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How many keys (5SK) to really start enjoying golf? - Page 2

post #19 of 66
I don't think enjoying golf is about keys, but more about state of mind, as some others have mentioned.

I know guys who shoot in the 70s who aren't as happy as guys who score in the 90s.

Personally, I enjoy the game much more now, even though my scores haven't improved much in the few years. For me, it is the enjoyment of the game that led me to improve, not the other way around.
post #20 of 66

There are a couple of problems with this question, not the least of which is that the vast majority of golfers, even those on this site, unless they're working with a 5SK instructor, have no idea how many, or what % of each key they're hitting.

 

Perhaps a better measure for the average golfer would be to ask at what scoring level did they start to really enjoy the game.

 

Regardless though, for me it was from almost the first time a club was placed in my hand.  Sadly, as I got better, my enjoyment of individual rounds became more dependent on my score, not less.  In other words, as a rank beginner, every round was fun.  Now, rounds in which I play poorly, are miserable.

post #21 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

The topic is how many keys to really start to enjoy the game?

Everyone has been more concerned about making progress towards the single digits or scratch, I just wondered how many people care more about having fun and enjoying a shank free round (not perfect strikes, but serviceable) more than getting "better" for betters sake.

So, my progress has been very positive for the last three and a half months. My key 3 suffered all of 1 week when I changed my woods to really heavy ones because my wrists were getting stronger. Once this was fixed my golfing has never really been better.

With just roughly 2 keys under my belt (0.9 for key 1; 0.75 for key 2 and 0.35 for key 3 on the course; http://thesandtrap.com/t/67014/keys-vs-handicap-share-your-data#post_844167), I have found that I am really getting onto or near the greens with much more reliability than before this in turn makes the game much more enjoyable.

I did not post or really score my last couple rounds with my son, but they were a couple of the most fun rounds I had. I hit the greens quite a few times, and am really starting to enjoy the game. My short game just kind of happened, although there is a lot of improvement to be made in this area with "Method of 12" and "Aimpoint", but it was good enough. I do not recall having anything more than one or two doubles in both rounds, and parred quite a few with nice relaxed up and downs.

Who else thinks this way, and at what point do you just start to enjoy the game?

It would be interesting to see the intersection of how many keys are attained and true enjoyment meet together.


Judging from many of your posts, I think the enjoyment of the game will come to you rather than you finding it thru over analyzing and micromanage the equipement, the swing, the data, the golf ball, your score, etc etc. . I do realise that some people of are wired this way and others are not. The enjoyment of the game will come in the form of pleasure of beng outside, getting fresh air, some excercise and company amongst friends or strangers.

There is no secret sauce or holy grail of a complexed spread sheet, a matrix or data that will determine if you enjoy something such as golf, enjoying golf is not measurable rather its an emotion an opinion if you will. So forget the 12 steps to nirvana, and other forms of happy horse $hit and set your expectations low, play a round of golf with 3 other people you don't know, perhaps 3 different abilities and watch, observe how they all love the game. For after all pleasure is standing on the first tee box for most of us.
post #22 of 66

If youre not going to use all 5 keys, whats the point?  Personally, I dont think you need ANY of the keys to enjoy the game.  5SK is fine if it works for you but its not as if no one enjoyed playing golf before it came along and theres plenty of very good golfers out there who dont subscribe to the 5SK system.

post #23 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post
 

If youre not going to use all 5 keys, whats the point?  Personally, I dont think you need ANY of the keys to enjoy the game.  5SK is fine if it works for you but its not as if no one enjoyed playing golf before it came along and theres plenty of very good golfers out there who dont subscribe to the 5SK system.


What I meant by the number of keys is the total sum of the fractions of the keys that you have attained. For example, if I say I am a 2 key golfer, it does not mean I keep my head steady and shift my weight forward and do none of the other keys.

 

There are plenty of golfers that do not explicitly subscribe to 5SK, but there is a strong correlation between my number of keys and skill level.

post #24 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post


What I meant by the number of keys is the total sum of the fractions of the keys that you have attained. For example, if I say I am a 2 key golfer, it does not mean I keep my head steady and shift my weight forward and do none of the other keys.

