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I hate the whole "pro/amateur" illusion!


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I don't find golf all that hard. And yes it was an 88 (par 71) for 18 holes. Just keep the ball in play and 2 putt all the greens....done. Most holes are an average of 350 yards or so long......3 120 yard shots (wedges), or 2 5 irons and a chip, get you on the green in 3.....2 putt bogey. Most of my playing buddies love to hit the biggest stick they have every time....no reason to do that : ) I don't mind laying up with a 6 or 7 iron (no reason to lose a 3 wood in the woods), for an easy wedge to the green on par fives...and so on and so on.

Hey, it's great that golf comes naturally to you. I've been lucky enough to be proficient at every sport I've tried my hand at, golf included. But it's not that way for most people. For every person that shoots 88 with relative ease, there are at least 10 that will never break 90 (based on what I've seen).

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I like how "talent" always manages to come into these types of discussions.. Talent, my friend, is an illusion which hides behind proper practice, a lot of it..... even more so for a game like golf

OK, so this I agree with. We won't argue the talent part. The reason I'll side with you here is this. 2 years ago I bought my first set of clubs from some sport shop I can't remember. Carry bag, s

I just love this whole topic. The am-pro difference debate has and will go on forever. With 3 grown children who were very competitive in sports, I saw and coached a bunch of "sure things" that never

Oh, I agree 100%. One of my regular partners has been playing for 20 years and never broken 90. Thats just the way it is. For some its not too hard, for others they struggle every time out for years. Remember, we, or at least I, do this just for the fun of it. We have real jobs and golf is just a hobby. I started golf to replace triathlons which I have been racing for 22 years. I'm getting too old and slow and considering hanging up the bicycle to play golf.
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Remember.......when you watch the PGA Tour on TV you are ONLY seeing those players that are playing well that weekend. You didn't see the guy that is a PGA Tour Pro and shot an 82 on Friday. You are seeing the guys that "have it" that week. Now there are a FEW PGA Pros that are good enough that they have it nearly every week, but not many and far less then 10% are there each week. Most are not playing well that day and miss the cut.

You didn't shoot 88 on a proper golf course the first time you played golf. The fact that you think par 4s average 350 yards shows that. Also, your simplistic explanation of "how to do it", like 3 wedges on a 360 yard hole is plain silly. A first timer can not go and hit three wedges 120 yards consecutively straight and the third to a target. And then simply 2 putt every green.

You obviously don't spend much time looking at leaderboards, either. Not that I'm suggesting that it's a worthy way to spend your time, but you seem to think that the game is easier than it is with your blase attitude, which says more about the "golf course" you play than anything else. The cut is frequently under par. Just look at the scores midway through the UBS Hong Kong Open, for example. As I write this, 60th position is under par. The cut was 2 under. There will always be a few players who shoot high scores in most tournaments, but the norm is for the majority to be very close to par after 36 holes. You are implying that most pros are shooting very high scores and that the leaders' scores seem to fool the viewers into thinking the players are better than they are. Go and watch a proper tournament one day and you'll see that as easy as you claim to find the game, the difference between you and the worst of these guys would be 20 shots a round.
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2 years ago I bought my first set of clubs from some sport shop I can't remember. Carry bag, shoes, balls, and a full set of clubs for $295. I proceeded to shoot an 88 the first time out. Now I'm a 5 handicapp.

Shooting an 88 on the first 9 you played isn't bad. Good thing you worked hard and the game came easily for you to become a 5 handicap.

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Shooting an 88 on the first 9 you played isn't bad. Good thing you worked hard and the game came easily for you to become a 5 handicap.

88 for 9, mmmhhh..... yea, that's more likely... and still very good for a first time!

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I stand by my previous post re talent....but those who raised running as an example made a good point that I should clarify in my post.... For any task that requires skill over strength/size there is no subsitute for practice.... talent does not come into it....

From a quantity point of view 10000 hours will do it... you then need to ensure the quality of practice will get you there....

For the doubters go and read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell or Bounce by Matthew Syed.... The later even uses Tiger as an example that reinforces the arguement...

For the poster that raised the the question about Brain Surgeons and alike the same holds true....

Pros do not have a whole bunch more talent than ametuers they have just practiced more and/or got better tutition...
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I

Only if they are "ametuer" (the way you spell it every time) brain surgeons.

You have to be kidding, but I fear you are serious. Totally ridiculous.
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. . . For any task that requires skill over strength/size there is no subsitute for practice.... talent does not come into it....

Tutition is very important. Does practice trump talent? Is the abilty to practice being a brain surgeon on one's own a talent or a skill?
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Tutition

You don't get it do you?

It doesn't matter how much time or money or desire you have. Some people simply don't have the genetic or intellectual make-up to do certain things. There's a couple of posters on this forum who are trying very hard to become professional golfers. They are dedicated, sincere and highly motivated, and presumably have expert tuition. It isn't enough. No-one is saying that tuition isn't important. No-one is asaying that practice isn't imoprtant. The fact is, that no matter how good the teacher and how dedicated the practice, you either have it or you don't. Replace your "10,000 hours" with 10,000,000 and the cream will still beat you. Check out the Q School stage 2 results, and you'll see who's dreaming and who has the goods. And those who appear to have the goods have in many cases done terribly poorly on the PGA Tour. Check out David Lutterus's results. And he's a fantastic player.
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You don't get it do you?

