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Con Artist Swing Coaches???

post #1 of 66
Thread Starter 

There is this driving range that I go to a lot that is owned by this ex Club Pro (or so he says). I usually stop and hit a bucket of balls or so just working on individual things. He is always talking about how he used to teach at several country clubs etc.  I actually took a lesson from him when I first started playing and this guy had my swing messed up for months!  It was bad!

 

Anyway.... I was out there yesterday hitting some balls. Now I hit my driver straight most of the time unless I'm really trying to kill it and my irons are almost always straight if I don't mishit.  Anyway, I'm in a great mindset and hitting my iron shots perfect.  I'm dancing all around the flags, online and distance control is great.

 

He gives lessons at the range so he walks over and says to me 'Hey hit a few for me". I pull a gap wedge and aim for the 125 yard flag.  Hit it to about 10 feet.  I hit a second and a third and all were within 10 feet. One actually was about 2-3 feet.  So he says "Your swing is much better but you are not there yet.  Take your stance and pretend like you are sitting on a stool".  

 

So I do it and he says that I'm still setup too steep and he keeps at it until I'm in the position he wants. Ok now, all my weight is on my heels and I'm completely off balance.  I tell him that this is not correct because I'm sitting back so far that my swing is too flat and I feel like I'm swinging around my body. It feels awkward and I know that it looks awkward but HE says this is the correct setup.

 

I'm actually beginning to think that either..

 

1.  He has no idea what he is talking about or...

2.  He is purposely screwing up people's swings so they can come to him for more lessons.

 

When I first started he is the reason I was flipping my wrist for 2 months making me either hit behind the ball or top the ball all the time.  

 

I was at another course and this guy was hanging around and finally came up to my friend and I and gave us a card and said that he could teach us to swing better.  We were on the first tee.  I told him to tee it up and hit one.  He didn't want to but we told him we can't take lessons from a guy scared to hit a shot. He took my driver and promptly sliced one 80 yards right of the fairway and across the highway. He made and excuse and teed up another and hooked it to hell and back over to the other fairway and out of bounds FOR THAT FAIRWAY.

 

Do you guys think there are so-called teachers out there running a con?  

post #2 of 66
YES!!!

This should be a poll question in my opinion!

Love the two stories you have there... You didn't finish what happened with the range coach after he had you set up? I'm assuming after you took the swing you chunked it or fell over or something?
post #3 of 66

I feel like the vast majority of them are con artists. And if they're not, then they're incompetent. Either way, it's money lost and time and energy wasted on our end. 

 

That's why it's so important to study and read, so you can avoid these clowns. No excuses now, guys. There's good info on the net (much of it right here on this website). 

 

Con-artist swing instructors will never go out of work until consumers wise up and do some research before giving anyone their money. 

post #4 of 66
There are lots out there.-Just like there are lots of bad golfers.

Is your handicap still 25?
post #5 of 66

I can't get past the 3 in a row inside of 10 feet with a gap wedge from 125. :beer:

 

That should have been enough for him to think you didn't need any coaching.

 

I have a target in the backyard at 125 and my grouping isn't nearly that impressive. :cry:

post #6 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post
 

I have a target in the backyard at 125 and my grouping isn't nearly that impressive. :cry:

 

Darn fine play there considering the PGA Tour leader in 2013 from 100-125 yards was outside 15'.

 

A lot of golf instructors don't know what they're really doing.

post #7 of 66
Thread Starter 

~Deep breath

 

Yes, my handicap is still 25. What's your point?

post #8 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by MS256 View Post

I can't get past the 3 in a row inside of 10 feet with a gap wedge from 125. c2_beer.gif

That should have been enough for him to think you didn't need any coaching.

I have a target in the backyard at 125 and my grouping isn't nearly that impressive. d1_bigcry.gif

No doubt. What do pros do from 125?
post #9 of 66
Thread Starter 

Well anybody that practices on a range as much as I do should know that once you get dialed in it is pretty easy to hit the same shot over and over.  At least it is for me.  Now switching from driver to wedge to long iron is another story altogether.

 

Surely with all the low handicap guys here there are guys that can hit the same shot multiple times after hitting 30 balls or so right? Same club, same stance, same swing.

post #10 of 66

Simple answer is yes, as many have said. For me, it motivated me to find people who are knowledgeable. Any time you meet an instructor you should probe to see if they know their stuff. You can start with this article I posted below to find out what kind of pro you are dealing with. I don't think you need to ask all of them the first time you meet, but probe. Maybe ask 3 and if he gets them right take one lesson and ask a few more. You should have a good idea of what kind of pro you are dealing with after asking these questions.

