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I need advice for mini tour golf

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
I need your thoughts.

My golf game has really developed as of late. I know that I have a good game inside me. I have shot several rounds in the low 70's. My lowest round is 70 at my home course. I have shot a couple 9 hole rounds under par as well.

but.... last weekend, while I was playing with the "Sunday crowd" at my home course, I shot an 85. Just could not get it together. Why do I have these days?

I really want to start being competitive in some mini tour tournaments, and who knows from there. My dream is to make the NationWie, and be good enough to actually try Q school. Actually, I hit balls everyday. I mean everyday after work, I am practicing. I am 34. Is it too late for me to expect to be competitive in tournament golf? Why do I have rounds at 70, and rounds at 85? What should I do to improve this situation?

I need some constructive critisim / guidance.
Thanks,
Cole
post #2 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

It's never too late.
And you have those rounds because your playing golf. It just happens that way. All I could say would be to not put TOO much pressure on your game, and keep on practicing smartly.
post #3 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Cole View Post
I need your thoughts.

My golf game has really developed as of late. I know that I have a good game inside me. I have shot several rounds in the low 70's. My lowest round is 70 at my home course. I have shot a couple 9 hole rounds under par as well.

but.... last weekend, while I was playing with the "Sunday crowd" at my home course, I shot an 85. Just could not get it together. Why do I have these days?

I really want to start being competitive in some mini tour tournaments, and who knows from there. My dream is to make the NationWie, and be good enough to actually try Q school. Actually, I hit balls everyday. I mean everyday after work, I am practicing. I am 34. Is it too late for me to expect to be competitive in tournament golf? Why do I have rounds at 70, and rounds at 85? What should I do to improve this situation?

I need some constructive critisim / guidance.
Thanks,
Cole
Because you are a 9. They have rounds between 65 and 75, huge difference.

Make a commitment, right now, that you are going to find a Nationwide event, and attend it. Spend some time near the practice range, practice green and on the course. Watch the guys hit balls, listen to the sounds being made by the balls, watch the putting.

I think you will (1) enjoy the experience and (2) get a feel in probably just a few hours for whether you really have the potential to have the game most of those guys have.
post #4 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Cole View Post
I need your thoughts.

My golf game has really developed as of late. I know that I have a good game inside me. I have shot several rounds in the low 70's. My lowest round is 70 at my home course. I have shot a couple 9 hole rounds under par as well.

but.... last weekend, while I was playing with the "Sunday crowd" at my home course, I shot an 85. Just could not get it together. Why do I have these days?

I really want to start being competitive in some mini tour tournaments, and who knows from there. My dream is to make the NationWie, and be good enough to actually try Q school. Actually, I hit balls everyday. I mean everyday after work, I am practicing. I am 34. Is it too late for me to expect to be competitive in tournament golf? Why do I have rounds at 70, and rounds at 85? What should I do to improve this situation?

I need some constructive critisim / guidance.
Thanks,
Cole
Because you are a 9. They have spreads between 65 and 75, huge difference. I got to watch a young guy practice and play last summer who has made it through 1st stage twice of Q school, still isn't on the Nationwide, but plays mini tour events. You can't believe the difference between him and a "scratch" golfer, and he's trying to improve to the next level.

Make a commitment, right now, that you are going to find a Nationwide event, and attend it. Spend some time near the practice range, practice green and on the course. Watch the guys hit balls, listen to the sounds being made by the balls, watch the putting.

I think you will (1) enjoy the experience and (2) get a feel in probably just a few hours for whether you really have the potential to have the game most of those guys have. You really need to see first hand what that kind of game is.
post #5 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

While I can't shoot in the 70's like you. I have the same ups and down. In fact, you sound a lot like me as I posted before.

I get so frustrated and know I can shoot low scores (for me anyway) but can't understand why I can't always put it together. Maybe some of the responses I got, will help you. They helped me understand that 1. with my handicap I should expect these ups and downs and 2. I am not alone in my frustrations with this game I love so much
post #6 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

I think its' great youre shooting rounds in the 70's, but at 34 and being a 9 handicap I would think it would be tough to think the nationwide tour is in your future. The reason I say that is because tournament golf and especially Nation Wide is leeps and HUGE bounds from playing at your local course.



