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To get or not to get golf lessons?

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone Im a 28 year old golfer, been playing about 7 years and the last two years Ive been playing about once a week. My usual scores are anywhere from about mid 90's to lower 100's. Im finally thinkin about getting lessons this year but was wondering just how much they will help. So far Ive been reading books, watching videos, and alot of time at the range. At then end of last year however it seemed like I took a huge step back and got really discouraged. I love playing golf and have a passion for it, but am also very competitive!!! I also have two children so Im just wondering if lessons will be worth my time and also money. If you have any opinions it would really help. Thank you! Also does anyone know of a good instructor i.n the Des Moines,Iowa area.. Thanks again!!!!!
post #2 of 42

Lessons can be worth it, but you have to have the time and patience to practice what you are taught - whether it is practicing at home or on the range.

 

Just going to a lesson or 2 will not fix you unless you commit to it.

post #3 of 42

     Yes, it will definitely help although as was stated above you have to work at it. Also, it is beneficial to take more than one, maybe buy a package of 3 and space them out over the summer so that you work towards goals for each lesson and you can chart progress over a longer period of time.

     Even with a great instructor you will generally get worse before you get better but in time it will pay off. See if you can find an instructor who will give you lessons on different parts of the game. I see a lot of lesson on the range with the student hitting driver when their time may be better spent learning to play shots around the green or even putting. 

post #4 of 42

Yes yes and Yes But depending on your swing it may take a lot more than a few. 

post #5 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmigolfer84 View Post

Hello everyone Im a 28 year old golfer, been playing about 7 years and the last two years Ive been playing about once a week. My usual scores are anywhere from about mid 90's to lower 100's. Im finally thinkin about getting lessons this year but was wondering just how much they will help. So far Ive been reading books, watching videos, and alot of time at the range. At then end of last year however it seemed like I took a huge step back and got really discouraged. I love playing golf and have a passion for it, but am also very competitive!!! I also have two children so Im just wondering if lessons will be worth my time and also money. If you have any opinions it would really help. Thank you! Also does anyone know of a good instructor i.n the Des Moines,Iowa area.. Thanks again!!!!!

 

Lessons can be absolutely revelatory, or a complete waste of time, depending on the instructor. If you're a student of your game like you say, I'd think hard about what you think you KNOW about your swing right now. Film yourself, too, and compare yourself to some pros on YouTube or whatever. It's very easy to see stuff like bringing the club too far inside, casting the club, having a poor setup position, etc. Be honest with what you are doing now and ask pros a few questions before you sign up with them. That way you'll a) see if they know what they're talking about, and b) seem like someone who will actually work with you rather than stand there for an hour and give you the same lesson he or she gives every student. But be open to suggestion as well. As a former teacher myself and a high school/college athlete, I've found that the best relationship someone can have with an instructor or coach as an adult is one of guarded openness - listen to and consider everything they say, but think about how it helps YOU. You may even be shutting out the good stuff at first, but if you are either overly stubborn about what you think you already know, or if you take everything they say and try to employ it without question, I find it might make things worse. I also absolutely advise getting a package deal and spread them out over a few months. Cost of lesson doesn't always equal quantity as well. I learned more about short game in 2 hours with some old tour pro at my muni range for $35 than I ever knew in my life. I also knew someone who took a $500 lesson at Troon or someplace like that in Scottsdale and said the pro treated him like dirt and he learned nothing.

 

Last word from me - get a good short game lesson as well, and work on what you learned a lot at first. It astounds me how many people I see practicing chipping, pitching, and bunker play with absolutely awful technique - slappy wrists, scooping the ball, etc. If you learn sound technique and ingrain it early, it will go a long way. The full swing will take much longer to become above average, but proper short game technique is easy to learn. It might take you ten years to become a short game wizard, but ten days to be better than most.

post #6 of 42

BTW, no offense meant toward Troon. I just remembered that the lesson I referenced was at an exclusive Scottsdale outfit, and Troon came to mind. It may have been another place.

