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What do you need to play par? - Page 2  

post #19 of 166
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

The point people are making is that this advice you're offering means more and comes off better when you're not a bogey golfer.

Understood, but it shouldn't really make a difference who it's coming from.

 

I'll continue this thread once I've actually proven my point through my results!

post #20 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by pipergsm View Post

Knowing what my shortcomings are and doing something about it,

 

I get where you're coming from. I've always wondered how far accuracy can take you without the ability to hit long with each club so it's an interesting opinion. So much of my practice involves looking for that holy grail of more distance when I should be focusing on consistency and accuracy. My only disagreement with you - and I am by no means experienced - is that I believe one can get as skilled at hitting fairway woods and hybrids as they can any other club with enough practice.

 

I have to believe that the older golfers who can no longer hit far but still flirt with par would support your way of thinking.   

 

As far as the others calling you out, that's going to happen anytime you express an opinion or offer advice. Even if you're a scratch player, when you give advice you'd better be able to back it up. I would expect it from these guys because they know their stuff. It's not a bad thing. Personally, I believe its possible for someone with a high handicap to give good advice - even if it's a bit unorthodox. Just as someone with a low handicap can give poor advice even if they're teaching an established method (e.g. PGA pro instruction based on old ball flight laws). But you'll have to prove it. Use it as motivation and as soon as you make par, let everyone know. Good luck.

post #21 of 166
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JonMA1 View Post

 

I get where you're coming from. I've always wondered how far accuracy can take you without the ability to hit long with each club so it's an interesting opinion. So much of my practice involves looking for that holy grail of more distance when I should be focusing on consistency and accuracy. My only disagreement with you - and I am by no means experienced - is that I believe one can get as skilled at hitting fairway woods and hybrids as they can any other club with enough practice.

 

I have to believe that the older golfers who can no longer hit far but still flirt with par would support your way of thinking.   

 

As far as the others calling you out, that's going to happen anytime you express an opinion or offer advice. Even if you're a scratch player, when you give advice you'd better be able to back it up. I would expect it from these guys because they know their stuff. It's not a bad thing. Personally, I believe its possible for someone with a high handicap to give good advice - even if it's a bit unorthodox. Just as someone with a low handicap can give poor advice even if they're teaching an established method (e.g. PGA pro instruction based on old ball flight laws). But you'll have to prove it. Use it as motivation and as soon as you make par, let everyone know. Good luck.

Thanks for the reaction, I appreciate it!

And I really don't mind about the criticism, I try to learn from it. 

 

About the fairway woods and hybrids: I'm not saying you shouldn't try to master them.

At the contrary, every extra club and trick you master can only be of benefit to your game!

It's just that, in my experience (maybe I'm an exception?), they are more difficult to master than irons.

So far, I haven't tried very hard yet, but when I do try to play them, I can't hit a single ball decently!

That's why, for now, I don't try to play them and I don't waste my time on trying to master them.

I will do so, once I have fully depleted the abilities of my irons.

Being able to hit your 7-iron over 180 yards helps off course! :-)))

post #22 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by TourSpoon View Post

I can't wait for Shorty to weigh in. Get the popcorn ready. 

 

 

You are correct about one thing, accurate ball striking is the key to lowering scores. We have debated that ad naseum. But I have to agree with Mordan. Your distances are more akin to a high single digit handicapper, not someone who is going to get close to par. I don't have a lot of time to respond but some of this is ill advised. Let's just take putting. Your goal is not to get it within 6 feet because you are not going to make +70%. Justin Leonard is averaging 56.6% inside 5 feet and leads the Tour. Hitting driver-6-6 is not going to hit the green a high percentage of the time either. There are not too many guys that have the ability to shoot par that wouldn't at least consider hitting a hybrid versus not going above a 6 iron. You can avoid bunkers all you want, and maybe your up and down percentage is higher than your sand percentage, but if you want to lower your scores, you cannot be afraid of bunkers. To shoot par, you will need to birdie a couple of holes, and you need to have the ability to get aggressive. Laying up in front of a bunker is not going to yield many birdies. 

 

http://www.pgatour.com/content/pgatour/stats/stat.420.html

 

 

OK, I have misleading information about putting above. Justin Leonard is averaging 56.6% in one putt percentage from 5 feet. Does anyone know what that means really versus putts made from 5 feet? Is it the total percentage of his one putts occur within 5 feet 56% of the time? 

