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TTH83

How to be a Hack at a Golf Outing

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Hello!

New to to the forum as well as the game. Well, I played for a bit years ago, but I'm only trying to get serious about the game now for the first time.

Here's my question. I've got a couple of work-related golf outings coming up in the next couple of weeks, and I'm a bit worried that my lousy game will embarrass me in front of people. I've played four or five rounds this summer, and my scores have all been in the 110-130 range.

I don't expect to suddenly get near 100 on these outings (and don't need to for one of them -- it's a scramble), but I just want to avoid annoying my playing partners with my game. I'm going to bring plenty of extra balls so that I don't slow people down by spending a lot of time looking for lost balls and will be prepared to make plenty of self-depricating jokes, but is there anything else I should do to mitigate my group's pain at my presence?

In other words, what are the things that annoy you the most when you're playing with a beginner or just a pure hack at a work outing and what can the beginner/hack do to make your round less miserable? I'm not trying to impress anyone with my playing, but one outing is with potential coworkers (I'm a law clerk at a firm this summer) and the other is with potential future clients.

Thanks in advance, and hit 'em straight and far.

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It doesn't matter how many strokes you take as long as you don't slow down your group. Keep a positive attitude and simply pick up and move on if you're out of the hole..... ....doesn't hurt if you buy the first round when the cart girl comes around either! ;-) You've already taken the first.step in realizing that what you do affects the rest of your group. Keep that in mind and you'll be just fine! Now go out and have fun.
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For the love of God - KEEP PACE

That's it.

I couldn't care if you can't hit a ball more than 10 feet consistently (and I have a good friend who can't), but just keep pace and don't spend forever looking for your ball.

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Don't try and hit shots your not comfortable with, meaning rather than try to hit a 3 wood off the deck use a hybrid if you have one or maybe just a 6 iron, use a 3 wood instead of driver off the tee the gain accuracy will more than make up the slight loss of distance, the people your playing with will notice your playing smart and appreciate it.

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Much appreciated (although I think I hit my driver better than my fairway woods if only because I don't have a consistant enough swing to get the smaller clubhead back to the ball on plane with the 3w).

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Originally Posted by David in FL

....doesn't hurt if you buy the first round when the cart girl comes around either!

+1

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I was where you're at two years ago.  Scrambles depending on the format are ideal for new golfers because they minimally penalize your team for your poor shots.  Here are some tips that helped me;

  1. Self deprecating humor can quickly turn to self pity and anger.  Be careful to maintain the proper mindset, you're a new golfer and you're there to have a good time with co-workers.
  2. Bring plenty of golf balls (as you noted).  Every scramble I played in was from the tips so all hazards are in play.  Give a quick look for balls in the woods but be prepared to walk away from them if you aren't able to locate them quickly.
  3. Try to be an asset to the team, do your best to give the rest of the golfers (if they are good) something to work with.  On drives, don't try to kill it, put it in the fairway so the other guys can go for the long drive.  Stay conservative on your other shots, do your best to keep the ball in play so the others can shoot for the pins.  On putts, give your best effort so that even if you don't make it, your team mates get a good read of the greens.
  4. Maintain pace with the group and play ready golf.  You should be ready to swing when it's your turn.
  5. Be prepared for a ton of advice on your swing.  I've found the golf tips increase exponentially with the amount of alcohol consumed during scrambles.  In the beginning the tips are welcome by the 12th hole they start to become redundant and annoying.
  6. Don't hit anyone elses woods unless you know them well and are prepared to buy the club if you damage it.
  7. Have fun, that's why you're there in the first place.
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Originally Posted by newtogolf

I was where you're at two years ago.  Scrambles depending on the format are ideal for new golfers because they minimally penalize your team for your poor shots.  Here are some tips that helped me;

Self deprecating humor can quickly turn to self pity and anger.  Be careful to maintain the proper mindset, you're a new golfer and you're there to have a good time with co-workers.

Bring plenty of golf balls (as you noted).  Every scramble I played in was from the tips so all hazards are in play.  Give a quick look for balls in the woods but be prepared to walk away from them if you aren't able to locate them quickly.

Try to be an asset to the team, do your best to give the rest of the golfers (if they are good) something to work with.  On drives, don't try to kill it, put it in the fairway so the other guys can go for the long drive.  Stay conservative on your other shots, do your best to keep the ball in play so the others can shoot for the pins.  On putts, give your best effort so that even if you don't make it, your team mates get a good read of the greens.

Maintain pace with the group and play ready golf.  You should be ready to swing when it's your turn.

Be prepared for a ton of advice on your swing.  I've found the golf tips increase exponentially with the amount of alcohol consumed during scrambles.  In the beginning the tips are welcome by the 12th hole they start to become redundant and annoying.

Don't hit anyone elses woods unless you know them well and are prepared to buy the club if you damage it.

Have fun, that's why you're there in the first place.

All very intuitive advice. Thanks!

Another question, this time about proper dress. The first outing is at a country club and consists of a seminar in the morning, followed by golf in the afternoon. Any of you guys who are midwesterners know how crazy hot it has been lately. Even though it's cooling off, a mid-day round will still be a long, hot walk.

I know cargo shorts are definitely a no-go, but can I get away with bermuda shorts? They're allowed in the club's dress code, but I'm wondering if, since the first part of the day is a work function, if I should wear slacks in the morning, then change before the round? (less of a golf question, I know, but c'mon you guys are wise in ways I am not)

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If the bermudas are in with the course rules bring a set and change into them. If anything be the guy who waits around and sees what the others are wearing first and make a dash for the locker room once you spot a few others. If anything, just ask your playing partners what they're wearing?