post #7 of 42

It depends what you want to get out of golf.    For me, I'm totally OCD'd out on it (started playing at 46 years old)  ... read everything I can find on it online, books, and if the TV only had The Golf Channel, I 'd still have cable.     I'm pretty athletic, and put alot of time into it, but realize that I have a bad back & with very limited flexibility, I'll never have a backswing like Rory's.     I work within what I have & play a control game - focus on good contact, distance control, and wedges/chipping.   Video is your friend too - so much to be learned from watching yourself on video.    Putting is my nemesis - I'm at my witts end with it - just don't have any feel/distance control, tried so many different techniques ... and may actually take a lesson if I can't get some semblance of proficiency with it.        Anyways, my opinion is that if you want to be a very good player and are dedicated to it, sure, lessons will help you.      For me, if I can improve my putting dramatically, I think with the game I have now, high single digits are within reach in a year or two and thats all I realistically think I have in me ... but golf is a personal thing & I kinda like figuring it out myself with all the resources available to us today ...

post #8 of 42

Id say yes to lessons.  Golf is so much more fun when you can play well and you cant hope to fix your swing yourself if you dont at least know the basics.  Just remember to be patient and dont be afraid to try a different teacher if the first one you meet doesnt work for you.  Not all teachers are great and finding one who you like is important.

post #9 of 42

Based on your situation, I'd highly recommend the evolvr guys.  By doing video lessons instead of live, you not only save money, but you can squeeze it in whenever you want.  Just keep a camera with your golf stuff and if some time opens up in your schedule you can hit the range, take a video, and send it in later.  The convince and value cannot be beat.  

post #10 of 42

When I started did not have the money for lessons, 22 years ago and just married but  it was just a great game that I loved to play with friends. Years later played with a very large group each month and watched them and still did not have lessons but picked up so much just by playing with guys that where so much better then myself. Today I have my son in them once a week with a very young guy who is all about the swing and short game. I wanted him to have a better start then myself. His instructor does not just have him swinging at balls while standing behind him the whole time. They play on our home course a few holes each time to be in the real time. Then go to the range to swing, putt or chip. My son does not hit the ball far but deadly with his wedge and putter. Hitting the ball far that comes with time but proper mechanics of the swing is most important to this guy helping him.

Today older and maybe a little wiser i find that I have a good swing for the most part but just need a person to point out a few problems here and there to tighten it up that I can not see. That is what I use a lesson here and there for. One day I go to the range and work on just half swings, wedges, iron shots and some driving. I do no start at a wedge and work my way down each time I practice it is for a certain shot or club. When I do work the whole bag I start with one iron then switch to a different one and so on just like on the course. 

I am  not going to say that older instructors out there are not great but it is a business for them, so be careful on the one you pick to help you. Golf is not all about one club and swinging away at balls for an hour.

post #11 of 42

Golf lessons  can be very helpful, especially if you have an instructor who is competent.

 

On the other hand, understand what your pro will teach you...he'll try to show you how Tiger Woods hits the ball. But he won't thell you that Tiger spends 60 hours a week hitting balls to make that swing work. And he won't tell you that Tiger has had 4 different pros teach him 4 different swings. And in the end, you won't come close to hitting the ball like Tiger Woods.

 

Your pro won't teach you how to play the game of golf. There's more to the game than hitting the ball. There's strategy. And if you don't hit the ball liike Tiger, using Tiger's strategy won't help your scores.

 

If you're regularly scoring 95-105, you're hitting the ball well enough to be scoring 85!

 

Basic strategy for scoring better:

1. No more than two putts per green. 36 putts is par for a round of 18 holes. So practice putting.

2. Stay out of trouble. Don't even take a chance of hitting woods, water, even sand and rough. Always play the safest shot you can. Forget cutting doglegs. Stay in the faiurway.

3. Bogey is a GOOD score 17 bogeys and 1 lucky par equals 89! Forget birdies. They are Tiger's goal, but you don't play Tiger's game!

4.Forget Long Driving. A 200 yard drive in the fairway is better than a 300 yard drive in the woods or pond.

