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The Dan Plan - 10,000 Hours to Become a Pro Golfer (Dan McLaughlin) - Page 47

post #829 of 2281
I wish this guy the best of luck but this experiment in my mind proves to me that for sports, whatever he is trying to prove, doesn't work.

I know more than a few talented athletes who got to a legit 5 in a year or even less, they were consistently breaking 80 and some had full time jobs. In 2, 3 years scratch.

The way he approached it, starting with 1 foot putts and going to longer distances from there, ugh, that's the furthest from the way I would go about it. If he goes on the talk circuit after this you'd have to pay me to go listen to him.

Sports, music, endeavors that require physical skill and coordination. There's a bit of talent involved. You just can't pick a paint brush up, paint for 10k hours and be Picasso or Monet.

Not to be a complete negative nabob, but the research into better practicing methods today helps one become the best he/she can be better than previously but to be the best out of everyone, sorry, but there's a significant innate ability involved.
post #830 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nevets88 View Post

I wish this guy the best of luck but this experiment in my mind proves to me that for sports, whatever he is trying to prove, doesn't work.

I know more than a few talented athletes who got to a legit 5 in a year or even less, they were consistently breaking 80 and some had full time jobs. In 2, 3 years scratch.

The way he approached it, starting with 1 foot putts and going to longer distances from there, ugh, that's the furthest from the way I would go about it. If he goes on the talk circuit after this you'd have to pay me to go listen to him.

Sports, music, endeavors that require physical skill and coordination. There's a bit of talent involved. You just can't pick a paint brush up, paint for 10k hours and be Picasso or Monet.

Not to be a complete negative nabob, but the research into better practicing methods today helps one become the best he/she can be better than previously but to be the best out of everyone, sorry, but there's a significant innate ability involved.

 

Although I agree with you, I can't verify if he had people giving him advice on this or not.

 

Is there better ways of going about it sure.. Will we ever really find out?  I doubt it.  

 

The only real way to do that in my opinion is to take a group of people (let us say around 20) and have 10 of them practice the same exact way as Dan did, then take the other 10 and make them practice/learn in what ever method you want to follow, and then periodically look at the results in a controlled environment.

 

To me it is just entertaining to watch someone put undue pressure on him self in front of the world.  I wouldn't do it the way he did!

post #831 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post
 

 

I agree for you and me, but these kids are built for it. I'm sure they take care of themselves, like hit shorter if they feel sore to avoid injury. They do take some breaks. One of them went on a family vacation and suffered from withdrawals being away from golf for three days.

 

Here's one of their schedules (according to his mom and dad): Mon-Fri School from 8am to 2pm @ lunch he hits at the range and pitches and putts. I don't think he putts in the classroom, yet. After 1 hour of homework time, he tries to play 18 holes (Currently he can do it, and in the winter less because of the dark). He plays for free or $1. At 5:00 he eats dinner and from 5:30 to 6:30 he does more homework. From 6:30pm to 9:30pm (sometimes 10:00pm) he goes to the night range and practices till they close at night. Sometimes puts in an 18 hole par 3 round. Including some practice rounds, which he practices drills because he does it every single day, he puts in about 6 hours per day. On the weekends he's pretty much a fixture on the course and plays 2 (sometimes 3) rounds per day, plus drills and lessons. That would be 6*5+20 to 24 or about 50 to 58 hours per week or more including scoring rounds.

 

IDK, what the other kid's schedule is like, he has more natural talent, but pretty much lives on the local courses as well. He's on my kids high school team, but we don't know his practice habits. At least I don't.

 

@mvmac can ask my kid about the previous one (they've known each other since kindergarten) when we go to our lesson.

 

I still think you are overestimating the hours spent playing/practicing each week. 

 

Finishes school at 2pm and 1 hours homework before dinner at 5:30 means that at an absolute maximum there is 2.5 hours free time. 

That's not allowing any travel time from school -> home and then home -> course, and I'm assuming he needs to change into golf gear etc. 

