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bad course strategy.......it destroys so many rounds for high handicappers.... - Page 8

post #127 of 178
I play with a 62 yr old single digit handicapper who uses his driver on every hole regardless of length and narrowness. His gentle 230 yard fade is a consistent thing of beauty. I've often wondered why he doesn't back off as he's a very conservative player, who will always play away from water to the opposite side in the rough. But his drive is his best shot and he is comfortable and confident and will thread the needle into the narrowing neck of the fairway 99 out of a hundred. I've stopped wondering why a long time ago.
post #128 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post


Closer is almost always better. You're quite likely wrong about your beliefs. If you hit it to 15 feet from 50 yards that's nearly world class. 25 feet from 100 is also world class.

Your perceptions are probably off. And it's hurting your strategies.

I would like to think I can hit straight, but fail regularly. I am pretty good on my distances though, when hitting in from between 155m (169yd) 7i to 100m (109yd) SW I am usually able to get the distance to within about 5m.

 

The problem is that I am usually off line, on the occasions where I am on line then I have a chance of birdie but am usually on the fringe of the green or just off the green as I am usually off line. This is why my handicap is where it is, I can manage to get level with the pin most of the time in regulation, but am just off the green, so my handicap shot is my chip then I try to two putt for my handicap par.

post #129 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by liquor box View Post

I am pretty good on my distances though, when hitting in from between 155m (169yd) 7i to 100m (109yd) SW I am usually able to get the distance to within about 5m.

If you mean distances only, sure. But only that.

The fact remains closer is almost always better. For both distance and lateral dispersion.
post #130 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

But that doesn't mean that they don't have opportunities to minimize the damage that their inconsistency can cause by playing smarter golf.  Good course management can help players at any level.  Even though a well planned shot fails to go where it's intended, that's no reason to turn off your brain for the next one.  That recovery shot just might be the one that saves a bogey, rather than playing for the hero shot and making triple or quad.  That can lead to a cascade of confidence building shots.

Sometimes it's about making baby steps.  Players rarely progress in golf by making quantum leaps.
I agree with you. Strategy is important, it's just not the most important aspect of the game. Good course management can mean the difference between a 95 and a 105 for a bogey golfer, for example, but let's not pretend that all this golfer needs is a better strategy to lower his handicap (as some others have insinuated).
post #131 of 178

This thread has helped me get a lot more "par looks," even if they ended up as double bogeys. Instead of just whacking the 3 wood until I am close enough to put it down, I think more about how many strokes it will take to get me to a short par three on the long holes, and how to avoid trouble on the shorter holes. That usually means that that last three wood shot is some kind of iron shot, which gives me a lot more control over where I will taking my approach shot.

 

I will be honest. Up to now I never thought about strategy, but since my ball striking has gotten a little better, I work on it every day in the yard or at the range, strategy has become useful. Think about it. If you have no idea of how long or straight your iron or wedge shots are going to be, what is the point of strategy?

post #132 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post


I agree with you. Strategy is important, it's just not the most important aspect of the game. Good course management can mean the difference between a 95 and a 105 for a bogey golfer, for example, but let's not pretend that all this golfer needs is a better strategy to lower his handicap (as some others have insinuated).


I believe the thread was about STRATEGY and how it relates to a high handicapper....obviously consistent ball striking is a much bigger factor...but that wasn't the question here

post #133 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ho Chi Chi Vinh View Post
 


I believe the thread was about STRATEGY and how it relates to a high handicapper....obviously consistent ball striking is a much bigger factor...but that wasn't the question here

Not really, the premise of the thread was that bad strategy was what causes rounds to be destroyed for high handicappers. This is a false premise because even the best course strategy will be of little use to someone who can't strike the ball well. 

post #134 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremie Boop View Post
 

Not really, the premise of the thread was that bad strategy was what causes rounds to be destroyed for high handicappers. This is a false premise because even the best course strategy will be of little use to someone who can't strike the ball well. 

 

You have to assume that ball striking is not the issue for the high scores. For instance, if the person is a range rat who strikes the ball really well, but just fails to choose the correct club while on the course.

 

I've actually seen this.

 

I played one such range rat about 5 months ago who I assumed was a single digit player, and when we went out on the course he chose clubs that just didn't make sense. He would take out a hybrid and overshoot a safe landing area and end up in a bunker. Then to get out of the bunker he would hit a 4i with a 2 foot lip above him. He bored into the lip with a really good strike and the ball bounced out of the back of the trap over his head. Next he re-shot the 4i (choked up a foot) and rolled off the backside of the green. Then he hit his wedge and a putt for a bogey.

 

Meanwhile, I hit a 7i and a high 7i (with my old Ping i20 set) just short of the green. Up and down par on a short easy hole. Of course, the last time I was on this hole I drove the green.

