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Why are you not playing scratch? - Page 10

post #163 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post


I HATE that kid! a1_smile.gif


Yea, I was just thinking that might be the best way to calculate talent, by figuring out the lack of talent based on how many hours you have practiced and how bad you still are :P.

 

I played with a kid a couple years ago that was pretty committed to golf, he spend a fair bit of time on the range with me and we both had memberships so we played a lot together. I beat him every time we played pretty handily but he started getting better and then about a year later after I hadn't played with him for awhile he came back and could all of sudden shoot in the 70's pretty easily. He certainly didn't out practice me though, he just got really good really fast after taking the game up.

 

It just got more consistent and pretty quick too. He kind of flighted all his shots really well, like a really straight low to high climbing ball flight without much fade/draw and perhaps the most important thing when he got within a 100 yards he always thought of it as a birdie opportunity and often times turned it into one where I'd be thinking don't blow this. I've practiced that crap way more than he has but I'd say he had more talent for it.

post #164 of 215

Ok. We can also resume the discussion after you decide to actually work on your game. 6 months of 30+ hours will give you a little perspective about what hard work can do.a1_smile.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post


Ok, let's resume the discussion when you get to 5. Then you'll have at least a little perspective as to what those final 5 strokes mean.
post #165 of 215

Just remembering that at scratch you will be shooting the course rating wherever you play is pretty daunting.   It's not that easy either with natural ability or by practicing your balls off.    The lowest I have ever been is a 4.7. 

post #166 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by x129 View Post

Ok. We can also resume the discussion after you decide to actually work on your game. 6 months of 30+ hours will give you a little perspective about what hard work can do.a1_smile.gif

I've spent many thousands of hours on my game over the last 40 years, playing and practicing. I've also competed in another sport at a VERY high level nationally, with some international exposure. I understand what hard work, coaching, dedication, and desire can accomplish....

......I also understand that they're not enough to get past a certain level. That level is different for all of us. That difference is based on our natural talent and athleticism.


I'm curious, are you a personal trainer or coach of some type? I'm just trying to understand the "time and effort" can get anyone to an elite level in anything mentality. Not picking, I'm genuinely curious. Thks.
post #167 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harmonious View Post

I think Paradox echoes what a lot of medium handicappers think... That with just a little more practice, or the right coach, or whatever, they too could play to scratch.  And in some cases, that may be true. But I would say that in the vast majority of cases, that is not true.  Unless you have a goodly amount of natural-born talent (good hand-eye coordination, good physical dexterity, good mental abilities, for example) you will never get down there.

That's not to say that people wouldn't improve greatly by practicing more, or by taking some good lessons. Sure they would.  But it's not a straight-line progression from 20 handicap to scratch. Everyone reaches the point where their talent and desire and hard work ultimately runs out. For those with less talent, it just runs out sooner.
Guilty as charged. My view is this; virtually all, if not all, scratch golfers were, at some point, 10 handicaps. How many of them do you think did NOT BELIEVE that they could become scratch? I'm gonna say its 0.00%. So my choices are to believe I'm capable of becoming scratch even if its a minute chance, or think that I won't and absolutely guarantee Ill never get there. Which do you think I should choose?
post #168 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

Guilty as charged. My view is this; virtually all, if not all, scratch golfers were, at some point, 10 handicaps. How many of them do you think did NOT BELIEVE that they could become scratch? I'm gonna say its 0.00%. So my choices are to believe I'm capable of becoming scratch even if its a minute chance, or think that I won't and absolutely guarantee Ill never get there. Which do you think I should choose?

I absolutely agree with you! Just because not everybody can get there, doesn't mean that you can't.

Hell, I'm still holding out hope that I can get there too, and will keep working towards that goal!
post #169 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by NM Golf View Post


At the risk of sounding conceited, I never worked all that hard to become scratch. I did not pick up a golf club seriously until I was 22 or 23 years old. My first round I ever played was over 100 and I never shot above 100 again. Within a year of playing I was breaking 90, I broke 80 for the first time within 3 years. I have and continue to play quite a bit of golf but I have never been someone to beat balls and practice hour upon end. I became a scratch golfer in my early 30's, the entire time I have been playing I have had a full time job and family so I never had the luxury of spending hours upon hours at the golf course. Also, I have never really had a formal lesson, though I have had people help me from time to time along the way with my swing.

 

I guess what I am getting at is there are lots of stories way more impressive than mine. Stories of kids winning national competitions within a couple years of picking up the sport. Guys on tour now that were scratch within a couple years of starting. What makes those people so good? Natural ability.  I see it every summer when I teach junior golf lessons. We will get some kids that just grab a club take their stance and they can hit the ball pretty well. Others will attend several weeks of camp and even with us really working with them they never even make contact. Its natural ability, you have it or you don't.


