or Connect
TheSandTrap.com › Golf Forum › The Practice Range › Instruction and Playing Tips › Stop Aiming at the Flag!!!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Stop Aiming at the Flag!!! - Page 11

post #181 of 377

BTW, what's up with a tree line right in front of the green!?

post #182 of 377

Thanks mdl. Truth is we're not really all that far apart :) But you're a statistician by trade, I'm a golfer who plays very much by feel and instinct.

 

My 'trade' as it happens was air traffic controller (but currently playing golf full time). In what we term 'tactical' air traffic (I was a military controller) there are numerous ways of getting aircraft sequenced and into an airfield - no two controllers will do it the same. A good controller has a little 'flair' and will trust his instinct to find gaps, assess closing speeds and get everyone on the ground as quickly as possible (military jets have a nasty habit of running low on fuel :) ). An average controller will follow the book, do everything as a computer would and get the job done....... but it lacked something and no matter what the book said, it never actually got the planes on the ground as quickly. I was an examiner and ran my own tower, I'd like to think I fell into the former category (though no where near as good as a couple of the guys I could mention).

 

I once saw a group of vids where Anthony Kim was doing a clinic with Tiger shortly after Anthony became a Nike Staff Player. It's on Youtube and worth a watch. When guys ask Tiger how far he hits a sand wedge he answered straight off 117 yards, although in a later clinic he says it's dropped to 115. When they ask Anthony he says he doesn't know, sometimes its 100, sometimes 115, normally in between, but it kind of depends on the day. He says he sort of sees how he's feeling and goes with his instincts and feels his way around a course.

 

Tiger is the epitome of one type of player, Anthony Kim is the laid back epitome of another.

 

Looking at this subject - where do you aim on a green from a given yardage, this is what I do. I look at the green and look at the least bad miss. Let's say right is fine, left is a no go. I look at the yardage and decide how 'brave' I want to be - let's say the wind is calm, I'm 150 out (a yardage I happen to like) and I'm striking it well. Lastly I look at the pin (and I guess that's where we are pretty close in our approach - it's the last thing I look at). My initial thought may have pushed me over to the right of the green but if the pin is tucked in to the left, from 150 out I may err a fraction left of centre. It's kind of a moving calculation. Topography, position of pin, yardage, wind (not just for initial aim but for final target as my slight draw will hold well into a left to right wind, not so clever with a right to left and I prefer to hit a draw, so if I get it wrong the error will generally be greater...) and I'll have an idea how I'm striking it that day. It all plays a part in deciding how close I shoot to the flag. And it'll be different every time.

 

I think there's room in the game for both a scientific approach and a more varied, instinctive one. The game has seen players like Seve who take on the most barking mad of shots, sometimes pulling them off, sometimes failing miserably, but it was fun to watch him try. I actually don't think Seve would have been more successful if he had played the game 'by the numbers', I think his flair was his strength but we could debate that all day.

post #183 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by saevel25 View Post

 

Apparently you didn't read what was posted. It isn't were you aim, it is were the ball ends up. What is being advocated is the ball ending up in the center. Most people play a fade or a draw, that means they will not be aiming at the center, yet the ball will get there.

 

No I did. On this hole if you try to stop your ball in the middle of the green, it's between 2 deep bunkers and on a steep downslope - the tier runs between the 2 bunkers. So say the flag is at the back and you aim to stop your ball in the middle of the green, firstly you can't - it's on a steep downslope. Secondly if you aim just over the tier and you're a yard or 2 short or you've got some backspin your ball catches that slope which will roll it 30 or 40 yards back down the hill and off the front of the green, and thirdly you're trying to stop your ball between the 2 bunkers. The smart play for a flag at the back is shoot at the flag erring on the long side and accept a short chip it you balls it up rather than a pitch from miles away off the front of the green which if you get it short has the ball rolling back down the hill and back to your feet (personal experience :) )

 

It was just an example of a time when other things might outweigh any ideas about shooting at the middle of a green - the topography kind of outweighs it at times on this hole (depending on flag location.

 

Regarding your last point mdl, sorry, I was looking at 'middle of the green' being a distance thing, not just a left/right thing.

post #184 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

BTW, what's up with a tree line right in front of the green!?

Nothing at all, it just comes into play for a front pin, not so much into wind where you fire it higher and drop it steeper. Not really a massive factor in this as it'd probably encourage you to play past a front pin and more toward the centre :)

post #185 of 377

Please multiquote when possible, @Nosevi. Thank you.

 

Also, I added a lot to my post before. It may be worth going back to look at it, about five or six posts ago.

post #186 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosevi View Post
 

Thanks mdl. Truth is we're not really all that far apart :) But you're a statistician by trade, I'm a golfer who plays very much by feel and instinct.