Here's why:

Length of course
Pin placement
How high they keep the rough

and the most important one...

The pressure of playing REAL tournament golf.
post #7 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Sorry for doubling up, thought I had edited, but showed up twice.

No one can see your game. Go watch the pros you think you should be playing with play! You'll know your answer.
post #8 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Cole View Post
I need your thoughts.

My golf game has really developed as of late. I know that I have a good game inside me. I have shot several rounds in the low 70's. My lowest round is 70 at my home course. I have shot a couple 9 hole rounds under par as well.

but.... last weekend, while I was playing with the "Sunday crowd" at my home course, I shot an 85. Just could not get it together. Why do I have these days?

I really want to start being competitive in some mini tour tournaments, and who knows from there. My dream is to make the NationWie, and be good enough to actually try Q school. Actually, I hit balls everyday. I mean everyday after work, I am practicing. I am 34. Is it too late for me to expect to be competitive in tournament golf? Why do I have rounds at 70, and rounds at 85? What should I do to improve this situation?

I need some constructive critisim / guidance.
Thanks,
Cole
Well, with golf it's not so much about talent. It's about determination.

It's an all or nothing thing.

If you are really serious about making a living at playing golf you have to quit your job and practice at least 10 hours everyday for a couple years to have a realistic chance. Me for example I want to make it on the European Tour. I've started practicing 17 hours every single day.

99.9999% of golfers don't have the determination to do that. There are soooo many talented players out there that will never make it because they don't have the work ethic.

There are thousands of players out there that can shoot in the 60's. The key is to do it consistently four days in a row with an incredible amount of pressure.
post #9 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Cole,

How good of a player do you think my hero, and your new hero, Mike Goodes was at age 34? I don't know. But I bet he was dreaming of making it as a professional golfer and last week he beat a field containing tons of PGA Tour winners, major winners, and even a former world #1, to collect his first winner's check in his second year as a professional.

Several others said dedication and determination. We'll encourage you, but you have to practice and you have to practice smart.
post #10 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Cole View Post
I need your thoughts.

My golf game has really developed as of late. I know that I have a good game inside me. I have shot several rounds in the low 70's. My lowest round is 70 at my home course. I have shot a couple 9 hole rounds under par as well.

but.... last weekend, while I was playing with the "Sunday crowd" at my home course, I shot an 85. Just could not get it together. Why do I have these days?

I really want to start being competitive in some mini tour tournaments, and who knows from there. My dream is to make the NationWie, and be good enough to actually try Q school. Actually, I hit balls everyday. I mean everyday after work, I am practicing. I am 34. Is it too late for me to expect to be competitive in tournament golf? Why do I have rounds at 70, and rounds at 85? What should I do to improve this situation?

I need some constructive critisim / guidance.
Thanks,
Cole
First you need to sit down and figure out why your score was that bad. Was it driver irons, short game, putting? The older i get the more I sit down and realize where my scoring goes wrong, and the less of a gap I have between my good rounds and bad rounds. Know your tendancies!!! If your slicing your driver, don't hit it on holes with trouble on the right. If it's your putting is off that day, take a little extra time with your short game shots and concentrate on getting it closer to the hole. Whatever your problem is that day be honest with yourself and think your way around the course. You would be amazed how many strokes you can shave by using your head on those bad days. Jack Nicholas once said he has played some good golf with some bad swings, but he always knows what swing he has on that particular day and uses his head to get around the course with it.
post #11 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Cole View Post
I need your thoughts.

My golf game has really developed as of late. I know that I have a good game inside me. I have shot several rounds in the low 70's. My lowest round is 70 at my home course. I have shot a couple 9 hole rounds under par as well.

but.... last weekend, while I was playing with the "Sunday crowd" at my home course, I shot an 85. Just could not get it together. Why do I have these days?

I really want to start being competitive in some mini tour tournaments, and who knows from there. My dream is to make the NationWie, and be good enough to actually try Q school. Actually, I hit balls everyday. I mean everyday after work, I am practicing. I am 34. Is it too late for me to expect to be competitive in tournament golf? Why do I have rounds at 70, and rounds at 85? What should I do to improve this situation?

I need some constructive critisim / guidance.
Thanks,
Cole

Cole,

Well, you know what they say......."every party needs a pooper"......so I'll step up to the plate here.

