I was a excited when finding this book in my mail. On the back, it says "We show you the new way to shoot lower scores - immediately." As a cynic and critic, I must admit that it's a bold statement. I haven't been able to go out the next day and shoot lower scores after reading other books.
I've read a few books on golf through the years. Most on the swing, some on the short game and putting, some which focus on specifics of the swing, but this book takes on some different aspects.
The Separation Value system is a new term for me, but the principles are stuff I've read about in here before. It is a pretty important aspect of golf. You want to shoot lower scores, but where should you dedicate your time and focus? The book makes a solid point in guiding you to where you should focus your attention, and how much time you really should spent on fairway bunker shots. The system is used throughout the book, making it easy to see how it works.
The technique chapters are largely based on 5SK, including some info on drives, chips, bunkers, putts etc. It gives you a good introduction to the 5 Swing Keys, but doesn't go too far in explaining. They rather recommend you check out the 5SK website, with more information. I think this is a good move. The technical aspects of the swing is obviously a big part in shooting lower scores, and I belive video works better than words there. This is also elements that often takes a longer time to get working.
The chapter about advancing your ball is pretty good stuff. I had two eagle attempts (one birdie, one par) on today's 9 holes because of that chapter. Read it, then read it again.
I have not been able to look into the Aimpoint system yet, so I can't say much about it, but it seems like a good one to me. The chapters dedicated to putting gives you all the technical tips you'll need, some statistics and data. There are some nuggets in there which a lot of us amateurs out there could improve greatly from. I kept a certain putting tip in my head when putting today and my speed was a lot better than before.
Towards the end, a lot of pages are dedicated to Building Your Gameplan, which was one of my favorite parts of the book. I've been a member in here for a long time, but I don't think I've come across that way of planning your game before. Once you've read it, you probably think it sounds pretty logical, but is that how you really play? I haven't been able to find my shot zones yet, but it is definitely something I'll try to do.
I could write a lot about this book, but I don't want to put half the book out there. I really, really like this book. Some might say I'm a bit biased - and they are probably right -, but I would not hesitate in recommending this book for anyone out there who plays golf. It covers a lot of aspects in golf and gives you to the point information, but doesn't drag out with page after page on details. Some of the chapters give you the short version of the topic, and give you directions to where you can find more. But it still doesn't feel too short or that there is stuff missing.
Everything is based on facts. It's based on statistics and hard data from Tiger Woods and the PGA Pros to your random weekend hacker. Anyone familiar with TheSandTrap should not be surprised here. Erik and Dave base a lot of their teachings on statistics and facts, which is what makes this such a good book. You don't have to wonder if this is right or not. They are showing you that this is in fact how it works.
I read the book in 4 hours and it's easy to revise chapters if you want to. I literally went out and shot 5 over par on 9 holes today, which is the best I've played so far this year. I want to share an example.
This is the par 5 7th hole at my home course. Distances are in meters.
I usually lay up on this hole. Often hitting a utility instead of the driver off the tee, since I'll be hitting a short iron as my next shot anyways. It's better to lay up at 100 than risk rough, bunkers and stuff...right?
I'm often hitting to (1), then a short iron to (2) and another short iron to (3). Today I hit the driver to (1) (on the right), then hit a 3 wood (230m) to the back part of the green, pin high, 1 meter off the green. A chip and putt gave me a birdie.
While playing the hole, I also noticed a part I really haven't paid much attention to before, at (4). I could hit it there on my second shot, instead of (2). I haven't mapped out my driver shot zone, but I should clear the bunkers on most shots. But should I end up in one, I can still hit a short to mid iron and get myself up there for a short iron in. The risk of hitting the driver isn't as big when I think about it like that. If I end up in a spot where I can't really go for it with a wood, I could always try getting to (4) and have a shorter approach than from (2).
Same story on another par 5, but I didn't hit a very good chip and only got out with a par. I must say, reading this book has given me new ways to look at the golf course, and I shot lower scores, immediately.