That has to bring it to well under a 2 hour window...even if he lived right beside his course & school. 

There is no way he's getting 18 holes played in 1.5 to 2 hours he has before dinner at 5:30

 

I really can't see him getting a full 3 hours in between 6;30 and 9:30 (or 10), Again travel to/from etc etc. 

 

These kids may seem like they "live" golf, but your estimation of 6 hours a weekday is still way too high imo. 

I would imagine it is much closer to 4 hours per day than 5 or even 6. 

He still "lives" golf playing 4 hours per day, it allows for no interaction with other kids (unless he is meeting them at golf)

 

Whatever about too much golf being detrimental to his game (injuries etc), it surely has to be detrimental to his development as a child.... very little "free" time, very little time to interact with other kids. 

 

Even though it may seem they are "always" playing golf, the reality has to be that with school, the need to eat :-D, and general "living life" stuff like attending birthday parties, socializing etc etc....40 hours is still a hell of a lot to accumulate on average per week. 

 

They may be gone to the course for 20-24 hours at the weekend (seems quite high and shows bad parenting to let them away for that long imo) but I am sure this time is not dedicated completely to practice. There has to be a lot of down time for these 10 hour days. 

 

All this may seem a bit pedantic, but it makes a big difference when you are throwing out figures like a 15 year old having clocked up ~ 15,000 hours golf.

40 hours per week for 50 weeks of the year = 2,000

Assuming they didn't get into the routine until they could walk, talk etc, gotten to an age were they could be left alone to look after themself, then we don't have 15 years to multiple it by. 

 

At a push I think even the most dedicated would have amassed 10,000 hours.

Just my opinion on it, maybe there are kids that have more the 10,000 clocked up....but I would seriously worry about their development (social skills etc) if they had more than that in the bank.  

post #832 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu3baid View Post
 

 

Although I agree with you, I can't verify if he had people giving him advice on this or not.

 

 

Lots of people giving him advice.

 

http://www.svt.se/sport/talangprofessorn-talang-ar-bara-en-myt

 

http://thedanplan.com/guest-blog-from-stuart-hamilton/

 

His swing coach: feel ain't real: 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #833 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post
 

 

Yeah, it's pretty obvious to me as well that if he scores in the 92 range, that he is most likely not a legitimate 4 handicap. It seems like a tournament round and a normal round should only be a few strokes different.

 

If he does get down to a solid 2 to 4 handicap, he would at least prove his point.

 

 

 

Sorry, I disagree.

 

There is a HUGE difference between a 2-4 hcp and even an honest 0 hcp.  There's an even bigger difference between an honest scratch player and someone who can reasonably compete on any kind of professional tour, let alone either the Web.com or the PGA tour.

 

I know plenty of players in the 2-4 hcp range.  Most practice very seldom.  Most don't even take lessons.  All have jobs, families, and other obligations.  They're good players, but a 2-4 hcp just isn't all that good of a golfer.......at least when compared to what it takes to successfully play professional golf.

 

From the article @Stretch posted, it sounds as if Dan may be trying to subtly redefine his goal.  It mentions achieving a + hcp and even goes so far as to define that as good enough to "have the skill set to compete in a legitimate PGA tour event."  That statement by itself is nonsense, though it may ring true to the average recreational golfer who simply doesn't have a concept of the true skill level of an actual tour pro.

post #834 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

If he does get down to a solid 2 to 4 handicap, he would at least prove his point.

Sorry, I disagree.

 

There is a HUGE difference between a 2-4 hcp and even an honest 0 hcp.  There's an even bigger difference between an honest scratch player and someone who can reasonably compete on any kind of professional tour, let alone either the Web.com or the PGA tour.

 

I know plenty of players in the 2-4 hcp range.  Most practice very seldom.  Most don't even take lessons.  All have jobs, families, and other obligations.  They're good players, but a 2-4 hcp just isn't all that good of a golfer.......at least when compared to what it takes to successfully play professional golf.