I think your story might be a wake-up call for all those 20 caps who are convinced that hard work and desire are all they need to get to scratch.  My guess is that most scratch players have much the same background as you.  The game was never really difficult, as in you never had to worry about making solid contact.  Just by watching others, you figured out how to move your body to hit the ball a considerable ways.  Then, when you got more serious and had someone help out, you dropped the last couple of strokes and became scratch.

 

My case is similar: Although my swing is not a thing of beauty, it has always been efficient enough for me to hit the ball pretty well from the time I first picked up a club, also in my 20's.  After moving to an apartment on a golf course and playing a couple of times a week for a year (no time on the range and no lessons) I got down to a 9 handicap. Fifteen years later, after my softball days were over, I decided to pick golf back up and get a little serious.  Went to a week-long golf school in Arizona, started going to the range a little bit, started reading some golf instruction books.  Didn't take long, a couple more years maybe,  to get down to a 5 and win a club championship. The last 5 strokes to scratch were much tougher, of course, and required a lot of short game and putting work. But it was never a case of needing 1000's of hours like some here suggest.

 

Some folks don't want to hear it, but if you have played golf semi-regularly for more than a couple years and are still over a 10, chances are you won't become scratch, no matter how much time you put in.

post #170 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwlee7 View Post

Just remembering that at scratch you will be shooting the course rating wherever you play is pretty daunting.

 

Well, to be accurate you only need to shoot the course rating half the time (10 out of your last 20).... but yeah, still daunting. :-)

post #171 of 215
Quote:

Originally Posted by NM Golf View Post

 

At the risk of sounding conceited, I never worked all that hard to become scratch. I did not pick up a golf club seriously until I was 22 or 23 years old. My first round I ever played was over 100 and I never shot above 100 again. Within a year of playing I was breaking 90, I broke 80 for the first time within 3 years.

 

 

Originally Posted by Harmonious View Post
 

My case is similar: Although my swing is not a thing of beauty, it has always been efficient enough for me to hit the ball pretty well from the time I first picked up a club, also in my 20's.  After moving to an apartment on a golf course and playing a couple of times a week for a year (no time on the range and no lessons) I got down to a 9 handicap.

 

Some folks don't want to hear it, but if you have played golf semi-regularly for more than a couple years and are still over a 10, chances are you won't become scratch, no matter how much time you put in.

 

So, what makes scratch so unattainable?

 

My kids have been playing for about 4 years now, but only from the standard white tees this year. My son is a 12 and my daughter is an 18 and play 3 hours a week. My son's friend plays four full rounds a week and is an 8. Both of my son and his friend are planning on playing scratch by 15 years old (3 years from now, when or after they hit puberty and get some muscles) just like a few of the high school team members are already. It just does not seem like an impossible goal, and their coaches do not think it is outrageous.

 

There seems to be a disconnect that I am not too clear about?

post #172 of 215

Should change the name of this thread to " I am talking out of my ass" thread. Sorry more appropriately the "speculation" thread. Everybody has a golf story.

post #173 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave2512 View Post

Should change the name of this thread to " I am talking out of my ass" thread. Sorry more appropriately the "speculation" thread. Everybody has a golf story.

Thanks for the contribution.

post #174 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

 

So, what makes scratch so unattainable?

 

My kids have been playing for about 4 years now, but only from the standard white tees this year. My son is a 12 and my daughter is an 18 and play 3 hours a week. My son's friend plays four full rounds a week and is an 8. Both of my son and his friend are planning on playing scratch by 15 years old (3 years from now, when or after they hit puberty and get some muscles) just like a few of the high school team members are already. It just does not seem like an impossible goal, and their coaches do not think it is outrageous.

 

There seems to be a disconnect that I am not too clear about?

It's easy to get to a 12 and an 8. While it's not impossible to get to scratch, hardly anyone does it. According to the USGA:

 

0.13% of golfers that have a handicap on the plus side of scratch. So, that's ~.13% scratch and better. So 1 out of 1000 people that take golf seriously enough to have handicaps are able to get there. Maybe I'm missing something.

 

I don't know know how else to explain this without sounding patronizing. Think of a histogram, people that get near 0 are extreme outliers. Maybe forget about golf and think height.

 

The scratch golfer as rare as a person that is 6 foot 9 in.

 

The % of golfers that are scratch or better is .13% the % of people that are over 6 9 is .1% as well. It's clear to me that people just don't realize how freaking rare scratch is.


Edited by Williamevanl - 12/2/12 at 4:16am
post #175 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Williamevanl View Post

It's easy to get to a 12 and an 8. While it's not impossible to get to scratch, hardly anyone does it. According to the USGA:

 

0.13% of golfers that have a handicap on the plus side of scratch. So, that's ~.13% scratch and better. So 1 out of 1000 people that take golf seriously enough to have handicaps are able to get there. Maybe I'm missing something.

 

I don't know know how else to explain this without sounding patronizing. Think of a histogram, people that get near 0 are extreme outliers. Maybe forget about golf and think height.