I read your post and also looked through some of your older posts just to get a better feel for your experience and skill level. One post in particular that stood out was back in October......only 5 months ago, when you shot 90 but were clearly proud of the 41 on the back 9. I understand that your game is improving, and that's great, but the level to which the pros play, even on the mini-tours is so far ahead of that that it's hard for us normal schlubs to even comprehend it. As a point of reference, a buddy of mine plays off of a +1, he beats me like a drum, and regularly gets his ass handed to him on the mini tours. When you start talking "Nationwide Tour", you're talking about players with decent world rankings!

Is it too late to play tournament golf? Hell no......there are a lot of amateur tours out there where you can have a ball and tee it up in a competitive atmosphere. Once you start regularly winning the open division of those tournaments. Once you expect to break par playing from the tips, then it might be time to consider moving to the next level. But until you're at that point you're just going to be throwing money away, frustrating yourself, and not enjoying the game that you obviously love.....and that would be a shame.

Of course, all the forgoing is simply one man's opinion, which may very well be worth exactly what you paid for it!

Good luck and above all else, have fun!

D.
post #12 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Shindig View Post
Cole,

How good of a player do you think my hero, and your new hero, Mike Goodes was at age 34? I don't know. But I bet he was dreaming of making it as a professional golfer and last week he beat a field containing tons of PGA Tour winners, major winners, and even a former world #1, to collect his first winner's check in his second year as a professional.
Mike Goodes is a pretty wealthy guy. He owns a packing company and is a partner in a plastc recycling business.

What I'm saying is - to pursue his passion he was able to practice/play golf for atleast 8 hours (usually more) every day of his life. A packing company doesn't require so much 'hands on' by the owner after it's established, it probably functions just fine with him absent - giving him time to play all day - but still make money at his 'job'.

I think if you have a great passion for golf, incomparable work ethic, AND have the available means to play 8+ hours of golf everyday, YES it's possible.
post #13 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by David in FL View Post
Cole,

Well, you know what they say......."every party needs a pooper"......so I'll step up to the plate here.

I read your post and also looked through some of your older posts just to get a better feel for your experience and skill level. One post in particular that stood out was back in October......only 5 months ago, when you shot 90 but were clearly proud of the 41 on the back 9. I understand that your game is improving, and that's great, but the level to which the pros play, even on the mini-tours is so far ahead of that that it's hard for us normal schlubs to even comprehend it. As a point of reference, a buddy of mine plays off of a +1, he beats me like a drum, and regularly gets his ass handed to him on the mini tours. When you start talking "Nationwide Tour", you're talking about players with decent world rankings!

Is it too late to play tournament golf? Hell no......there are a lot of amateur tours out there where you can have a ball and tee it up in a competitive atmosphere. Once you start regularly winning the open division of those tournaments. Once you expect to break par playing from the tips, then it might be time to consider moving to the next level. But until you're at that point you're just going to be throwing money away, frustrating yourself, and not enjoying the game that you obviously love.....and that would be a shame.

Of course, all the forgoing is simply one man's opinion, which may very well be worth exactly what you paid for it!

Good luck and above all else, have fun!

D.
Good post, David - thanks for that.
post #14 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

Originally Posted by Jay-Bird View Post
Mike Goodes is a pretty wealthy guy. He owns a packing company and is a partner in a plastc recycling business.
I didn't know his background; thanks for the information.

So, I guess own a business that doesn't require much hands-on work... that should help.
post #15 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

I can't remember where I saw it before. It may have been a comment here or in a magazine. Someone posed the same type of question and as best as I can recollect here is the summary of a good answer on the progression of a great golfer. Wish I could give credit for the comments, but I forget where I saw them.

Because of your age I will skip the junior stuff.
Win your club championship.
Win a city/local championship.
Compete in a state amateur.
Be successful in a state amatuer.
Compete in a national amateur.
Qualify for any professional tournament.
Be successful in a professional tournament.

Do you beat the best players at your course? Have you won the club championship? I ask not because I doubt you can do it, but I don't think anyone can compete at the pro level unless you can learn how to win and more than anything, you have to be able to go low at any course under any conditions. Just shooting 70 at your home course won't cut it. The guys who can't make a living on the Nationwide Tour still average between 71-72 at difficult courses.

