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post #19 of 188
Thread Starter 

Re: Back into the 6s!

Quick update...only have 2 more lessons to finish out the series so I went today. Hit the ball great and it was pointed out to me that I was turning properly and not dipping (which is my biggest swing fault as it results in a club lift and toey hits). We discussed ball position and worked on alignment. With the driver, I was starting to play it too forward which sets my shoulders up open so I moved it in to set up square. Turning around the spine and using the legs came next and I ended up having to move closer to the clubhouse so that I could hit my driver without blowing it off the back of the range.

The revision came out and I moved to a 6.2, which after the last 5 rounds is slightly overstating my performance. The last round I hit my new driver and was in position only to blow 4 short irons that all resulted in bogey. Needless to say we fixed that today. The last few rounds have been extremely windy and have been 79, 82, 86 (worst of the season), 82, and 83. Anyway, I am preparing for a stroke play tournament in December and I am trying to tune everything up. I have a couple of practice rounds to go and hope to break 80 a few more times to get closer to that elusive 5 index (78 at my home course puts me right there).
post #20 of 188

Re: Back into the 6s!

It sounds like you are well on track with your plan. I haven't swung a club in about 2.5 months, so I am going to have to hit my teacher up soon to get on track for next year.

Good luck in the stroke play event.
post #21 of 188
Thread Starter 

Re: Back into the 6s!

Ok, today I drove it like crap (20% fairways, but some decent misses) hit spectacular irons (67% GIR), putted horribly (34 putts, 2 three putts, 4 one putts), was 40% on up/downs, had one penalty stroke, a topper from the heavy rough, a bladed wedge, and still scraped a 78 which puts me into my goal index of 5 at a 5.9! I have been using Scorecard and by keeping track of the score on my iTouch I really didn't know where I stood on the day as I thought I was looking at 82, so I never really panicked.

Next week is my stroke play event...I really need a lesson on tempo off the tee...I did hit one bomb for 285 cutting off a major dogleg. The new driver is giving me a little extra distance but today I was really slapping it and my 3 wood.
post #22 of 188

Re: Back into the 6s!

Nice one (mostly)!

My own end goal is a solid 5 handicap in the next few years, so it's interesting to hear how you are coming along.
post #23 of 188
Thread Starter 

Re: Back into the 6s!

Thanks...the first thing about today was avoiding the big numbers although I had one double. I got away with another one when I snapped a drive into the water and hit 4 iron from 215 to the front of the green and got u/d to a back shelf pin location for a 5. After that I parred in with one more u/d. I figure at this point in my playing career, if I don't make any doubles then I have real good chance of breaking 80 even with a less than stellar performance. My goal of a solid five is still probably 6 months off, and I know I can get there now. One of the biggest helps with the lessons is learning how to properly chip and pitch. Today I got u/d twice with pw, and once with the sw so I have learned to not always get cute with it. I would have had some more u/d if I didn't short side myself and leave some difficult shots to get close.

The coolest shot was a 135 yard 9 iron that our playing partners were yelling at to hit the flag and then "BAM" it hit it dead on. Luckily, it stopped pretty good and gave me a 5 foot birdie which I made.
post #24 of 188
Thread Starter 

 

Well, I am getting into the 5s now and I am ahead of my goal...today puts me @ 5.6. Since this thread started I had a couple of equipment changes...Octane Tour 9.5 and an Odyssey Two Ball Lined Blade.  The driver is just long, at least 10 yards past the old technology.  I had a couple of 300 + the other day with windy conditions and hard fairways. The bomb I hit in the last post at 285 turned into a real monster at 318!  I have been working on short game, alignment, and just trying to score.  The biggest change in chipping is employing more "Hinge and Hold" to get more action. Here is what I wrote a few minutes ago in a different post:

 

TourSpoon:

I played today and it really makes Iacas's point about ball striking.  Even though my stats look marginal on paper, you have to realize that I hit the ball great especially if you figure that when we started it was 40 degrees and windy (15-20 mph).  Conditions were tough and not conducive to scoring, but I managed to hang around all day.  I only hit 3 fairways (I was close the entire day except for one punch out) and 7 greens and shot 76.  I got up and down 6/10 for par, holed a birdie from the bunker, and made one birdie putt (total 6 bogies and 2 birdies).  What cost me?  A three putt, the punch out, and four missed up and downs.  What saved me?  Hitting it just off the fairway but in decent spots (ie: having a shot to the green), missing most of the greens fractionally, 60% scrambling, 29 putts, 2 birdies, and no doubles.  My playing partners, both of my ability, ended up shooting 82 and 84 mainly because of a couple of doubles, missed up/downs (some were in tough places), a couple of missed putts, and a penalty stroke or two.  