 

He was a much better ball striker than me, but ended up 6 strokes higher for the 9 we played together. His strategy was clearly the issue, and to top off everything I have not even started to learn course strategy yet (Still awaiting the arrival of my LSW book.)

post #135 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post
 

 

You have to assume that ball striking is not the issue for the high scores. For instance, if the person is a range rat who strikes the ball really well, but just fails to choose the correct club while on the course.

 

I've actually seen this.

 

I played one such range rat about 5 months ago who I assumed was a single digit player, and when we went out on the course he chose clubs that just didn't make sense. He would take out a hybrid and overshoot a safe landing area and end up in a bunker. Then to get out of the bunker he would hit a 4i with a 2 foot lip above him. He bored into the lip with a really good strike and the ball bounced out of the back of the trap over his head. Next he re-shot the 4i (choked up a foot) and rolled off the backside of the green. Then he hit his wedge and a putt for a bogey.

 

Meanwhile, I hit a 7i and a high 7i (with my old Ping i20 set) just short of the green. Up and down par on a short easy hole. Of course, the last time I was on this hole I drove the green.

 

He was a much better ball striker than me, but ended up 6 strokes higher for the 9 we played together. His strategy was clearly the issue, and to top off everything I have not even started to learn course strategy yet (Still awaiting the arrival of my LSW book.)

That would be an atypical high handicapper then. When I see people who have high handicaps *read higher than mine* their ball goes every which way, left/right/way high/worm burner/etc. Trying to give them a course strategy to improve their score would be supremely futile. I'm not saying there aren't people out there who could benefit from a better strategy and shoot better scores, but I just don't see that being the case for most 25+ handicappers.

post #136 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremie Boop View Post
 

That would be an atypical high handicapper then. When I see people who have high handicaps *read higher than mine* their ball goes every which way, left/right/way high/worm burner/etc. Trying to give them a course strategy to improve their score would be supremely futile. I'm not saying there aren't people out there who could benefit from a better strategy and shoot better scores, but I just don't see that being the case for most 25+ handicappers.

 

That's why I assumed that the OP meant that just strategy alone is the culprit for the high handicap and not bad ball striking.

 

Also worth noting is the OP is a low single digit/scratch player, and that anyone above a 10 handicap could be deemed as high handicap to him.

 

But your are correct, this person was atypical of a normal higher handicap. I should see how he is doing these days, I'm sure that it was his lack of experience on the course that led him to these decisions. If he's played more often, recently, I'm sure his handicap would be in the singles at this point.

post #137 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ho Chi Chi Vinh View Post
 


I believe the thread was about STRATEGY and how it relates to a high handicapper....obviously consistent ball striking is a much bigger factor...but that wasn't the question here

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremie Boop View Post
 

Not really, the premise of the thread was that bad strategy was what causes rounds to be destroyed for high handicappers. This is a false premise because even the best course strategy will be of little use to someone who can't strike the ball well.

Agree with @Jeremie Boop, here. The thread is a about relating bad strategy with high handicaps, and you just can't discuss scoring with high handicaps without factoring in ball striking (among other things). I think sometimes people with low single digit handicaps forget (or may have never known) how it is to hit the ball poorly. Sure, if you hit the ball fairly and consistently well, then you can realize the benefits of good course strategy. If you can hit two shots in a row and can't tell me definitively where they are both going to go, you're going to benefit a lot more from a better swing than better strategy. Not much point to good strategy if you can't hit the shots you wanted to.

 

If the thread were "Bad Course Strategy....It Destroys So Many Rounds...." then yea, we can just talk about strategy and how it affects all golfers across the board.

post #138 of 178

I think many of us (high cappers) are agreeing that it is our execution that leads to a ruined round.   It is certainly for me. My strategy is simple.   Hit the freaking ball straight, chip straight,  and putt straight.  My former home course was very forgiving when it came to being "straight"  - not many OB areas, a few lateral hazards which I can easily avoid, not too many places a ball can disappear to (no 5 inch deep roughs).   Even if I couldn't hit straight, I was able to break 90 regularly and carried 15 - 17 handicap.   In my current home course, every miss leads to OB or lost ball.   It is pretty common to have 8 on par 3, 10 on par 5.   A few of those holes and my chance of breaking 90 is gone after 1st 9 holes.   If my strategy of hitting straight does not work, my back up strategy is to find another home course ;-).

post #139 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by rkim291968 View Post
 

I think many of us (high cappers) are agreeing that it is our execution that leads to a ruined round.   It is certainly for me. My strategy is simple.   Hit the freaking ball straight, chip straight,  and putt straight.  My former home course was very forgiving when it came to being "straight"  - not many OB areas, a few lateral hazards which I can easily avoid, not too many places a ball can disappear to (no 5 inch deep roughs).   Even if I couldn't hit straight, I was able to break 90 regularly and carried 15 - 17 handicap.   In my current home course, every miss leads to OB or lost ball.   It is pretty common to have 8 on par 3, 10 on par 5.   A few of those holes and my chance of breaking 90 is gone after 1st 9 holes.   If my strategy of hitting straight does not work, my back up strategy is to find another home course ;-).