Anyone can get better with practice. How much better would be up to you. If you really want to know where you stand, go to a course that you haven't played much, play from the tips, and see what you shoot. Anyone can go low at their regular course. I could go to my home course where I grew up and give you the break for any putt on any green--from the fairway.

If you really want to do it, practice hard and don't expect results overnight, it would probalby take 5+ years to get where you want to be. Set some performance goals for the coming summer. Things like scoring avg, GIR %, tournament entries and wins, etc., and see how many of them you can hit.
post #16 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

I have played some mini-tour events and many amateur events both at the state and national level, and I know many mini tour players and heard all kinds of stories. I can tell you one thing - Bring your game!

As another person mentioned, there are thousands of good players out there. I moved to Florida in 97 to join the fray, and being good back home was nothing compared to being good down here. Every scratch golfer with a few bucks and a dream is trying it. I know a young guy who once won 4 times on the Canadian tour, made it to the PGA, lost his card and now he's not even playing. That was all in a span of 4 years.

So what separates the guys that sleep in their cars and the guys that make a decent living as a pro? Consistency. If you can shoot in the 60s every now and then at your home course that's great, but stay home. Pick up a copy of Golfweek and look at the mini-tour leader boards. After you factor in the travel costs, tournament entries, caddy costs (if applicable) etc. you had better be shooting 4 rounds in the 60s from the tips on a course you don't know in tournament conditions to have a chance of breaking even for the week. If you start missing cuts you are going to run out of $$$ pretty quick.

If you have the desire to play as a professional it takes 3 things to get started: Desire, discipline and money! Here's a quick getting started guide.

1. Get a sponsor(s)! You need money to play pro golf. Period. Figure on having 1 or 2 years living expenses in the bank before you get started. You'll need money to travel, eat, sleep, enter tournaments, hire caddies and other misc expenses. If you can get a sponsor to the tune of $100,000, you are on your way. Look, playing golf for a living is like starting your own business. You need investors and/or start up capital, and it's always a big risk.

2. Get a game! You need to practice. Now that you have some cash in the bank, hire a good teaching pro and hit balls until your hands feel numb. When your hands are about to fall off, start chipping and putting. As a pro you are only as good as your short game. If you can't chip and putt you'll last 10 minutes. At best the pros miss 5 or 6 greens per round. If you don't get up and down 5 or 6 times you are going to miss cuts.

3. Get out there! Move to a warm climate - Arizona, Southern Cal, Texas or Florida for example, and start playing. There are dozens of pro tours around these states and others. Start at the bottom with some small field one day tourneys and if you have some success, start working your way into multi-day events with bigger purses. The more money is on the line, the bigger the field will be and the bigger the entry fee is.

4. Get balance! You can't be all about golf, 24/7/365. You will burn out. Those who preach practicing every day for 12-15 hours are foolish. Quality of practice is much more important than quantity of practice. When preparing for tournaments, take at least one day off per week, and when playing tournaments, try not to play more than 3 or 4 weeks in a row. You need a break, your body needs a break. You can thank me later

If you are struggling, take a week off, then see #2, or you will be back to #1 before no time. It's not easy. In fact it's a lot like work! If it was easy, everybody would do it. Many, many try, but only a very few succeed. Good luck! Maybe I'll see you out there.
post #17 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

I think jorruss has given you some really solid advice. I attended a mini-tour event (the Hooters Tour) once at a local course that I consider a pretty hard course. 6706yds rated 71.9 138 slope from the tips. The course was set up specially for the tournament with more rough and the bent grass greens running as fast as possible. The winner was 22 under for the event. So he shot about 66 every day. I was impressed by the quality of play.

The pros obviously have their game at a level that is hard for most amatures like us to comprehend, but obviously it can be done. Pursuing one's dream is an important part of life and you certainly should follow through on this, but do so realistically.
post #18 of 33

Re: I need advice for mini tour golf

I think most good amateur golfers have asked this very question at least once in their life. I have read through all the posts here and I would agree that there is a ton of great advice here. I think the best advice is that if you really want to see how good you are...set some realistic goals and go after it. Work your way through the amateur ranks and see what you can accomplish.
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