 

From 5 feet the make percentage leader on tour is David Lynn at 91.4% and YE Yang is at the bottom at 60.53%. 

 

http://www.pgatour.com/content/pgatour/stats/stat.343.html

 

Anyway to the OP, I think that you are using a strategic approach to play smart golf. This will help you lower your scores, which you have done. I just think that to get down to par level, you are going to have to take some chances at some point and be adept at being able to recover when things go awry. I think that most ams that can hit a 6 iron consistently would benefit and could successfully use a hybrid which would give them a great tool especially given its versatility and recovery aspects. Good luck and keep working hard. 

post #23 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonBrew View Post

In my opinion, that's the most important part of playing scratch. The biggest difference between a scratch golfer and myself is that he saves par more often than I do when we miss the green. 

Um... Don't mean to burst your bubble but there's a lot more difference than just that between you and a scratch. An 18 handicap is closer to being you than you are to being a scratch.
post #24 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post

Please take this in the spirit of helpfulness that's intended......    You might gain more credibility in your posts if you wait until you are a low handicapper, before trying to teach others how to become one.

So someone like say Haney or Foley (or even Harmon) would have more credibility when they wait until they are a 14 time Major Champion before trying to teach one?

 

No.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

I'll make it even simpler: to play good golf, you have to get the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible.

^ Well said.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

Um... Don't mean to burst your bubble but there's a lot more difference than just that between you and a scratch. An 18 handicap is closer to being you than you are to being a scratch.

There's one in every crowd.

post #25 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by minitour View Post

So someone like say Haney or Foley (or even Harmon) would have more credibility when they wait until they are a 14 time Major Champion before trying to teach one?

It's not a continuously sliding scale, but I think most students are going to have a lot more confidence in their teachers if they know that the teacher grasps the basic concepts.  While there are certainly people who can teach but not do, 18 handicappers, by and large, have likely not yet grasped those basic concepts ...

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by colin007 View Post

Um... Don't mean to burst your bubble but there's a lot more difference than just that between you and a scratch. An 18 handicap is closer to being you than you are to being a scratch.

I would like to respectfully disagree with this one. b2_tongue.gif  Call me delusional but I strongly believe I have a lot more in common with scratch golfers than I do with your average 18 capper. c2_beer.gif

post #26 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by pipergsm View Post

 

I just believe that many amateur golfers are not practicing the right way and focusing on the wrong things.

 

You seem well-intentioned, but I believe this sentence exemplifies where you begin to lose your audience.  There are folks here that are much, much better golfers than you and I, and even instructors that make a living on these forums.  They probably take exception to you stating, rather confidently, that amateur golfers aren't practicing the right way.

 

Now, that out of the way, I find the club-distance issue to be an odd one.  Sure, I don't need to drive it 300 to be good.  I don't need to hit my 7 iron 180 to make a par.  However, the larger point of this discussion appears to be something along the lines of, what is required to play scratch golf.  If I'm wrong, and you're only talking about shooting par, then maybe that's different.

 

However, if this is about playing scratch golf, then it should be pointed out that scratch means that you should have the ability to shoot the course rating from any given set of tees.  Why is that a big deal?  Because saying you only need to hit the driver 220 or 240 to be able to play par might be true...from a specific set of tees on a specific course.  So then the 10-handicap guy who finds the local muni with a 110 slope from the white tees, drains a few putts and shoots +1, can now call himself a scratch golfer.  But the reality is when he moves to the big boy course from the big boy tees, he will shoot +15, or whatever.  Both times, he was probably 10-12 strokes above the course rating, which is what the scratch golfer is theoretically capable of shooting on their good days.  

 

No, I'm not saying elite distance is required to shoot scratch (and I'm not saying it isn't either).  But, I find it hard to read the distances you listed and believe that that guy is a scratch golfer.  And if he does shoot par from the white tees on the 110 slope course, his next goal should be to move to the back tees, and then to a tougher course.