 

http://thesandtrap.com/b/playing_tips/the_instructor_quiz_nine_questions_youve_gotta_ask

post #11 of 66
Thread Starter 

Actually I hit behind the ball once and I think I may have topped another.  I was swinging totally around my body and it was nowhere near comfortable. I heard some other guys on the range say on another day that they took a couple lessons from him also and they stopped because he was only making them worse.

post #12 of 66

One thing I found out over the years is, good instructors don't go looking for clients, bad ones do. I've hit balls at ranges, on the next stall from where instructors were giving lessons, and Not once did any of them offer to show me something. All I/we did was say hi, and that was it.

 

It's kind of a shame, that folks just taking the game up don't seek out referrals for golf instructors/PGA Pros, for instance they could come here, and I bet for every state, and city, there would be someone who could point them in the right direction. 

post #13 of 66

I think "con" may be a bit strong, I don't think he's purposely giving you bad information. He's trying to get business and thinks he can help you. He should probably spend some time on this site to improve his knowledge ;-)

post #14 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by RightEdge View Post
 

~Deep breath

 

Yes, my handicap is still 25. What's your point?

 

I agree and have also been a victim of the so called "con artist" coaches. However, I think most of them are conning themselves as well. I would give them the benefit of the doubt that they are actually trying to help, and genuinely believe that they know how to teach golf even if they can't play that well themselves.

 

You should find better instructors. Ones who actually play to a decently high level. Not all good golfers can teach, but there are certainly enough good golfers that some of them (like the ones on this site) can teach well.

 

 

In regard to your 125 yard +/-10 foot statement:

 

If you hit your gap (50 degree) wedge within +/-10 feet 125 yards away, then you should be able to make any standard par 4 (375 yards) within 3 strokes. This would leave you 2 putts for bogey. Most of the time 10 feet would give you a little less than a 25% chance of getting par. So, on a typical course with 14 par 4 should give you on the order of 12 strokes. Par 3 and 5 similar thing. So, you should be able to make on the order of 14 to 16 over par which is something like a 12 to 14 handicap with just a wedge and putter.

 

Erik brought up that this figure is about 2/3 closer than the best PGA pro in this distance range.

There is also an implication that being able to hit your gap wedge 125 yards generally means that you can hit your driver on the order of 250 yards. The same swing with a properly fitted driver should give you 250 yards with a commensurate accuracy with the driver or about +/-7 yards. The usual rule of thumb is that a person who can hit a PW (47 degree) hit 120 yards (carry) can generally hit a driver 240 (carry).

 

Edit: agree with @mvmac.

post #15 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hammer 4 View Post
 

One thing I found out over the years is, good instructors don't go looking for clients, bad ones do.

 

I don't agree with that, depending on what your definition of "go looking for clients" is. I consider myself a good instructor and I've certainly told people that I could help them.

 

The difference between me and a poor instructor is that then I do help them. :-)

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hammer 4 View Post
 

It's kind of a shame, that folks just taking the game up don't seek out referrals for golf instructors/PGA Pros, for instance they could come here, and I bet for every state, and city, there would be someone who could point them in the right direction. 

 

They often simply choose the cheapest and/or most convenient. Who can blame them for that? They're new to the game - they don't know to go online to look. They just think a golf lesson is a golf lesson. It's unfortunate that they sometimes (often?) fall prey to lesser instructors, mostly because it may dampen their spirit for the game, but also because it often dampens their spirit for instruction. That hurts the good instructors too.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lihu View Post
 

I agree and have also been a victim of the so called "con artist" coaches. However, I think most of them are conning themselves as well. I would give them the benefit of the doubt that they are actually trying to help, and genuinely believe that they know how to teach golf even if they can't play that well themselves

 

Hits the nail on the head there. A con artist knows he's conning someone. Most of these instructors - the bad ones - simply don't know that they're bad.

post #16 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil McGleno View Post

There are lots out there.-Just like there are lots of bad golfers.

Is your handicap still 25?


That was my question too.  Sounds like he never hits one off line and is a 25 must have the worst short game in history of golf

post #17 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by poser View Post
 


That was my question too.  Sounds like he never hits one off line and is a 25 must have the worst short game in history of golf

That is a bit off topic for this thread.  His HC is irrelevant to what is being discussed.

 

Good instructors are hard to find @RightEdge .  I spent a long time looking.  I took a couple of lessons from a nice guy teacher, but his instruction was confusing to me.  Your concern for this instructors approach is warranted.  I would politely decline unsolicited instruction by telling them that I was working with another instructor, which is true for me.

post #18 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by poser View Post


That was my question too.  Sounds like he never hits one off line and is a 25 must have the worst short game in history of golf

No, I currently hold that record. a4_sad.gif
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