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Please Evaluate My "Bogey" Game

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I'm hoping I could receive some insight about my golf game. I realize without seeing my swing and seeing me play in person that this might be difficult, but I hope my summary can allow some constructive feedback.

 

Age: 23

Location: Cleveland, OH

Experience: 2 summers of golf play (average 10 rounds per golf season)

Equipment: Top-Flite XL2000 complete set

Average score: Low-Mid 90's

Weaknesses:  See below...

 

Driver = typically ball travels 80% straight then the remaining 20% slices to the right and I'm usually in the rough, in the trees, or worse the other fairway. I drive the ball no more than 250 yards on a good drive. Honestly, I feel the driver I have is too whippy. I recently have been leaving my driver in the bag and using my 3 wood off the tee. This is a steel shaft and I do not slice as often or badly with the stiffer set up, however my distance suffers 20-30 yards.

 

Irons = I know where I want to place the ball and my distance is spot on, but I usually miss my target right with the occasional left. I will be pin high, but I will be far from the pin or off the green all together, then have to chip on.

 

Wedges = No backspin whatsoever, so my ball usually runs past the area I would like it to stay. I have adjusted to this by simply aiming before my ideal area and letting the ball roll up to it. I prefer my PW over my SW around the green, just because I hit it better.

 

Putting = Actually my strong area. I read the greens very well and typically 2 putt, which from where my balls land on the green, is good in my opinion. Usually it will be a long putt to get the ball closer to the hole and then a under 5 footer to sink it.

 

Random Notes:

 

1) I'm a sweeper. I rarely take divots. When I do it's always before the ball, which I know is not correct

 

2) I usually make good ball contact, but I will admit...I do occasionally hit the ball fat or thin. Maybe 2-3 times per round, then hit it solidly the next shot to make up for the miss-hit.

 

3) My father who consistently shoots in the high 70's - low 80's believes my lack of ball control and consistency is from my grip. I'm a right handed golfer and he always comments how my bottom hand looks out of place.

 

4) My father describes me as a player that plays "bogey golf" meaning I will usually bogey holes with the occasional par and occasional double bogey.

 

5) I seem to make the game harder on myself than it needs to be. For example, I will drive the ball off the tee into the trees, I will then punch the ball under the trees up to the green, I will chip or pitch on, and then one or two putt for a par/bogey. I always think to myself "If only I drove the ball into the fairway and then hit a solid iron shot, I could birdie or par the hole.

 

6) I do not practice enough. I need to consistently hit the range and work on ball control.

 

7) I am beginning to think the clubs I currently have are negatively affecting my game. I am looking to get professionally fitted and purchasing my quality equipment that fits me and my swing. I do not know my numbers regarding swing speed, ball speed, length, loft, lie angle, ideal shaft flex, etc

 

Overall Goal: Next summer, I want to shoot in the low 80's on a consistent basis. I know I can lower my score significantly if I know where the ball is going when I hit it. Right now, it's a "I hope it doesn't go right" kind of mentality.

 

Please share your thoughts regarding my game. I appreciate your insight and I will answer any questions you might have.

 

Thank you!

post #2 of 17

at your age, resist the temptation to hit the piss out of it ... keeping the ball on the fairways is paramount - distance is secondary.    Even if you can hit it far doesn't mean you should.      Develop a nice easy tempo swing (I like a slow backswing to keep all the moving parts in the right places & accelerate hard on the downswing).    You gotta play more if possible though - 10 rounds a season will be very tough to lower your score.      Gotta play smart too ... instead of that low probability hero shot that we might make 1 out of 2 times, pitch it back on the fairway & make bogie instead of triple - its about knowing when to take your medicine.   To get below 90, can't have  OB shots  - gotta have more par's than doubles to break 90.     Keep it in the short grass & you'll get to the 80's ... heck, I'm there & am a ghastly putter - you have that up on me.