 

From the article @Stretch posted, it sounds as if Dan may be trying to subtly redefine his goal.  It mentions achieving a + hcp and even goes so far as to define that as good enough to "have the skill set to compete in a legitimate PGA tour event."  That statement by itself is nonsense, though it may ring true to the average recreational golfer who simply doesn't have a concept of the true skill level of an actual tour pro.

 

I second this.  I first heard of this as a report on TV.  The way I understood it at the time was that it helped prove that talent was over-rated and that the goal was some level of professional golf - not sure exactly what lever, but I assumed a playing pro, but not the PGA tour.  It does sound like they are backing off of the goal.

post #835 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post
 

While this could be true ... it kind of surprises me.  I thought I understood the entire point of the exercise to be a bit of a science experiment.  It didn't seem like it would matter in even the slightest whether or not the experiement "succeeded."  The goal from the beginning (I thought) was to do the experiment and write a book, and the book was the real "craft he dedicated his life to."  But maybe he actually (somehow, miraculously) let himself believe he could succeed at this.

 

 

People rarely take on an exercise like this with a neutral position, it's usually to prove or disprove a theory.  In Dan's case, I think he wanted to prove that any average person with average skills could become a pro golfer if they spent 10,000 hours trying to do it. 

 

I believe the premise of Dan's "experiment" was based on the book, "Talent Code".  This is where I see Dan having gone off track because the sample cases in the book were working with highly specialized instructors and following a training and practice routine designed specifically to achieve success.  It seems like Dan got the concept but his execution due to a lack of funds and / or access to the best / right instructors has been poor.

 

I'm not an instructor but I've read a number of golf books (too many actually).  Of the ones I've read, only a few suggest one learn to swing by putting and then chipping, pitching, etc.  It may be a proven instructional concept and I get that putts make up 1/3 of all your shots but overall I'm not sure where that philosophy stands within the instructor community today @iacas

 

As Dan progressed, he seemed to become more concerned about sponsors and reader reaction than working towards his goal.  As soon as you start lying to yourself and others about your progress, you're headed off track.  Quitting practice rounds, not posting bad scores is like a guy on a diet lying about his weight.  Eventually all those lost pounds he's reported have to show in your clothes, just as Dan's performance in tournaments has to show the improvement of his handicap. 

 

I don't see where he's applying any of the principles of the "Talent Code" at this point other than he's spending a lot of hours swinging clubs.  If someone walking the course with him teaching him the mental game?  Is he practicing with a purpose?  It's almost as though he's lost his way and the original objective he set up to achieve.

 

We are all passionate about the game and would probably like the idea of doing what Dan is.  I think Dan has an amazing opportunity but he seems to be wasting it, I hope I'm wrong.

post #836 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post
 

 

Sorry, I disagree.

 

There is a HUGE difference between a 2-4 hcp and even an honest 0 hcp.  There's an even bigger difference between an honest scratch player and someone who can reasonably compete on any kind of professional tour, let alone either the Web.com or the PGA tour.

I agree with this 100%.  I personally feel the depth of the gap where I am at compared to a scratch.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by David in FL View Post

 

I know plenty of players in the 2-4 hcp range.  Most practice very seldom.  Most don't even take lessons.  All have jobs, families, and other obligations.  They're good players, but a 2-4 hcp just isn't all that good of a golfer.......at least when compared to what it takes to successfully play professional golf.

 

I will take your word for it on this. It sounds about right with most of them don't practice or take lessons. Then again maybe if more worked hard on their game, the gap might not seem so large between them and scratch.  It is still a huge difference no matter what, maybe it is just not insurmountable.

post #837 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulhacker View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

 

I agree for you and me, but these kids are built for it. I'm sure they take care of themselves, like hit shorter if they feel sore to avoid injury. They do take some breaks. One of them went on a family vacation and suffered from withdrawals being away from golf for three days.