 

 

The wind toward the end was getting brutal.  Into the wind I was hitting 9 iron from 100 yards and 4 iron from 170 (both to the front of the green).  The shot of the day was definitely holing out from the bunker for birdie from 10 yards or so.  My sand saves are at 45% to an average of 9.5 (9/20) feet since October, so I am feeling very confident in the bunkers.  One thing that I am noticing is that I am starting to trust my short game more.  Scrambling is also near 45% with the last two rounds being 60% which takes some stress off my mind.  Using Scorecard is cool because it keeps me from adding up my score during the round and  then allows me to analyze my game after the round.  Right now my number one thing to work on is hitting more fairways because I am only hitting 40% on average and when I do I hit the green 70% of the time.  This has been a journey and I am enjoying it.  

post #25 of 188

I love reading this thread. I was down to a 6.3 this past October and I want to get into the 5's in 2011. My game has been slipping as of late but its been pretty cold and makes hitting balls at the range terrible. As you can tell, this year has been erratic for me so I need to string a few rounds together to get to a 5. Im just ready for some warm weather and lessons with my new pro.

 

handicap11111.JPG

post #26 of 188
Thread Starter 

It looks like you are knocking at the door.  With a little more consistency you will smooth out those peaks and be in the valleys more often!  I am glad you are enjoying the thread.  Thanks. 

post #27 of 188
Thread Starter 

I went to the golf store today as my gift card was burning a hole in my wallet. I was looking for a hybrid, and was checking out the Bobby Jones that was on sale ( and the Adams, TM, and Cally).  But alas, my old Nickent was up to the task of carrying 220-225 fairly straight.  I couldn't find a three wood either.  The 2006 X Tour was more spry than anything else I hit including the Adams, and new Cally putting it out there 230-240.  I went ahead and hit my Octane Tour Driver too, as the numbers on the course have been good.  The last swing was 103 mph, 15 degrees of launch, and spin rate of 2450 and a carry of 259 for a 275 total. That is just sick.  Anyway, I walked out with zip, but at least I have more confidence in what I am hitting.  

post #28 of 188
Thread Starter 

Well, I followed up the 76 with an 85 at my home course...even after starting with a birdie on # 1 and # 5 only to snap one OB on #7 to start the double bogey train.  I just had a hard time committing off the tee.  To compound it I thought it would be a good idea to try to work the ball...ha.  Lots of trouble that day, as I really lost focus on the back. 

 

I am waiting for my new addition, an Adams Pro Gold 18* hybrid.  Got a great deal on it with the Matrix shaft.  That will finish out my equipment changes for this year.  At least that is what I told my wife.  Let's see if I will have to negotiate those terms or not!  Index came out with 5.6 so I know that overall, I have made some serious progress over the last 8 months.  

post #29 of 188
Thread Starter 

I played yesterday afternoon at a brand new course that sits on the edge of the Everglades.  Needless to say, there was no cover from the 25 mph wind that we started off with.  The fairways and greens were rock hard and even the Pro Vs had a hard time sticking.  I only hit one bad shot on the front, by pushing a ball into the environmental scruff that marks the longest par 5 that played directly into the wind.  After that I had no more pushes for the day.   Shot 41-37 which, due to the condition of the greens should have been at least a 2-3 strokes better, but I guess it evens out as a 78 in those conditions was beyond reasonable.  The rest of the group just quit scoring early so I really focused the entire round.  

 

I love the new Adams Pro Gold 18* hybrid.  Yesterday I hit it 6 times off the tee and got 220-250 out of it (rock fairways) and overall hit every fairway but the last one.  This is an improvement as I have really been trying to hit my driver more in play.  The swing key yesterday was to take the club straight back, and feel almost like the butt was pointing at my left thigh so it would be in a good position at the top.  It worked as from there I just felt like I had to swing through down the line.  I hit great drives all day and was able to hit irons into 2 par 5s (that never happens) to set up two really good birdie chances (one worked out).  Putting was marginal with 31 putts, but most people would agree that some of these greens would fall under the two putt rule as they were gnarly.  The 78 (7.0) was a great round especially considering the hurricane we were playing in.  Everything was solid (hit a lot of knock-downs and wind cheaters) and I had a lot of fun.  

post #30 of 188
Thread Starter 

The last 4 rounds have been 76-85-78-83 so I decided to go see my guy for a tune-up since I had the time.  