post #3 of 17
I don't think hiting the fairway is was important as he is saying, whats more important it putting it in ob, hazards, or under trees. When I was shooting 90 I worked a little on my driving and putting. For you I reccomend chipping and driving. If you can get yourself to 1 very poor drive per round and maybe get up and down almost half the time you should be shooting 80s
post #4 of 17
You need to post a swing vid and or seek out guidance from people who know WTF they're talking about. Do this first before you do anything else. Gl
post #5 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by theworldengine View Post

You need to post a swing vid and or seek out guidance from people who know WTF they're talking about. Do this first before you do anything else. Gl

 

Yes pretty tough to help you if we can't see the swing.  Post here

 

http://thesandtrap.com/f/4180/member-swings

post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by nick1998bunker View Post

I don't think hiting the fairway is was important as he is saying, whats more important it putting it in ob, hazards, or under trees. When I was shooting 90 I worked a little on my driving and putting. For you I reccomend chipping and driving. If you can get yourself to 1 very poor drive per round and maybe get up and down almost half the time you should be shooting 80s

 

I completely disagree with this.  Staying in the fairways shaved more strokes off my rounds than anything else I did this year.  Unless you're playing the creampuff courses where the rough is half an inch taller than the fairway you'll most likely have to hit a shorter club than if you were planning, swing harder and make yourself less accurate, and possibly still be short or wide and have an up and down situation anyway.  If there was one thing about course management that surprised me the most this year it was learning how much of a penalty being in the rough is eventhough it isn't formally labeled one.

post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Strandly View Post
 

 

I completely disagree with this.  Staying in the fairways shaved more strokes off my rounds than anything else I did this year.  Unless you're playing the creampuff courses where the rough is half an inch taller than the fairway you'll most likely have to hit a shorter club than if you were planning, swing harder and make yourself less accurate, and possibly still be short or wide and have an up and down situation anyway.  If there was one thing about course management that surprised me the most this year it was learning how much of a penalty being in the rough is eventhough it isn't formally labeled one.

 

I agree with you Strandly. I shot an 89 on Tuesday that I was pretty proud of. The course was not very forgiving off the tee, and upon reflection I realized I had to "punch out" 9 times. Had I given myself a chance for GIRs I probably could have converted 9 of those "punch outs" to 4-5 shots saved or more.

post #8 of 17

I agree with your idea to upgrage your equipment. I played a set of adams tight lies I picked up for 150 bucks, 4h-pw for about two years, working on my fundamentals when equipment wouldn't matter. However, this year, I picked up a set of burner 2.0 stiff shafts, (adams were uniflex) and saw an instant difference. I gained 20 yards with every iron, better ball control and consistent trajectory. But I think the big difference was I now was able to hit a 7 iron where I was hitting a 5 iron before and so on. That enabled me to take 3 wood off the tee to control the tee shot better, and be more confident in myself. Get fitted and see if the difference is worth it.

post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Strandly View Post

I completely disagree with this.  Staying in the fairways shaved more strokes off my rounds than anything else I did this year.  Unless you're playing the creampuff courses where the rough is half an inch taller than the fairway you'll most likely have to hit a shorter club than if you were planning, swing harder and make yourself less accurate, and possibly still be short or wide and have an up and down situation anyway.  If there was one thing about course management that surprised me the most this year it was learning how much of a penalty being in the rough is eventhough it isn't formally labeled one.
What is tigers average fir? The number 1 player in the world? Going in the rough dosnt make it much harder to hit the green and dosnt cost any strokes whereas punching out or hazards do
post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by nick1998bunker View Post


What is tigers average fir? The number 1 player in the world? Going in the rough dosnt make it much harder to hit the green and dosnt cost any strokes whereas punching out or hazards do

Tiger, as well as most PGA Tour players, are just stronger than the average golfer, so yes, it probably affects them less, but it still costs them strokes (probably less than 1.0, but I'm not a golf stats guy).

 

Putting the ball in the rough vs the fairway brings in a bunch of lie variables most golfers don't account for. Is it a flier? Is it buried? How will it affect spin and contact? Generally speaking, putting any varying amount of grass between one's clubface and ball will have adverse effects on consistency.