Here's one of their schedules (according to his mom and dad): Mon-Fri School from 8am to 2pm @ lunch he hits at the range and pitches and putts. I don't think he putts in the classroom, yet. After 1 hour of homework time, he tries to play 18 holes (Currently he can do it, and in the winter less because of the dark). He plays for free or $1. At 5:00 he eats dinner and from 5:30 to 6:30 he does more homework. From 6:30pm to 9:30pm (sometimes 10:00pm) he goes to the night range and practices till they close at night. Sometimes puts in an 18 hole par 3 round. Including some practice rounds, which he practices drills because he does it every single day, he puts in about 6 hours per day. On the weekends he's pretty much a fixture on the course and plays 2 (sometimes 3) rounds per day, plus drills and lessons. That would be 6*5+20 to 24 or about 50 to 58 hours per week or more including scoring rounds.

IDK, what the other kid's schedule is like, he has more natural talent, but pretty much lives on the local courses as well. He's on my kids high school team, but we don't know his practice habits. At least I don't.

@mvmac
can ask my kid about the previous one (they've known each other since kindergarten) when we go to our lesson.

I still think you are overestimating the hours spent playing/practicing each week. 

Finishes school at 2pm and 1 hours homework before dinner at 5:30 means that at an absolute maximum there is 2.5 hours free time. 
That's not allowing any travel time from school -> home and then home -> course, and I'm assuming he needs to change into golf gear etc. 
That has to bring it to well under a 2 hour window...even if he lived right beside his course & school. 
There is no way he's getting 18 holes played in 1.5 to 2 hours he has before dinner at 5:30

I really can't see him getting a full 3 hours in between 6;30 and 9:30 (or 10), Again travel to/from etc etc. 

These kids may seem like they "live" golf, but your estimation of 6 hours a weekday is still way too high imo. 
I would imagine it is much closer to 4 hours per day than 5 or even 6. 
He still "lives" golf playing 4 hours per day, it allows for no interaction with other kids (unless he is meeting them at golf)

Whatever about too much golf being detrimental to his game (injuries etc), it surely has to be detrimental to his development as a child.... very little "free" time, very little time to interact with other kids. 

Even though it may seem they are "always" playing golf, the reality has to be that with school, the need to eat a3_biggrin.gif , and general "living life" stuff like attending birthday parties, socializing etc etc....40 hours is still a hell of a lot to accumulate on average per week. 

They may be gone to the course for 20-24 hours at the weekend (seems quite high and shows bad parenting to let them away for that long imo) but I am sure this time is not dedicated completely to practice. There has to be a lot of down time for these 10 hour days. 

All this may seem a bit pedantic, but it makes a big difference when you are throwing out figures like a 15 year old having clocked up ~ 15,000 hours golf.
40 hours per week for 50 weeks of the year = 2,000
Assuming they didn't get into the routine until they could walk, talk etc, gotten to an age were they could be left alone to look after themself, then we don't have 15 years to multiple it by. 

At a push I think even the most dedicated would have amassed 10,000 hours.
Just my opinion on it, maybe there are kids that have more the 10,000 clocked up....but I would seriously worry about their development (social skills etc) if they had more than that in the bank.  

I fully agree with what you are saying.

The kid lives 5 minutes from the night course, and chose his school based on the proximity to a golf course also 5 minutes away. He turned down a scholarship to a well known sports school, because it would have taken 2 hours out of his schedule.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu3baid View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by nevets88 View Post

I wish this guy the best of luck but this experiment in my mind proves to me that for sports, whatever he is trying to prove, doesn't work.


I know more than a few talented athletes who got to a legit 5 in a year or even less, they were consistently breaking 80 and some had full time jobs. In 2, 3 years scratch.


The way he approached it, starting with 1 foot putts and going to longer distances from there, ugh, that's the furthest from the way I would go about it. If he goes on the talk circuit after this you'd have to pay me to go listen to him.


Sports, music, endeavors that require physical skill and coordination. There's a bit of talent involved. You just can't pick a paint brush up, paint for 10k hours and be Picasso or Monet.