For shirt, I'd say any polo shirt with a collar and no huge advertising marks would be ok.

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If the purpose of the outing is golf centric then I think wearing your golf shorts and shirt is perfectly acceptable.  These events never run on time and you don't want to miss the start because you have to change.  The safest option would be golf pants.  Actual golf pants (tech fabric) in a light color will keep you just as cool as shorts.

Just make sure you follow the dress code of the country club, including footwear.  Many CC don't allow sneakers in the club house.

Originally Posted by TTH83

All very intuitive advice. Thanks!

Another question, this time about proper dress. The first outing is at a country club and consists of a seminar in the morning, followed by golf in the afternoon. Any of you guys who are midwesterners know how crazy hot it has been lately. Even though it's cooling off, a mid-day round will still be a long, hot walk.

I know cargo shorts are definitely a no-go, but can I get away with bermuda shorts? They're allowed in the club's dress code, but I'm wondering if, since the first part of the day is a work function, if I should wear slacks in the morning, then change before the round? (less of a golf question, I know, but c'mon you guys are wise in ways I am not)

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Whenever I go to work functions, I wear normal slacks and bring a change of shorts. If it's a country club, they have a locker room and you can change in 3 minutes. If not, you have a car and can't tell you how many times I've changed in my car this year (tinted windows and a minivan help).

As far as being new, I think it's all been pretty much said. I'm far from good but if I play with people I haven't played with before, I tell them that I am better than a lot of people and a lot of people are better than me. That I'll hit some good shots, but some bad as well. I prefer to play better than I say, not the opposite.

Pace isn't as big for me. If I know someone is newer, I'll cut them some slack. It's looking for balls that bugs me. Play your ball and your game, everyone was as good (bad) as you at some point. It's looking for a ball or two every hole that can get rough.

Lastly, someone mentioned the self-deprecating jokes earlier. A couple are ok, but don't go overboard. It does turn to pity after a while. Make a couple of jokes and if you are playing really bad, halfway through the round and at the end, say I appreciate your patience today and I enjoyed playing with you. The worst (and this doesn't sound like you) are the ones who can't come within 50 yds of the fairway and say they used to hit it over 300 yds every time with a nice little draw.

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I find that in general, most golfers suck at golf.  I don't think you'll be alone in that respect.

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Originally Posted by dsc123

I find that in general, most golfers suck at golf.  I don't think you'll be alone in that respect.


Haha, you said in 19 words what I said in a 1,000.

If anyone complains, they're an a-hole and you don't want to play with them to begin with.

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There's lots of hacks out there, not only that some folks just have bad days. Personally I don't care how bad someone is playing as long as they aren't slowing things up. We got stuck behind a slow 4some yesterday and it made our round miserable because we were the group immediately behind them and it resulted in 2 groups catching us. Consequently we felt rushed in an attempt to not hold up those behind us. Even the ranger wasn't help and despite asking our request to play through wasn't honored because there really wasn't anywhere to go, groups in front of them that were close to the same pace. One or two slow groups can jam up the entire course. Sounds like you've got it covered with extra balls and the knowledge to not hold things up.

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Another question: I should probably go buy a box of balls so that I'm playing with the same style of ball all round, right? It'd look pretty tacky to play a bunch of different balls I've shagged from weeds while playing, yeah?

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Originally Posted by TTH83

Another question: I should probably go buy a box of balls so that I'm playing with the same style of ball all round, right? It'd look pretty tacky to play a bunch of different balls I've shagged from weeds while playing, yeah?

I dont think so, I really dont care what ball anyone else is playing or even notice for that matter.

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Originally Posted by onesome

Don't try and hit shots your not comfortable with, meaning rather than try to hit a 3 wood off the deck use a hybrid if you have one or maybe just a 6 iron, use a 3 wood instead of driver off the tee the gain accuracy will more than make up the slight loss of distance, the people your playing with will notice your playing smart and appreciate it.

THIS!

i have a friend i play with regularly and he tries to pull off all kinds of shots thats not in his bag of tricks and 100% of the time tops it 50 yrds or slices it bad. he refuses to hit his hybrid off a tee to at least get him 200 yards in the fairway and goes with driver to over swing it, top it, and roll it maybe 100 yards out. oh yea and that fact that he stands over each shot dead still for like 10-20 seconds before starting his swing only to top the ball again doesnt help. if you know you cant hit your woods off the deck just hit something u know will be findable. who knows everyone else might shank their in the woods and your shot saves the hole.

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Originally Posted by Lost-Ball

THIS!

i have a friend i play with regularly and he tries to pull off all kinds of shots thats not in his bag of tricks and 100% of the time tops it 50 yrds or slices it bad. he refuses to hit his hybrid off a tee to at least get him 200 yards in the fairway and goes with driver to over swing it, top it, and roll it maybe 100 yards out. oh yea and that fact that he stands over each shot dead still for like 10-20 seconds before starting his swing only to top the ball again doesnt help. if you know you cant hit your woods off the deck just hit something u know will be findable. who knows everyone else might shank their in the woods and your shot saves the hole.

Yep, the headcovers will stay on my fairway woods throughout the round. I haven't the slightest clue how to hit 'em. I'm not much better with my 4i/5i, but hell, I gotta swing somethin right?

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