 

...

 

Lastly I look at the pin (and I guess that's where we are pretty close in our approach - it's the last thing I look at). My initial thought may have pushed me over to the right of the green but if the pin is tucked in to the left, from 150 out I may err a fraction left of centre. It's kind of a moving calculation. 

 

On the course I actually tend towards feeling it out as well.  I just like looking at the numbers off the course to know where I should bias my feel.  The 2nd graph above is the point I've been trying to argue against (i.e. not arguing for aiming for the geometric center of every green).

 

My feeling after thinking about it and doing the analysis I did is that if you think it's smart and reasonable to aim pin high, and then look at the layout, the conditions, and your game that day and decide that, say, targeting 15' right of center is the best combination of maximizing GIR and minimizing risk of ending up in huge trouble left, then that's where you should aim regardless of where the flag is left to right.

 

This is where I think the math trumps the feel.  This isn't a high speed complex problem like military air traffic control where the human mind's pattern recognition still outperforms an algorithm (for now!). It's a simple calculation to find that the small extra chance of birdie that you gain by shifting your target to 5' left of center because of the left pin is almost guaranteed to cost you strokes because you'll lose way more strokes by increasing your chances of getting in big trouble left than you will gain by slightly increasing your chances of a birdie.

post #187 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
 

Please multiquote when possible, @Nosevi. Thank you.

 

Also, I added a lot to my post before. It may be worth going back to look at it, about five or six posts ago.

I just have, sorry for not noticing it :) "Multiquote"....... I'll get the hang of it eventually but please bear with me, this forum runs on different software to ones I usually go on (certain type of car I have) and it works a little differently. But also sometimes I'm just getting 'code' when I hit quote but doing my best.

 

I guess to answer much of what you wrote, I was basing my initial thoughts and subsequent responces to the first post in the thread. Basically..

 

"If your handicap is over 20 aim at the dead center of the green any time you are more than 60 yards from the flag. If it is between 11-20, aim at the dead center of the green any time you are further than 80 yards from the hole. If you are reading this and carrying a handicap 10 or lower… but you are not playing a major tour currently… let's aim at center of the green from anywhere 100 yards and further from the hole."

 

That was what I was mostly commenting on. The more we have talked about it the more grey it has become (and I mean that in a good way). What I was saying was there are multiple factors that influence where I'm going to aim, or aim to stop my ball, on a green. I'm not really sure anyone is disagreeing.

post #188 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

@mdl can speak to it more accurately than I can, but I think he simply used the formulas to show how often it was a bad idea to flirt with leaving a short game shot over a putt. I agree that people over-estimate their short game abilities.

 

That's it exactly.  I was actually quite surprised to find that the median pro is only getting up and down 60% from 10-20 yards (the shortest non-fringe, non-bunker short game category).  Given we're all surely worse than that, it only accentuates the very high cost for the rest of us for missing the green.

post #189 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post
 

On the course I actually tend towards feeling it out as well.  I just like looking at the numbers off the course to know where I should bias my feel.  The 2nd graph above is the point I've been trying to argue against (i.e. not arguing for aiming for the geometric center of every green).

 

My feeling after thinking about it and doing the analysis I did is that if you think it's smart and reasonable to aim pin high, and then look at the layout, the conditions, and your game that day and decide that, say, targeting 15' right of center is the best combination of maximizing GIR and minimizing risk of ending up in huge trouble left, then that's where you should aim regardless of where the flag is left to right.

 

This is where I think the math trumps the feel.  This isn't a high speed complex problem like military air traffic control where the human mind's pattern recognition still outperforms an algorithm (for now!). It's a simple calculation to find that the small extra chance of birdie that you gain by shifting your target to 5' left of center because of the left pin is almost guaranteed to cost you strokes because you'll lose way more strokes by increasing your chances of getting in big trouble left than you will gain by slightly increasing your chances of a birdie.

 

You've got to take up counting cards, I'm guessing you'd be good at it :)

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdl View Post

 

That's it exactly.  I was actually quite surprised to find that the median pro is only getting up and down 60% from 10-20 yards (the shortest non-fringe, non-bunker short game category).  Given we're all surely worse than that, it only accentuates the very high cost for the rest of us for missing the green.

How good the pros are vs how good some of them think they are is a whole different subject. Got a vid where monty proudly proclaims he'd get up and down 8 out of 10 times from inside 100 yards. Shame he didn't do.......