Not to be a complete negative nabob, but the research into better practicing methods today helps one become the best he/she can be better than previously but to be the best out of everyone, sorry, but there's a significant innate ability involved.

Although I agree with you, I can't verify if he had people giving him advice on this or not.

Is there better ways of going about it sure.. Will we ever really find out?  I doubt it.  

The only real way to do that in my opinion is to take a group of people (let us say around 20) and have 10 of them practice the same exact way as Dan did, then take the other 10 and make them practice/learn in what ever method you want to follow, and then periodically look at the results in a controlled environment.

To me it is just entertaining to watch someone put undue pressure on him self in front of the world.  I wouldn't do it the way he did!

My point earlier is that there are thousands of kids he could gather data from, and even some tour players. You would also need a much larger sampling than 20. Not one of them would statistically make scratch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

 

Yeah, it's pretty obvious to me as well that if he scores in the 92 range, that he is most likely not a legitimate 4 handicap. It seems like a tournament round and a normal round should only be a few strokes different.

If he does get down to a solid 2 to 4 handicap, he would at least prove his point.


Sorry, I disagree.

There is a HUGE difference between a 2-4 hcp and even an honest 0 hcp.  There's an even bigger difference between an honest scratch player and someone who can reasonably compete on any kind of professional tour, let alone either the Web.com or the PGA tour.

I know plenty of players in the 2-4 hcp range.  Most practice very seldom.  Most don't even take lessons.  All have jobs, families, and other obligations.  They're good players, but a 2-4 hcp just isn't all that good of a golfer.......at least when compared to what it takes to successfully play professional golf.

From the article @Stretch
 posted, it sounds as if Dan may be trying to subtly redefine his goal.  It mentions achieving a + hcp and even goes so far as to define that as good enough to "have the skill set to compete in a legitimate PGA tour event."  That statement by itself is nonsense, though it may ring true to the average recreational golfer who simply doesn't have a concept of the true skill level of an actual tour pro.

You're being a little hard on him, because I think his original goal was born out of ignorance. Even the current goal of + is still too light to compete successfully. I think his goal is just to make a cut or two in a pro tournament. This might be possible with a +2 handicap.

Will he be able to do it? That's the question.
post #838 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

You're being a little hard on him, because I think his original goal was born out of ignorance. Even the current goal of + is till too light to compete successfully. I think his goal is just to make a cut or two in a pro tournament. This might be possible with a +2 handicap.

 

I don't agree that holding him to his original stated goals is "being too hard on him."

post #839 of 2281
I agree with Abu3baid. This is a progression I'd expect:

Let's say he breaks 80 consistently in year 1. Starts to shoot par in year 2. Moves to the back tees, continues to shoot par, starts to play amateur events year 3. Places high in year 4. Year 5 and 6 in small satellite pro events. Monday Qualifies for a tour event in year 7.

Let's say he does all this. What does that prove? It's just one single standalone sample. If I'm to be convinced I need a bigger sample space.
post #840 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by cipher View Post

I agree with this 100%.  I personally feel the depth of the gap where I am at compared to a scratch.

I will take your word for it on this. It sounds about right with most of them don't practice or take lessons. Then again maybe if more worked hard on their game, the gap might not seem so large between them and scratch.  It is still a huge difference no matter what, maybe it is just not insurmountable.

God, I hope it's not insurmountable! a2_wink.gif

Most mid-high hcp players simply don't understand the exponential increase in difficulty and quality of play that each hcp stroke represents the lower the index goes.
post #841 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

 

I don't agree that holding him to his original stated goals is "being too hard on him."

This.

You can't make a spectacle out of proving someone or something wrong, followed by modifying your goal to meet reasonable expectations -- or modifying your goal to meet where you currently are to say "I did it, kind of..". By doing so, you're subtly admitting you are/were wrong without coming out and saying it. Settling for less, while magnifying your accomplishment(s).