 

In fact, I can't remember where to find this (a quick glance of the USGA site didn't reveal it), but I am pretty sure that either the USGA or some other golf governing body used to explain the definitions of things like "slope" & "course rating" by describing the difference between bogey and scratch golfers, and they offered that a scratch golfer should be able to reach a 450 yard par 4 in regulation and I THOUGHT they either expressly stated or implied that roughly a 275-yard drive was a good benchmark.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by minitour View Post

So someone like say Haney or Foley (or even Harmon) would have more credibility when they wait until they are a 14 time Major Champion before trying to teach one?

 

You going for the reductio ad absurdum approach?  Haney and Foley aren't exactly teaching Tiger how to golf, anyway.  They are coaching.  Do you think Phil Jackson had to teach Jordan how to play basketball?  

 

But for many instructors, they may be literally teaching a novice who has aspirations of becoming a low handicap someday.  I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that requires significant knowledge that somebody who isn't good at golf doesn't possess.

post #27 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View PostIn fact, I can't remember where to find this (a quick glance of the USGA site didn't reveal it), but I am pretty sure that either the USGA or some other golf governing body used to explain the definitions of things like "slope" & "course rating" by describing the difference between bogey and scratch golfers, and they offered that a scratch golfer should be able to reach a 450 yard par 4 in regulation and I THOUGHT they either expressly stated or implied that roughly a 275-yard drive was a good benchmark.

 

USGA Ratings Primer

 

http://www.usga.org/Content.aspx?id=25369

post #28 of 166
Maybe the OP slept at a Holiday Inn the other night!
post #29 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

It's not a continuously sliding scale, but I think most students are going to have a lot more confidence in their teachers if they know that the teacher grasps the basic concepts.  While there are certainly people who can teach but not do, 18 handicappers, by and large, have likely not yet grasped those basic concepts ...

 

I would like to respectfully disagree with this one. b2_tongue.gif  Call me delusional but I strongly believe I have a lot more in common with scratch golfers than I do with your average 18 capper. c2_beer.gif

Yeah. I know it's harder to get from 8 to scratch than it is to get from 18 to 8, but I've played with some 18+ handicappers and I'd like to say we didn't share too much in common in regards to our golf game. 

post #30 of 166

My only "bogey free" round of golf in 24 years was 18 holes I played with nothing but irons.  Shot a -1, 71.  This was on a private course I had been playing for many years and at the time my handicap was 1.2.  

 

Granted, it wasn't the "lowest" round, just the only one without a bogey.  I was playing 1 round per week with nothing but irons working on my ball striking.  Oddly enough, it taught me a lot of strategy on that particular course and I started playing some of those holes with irons off the tee all of the time.

 

The most important lesson I learned was course management.  Being a good chipper and putter saves a lot of pars too.

 

So, in the end I think you have some solid concepts to build on revolving around ball striking, course management, and saving par.  You don't have to be the longest hitter to shoot a good score.

post #31 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post
Originally Posted by minitour View Post

So someone like say Haney or Foley (or even Harmon) would have more credibility when they wait until they are a 14 time Major Champion before trying to teach one?

 

You going for the reductio ad absurdum approach?

Where do you draw the line where skill is or isn't needed to teach?

 

...and why do you get to draw the line?

post #32 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by pipergsm View Post

WOW guys, please read exactly (and everything) what I write and interpret it the right way!!!

 

You have not interpreted what others have to say.

The problem is that we, as golfers, are not robots.

Just say that after years of trying to prove your theory to yourself and you actually arrive at the 16th tee at even par. The following, or something very similar will happen:

Hole 16: You will block your drive and then your hybrid will end up in a horrible lie in a fairway bunker. You walk off with a double bogey, even though you did well to get out of that bunker and onto the fairway. 

Hole17: You are worried that the par round you had imagined 15 minutes ago has vanished. The pin is up the back. You skull your second shot after a great drive, you then chunk a chip shot which rolls down the bank to your feet. Your brain has gone to mush so you belt your first putt from 12 feet 3 feet past, thinking that at least a bogey isn't that bad. Miss the comebacker. There's a triple

Hole 18: Easy par 4 but you snap hook your drive after thinking that at least 77 is your best score and you're making progress. You can't find it, you return to the tee and walk off with a triple bogey. You didn't even break 80. 