There are plenty of golfers that do not explicitly subscribe to 5SK, but there is a strong correlation between my number of keys and skill level.
I get what you're saying, but is your enjoyment of the game really linked to how good your swing is? Didn't you say you had a great time golfing with your son? I'm pretty sure you don't need any keys for that.
post #25 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by billchao View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post


What I meant by the number of keys is the total sum of the fractions of the keys that you have attained. For example, if I say I am a 2 key golfer, it does not mean I keep my head steady and shift my weight forward and do none of the other keys.

There are plenty of golfers that do not explicitly subscribe to 5SK, but there is a strong correlation between my number of keys and skill level.
I get what you're saying, but is your enjoyment of the game really linked to how good your swing is? Didn't you say you had a great time golfing with your son? I'm pretty sure you don't need any keys for that.

 

Sure, but I do like the feeling of striking the ball reasonably well. Judgement is another thing, if I pulled off the shot I intended, but it did not do the job it still feels good to me. If I score a 100+ round, it does not bother me as much as a severe mishit.

 

I think keys are related directly to my enjoyment of the game, because I don't like the feeling of a severe mishit. The minimum is somewhere around 1.5 keys and a nice to have is around 2. At my current level, getting close to the greens makes it enjoyable.

 

Not many people like hitting 4 to get on the green on a par 4, because most likely they shanked a shot or more. Some people don't let it get to them, but I am certain most people do not enjoy it.

 

What makes the game enjoyable versus a struggle?

post #26 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post
 

There are a couple of problems with this question, not the least of which is that the vast majority of golfers, even those on this site, unless they're working with a 5SK instructor, have no idea how many, or what % of each key they're hitting.

 

Perhaps a better measure for the average golfer would be to ask at what scoring level did they start to really enjoy the game.

 

Regardless though, for me it was from almost the first time a club was placed in my hand.  Sadly, as I got better, my enjoyment of individual rounds became more dependent on my score, not less.  In other words, as a rank beginner, every round was fun.  Now, rounds in which I play poorly, are miserable.

Very well said. I have done the due diligence (research) on 5SK but I do not work with a 5SK instructor and have no clue how many keys, percentage etc. That's not at all to say I could not get better from it and maybe should try it but if I were to answer the question it would definitely have to be based on a scoring level...

OP - When I first started playing almost 5 years ago, i was consistently in the 90s / low 100s. My swing has dramatically improved but guess what...I still have not broken 90. (I can talk forever about why I think that is). My enjoyment for the game goes up and down based on if I feel like I am getting closer to accomplishing my short term golf goal (breaking 90). That feeling of getting closer is usually score OR if (like lately) I can really narrow down what exactly I need to do to break 90 and have an understanding of where my biggest problem area is. (ex. off the tee / irons are in a place where I know I can break 90 but short game needs to get better).

 

I play a lot of 9 hole rounds on the same exact courses that I can not break 90 on...I will shoot scores like 42 on the front 9 on saturday and 43 on the back 9 on Sunday (have done this and similar scores often) - but ask me to do it all in one 18 hole round and the outcome is dramatically different - anyways those 9 hole rounds where I know if doubled up would be sub 90, make me feel great and remember how much fun and how amazing this game is...then I look at one of my buddies who might go home really upset because he shot a 78 and think to myself "Should I really even be happy about getting closer to breaking 90??" LOL but I guess it all depends on where you are at in your golf journey ;) Great thread btw!

post #27 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post

Not many people like hitting 4 to get on the green on a par 4, because most likely they shanked a shot or more. Some people don't let it get to them, but I am certain most people do not enjoy it.

What makes the game enjoyable versus a struggle?
I don't like it, but I'll forget about it. Much easier to do when you're having fun.

I've had rounds where I scored well and felt absolutely miserable the whole round trying to grind out a good score and I've had rounds where I scored like garbage and had a great time. I'll pick the latter any day of the week. When I stop enjoying golf, I'll stop playing.
post #28 of 66

Key #1: Steady Head. I think it's impossible to make good contact without this, so it's unlikely to ever result in a satisfying shot. That, and making a swing with head movement is physically unpleasant, it's like paying 40$ an afternoon to have a giant person shake your brain violently 90 or so times, resulting in distress, vertigo and whiplash. That is not fun and it no doubt results in anger on the part of the person being shaken. It would be like getting forced to do a few hours of zen archery vs full contact jousting. You might not love the zen archery but it's unlikely to result in anger. The jousting seems simple enough but getting hit by lances and not knowing how to ride a horse straight would piss anyone off. Such is the experience of starting out in golf. Also, you're not doing anything good with the ball from swinging like this, so you shoot 150+ too.