He didn't say "10,000 hours to become a good golfer"...

post #842 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post


God, I hope it's not insurmountable! a2_wink.gif

Most mid-high hcp players simply don't understand the exponential increase in difficulty and quality of play that each hcp stroke represents the lower the index goes.

I just looked at the time that I have put into bettering my game/playing in the last three years. I work on my game, I get great instruction, but have a job and a young family. I am only averaging about 200 hours per year that I have been able to put in(considering playing time, range time and practice at home). Last year I was able to put in about 225 hours. It is tough to get there at that rate, very tough.

post #843 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by cipher View Post

I agree with this 100%.  I personally feel the depth of the gap where I am at compared to a scratch.

I will take your word for it on this. It sounds about right with most of them don't practice or take lessons. Then again maybe if more worked hard on their game, the gap might not seem so large between them and scratch.  It is still a huge difference no matter what, maybe it is just not insurmountable.

God, I hope it's not insurmountable! a2_wink.gif

Most mid-high hcp players simply don't understand the exponential increase in difficulty and quality of play that each hcp stroke represents the lower the index goes.

Hey, I'm bogey, and understand this. It's easy to misjudge the difficulty if you don't keep statistics.

I suppose I am validating the premise that this endeavor is pretty absurd. The fact that his original statement was made without understanding what it was kind of invalidates his goal.

However, there are many kids proving the 10,000 hour theory in golf. Just not him. I think he, like the average person, does not know how hard it is to golf at a professional level.
post #844 of 2281

From his site:

 

THE DETAILS

 

On April 5th, 2010, Dan quit his day job as a commercial photographer and began The Dan Plan. Logging in 30-plus hours a week he will hit the 10,000 hour milestone by October of 2016. During this time, Dan plans to develop his skills through deliberate practice, eventually winning amateur events and obtaining his PGA Tour card through a successful appearance in the PGA Tour’s Qualifying School, or “Q-School”.

 

From the BBC article:

 

"I began the plan in April 2010 and I basically putted from one foot and slowly worked away from the hole," he says.

 

"Eighteen months into it I hit my first driver and now it's approaching four years and I'm about half way. So I'm 5,000 hours into the project. My current handicap is right at a 4.1 and the goal is to get down to a plus handicap [below zero] where I have the skill set to compete in a legitimate PGA tour event."

 

 

I also reread parts of the Tampa Bay article - it said he didn't like golf.

 

 

post #845 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nevets88 View Post

I agree with Abu3baid. This is a progression I'd expect:

Let's say he breaks 80 consistently in year 1. Starts to shoot par in year 2. Moves to the back tees, continues to shoot par, starts to play amateur events year 3. Places high in year 4. Year 5 and 6 in small satellite pro events. Monday Qualifies for a tour event in year 7.

Let's say he does all this. What does that prove? It's just one single standalone sample. If I'm to be convinced I need a bigger sample space.

 

It is my recollection that he didn't even take a full swing until 4-6 months in (all putting and chipping to start), and didn't hit his driver until after a full year into the project. In that sense, his full swing is almost a year behind the actual start date of the project.

 

I suppose it can be debated whether that was a smart way to begin his plan.

post #846 of 2281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big C View Post
 

 

It is my recollection that he didn't even take a full swing until 4-6 months in (all putting and chipping to start), and didn't hit his driver until after a full year into the project. In that sense, his full swing is almost a year behind the actual start date of the project.

 

I suppose it can be debated whether that was a smart way to begin his plan.

 

I'd love to know who agrees with that idea of learning. To me, it seems blindingly obvious to just start all aspects simultaneously. Putting some, chipping/pitching, bunker shots, short irons, long irons, driver. All a little bit every day. Even if you just learn a couple basics for each area every day. But months on putting?? Whew. What a waste it seems.  Isn't there a point of diminishing returns each day with a putter?  Maybe there's some science behind his decision, and my "blindingly obvious" hunch is incorrect.

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