also I know Nick Clearwater and he's a great instructor for the full swing.

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Dunno about the first two, but I've made a couple of day trips to Erie from NY and did full swing and short game work and it's definitely worth it, Dave and Erik know their stuff and will take care of you. And I would implicitly trust any referrals given by them.

If it were me and I was going to dedicate fully to something, I'd try all three if possible. Nothing like kicking the tires for real.

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