 

Key #2: Weight Forward. I'd say one of the most important keys for solid contact and distance. If you can't hit the ball off the ground, this is probably why; being able to hit shots off a tee is easy and requires little mastery of the swing. You can enjoy breaking 100 on a par 60 where you don't need any long approaches or demanding tee shots though. 

 

Key #3: Flat Left Wrist. Important, essential for power and proper impact, but you can still flip and hit a driver a somewhat respectable 220+ yards. Plus your ball goes high when you do this, so you can feel somewhat like you're hitting a proper shot. You could certainly have fun doing those things, however.

 

Key #4: Diagonal Sweet Spot Path. This one is important for building a big boy swing or a decent looking one, and it's unlikely to hit a straight shot without this. Yet I see so few people out there hitting straight shots so they must be finding a way to enjoy themselves. This one is important to have for a better player because you'd spray the ball and that's infuriating if you think you have a decent swing.

 

Key #5: Clubface Control. This is what makes strategy on the golf course possible if you have a decent swing. If you have this you can manage your misses a bit, so it can make your bad shots hurt your score less. If you can't control your start lines it can be infuriating but one can develop compensations to keep the ball on earth. You'll likely putt miserably though but being a terrible putter is excusable to most of the fellow golfers.

 

I'd say you need key #1 at least a decent amount of the time unless you're a masochist. Just the idiots telling you you moved your head after every shot, and there will be many (both idiots and shots), is enough to make anyone run himself over with a cart to end the misery. A dash of 2 and 3 are essential to hitting solid shots consistently, which any handicap golfer is hoping for. Some proficiency in 4 and 5 are needed unless you enjoy or tolerate looking for your ball every hole, but generally being inaccurate and/or short is acceptable to golfers, socially speaking. If you can't hit a solid shot and do nothing but duff it because you lurch violently on every shot, you'll do terribly and no one will want to be in your group. 

post #29 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by LuciusWooding View Post

Key #1: Steady Head. I think it's impossible to make good contact without this, so it's unlikely to ever result in a satisfying shot. That, and making a swing with head movement is physically unpleasant, it's like paying 40$ an afternoon to have a giant person shake your brain violently 90 or so times, resulting in distress, vertigo and whiplash. That is not fun and it no doubt results in anger on the part of the person being shaken. It would be like getting forced to do a few hours of zen archery vs full contact jousting. You might not love the zen archery but it's unlikely to result in anger. The jousting seems simple enough but getting hit by lances and not knowing how to ride a horse straight would piss anyone off. Such is the experience of starting out in golf. Also, you're not doing anything good with the ball from swinging like this, so you shoot 150+ too.

Key #2: Weight Forward. I'd say one of the most important keys for solid contact and distance. If you can't hit the ball off the ground, this is probably why; being able to hit shots off a tee is easy and requires little mastery of the swing. You can enjoy breaking 100 on a par 60 where you don't need any long approaches or demanding tee shots though. 

Key #3: Flat Left Wrist. Important, essential for power and proper impact, but you can still flip and hit a driver a somewhat respectable 220+ yards. Plus your ball goes high when you do this, so you can feel somewhat like you're hitting a proper shot. You could certainly have fun doing those things, however.

Key #4: Diagonal Sweet Spot Path. This one is important for building a big boy swing or a decent looking one, and it's unlikely to hit a straight shot without this. Yet I see so few people out there hitting straight shots so they must be finding a way to enjoy themselves. This one is important to have for a better player because you'd spray the ball and that's infuriating if you think you have a decent swing.

Key #5: Clubface Control. This is what makes strategy on the golf course possible if you have a decent swing. If you have this you can manage your misses a bit, so it can make your bad shots hurt your score less. If you can't control your start lines it can be infuriating but one can develop compensations to keep the ball on earth. You'll likely putt miserably though but being a terrible putter is excusable to most of the fellow golfers.