 

The scratch golfer as rare as a person that is 6 foot 9 in.

 

The % of golfers that are scratch or better is .13% the % of people that are over 6 9 is .1% as well. It's clear to me that people just don't realize how freaking rare scratch is.


I understand there is a distribution. I just did not understand that being scratch was that far out of the norm.

 

Maybe the coaches just don't want to discourage the young kids. However, three of the high school kids play scratch. Then again, they play 3 hours a day every day and are probably the result of filtering out 2997 other kids.

 

Thanks for the statistics. I should have verified the actual number, first. I understood it to be more like 1% played scratch.

 

Funny you should mention a 6'9" person, but 2 of the dads in my daughters class are that tall. Roughly 6'8" and 6'10". What are the odds?

post #176 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave2512 View Post

Should change the name of this thread to " I am talking out of my ass" thread. Sorry more appropriately the "speculation" thread. Everybody has a golf story.


I have no reason to doubt the two golfers I quoted are indeed scratch or plus golfers. So, I posed the question in general, why is it so difficult to achieve? I guess you're born with that ability, and the rest of us just have to enjoy the game as it is. I can also live with that a1_smile.gif

post #177 of 215

I have probably read almost everyone of these posts and I like that alot of people feel like it is doable and strive to achieve it.  The fact is that a huge number of us will fall short.  I have played in the same group with a legit 2 handicap and the pro playing off of a +2. Though their overall games didn't seem much different than mine when the scores were tallyed up I shot 77, the 2 handicap shot 68 and the plus two shot 65.  I got waxed by 9 and 12 shots respectively.  It just reinforced to me the fact that I have a really long way to go.  The 2 handicap is one of the best amatuer golfer's I've ever seen and routinely shoots under par for consecutive rounds and is always around par for any given round and he talks about how hard it is to get to scratch because those last few points require consistency on a whole different level. 

 

Just think about that....the two handicaps low round is 4 under and the +2's low round is 9 under (that is probably the same difference as a 36 handicap and a scratch golfer) .  How many times do most people even play with another amatuer golfer that shoots even par let alone under par. My friend is the only amatuer that I've ever played with that I have seen shoot under par, or under par in consecutive rounds.   

 

If you can shoot even par....you better be real real consistent from day to day.  If you can shoot under par, then you don't have so much pressure because you can better deal with the ebs and flow of a typical golf season.  For now I'm just trying to keep myself shooting in the 70's for as many rounds in a row as I can then I'll look for the next step.  My low score is 1 over for 18 and 1 under for 9 holes but I know I don't do it day in and day out. 

 

In my honest opinion, off of shear numbers, until you have:

 

1. Shot within 3 strokes of par for 18 holes you do not have any chance of being having a handicap less than 3

 

2. Shot under par for 18 holes you do not have any chance of being a scratch golfer.

 

3. Really really gone low (5 or more shots under par) you do not have any chance of being a plus handicap

 

 

If your potential isn't better than your handicap then you won't be able to maintain it even if you got there. You'll never hear a scratch golfer say their personal best score is even par. Just my take on it.  There are so many variables that have to line up within a given round to shoot just even par that I just try to keep it in perspective and allow my personal talent to show when I tee it up and see what happens.

post #178 of 215
It is a good question, albeit difficult to answer, how many golfers out there that in theory could reach scratch.

Firstly, the people using this forum is over average interested in golf. Those filming their swing and taking lessons more so.
It would have been interesting to see how low the average mid-to-low handicapper on this forum could go, given the best tools for the job.

There is no doubt that some people get there a hell of a lot quicker than others, given the same amount of time, but could those less talented get there at all?
post #179 of 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeph View Post

It is a good question, albeit difficult to answer, how many golfers out there that in theory could reach scratch.
Firstly, the people using this forum is over average interested in golf. Those filming their swing and taking lessons more so.
It would have been interesting to see how low the average mid-to-low handicapper on this forum could go, given the best tools for the job.
There is no doubt that some people get there a hell of a lot quicker than others, given the same amount of time, but could those less talented get there at all?

Me too!  And the best part about it for me (my opinion only!) is that I believe I am currently using the best tools available ...

 

This forum, 5SK, and Evolvr!

 

So I guess I'll find out eventually.  c3_clap.gif

post #180 of 215
Well I'm going to be the optimistic guy. I think you can go from +30 to scratch! All you have to do is talk your friends into letting you keep the scorecard. Then you can shoot whatever you'd like to. a1_smile.gif

In reality though, I do believe single digit caps can be scratch with all of the instruction and new technology as long they have the physical ability to replicate what they're taught and the mental capacity to overcome their bad habits and create a sweet swing. With that said... Good luck to everyone in their pursuit because its always better to have a little luck on your side.

PS... Since scratch is 1%, does that make us the "99 percenters"? Haha
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