Exactly my point David!
And some people still mistakenly believe that the long game isn't the most important part of golf. Sounds like we agree!
No. It's a fact. All of the short game in the world isn't going to save you without a long game. My scores maxed out long ago because of an inconsistent long game and I'll put my short game up against any of the guys that beat me regularly...It is only going to save me so many times, and will almost never win against the really good ball strikers.
Yes, but as pointed out in the two threads that have gone into great detail about the long game versus the short game and how to prioritize practice. If you have a glaring weakness then you need to work on it. Glaring weakness for a pro is such a small detail, its big for them because they are playing at a level were there is such marginal gains on strokes.
To say, "OH Lee Westwood has a good ball striking but poor short game". Well his short game is way better than most amateurs, and his ball striking is beyond an amateurs ability. Which one do you think Amateurs need to work on.
Its an easy answer, would you rather be putting, or would you rather be chipping or pitching? The old saying that you need to improve your short game basically guarantees you are going to be using your short game a lot. The other helps you make sure you don't need to use your short game. Which one is the best fix?
If your car was leaking oil, do you just keep putting in a quart of oil each time you fill up gas, or do you go get your leak fixed. Cause I rather have those leaks in my long game fixed so I don't need to be struggling on the golf course.
Yes recommend posting a few swings up. If you can hit it over 300 and straight then there is something going on when it comes to your irons and wedges.
Hitting the ball a long way is great and all but truthfully it's way overrated. Now don't get me wrong, if you can hit the ball 300 yards and hit 2 out of 3 fairways, it will be a great tool for you. However, that is only good for 12-13 shots per round. That leaves another 78 shots that you have to execute without the advantage of being a long driver. Good iron play is "the great equalizer" as I like to call it. I drive the ball about 260ish, maybe a little farther on a good day, and play with several guys that can out drive me by 20-30 yards. The best golfer I know personally though hits the ball about the same distance I do, if not a little shorter. He is so good with his irons though that it not only equalizes, but exceeds the advantage that the other golfers gain on their drive. Me and him almost always beat the guys who outdrive us because they hit their wedges to 30 feet and we hit our 8 irons inside 15-20 feet (my buddy inside 10 feet a lot of the time.)
The drive is a place where you don't typically gain a stroke assuming no one gets themself into trouble. The only situation where you may is if it puts you in a position to go for a shot that the other person couldn't due to being 30 yards farther back (carrying water, bunker, dogleg, etc.). All it boils down to is that you may hit an 8 iron into the green whereas I hit a 6. Sure, there is a scoring advantage there, but not if you aren't a good iron player. Golfers who are great iron players can typically hit their 6 iron closer than golfers who are known for being great drivers can hit their 8.
I guess what I'm getting at is if I were you, I wouldn't base my "potential" or "talent level" on my driver distance. If you can hit the ball 250 yards and can hit fairways, your drive is good enough to be a great golfer. An extra 50 yards on your drive isn't going to elevate your skill level near as much as a good short game will.
Its a fact for everybodys game..
FACT: More strokes can be gained due to long game vs. short game.
FACT: The long game is more important to your scoring.
FACT: Just because you are good at the long game does not make it less important.
It may make sense to take that approach with an absolute beginner to perhaps build a little confidence but I would think that the pro should move very quickly to the full swing.
Important to be clear that the long game isn't just bombing drives, it's every swing that uses full swing mechanics. When I'm 80 yards out I'll take a full swing with my 60*, in this definition that is long game***. I think some of the push back around this concept is the misunderstanding as to what qualifies as the long game, this becomes evident when people comment that hitting great drives only accounts for 14 strokes. The long game that Erik is referring to includes pretty much EVERY shot that isn't a chip, pitch, bunkershot or putt.
***Ironically if my long game didn't suck so much I wouldn't be hitting so many shots from 80 yards out.