I'd say you need key #1 at least a decent amount of the time unless you're a masochist. Just the idiots telling you you moved your head after every shot, and there will be many (both idiots and shots), is enough to make anyone run himself over with a cart to end the misery. A dash of 2 and 3 are essential to hitting solid shots consistently, which any handicap golfer is hoping for. Some proficiency in 4 and 5 are needed unless you enjoy or tolerate looking for your ball every hole, but generally being inaccurate and/or short is acceptable to golfers, socially speaking. If you can't hit a solid shot and do nothing but duff it because you lurch violently on every shot, you'll do terribly and no one will want to be in your group. 


Be careful with the sweeping generalities.

You might be surprised by the creative solutions some of us develop to mitigate our swing flaws! a2_wink.gif
post #30 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post
 

If youre not going to use all 5 keys, whats the point?  Personally, I dont think you need ANY of the keys to enjoy the game.  5SK is fine if it works for you but its not as if no one enjoyed playing golf before it came along and theres plenty of very good golfers out there who dont subscribe to the 5SK system.


I haven't studied enough of the best golfers and checked their swings against the 5 keys to know how close they all come and how many (if any) don't do all 5 fairly well. Just from reading the 5 keys and going from the swings I have looked at very closely it seems they cover the 5 keys very well even though their swings are different.

 

I'm certain that any improvement in any of those keys would make me (and everybody else) a more consistent golfer.

 

That said, I'm never happy with my head movement but somehow manage to hit the ball fairly well anyway. That doesn't mean that I wouldn't do better if I fixed it though.

post #31 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post
 

Personally, I dont think you need ANY of the keys to enjoy the game.

Agreed.  There are plenty of horrible golfers out there who enjoy the crap out of it (me!) and, likewise, there are plenty of great golfers who seem like they get no enjoyment out of it.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GaijinGolfer View Post
 

5SK is fine if it works for you but its not as if no one enjoyed playing golf before it came along and theres plenty of very good golfers out there who dont subscribe to the 5SK system.

There are a couple of things wrong with this statement.  5SK never really "came along."  Every great golfer through time had the 5 keys.  And the good golfers you mention may not expressly "subscribe" to the 5SK, but they still have 'em.  Otherwise, they're not great golfers. ;)

post #32 of 66

In agreement with what Golfingdad wrote earlier, I think it's when you can see your game improving at least somewhat along a path that you have planned out, that the enjoyment factor comes in.

Last year I finally swallowed my pride and booked a series of lessons with my local pro. It's taken about a year and some regular work in the nets, but I finally feel like I own a golf swing that I am pleased with, and one where I can also see where improvements can be made. It's having a plan to improve, in baby steps, that keeps bringing me back to the practice mat.

But, just to get back on topic, for me the real enjoyment started coming when I got a handle on keys 1 & 3. Key 2 is the one I really want to own now, and is the focus of my practice at the moment.

post #33 of 66
Thread Starter 

Well, I just had the worst score in months on a new course I played. I played to about 1.5 keys (estimate). All but 2 drives were good. Actually, very good. My irons more than 100 yards were really bad. I could not hit longer than my PW, very well. Fortunate that there were only two cases where longer clubs were needed.

 

Yet because over 90% of the cause of my bad scoring was due to bad playing around the greens (which are really hard as compared to the normal courses I played), I really enjoyed the round. Need to get more backspin on the chips/pitches to hold the greens. Many of the shots I made would have stopped dead on my normal courses, but there was not enough spin for these hard smooth undulating greens. I felt like I was hitting the surface of a pool table, and putted off many of the greens with the slightest tap (in one case a 3" putting stroke).

 

All in all, I really enjoyed the round, because my driver tee shots were decent thanks to the few key (s?) I have.

post #34 of 66

I would like to know how y'all are evaluating your keys? 

post #35 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ernest Jones View Post

I would like to know how y'all are evaluating your keys? 

You need to evaluate while playing, by comparing them to a more ideal condition. For me, I use a grass driving range. The lie strongly affects your ability to get the keys.

For the first two keys, it's easy. If your head moved, it moved. If your weight does not transfer well your finish position pretty much tells it all.

When I practice on a grass driving range, I gauge how well I maintain the keys by the quality of the shots, and compare those to the shots I make on the course.

I know you don't really have an option for grass practice areas, during the winter, but the only real difference is fat shots on a mat can still feel good. You can still get feedback.
post #36 of 66
Quote:
 ~~I would like to know how y'all are evaluating your keys?

Practice into a net, using video. There is usually a reasonable difference between how my swing is, compared to how it feels.

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