5. Learn to chip and putt. Near the green in regulation, on the green in one-over, and 2 putts is an easy bogey.

post #12 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Fields View Post

Golf lessons  can be very helpful, especially if you have an instructor who is competent.

 

On the other hand, understand what your pro will teach you...he'll try to show you how Tiger Woods hits the ball. But he won't thell you that Tiger spends 60 hours a week hitting balls to make that swing work. And he won't tell you that Tiger has had 4 different pros teach him 4 different swings. And in the end, you won't come close to hitting the ball like Tiger Woods.

 

Your pro won't teach you how to play the game of golf. There's more to the game than hitting the ball. There's strategy. And if you don't hit the ball liike Tiger, using Tiger's strategy won't help your scores.

 

Pretty harsh words from a 16 handicapper's first post.

post #13 of 42

Golf lessons can be a good thing.  I've had some really good golf instruction that has helped my game, some really good instruction that hasn't helped my game and, unfortunately, some really good golf instruction that has actually hurt my game.  The trick is to get the right instruction for you.  Viewing videos, reading periodicals and books, buying DVD's etc may be interesting but they don't necessarily help you unless they are right for you.  A good golf instructor will take the time to understand your goals and abilities and tie them to a realistic lesson plan that will help you swing better, play better and have more fun.  I'd find a good local golf professional to help you.  First, sit down with him or her and find out how they teach.  If they have a good reputation,  listen to you and ask questions about where you are with your game and where you want to go with it, chances are you will improve.

 

Also, there is a golf site I'm aware of that is in the development process.  It's not much currently but I am told it will be excellent in the next 90 days.  It's called Prescription Golf.  You will be able to go to rx-golf and just like a Doctor's office, fill out a profile about yourself.  As a result you will receive pointed instruction based upon your profile.  If it as good as I am told it will be, you will want to take a look.

post #14 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by gsquare View Post

 

Also, there is a golf site I'm aware of that is in the development process.  It's not much currently but I am told it will be excellent in the next 90 days.  It's called Prescription Golf.  You will be able to go to [] and just like a Doctor's office, fill out a profile about yourself.  As a result you will receive pointed instruction based upon your profile.  If it as good as I am told it will be, you will want to take a look.

 

g2

Does the gsquare refer to Gerry Graham, who is president of the company who runs the above website?  If so, just tell us. You don't have to say "I am told" it will be excellent.  You won't lose credibility that way. BTW, the rx-golf site doesn't look too bad.

post #15 of 42

Harmonious,

 

You're right, it sounds like an amateur giving tips to a pro. Pappy always told me, "Never bet against a man at HIS game."

 

I'm 76 years old, have played golf for 62 years, was a 6 handicap who regularly broke 80. But in my profile they asked what my handicap is today, not what I used to do. 

 

I shot a 79 last April. But I don't play much any more. That 79 was shot on a 6600 yard course, hitting 175 yard drives.

 

However, I do admit to one area of ignorance. What is an Avatar?

 

And if you want to know more about me, look me up on Google under Fred Fields, Golf

 

Fred Fields

post #16 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by gsquare View Post

Also, there is a golf site I'm aware of that is in the development process.  It's not much currently but I am told it will be excellent in the next 90 days.  It's called Prescription Golf.  You will be able to go to [] and just like a Doctor's office, fill out a profile about yourself.  As a result you will receive pointed instruction based upon your profile.  If it as good as I am told it will be, you will want to take a look.

 

g2

 

Your doctor gives you medical advice based on a profile you fill out? 

post #17 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Fields View Post

However, I do admit to one area of ignorance. What is an Avatar?

 

 

Its the picture associate with your account.  Mine is the picture of the dreaded Mangina trophy.  Hacker101's is the guy from Dexter, etc.  You don't appear to have one set up, but you can upload one through your account settings.

post #18 of 42

Fred i assume that this is not you!

Fields, Fred 88 Nov. 12, 1923 Dec. 13, 2011 Fred W. Fields was born Nov. 12.

 

As for my Avatar not sure how I got that one unless my son did it?

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