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shermanM4A1

Unsolicited Advice

20 posts in this topic

What do you do when someone gives you unsolicited advice at the range or during a game?

My friend tells me that he gets such advice all the time. He said that usually I should just ignore the person and continue on with whatever I was doing.

But, what if the person is persistent and won't stop trying to "help" you?
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But, what if the person is persistent and won't stop trying to "help" you?

Tell them to go away?

Can't say I've ever had that problem. Usually people get the hint, don't they?
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"In one ear and out the other" is the best policy for this.

If its really bothering you, I think an escalating scale of curt responses would be a good idea. Interrupt the advice with (in order):

"You know man, I'm really just here to play my own game"
"I really don't want advice right now"
"Please stop giving me swing tips, I'm not interested"
"STFU"

Just a thought. I once played with a pro who had the best way of offering advice. He asked me "Would you like some information?" I thought that was a very courteous way of broaching the subject without seeming superior or pushy.
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If you're playing, tell them you only make swing changes on the range, or vice versa.

"Thanks, but I'll stick to what I know."
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Simply reply to everything s/he says to you in pig latin. If they reply in pig latin reply in normal english. If it goes past that, walk into his hitting bay and say I need to use the restroom (either in pig latin or english).

Buuut yeah, I can't stand unsolicited advice. Just ignore and ignore, if they don't get it then all you can do is laugh, right?
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I was at the range about 2 weeks ago and the pro just happened to walk by me hitting. He came right up and said "if you don't mind....." I listened to what he had to say but I took it with a grain of salt because I had no idea who he was at the time. But just coming up and asking if I wanted advice, sort of made me think about it.

If this person is just coming up and giving unwanted advice, I'd definitely tell him that I don't want it and it's not needed.
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Just be nice. I don't know many people that are that dense where they don't get the subtle hints. Who knows...maybe their advice could help?? Don't be so proud that you ignore the comments that COULD be good advice?? If you are hitting like crap...then maybe their advice may help!! Now with that said...you see the guy hitting the ball and he is horrible...then he wants to offer free advice...be polite and just say that you are working on some drills that you were taught by your buddy..Tiger! That'll shut him up!
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Ask them how much they charge per hour and then tell them you left your wallet in the car.
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Ask them how much they charge per hour and then tell them you left your wallet in the car.

That was funny!

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Just be nice. I don't know many people that are that dense where they don't get the subtle hints. Who knows...maybe their advice could help?? Don't be so proud that you ignore the comments that COULD be good advice?? If you are hitting like crap...then maybe their advice may help!! Now with that said...you see the guy hitting the ball and he is horrible...then he wants to offer free advice...be polite and just say that you are working on some drills that you were taught by your buddy..Tiger! That'll shut him up!

Yeah, sometimes, the advice is good. Like the other day, some guy told me not to bend my knee so much on my backswing and now I am virtually whiff-free.

However, being a newb, its difficult to tell good advice from bad advice. Also, sometimes different people tell me different things. Like, some people say you should hit down on the ball during your full swing while some people say it's better to try to scoop it up.
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....while some people say it's better to try to scoop it up.

Watch these people try to hit, and that judgment call should be easy.

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If the advice cames from a guy that plays better than me I will be thankful to heart it, also it depends on they tell you the advice, but if it's the other way it really bothers me and I try to be polite and don't pay attention to what he/she is saying.

Greetings!
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If they are a good player I may listen to and take their advice. If it's not working for me though I'll just say, "sorry but that's not working for me, thanks anyways though."

If I see the person hacking up the range and they proceed to give me swing tips the conversation will go like this.

Them - "Do you want some tips?"

Me - "Are you a certified teaching professional?"

Them - "Well no but......"

Me - "I don't give a medical diagnosis if someone in line beside me at the grocery store is sick, because I'm not a doctor. Does that answer your question?"

Akward silence while the stranger stares at me and then walks away.

If it's a friend of mine I don't have a problem with it as I relate to it as just conversation between friends.
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Yeah, sometimes, the advice is good. Like the other day, some guy told me not to bend my knee so much on my backswing and now I am virtually whiff-free.

I've only once gotten swing advice on the course

from a good golfer . I commented out loud that I was hitting it poorly for some reason, and he observed that my tempo was off. Nothing mechanical, and really, he was right. I thought about my tempo for the next few swings... and started hitting better shots. I even made a birdie a few holes later, on a par-4, thinking only about tempo for all 3 shots. (This doesn't count a playing lesson from my teacher, when we went to a course with the intent of on-course lessons... but it was things like club selection and course management we were discussing.) On the other hand, I've gotten advice plenty of times from a bad golfer. For some reason, a bad player giving you tips seems to do the same thing as saying "hey, watch this, I saw Tiger hit this shot last Sunday!" before swinging: it produces bad shots. With the above exceptions, everyone who offers me playing advice on the course seems to end up with bad shots. Man, the first time my friends and I were _ready_ to play and were going to play _nine whole holes of par-3 golf_, only 3 of us were going. We got paired up with a fourth. I still remember the guy and the day (early morning Easter Sunday 2006 - so we could get back to watch The Masters). I took a practice swing on the first "tee" (par-3 course where we hit off mats) and he started telling me what was wrong with my swing *and my equipment*. So my friends distracted him while I hit (the green! This is easy, I thought... oops). I repeated the favor for them. He hit fourth and topped it. Last, but not least, touring professionals are prone to not being able to tell good advice from bad, just as you and I are. You periodically hear about someone really good who lets bad ideas creep into his head. How many people told Seve that he needed a perfect swing so he could finally win a U.S. Open? He listened to the many who told him to think about mechanics... and... artists aren't mechanics. Anyway, long story short, too late, don't worry about being able to distinguish good from bad. A certified teaching professional will rarely steer you wrong. Oh, and look for the good threads on here - people talking about great scores and/or great shots. It's easy to worry about things if you read the threads on unsolicited advice or the thread on the hustler a few days ago. But the fact of the matter is, for every incident where we're paired with a jerk, there's plenty of fantastic rounds where we enjoyed the air, the course, and the company. Statistically, you're going to be paired with good people.
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I think a lot of unsolicited advice is some folks attempt to be social and start a conversation.

Being one that is always interested in learning more about people and always looking for more folks to add to my "outer tier" of friends I approach this with the attitude of "always be gracious"

It is easy to side step the unwanted advice, and ask them a few questions about their own game, it gets them talking about themselves and in a few minutes either you have found someone that is a new social contact, or they fill their need to be social and move on.

Either way, I can go back to my practice with a good frame of mind because I never got worked up, just let it be what it is. Most times the pause is good too in helping you to work with distractions then refocus on your game.

Regards,
-E
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I don't think anyone has ever just walked up and offered me totally unsolicited advice. There was this doofus I had the misfortune to play with a couple of times who had a couple lessons (trust me you play with this guy once and you pretty much come away with his entire life story) and constantly felt the need to explain every shot and tell you what you're doing wrong. I played with him twice and to be honest the second time we played together the guy had improved (I guess those lessons were working), but he still wasn't a person who should be telling anybody how to play golf. My reaction to this guy and I suppose anyone else who becomes obnoxious with the advice giving is to ignore them as much as possible. If this guy were to pull this stunt on me at the range I wouldn't be rude but I'd tell him I was busy and would appreciate being left alone. In my experience most people respond better when you are straight forward with them and not try to sugar coat your message.
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Hmm.. I must look like an ass.. I can't say I've ever had that problem. Interesting situation though
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