 

Anyway, cheers for the debate, but it's pressing on towards midnight here so best call it a day :)

post #190 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosevi View Post
 

"If your handicap is over 20 aim at the dead center of the green any time you are more than 60 yards from the flag. If it is between 11-20, aim at the dead center of the green any time you are further than 80 yards from the hole. If you are reading this and carrying a handicap 10 or lower… but you are not playing a major tour currently… let's aim at center of the green from anywhere 100 yards and further from the hole."

 

Center with some common sense for hazards (which includes not landing the ball 30 yards short of a hole on a 70-yard deep green)…

 

You're reading perhaps a bit too much into the OP. It was a quick post made on the Facebook that was copied to here. These types of things have to be "quick hitting" because they stick with people much more so that way.

post #191 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosevi View Post
 

 

You've got to take up counting cards, I'm guessing you'd be good at it :)

This is, actually, probably a pretty good comparison.  I appreciate the math involved in this topic just as much as a appreciate the math involved in the correct way to play blackjack.  Note that there is only ONE way to play blackjack.  There are no grey areas.  There are a some variables you have to consider ahead of time (# of decks, payouts, whether or not you are counting) but while you're playing there is always only one correct move.

 

I like that these guys have simplified golf in this sense; they've done the math for me.  I don't need to sit there and try to over-ride their work by justifying that it's a birdie hole, just like I don't sit there and tell myself to stay on 16 against the dealer 9 because I just "know" I'm going to bust again.:beer:

post #192 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosevi View Post

 

You've got to take up counting cards, I'm guessing you'd be good at it :)
This is, actually, probably a pretty good comparison.  I appreciate the math involved in this topic just as much as a appreciate the math involved in the correct way to play blackjack.  Note that there is only ONE way to play blackjack.  There are no grey areas.  There are a some variables you have to consider ahead of time (# of decks, payouts, whether or not you are counting) but while you're playing there is always only one correct move.

I like that these guys have simplified golf in this sense; they've done the math for me.  I don't need to sit there and try to over-ride their work by justifying that it's a birdie hole, just like I don't sit there and tell myself to stay on 16 against the dealer 9 because I just "know" I'm going to bust again.c2_beer.gif

I like the fact that golf allows for players like Martin Kaymer playing by the numbers, Jim Furyk playing his steady safe game, Anthony Kim feeling his way round a course or a player in the Seve mould repeatedly taking on shots he shouldn't then amazing all by how he gets out of the resultant 'miss'.

Out of all I guess I tend towards an Anthony Kim approach. My short game wouldn't stand up to a Seve style game and I'm just not a Martin Kaymer type person in anything I do..... But I do take note of all of my stats - GIR, Up and Down %, putting average, where I'm missing my shots, etc and this info guides my daily practice. I think getting to know your own game is hugely important - play to your strengths and be aware of your weaknesses.

I fully understand why some like having the decision making process simplified, especially if perhaps they are playing golf less often. I like the challenge of plotting my way round a course, making these decisions based on a whole host of factors, one even being instinct. I picked up on the OP because it, on the face of it, appears to attempt to 'dilute' that down to x yards out, y handicap - aim at the dead centre of the green (that is afterall what it says). What's being said by you all here is we're not necessarily talking the dead centre of the green, not always a set yardage out, other factors come into it not just yardage and handicap...... just think and play smart. I'm not convinced we're disagreeing.
post #193 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosevi View Post


I like the fact that golf allows for players like Martin Kaymer playing by the numbers, Jim Furyk playing his steady safe game, Anthony Kim feeling his way round a course or a player in the Seve mould repeatedly taking on shots he shouldn't then amazing all by how he gets out of the resultant 'miss'.

Out of all I guess I tend towards an Anthony Kim approach. My short game wouldn't stand up to a Seve style game and I'm just not a Martin Kaymer type person in anything I do..... But I do take note of all of my stats - GIR, Up and Down %, putting average, where I'm missing my shots, etc and this info guides my daily practice. I think getting to know your own game is hugely important - play to your strengths and be aware of your weaknesses.

I fully understand why some like having the decision making process simplified, especially if perhaps they are playing golf less often. I like the challenge of plotting my way round a course, making these decisions based on a whole host of factors, one even being instinct. I picked up on the OP because it, on the face of it, appears to attempt to 'dilute' that down to x yards out, y handicap - aim at the dead centre of the green (that is afterall what it says). What's being said by you all here is we're not necessarily talking the dead centre of the green, not always a set yardage out, other factors come into it not just yardage and handicap...... just think and play smart. I'm not convinced we're disagreeing.

LOL ... pretty sure we're not. :beer:

 

Phil Mickelson is also another guy that falls into that 'Seve' category.  He plays boldly - some would say 'reckless' - and not necessarily always the "correct" way, but its what works for him and how he has the most fun.  There is nothing at all wrong with that.

post #194 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post

 

 

You're reading perhaps a bit too much into the OP. It was a quick post made on the Facebook that was copied to here. These types of things have to be "quick hitting" because they stick with people much more so that way.