Are you being your typical sarcastic jackass self or did you recently misinterpret my post (and every other post I've made on this subject)?

If it's the former, and you're not suffering from a brain fever, my bad.
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Are you being your typical sarcastic jackass self or did you recently misinterpret my post (and every other post I've made on this subject)?

Sorry - I was referring to noefi13b. I made an error in my quoting and can see that it looks like I was referring to you rather than waht you referred to, if you know what I mean.

I don't think that this particular post of mine could be seen as being sarcastic, and the "you" I meant was noefi13b, who clearly thinks that he would be Tiger Woods if he could be bothered spending a few more hours on the range and had access to Tiger's discarded coaches.
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Pros do not have a whole bunch more talent than ametuers they have just practiced more and/or got better tutition...

You can't argue that genetics plays a role in pre-determining one's ability and talent level. It's scientific fact that some people are born faster, stronger, more intelligent, and with more natural skill. There's something to the concepts of natural selection and survival of the fittest. I.Q. tests measure intelligence, we're not all born with a genius level I.Q. and we're not all born to be professional golfers.

There's also the concepts of wasted talent and working below potential, etc. Yes someone with slightly lesser natural abilities can out-achieve someone with great natural abilities by outworking them, having better resources, or cheating, but those are exceptions to the rule. It's difficult to accept that your genetics may limit your ability to achieve your goals, but it's reality. In these "feel good", politically correct days, no one wants to face reality. Instead we tell people they can achieve anything they want, they devote their life to being a professional "fill in the blank", spend all their time and savings to be one, and if and when they fail, they become depressed and miserable because no one told them the deck was stacked against them from the start. Stephen Hawking is genetically blessed, one of the greatest minds of our time, and an amazing physicist, but fact is he couldn't make the PGA no matter how hard he tried.
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Talent vs practice arguments are always heated especially when it comes to golf. I think the general public underestimate the talent and skill required to make it in this game. Hardest game in the world imo, so many variables at play.

Back to topic gotta agree with the OP. What gets to me is when you play with someone whom never practices, plays once a fortnight yet chucks a hissy fit when he doesn't break 45... Don't get that.
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It's difficult to accept that your genetics may limit your ability to achieve your goals, but it's reality. In these "feel good", politically correct days, no one wants to face reality. Instead we tell people they can achieve anything they want, they devote their life to being a professional "fill in the blank", spend all their time and savings to be one,

So you're gonna tell your kid to settle for mediocrity?

Disagree with the bold part. If I bust my ass off to achieve whatever goal and fail then I'm comfortable with that. At least I gave it a crack. It would be impossible for anyone to be a pro golfer when you have motor neurone disease :P
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You don't get it do you?

I gotta say that Shorty is right. With a lot of practice that vast majority of players could become a decent player... low 80s maybe down into the 70s, but that's really about it. I think that only few people really have what it takes to get down further than that to scratch or a +hcp. Even fewer have what it takes to be a +hcp and have the mental make-up to play on tour week after week. The bottom line is that only most of us simply do not have the talent to be a pro and even if we do some of us don't have the time to make it happen. It really takes a perfect situation of somebody who already possesses that talent or potential talent and the necessary time to dedicate to the game to create a real pro. This isn't a bad thing necessarily, but it is the way it is.

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I firmly believe that anybody can improve to some degree with tuition and practice - but I do not believe that everybody possesses the same innate level of skill/talent (or lack thereof). Call it whatever you want, but some just don't have the innate athletic ability, eye/hand coordination, mental fortitude or whatever other intangibles to rise to the top. I'm not saying that the pros (or even the amateurs with 'plus' handicaps) are just "naturals" because IMO it would be insulting to their work ethic to imply that it took them no effort to get where they are. I certainly think they've put in the work, but in addition I think they have some level of innate ability/skill/talent (whatever you want to call it) that differentiates them from the many golfers who work their butts off, but struggle just to break into the single-digit handicaps.
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So you're gonna tell your kid to settle for mediocrity?

No, I'm not telling my kids to settle for mediocrity, but I'm also not knowingly going to set them up to fail.

I was a good to very good linebacker in H.S. and college. In H.S. I had some scholarship offers and started to believe I could live out my dream as an NFL linebacker. Then I got into college and saw that even at that level I was genetically at a disadvantage. These guys were faster, stronger, more agile than I was. I had always worked hard in H.S. but during my first 2 years in college I really worked my butt off, eating right, not drinking, living in the gym, running, doing everything I could to catch up to them, it still wasn't enough. I decided that my dream to be a pro was a long shot at best, and I'd be better served to focus on my education. How many kids sacrifice their college education with the hopes to become a pro athelete when it's apparent to their parents, and coaches they don't have the natural ability to make it. Best case they play their sport in another country to make a decent living, but in most cases without a proper education they end up struggling the rest of their life. That's what I want to avoid.
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You didn't shoot 88 on a proper golf course the first time you played golf.

That's extremely rude to call someone who you have never met a liar. I would say it is extremely rare for someone to shoot 88 their first time out, but I am sure it has happened. Maybe you are just jealous, or you have read too many posts by users that make outrageous claims, but it's better to just keep it to yourself.

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