The pro asks you how you did and you realise after 20 seconds that he's not interested in what you MIGHT or COULD have had. You actually didn't break 80. Never mind that you were even after 15 holes. It's an 18 hole game.

 

You may as well say that a pro only has to hit 3 wood off each tee, have a good short game and make a few putts and he'll always be around par and make more cuts that he misses and make an easy $million each year.

 

Our game doesn't work that way.

post #33 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shorty View Post

You have not interpreted what others have to say.
The problem is that we, as golfers, are not robots.
Just say that after years of trying to prove your theory to yourself and you actually arrive at the 16th tee at even par. The following, or something very similar will happen:
Hole 16: You will block your drive and then your hybrid will end up in a horrible lie in a fairway bunker. You walk off with a double bogey, even though you did well to get out of that bunker and onto the fairway. 
Hole17: You are worried that the par round you had imagined 15 minutes ago has vanished. The pin is up the back. You skull your second shot after a great drive, you then chunk a chip shot which rolls down the bank to your feet. Your brain has gone to mush so you belt your first putt from 12 feet 3 feet past, thinking that at least a bogey isn't that bad. Miss the comebacker. There's a triple
Hole 18: Easy par 4 but you snap hook your drive after thinking that at least 77 is your best score and you're making progress. You can't find it, you return to the tee and walk off with a triple bogey. You didn't even break 80. 
The pro asks you how you did and you realise after 20 seconds that he's not interested in what you MIGHT or COULD have had. You actually didn't break 80. Never mind that you were even after 15 holes. It's an 18 hole game.

You may as well say that a pro only has to hit 3 wood off each tee, have a good short game and make a few putts and he'll always be around par and make more cuts that he misses and make an easy $million each year.

Our game doesn't work that way.

You've obviously followed me around the course before......

Btw......while I appreciate the symbolism of the new avatar, I miss the damn cat! a2_wink.gif
post #34 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by minitour View Post

Where do you draw the line where skill is or isn't needed to teach?

 

...and why do you get to draw the line?

 

Probably the small area between reasonableness and idiocy.  

 

...ask yourself, since you're the one with the reading comprehension that allowed you to infer that.  I tell you what, though.  Go ahead and entertain me with your rationale as to why a bad golfer can be effective in coaching a golfer to scratch, if that is indeed your position.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave2512 View Post

 

USGA Ratings Primer

 

http://www.usga.org/Content.aspx?id=25369

 

Thanks for that.  So the respective numbers were 250 and 470.

post #35 of 166
A higher handicap opinion. These strategies are all well and good but they rely on perfect ballstriking. I mean if you can hit the ball that well why wouldn't you have the ability to go for greens in 2.

The kind of approach the OP mentions works for a mid handicap protecting a score but for those of us not at a high level it is imperative we hit the ball more consistently more often before we can even think about scoring well.

Its my belief that if you practice certain shots then the score will reflect your current ability. I have an approach to holes depending on length and hazards etc... but I'm not shooting the score I should be because of the errors I make.

I'm convinced you can't take the long game out of the equation if you want to be a scratch player. You will struggle if you can't hit a certain length. Also course difficulty is a big factor too agree there.
post #36 of 166
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post

...ask yourself, since you're the one with the reading comprehension that allowed you to infer that.  I tell you what, though.  Go ahead and entertain me with your rationale as to why a bad golfer can be effective in coaching a golfer to scratch, if that is indeed your position.

How the hell would I know?  You guys are the ones making up the rules on when skill is and isn't required to be able to teach someone.  That's why I asked you the question.

 

Again, I'll state it one more time so that you get two shots at comprehending this yourself.  You are the one making up the rules on the whole "you have to be xyz good to teach, but not abc caliber students" deal, not me.  I'm simply trying to understand your rationalization for such claims.  I made no claims other than to point out that one does not need to possess superior skills in order to teach somebody something.

 

To answer your rhetorical, no, Jackson probably didn't teach Jordan a lot.  Do you think Jackson had a role in teaching any of his players anything, or at that point is the coach just a figurehead?

 

Since you asked about Jackson, and you have the knowledge, I'm curious...  Do you think Haney, Foley, Harmon, Smith, etc. have a role in teaching any TOUR player anything or at that point (actual PGA TOUR players) are they just a figurehead standing there watching them hit balls and saying "looks good"?

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