 

First with putting...on the shorties I need to keep that left wrist solid...I have no problems on the longer putts.  The IDL really has the ball rolling and the line is true.  We went to the full swing and we worked on turning!  Again, I have a slight tendency to tighten up and lift which gets me off plane from the start.  So I loosen up, turn, and start the downswing, and rotate to the finish.  The rotation has been the biggest area of improvement in hitting the ball consistently and can be seen through impact to finish.  I moved the ball back slightly with the woods so my shoulders were more square at address and in no time I was hitting a nice push draw which is not that common for me as my flight is usually straight or straight draw.  Anyway he had me fixed in 10 minutes so we spent some time with the short game.  He is a hinge and hold guy so we practiced that and variations of different situations.  The last round I pitched in from 20 yards so the hinge and hold has me sold, so we then worked on the chip shots and I holed three.  

 

Overall...relax, turn, through the ball and rotate to finish.  I continue to hit 60 putts or more every night with the IDL track and have to try to swing the club more during the week even if it is just in the garage.  The revision came out and I am still a 5.6 and realize that my goal of 5 before the summer is there for me to grab.  Good times!  

post #31 of 188
Thread Starter 

Since my tendency when tight is to dip a little and not turn like I should, I have been working on feeling that turn more.  I saw a tip on the Golf Channel that reminded me to keep the feeling of the clubhead in front of the chest during the swing (the club in the belly button drill).  Well, it worked.  I hit 80% of the fairways today.  I have also been working on the chipping and hit two beautiful little 54* 20 yard skippers that just spun dead at the hole.  I ended up with two doubles on the back and missed so many birdie putts.  It seemed like on every important putt that I was on the wrong side of the hole. I finally made a 15 footer on 18 for birdie to post 80 with 31 putts.  Overall, I hit some great shots, but found it hard to judge distance because of the cold (45 at tee off) and the wind which was a steady 15.  I was very pleased with my tee shots as all but one were solid.  

post #32 of 188
Thread Starter 

I have been using the Pro V1 almost exclusively during the winter.  I am getting spoiled but found an outlet that resells them mint for 19 a dozen.  Luckily, I kept the same one all day and it held up really well.  There is no short game substitute.  

post #33 of 188
Thread Starter 

I played twice this weekend...that's rare!

 

The first round was a driving display as I hit just over 60% of the fairways with nothing that got me into trouble.  I have been working the turn and it has been paying off. I had a tough time with the irons and putting today.  The greens were slick and the pins were set up in some places I had never seen before.  On one hole I played away from the sucker pin to the middle and three putted.  Later that evening I saw my father-in-law who played earlier and told him of my three putt, and he told me of his 5 putt for a 7!  Anyway, it was a tough set-up and I ended up with an 85 with no birdies and so many missed 4-5 footers that broke 3 inches or more.  

 

Sunday's round came with being paired up with some early member types that liked to play uber fast.  I felt like I was running to my ball and slapping my putts.  They settled down, and so did I after being four over in five holes I went on to par the next four to salvage a 40 on the front.  On the 13th, I finally figured out that the greens were faster than normal so I adjusted the weighting in my putter lighter (I know it's not legal during a round) and finished with three 2 putts and three 1 putts with an u/d and 2 birdies.  The driving was good today and I hit one snap on the back with resulted in a double but ended up 38 for a 78 with a birdie on 18.  Since I have concentrated so much on the long game with great results, I need to get back to the wedges and try to put it all together.   

 

I can't wait to play in some warmer weather as I keep hitting it short in the early morning when it is mid 40s, but I am playing golf in January so I am not going to complain!    

post #34 of 188

Shooting low #'s all comes down to course management and PUTTING , and of course from 100 yards in you have to set yourself up 5ft or better to get those birds.

post #35 of 188
Thread Starter 



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by basscat348 View Post

Shooting low #'s all comes down to course management and PUTTING , and of course from 100 yards in you have to set yourself up 5ft or better to get those birds.

 

Thanks for reading basscat.  Course management and putting are huge and my goal is to get down to a 29 putt average.  There is nothing like a putt dropping to get your confidence up. 

post #36 of 188
Thread Starter 

One of the best shots that I hit last round was a fairway bunker shot from 55 yards.  I took my 54 and hit a 1/2 swing punch ball first to 15 feet.  That was probably one of the best shots all day along with a 100 yard 54 to 6 feet and a 9 iron to 6 feet again on the 18th (made both putts).  I really want to get my index down into the 4s now and I will be at 5.5 at the next revision.  The strokes are coming off slowly but it is a process.  This week I have limited time to practice so I stopped on the way to work to putt and hopefully I can get to chip this week as well.  I am going to Orlando in a few weeks and plan on playing at my friend's course that he owns and manages.  I am really enjoying the playing and practicing and my journey back into playing golf.  

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