 

And you gotta save something for the book ;-)

post #195 of 377

Took this advise on the course last week and it made a huge difference. Difficult to stayed disciplined and must admit i didn't remember every time i was playing an approach shot but when i did had no worse than a par ok did get one boggy. And even got two birdies wil be using this method from now on. hopefully start to bring this handicap down

post #196 of 377

Dave and Erik, thanks a lot for posting this little preview of the book. It's such simple and clear advise yet something I've not thought about enough in the past. I feel confident chipping but if I can choose I'd rather take my chances putting. Since I saw this thread I have played a few 9 hole rounds and aiming for the center of the green seems a much easier task then aiming for the flag which helps me mentally as well so I can swing more relaxed in a way. It sure has helped my scores already, can't wait to read the whole book when it's done! :)

post #197 of 377

Played my 3rd round (and first at my home course) using this simple piece of advice,

 

Shot my career low home course score (91), low 9 (44 on the back), differential (16.5) and most GIRs (4 with career avg less than 1 per round) and most pars (4) with a horrible round for fairways (7/14) and putts (36 putts with 1 putts and 3 putts cancelling each other out (4 each))

 

I am not going to say this advice is the only reason (recently fitted for driver and 5 wood), but it is definitely a huge step in the right direction.

 

Now I just hope my friends stay off of this forum so I can take some of their $$$.........

post #198 of 377
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosevi View Post
 

Thanks mdl. Truth is we're not really all that far apart :) But you're a statistician by trade, I'm a golfer who plays very much by feel and instinct.

 

My 'trade' as it happens was air traffic controller (but currently playing golf full time). In what we term 'tactical' air traffic (I was a military controller) there are numerous ways of getting aircraft sequenced and into an airfield - no two controllers will do it the same. A good controller has a little 'flair' and will trust his instinct to find gaps, assess closing speeds and get everyone on the ground as quickly as possible (military jets have a nasty habit of running low on fuel :) ). An average controller will follow the book, do everything as a computer would and get the job done....... but it lacked something and no matter what the book said, it never actually got the planes on the ground as quickly. I was an examiner and ran my own tower, I'd like to think I fell into the former category (though no where near as good as a couple of the guys I could mention).

 

I once saw a group of vids where Anthony Kim was doing a clinic with Tiger shortly after Anthony became a Nike Staff Player. It's on Youtube and worth a watch. When guys ask Tiger how far he hits a sand wedge he answered straight off 117 yards, although in a later clinic he says it's dropped to 115. When they ask Anthony he says he doesn't know, sometimes its 100, sometimes 115, normally in between, but it kind of depends on the day. He says he sort of sees how he's feeling and goes with his instincts and feels his way around a course.

 

Tiger is the epitome of one type of player, Anthony Kim is the laid back epitome of another.

 

Looking at this subject - where do you aim on a green from a given yardage, this is what I do. I look at the green and look at the least bad miss. Let's say right is fine, left is a no go. I look at the yardage and decide how 'brave' I want to be - let's say the wind is calm, I'm 150 out (a yardage I happen to like) and I'm striking it well. Lastly I look at the pin (and I guess that's where we are pretty close in our approach - it's the last thing I look at). My initial thought may have pushed me over to the right of the green but if the pin is tucked in to the left, from 150 out I may err a fraction left of centre. It's kind of a moving calculation. Topography, position of pin, yardage, wind (not just for initial aim but for final target as my slight draw will hold well into a left to right wind, not so clever with a right to left and I prefer to hit a draw, so if I get it wrong the error will generally be greater...) and I'll have an idea how I'm striking it that day. It all plays a part in deciding how close I shoot to the flag. And it'll be different every time.

 

I think there's room in the game for both a scientific approach and a more varied, instinctive one. The game has seen players like Seve who take on the most barking mad of shots, sometimes pulling them off, sometimes failing miserably, but it was fun to watch him try. I actually don't think Seve would have been more successful if he had played the game 'by the numbers', I think his flair was his strength but we could debate that all day.

I remember that video. When talking about pitching distances, Tigers says he sometimes chokes down to lessen his distance. AK was asked about choking down more ( he already chokes down) more to lessen his pitch shot distance and he says  something to the effect that sometimes when he chokes down , he hits it longer. Yes AK certainly a feel player.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Instruction and Playing Tips
TheSandTrap.com › Golf Forum › The Practice Range › Instruction and Playing Tips › Stop Aiming at the Flag!!!