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I definitely fit into that category where if I think I can understand something, then I can just fix it (without all of that deliberate practice stuff) 😜  but working through a few of my PP’s over the past couple of years have proved me wrong 

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Awesome topic.

My wife got me video lessons for my birthday last year. Every other week for 8 lessons. I was hitting only in the net in my back yard so it was easy to ignore the terrible ball striking while making big changes. It took me 4-6 weeks just to clean up my back swing to the point where I could film my swing while thinking about some other issue and my back swing didn't back slide significantly in one way or another.

Then I moved on to dropping my hands and getting shallow from the top rather than yanking my hands towards the ball (not literally, but ~on that line from the DTL view) and getting super steep. I was practicing obsessively. Almost every day, often for an hour+. Always at least 30min. Lots of pause swings. Slow swings. Partial swings. Film maybe every 5th swing. It took me a month to be able to do it reliably even ugly where I was clearly just manually forcing/directing my hands to put the club in the positions I wanted. I'd say it took me ~3 months before upper body looked reasonably like I wanted from A4 to A6 and it felt natural. And it still drifts and is something I have to stay on top of and check on film and do pump drills and the like to keep it.

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  • Moderator

I definitely have to work at having the discipline to focus on slow, specific practice. Sometimes in a session, it may only be 10 minutes before I need a break. Other times it can go for a while. It is so easy to just hit balls and fall back into bad habits. This is why I try and mix it up. I’ll do 10-15 minutes of PP drills and work on the feels. These are the 5S drills and sometimes the contact stinks, but when I see the film, the change is happening. Then I may move on to another piece. But it does take a lot of discipline.

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This strikes home with me.    thanks for this thread.   much needed, much appreciated.

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  • Moderator

While I do get lazy with practicing correctly at times, I feel like I’m almost the opposite of this student. I don’t think enough. Often I’ll mishit a ball and have absolutely no explanation for it. It’s very difficult to make small adjustments on the course if I don’t know what I should be doing differently.

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After years of chasing the holy grail I finally had a realization that golf takes time. If I cannot be patient enough to nail down priority #1 then going to #2 is futile. So for the last month its set-up and hip rotation on the wall.  Every day. Do not pass go. Do not collect 200 dollars. It doesn't work that way. 

Thanks for sharing the honest feedback. It takes time. 

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An update to the conversation:

Student: Can't thank you enough. Just had my best range session in a long time. Also short and not a lot of balls. Went through our lessons and focused on my down swing path and hitting ball first with half to 3/4 swings.

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I'm not only the student....I'm the president of the student association!

 

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  • Moderator

I think sometimes I might overdo the slow bit. You have to swing slow enough that all the swing dynamics, the flowing nature of it is there. Exaggerate too slow, for me, it's the second half of the swing, and you're not really practicing what you want to practice I think.

Also, maybe when everyone around you is machine gunning balls, drawing from 2 giant buckets, it may make you go faster, harder to concentrate. I've found practicing more often with fewer balls is way better than hitting 300 in one go a week.

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1 minute ago, nevets88 said:

I think sometimes I might overdo the slow bit. You have to swing slow enough that all the swing dynamics, the flowing nature of it is there. Exaggerate too slow, for me, it's the second half of the swing, and you're not really practicing what you want to practice I think.

Also, maybe when everyone around you is machine gunning balls, drawing from 2 giant buckets, it may make you go faster, harder to concentrate. I've found practicing more often with fewer balls is way better than hitting 300 in one go a week.

It's funny- when I was starting to play golf, I used to fire through two jumbo (120+?) buckets in 45 minutes and wonder why I was done early. Now I'll split a large (~90) with a friend, hit maybe 30-40 of them in an hour, he'll hit the rest. Take my time setting up, getting the grip, aligning, checking it out, etc.

 

A while back I saw an unedited video of Xander Schauffle on the range at Kapalua (wish I could find it again). I think his fastest time between shots was 45 seconds (if even that fast). Every shot was set up, aligned, checked alignment with pointing the arm downrange, practice waggle, etc, swing. I'd like to someday be this slow.

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14 hours ago, nevets88 said:

Also, maybe when everyone around you is machine gunning balls, drawing from 2 giant buckets, it may make you go faster, harder to concentrate.

I agree with this. If it’s crowded, I really have to focus on what I’m doing.

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  • Moderator

Maybe there's a market for like an AI practice babysitter app to make sure you're on track during a practice session? Or gamfication?

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I struggle with the slow part. Yesterday I was working on new backswing priority piece, and I started off making what felt like a 75% speed swing. The swing speed from the launch monitor was only about 3mph slower than a regular swing. I did it again, and it was the same. If I wasn't in a practice bay with a launch monitor, I would have thought I was going at the speed I perceived, but I was actually going way too fast.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm a little late to this, but I align pretty closely with this student.  My main struggle is tinkering, mainly with my transition as one will work one day but not the next, so I change it until it works, at least works to get me around the golf course. 

But late last year after getting my new irons and moving into this year, I have tried to slow things down on the range and focus on one thing at a time, which has helped, but it is a constant battle with myself to stick with it.

But will also add that I have taken 3 separate lessons the past few years, and nothing against the folks I went to, but they were not the right fit for me.  It could be said that it is probably me, and I probably couldn't put up much of a defense, but I think you have to somewhat gel with the instructor to buy into what they are saying.

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Because of covid, I have chosen to stay away from driving ranges. Just my choice.

But kept up with indoor super slo swings all through the winter. Sometimes 50, usually 10-20 swings, daily. 

Its really helping me know and keep , where my club face is at impact. Just concentrating on the basics.

Been out this season maybe 8 times. 6 9's and 2 18's. The last two rounds, feeling like the rust is off. 

Managed  6 over on the last 9. My only goal, to eliminate triples and strategically manage doubles.

and try to turn my brain off when I'm setting up and hitting

 

 

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