 

Try it in a practice round one day. For every shot you miss the fairway, drop a ball in the fairway no closer to the hole and keep both scores. Include your hazard/punch out shots in both scores so you effectively are only replacing your scoring shots from the rough with ones from the fairways. You might be surprised at the results and learn a thing or two (not how to hit the ball in the fairway more often, mind you, but if you do, let me know?).

post #11 of 17

This is a silly argument - of course hitting fairways is paramount.  Who would rather hit a long iron/hybrid out of the rough than a fairway?     A greenside chip from the first cut rather than the rough ?    HItting out of the rough introduces all kinds of potential trouble (flier lies, difficulty judging distances, lack of spin, intentionally changing swing mechanics to swing far steeper to get at a ball that's sitting down in the rough, etc) ... advising someone struggling to lower their handicap that hitting fairways is not paramount is simply bad advice.     On the other hand, for the best players, distance may be their focus, as they can recover from the rough - but this is not the case for someone trying to improve their bogey game.

post #12 of 17
The rough does not really affect me. But that is just me. I just try and make sure I don't have tree trouble or penalty strokes. And if fairway was end all be all then why did they invent the driver
post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by nick1998bunker View Post

The rough does not really affect me. But that is just me. I just try and make sure I don't have tree trouble or penalty strokes. And if fairway was end all be all then why did they invent the driver

 

If the rough doesn't bother you then I guarantee you aren't playing the same courses I am because these places have grass that is so tall it falls over and absolutely buries your ball if you land one in it.  In fact you can't even find a ball unless you happen to step on it.  And what do fairways have to do with inventing a driver?

post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Strandly View Post

If the rough doesn't bother you then I guarantee you aren't playing the same courses I am because these places have grass that is so tall it falls over and absolutely buries your ball if you land one in it.  In fact you can't even find a ball unless you happen to step on it.  And what do fairways have to do with inventing a driver?
Most courses are that way. Some of the shorter ones have long rough but you are supposed to hit irons off the tees. And I'm not really sure what I was talking about but I think it was that if hitting the fairway was end all be all than they wouldn't bother with clubs that went far, just ones that go dead straight
post #15 of 17

Your driver doesn't go straight?

post #16 of 17

I am pretty confident that you swing across the ball based on your ball flight (starts straight but slices, so your club is probably square and your swing is going left of your target), but to get any meaningful advice on how to correct this, you will have to listen to these guys.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by theworldengine View Post

You need to post a swing vid and or seek out guidance from people who know WTF they're talking about. Do this first before you do anything else. Gl

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post
 

 

Yes pretty tough to help you if we can't see the swing.  Post here

 

http://thesandtrap.com/f/4180/member-swings

post #17 of 17

So... as the original poster can see, there are many opinions about the goodness and level of badness of being in the fairway.  Perhaps a slightly different criteria: keeping your shots out of trouble is really important.  Where I usually play most of the holes have water running laterally down at least one side of the fairway.  Along the other are often closely planted trees.  Between the fairway and water/woods is generally a strip of "rough" that the world doesn't come to an end if you find yourself in.  The water speaks for itself.  If you're in the woods, you will probably have to punch out and try to recover.  Either of those options are bad and you are all of a sudden hoping to finish the hole with a bogey.  Being in the fairway is the solution to that badness.

 

Playing "bogey golf" isn't really all that bad, better really than what is reported to be the average game of the average player out there, but people that are happy with that level of play don't hang out on forums like this.  Posting your swing will get you a lot of help.  It also sounds like maybe your dad could be a resource.  He doesn't seem to be happy with your grip; have you tried his suggestions?  Getting lessons from a teaching pro will help most if you have anyone decent in your area and can get past the cost.  That person can help you a lot with suggestions about upgraded clubs and the like also.  Getting your swing stabilized would be good before buying clubs.

 

To improve much, you will need to commit to practicing and playing more than ten rounds in a season.  Golf isn't easy, and beyond about the level of bogey golf you will need to really sort of knuckle down and work at it some.  Natural ability will, of course, help dictate how much work you need, but shooting in the low 80s regularly will not happen without it.  Practice the putting and inside 100 yard game a lot!

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