One strategy is to play your former home course as if you needed to stay within the fairways. Challenge yourself to hit fairways, then GIR. This gives you the mental edge to do it because you don't lose a ball and 2 strokes if you miss. When you get consistent enough with the easier course, the new course will look relatively easier. You won't have as much anxiety off the tee, nor your approach shots.

 

This has helped me play a few courses that I used to be totally intimidated.

post #140 of 178

"One strategy is to play your former home course as if you needed to stay within the fairways. Challenge yourself to hit fairways, then GIR. "

 

Another good point. The course I play is really wide in terms of lack of trees, but a lot of it is short rough and balls are easily lost. I don't even think about the fairways,I just think the ball is going to go into the same short rough it always goes into. Hitting from the fairway is one way to improve your ball striking.

post #141 of 178

I was gonna say same thing.theres one golden rule of golf I golf by.i wont hit an iron off tee on a par 4 or par5 ever.my reason is because to me the driver is easiest club to hit any distance you can possibly hit it.with drivers big heads they are too easy to just swing easy and tap a drive out there 180 yards or so rather than hitting a fuller swing with an iron with smaller face.seen way too many mishits with irons off tee result in longer shots in.i tell anyone to practice swing a half swing or so with driver and see how easy it is.

post #142 of 178
Quote:
 Not much point to good strategy if you can't hit the shots you wanted to.

 

I disagree with this.  Even high handicappers can cheat.  Take a green complex with water on the right but that is open left.  Say its a par 3, oh, 160 yards.  At a 20 hdcp I hit my 6 iron about 150ish.  Tee it up left, aim left of the left edge, preset weight left, ball back in stance.  You have set yourself up for good contact with the maximum room to miss.  Since you (hopefully) have decreased your chances of hitting it fat, and you are aimed at the left side, the "most likely" miss by far is a slice, thin line drive - which should be pretty good given where your aimed.  Could you put it in the water?  Of course you could.  But you've *significantly* decreased your chances over taking a normal stance from the middle of the tee box aimed at the pin near the water.

 

I don't think its just "oh well, can't hit it good anyway, better take dead aim and hit driver every time".  That isn't how you get better.  Even if your thoughts are wrong, get used to thinking.  Slowing down to think is a skill that needs to be practiced as much as hitting a club.  If you don't practice thinking about what you are trying to do on a hole you'll never improve the management skill, and you'll struggle even as your game improves.

 

As a high handicapper, you need to start exploring and developing the relationship between your setup/stance/contact and the shot you see in your head.  It has to start somewhere.  You need to learn what the ball back in your stance does.  I agree its silly to swing normally and do everything else the same and think "i'm gonna hit it here!".  But as you start to experiment you start to learn.  If you don't experiment, you don't learn.

 

Just because it doesn't work doesn't mean its not helpful.  You are grooving a mental game for when your swing improves.  Even if my 6 iron example, above, is way off, you are still much better off learning to think while out there than just blasting balls around because "what the heck, I'll hit it bad anyways".

post #143 of 178
Quote:

Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

 

One strategy is to play your former home course as if you needed to stay within the fairways. Challenge yourself to hit fairways, then GIR. This gives you the mental edge to do it because you don't lose a ball and 2 strokes if you miss. When you get consistent enough with the easier course, the new course will look relatively easier. You won't have as much anxiety off the tee, nor your approach shots.

 

This has helped me play a few courses that I used to be totally intimidated.

 

In retrospect, I should have done that.  I was so used to (and good at) scrambling my way out of trouble, I didn't focus on ball striking accuracy as much as I should have done.  

 

LOL to myself, the current golf course management has decided to convert most white sticks to red (i.e, all OBs will be lateral hazards).   Course rating will be adjusted accordingly but  the change can immediately improve my HI by 2 - 3 points.   However, I will keep Lihu's comment in mind and play them as if they are still OB areas.   

post #144 of 178
Quote:
Originally Posted by rkim291968 View Post
 

 

In retrospect, I should have done that.  I was so used to (and good at) scrambling my way out of trouble, I didn't focus on ball striking accuracy as much as I should have done.  

 

LOL to myself, the current golf course management has decided to convert most white sticks to red (i.e, all OBs will be lateral hazards).   Course rating will be adjusted accordingly but  the change can immediately improve my HI by 2 - 3 points.   However, I will keep Lihu's comment in mind and play them as if they are still OB areas.   

 

3 strokes? Nice.

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