At the advisement of iacas, I took the plunge and signed up for the evolvr.com monthly subscription. I uploaded a couple videos I recorded today to get the ball rolling (pun intended). So I wanted to share a record, a blog so-to-speak, of my progress, in case someone else who visits these forums was interested in the journey and the results.
I'm 33, I've been playing for 14 years. I'm 5'9" and 100 pounds overweight, which is probably causing my back pain, but I'm on a diet and exercise plan, so hopefully that goes away soon. I have had only a handful of in-person instruction sessions with a few different instructors, but it's been at least 8 years since the last one. Other than that I've tried to improve my game piecemeal through putting knowledge (occassional watching the Golf Channel, reading forums, books, and magazines) into practice. Though I'm not really hard-core about all that, I can be seen on the driving range with a video camera from time to time.
My index is 17.4 right now, the highest it's been in 7 years. At this time last year it was at its low of 12.3. I belong to the Men's Club of a nearby public course, where I participate in around 10 group and individual tournaments per year. I don't really win any money, but that's because I don't sandbag (is he joking?). I probably play 20 to 25 rounds per year. Here in Colorado, the golf season is only about 6 months long, so in the winter you spend a lot of time doing drills in your livingroom, and only actually playing 1-2 rounds when the snow clears if you're lucky. Needless to say it's easy to get rusty here. Since it's golf season, I'm hoping to get into the habit of either playing or practicing at least twice per week. Would love to do more, but I got a job, wife, and a kid to otherwise occupy my time.
Living in Colorado does have its advantages: playing at 5,000 to 6,000 feet every round makes me feel like The Hulk (estimated distances for decent contact):
Driver: 240-250 yards
3-hybrid: 210 yards
4-hybrid: 200 yards
5-hybrid: 190 yards
6-iron: 180 yards
7-iron: 170 yards
8-iron: 160 yards
9-iron: 150 yards
PW: 140 yards
AW: 120 yards (approach wedge?)
54 degree wedge: 90 yards
60 degree wedge: 70 yards
Notice the lack of a long wood, and the gaps in the wedges. I have yet to find a long wood that I would hit more consistently off the tee box than my driver. As for the wedges, any shot between 95 and 135 yards and I'm screwed. I haven't hit a good AW in over a year, and I don't seem to have any luck hitting my PW or AW at partial strength.
My natural ball-flight is a slight over-the-top fade, often a little heavy, so when I'm on the course or the range I try hard to fight it and hit a draw instead. Unfortunately going against my natural swing produces inconsistent results. Sometimes I hit a beautiful high draw, sometimes I hit a push fade off the toe, and sometimes I just hit it plain fat. As a matter of fact, fat shots infest my pitching game too.
Frankly I believe the greatest room for improvement in my game is shots within 50 yards. I've been keeping detailed stats for years now, and my numbers indicate that just over 50% of my strokes come from within 50 yards, including pitches, chips, and putts. I hit about 35.1 putts per round, and about 19.9 pitches and chips per round. So if I want to shoot lower scores that has to be the best place for me to improve. However my stats also indicate that if I hit the green in regulation, I'm going to get a par over 80% of the time, so I could stand to use some long-game improvement too. And, hey, if I hit more GIRs, that means fewer short game shots per round.
Anyway that's my background. Once I get feedback from the Evolvr folks and work my way toward the Stupid Monkey badge, I'll give another update.