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I am so frustrated and want to quit golf

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I started golf 6 months ago and now I am ready to quit. Golf is a good game and I love it. But I just could not get it. I had private lessons, I watched YouTub a lot, I even paid a program so I can practice drive range every day free. But I just could not get it. I understood what my instructor said, I know what I should do, but I just do not know hwo to do it. I hit from the top, I have chicken wings, and I can not release the club with hands cross-over. I top, I have fat shot and slice. I am going to see my third private instructor tomorrow and I do not have confidence in either him or me.

I am a very active person. I played basketball a lot, enjoyed it untill too many injuries. I also played tennis and have a 4.0 USTA rating. But golf seems very hard. I do not have the "feel" when I swing.

Would you guys share some experience learning golf? What should I expect at 6 months? How do you improve?

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Welcome!

Many non-golf athletes look at golf and those that play it and assume if they can play their sport well then golf should be easy to pick up.   I played a lot of sports well (football, softball, racquetball) well before trying golf, none of them were close to the difficulty of golf.

If you're a 30 handicap, a real 30, not a vanity cap 30 after 6 months you're probably a bit ahead of the average person.  I've played 2.5 years, seriously the last 2 and I'm just breaking 20.   I've taken lessons, practice 3-4 times per week during the season and usually play once a week when business and weather allows.

You made a smart move joining here, Erik, the site owner, is an instructor and he along with some of the other Five Simple Keys team are very generous with their advice and assistance.  If you post a video of your swing according to the site guidelines, they will be happy to provide you their insights.

Golf is about practice and patience.  You probably didn't reach a 4.0 USTA rating in 6 months so maybe you just need to re-adjust your expectations for golf a bit and try to enjoy it more.

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Hang in there, most of us went through a period where we came close to giving up, I for 1 am glad I stuck it out..

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My 1st 3 seasons ( when I started at 7 yrs old) I could t even get the ball in the air..but once every 20 swings. I hated golf...hated everything about it..but folks told me not to give up on it. Glad I didn't , I had the opportunity to meet so so so so many people, play some beautiful clubs all around the country..and allowed me to get a great job by playing golf one day with the section manager at the mill I've been at now for 15 years now..as a section leader and union Griever for our facility.,Played golf with him on a random Monday,,2 days later interview..week later pension/ free health insurance/ and a good living for me and my son,, Golf will take u some fun places in life..don't give up :-(

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6 months? You haven't even started to feel forelorn and frustrated yet. Seriously, you can't quit, you just started. I went 1 1/2 years like this, and am just starting to see progress. Hope you see it sooner than me. :-) :-) :-)

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Keep at it.

6 months is nothing -- I've been trying to change my swing for 2 years - it's only in the last 6 months with lessons from the guys here that I've made another push to mediocrity ... err ... greatness....

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I started golf 6 months ago and now I am ready to quit. Golf is a good game and I love it.

Some folks get good at golf really quickly and continue to excel at it until they top out at single digits or scratch. For the rest of us, we simply love playing the game. We take on the challenges, love what (sometimes little) successes we experience, and endure the failures.

I don't blame anyone for quitting, it's an incredibly humbling game. If I had more common sense, I'd go back to something I was better at (tennis also). But you said in your post you "love it". Nobody here believes you are going to give it up because most of us have been where you're at. You'll improve. It might not be at the pace you expected, but you will get a little bit better every year.

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For most of us there is a definite mental disconnect between the results we desire on the course and the value just being outside in the fresh air/green grass/ environment. When our desires are dashed and the snowmen add up beyond 100 that's the time to revel in the joy of being alive and conscious. Hold your head high, do not give into anger and realize that you are one of millions suffering the same fate. For late nights i recommend Percy Boomer's great book on golf 'On learning golf'.  It's in a class by itself.

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I'm two years in, and just towards the end of this season I FINALLY broke 100 a few of times and nailed my first eagle. I was "OK" athletically, running 5Ks and playing roller hockey a lot until my knee finally blew up for the last time and the doc said nothing but swimming or biking, which is when I decided to take up golf.

I know how you feel. There's been days where I leave half a bucket at the range because I'm just dreadful. Everything I think I'm doing, which I feel like I did exactly the same time I was out and hit decent shots, is resulting in slices or worm burners. It sucks. But then there's really good sessions, then suddenly there's two in a row, then the next week you have some blowup holes and a few where your partners say "oh wow, you played that hole great, nice shooting!" And then it's back to worm burners :-)

Stick with it. My first 6 months last year were spent almost entirely at the range, just trying to figure things out. Try with your 3rd instructor, let them know your frustrations. Maybe take the winter off (if you live in a wintery region) and just relax and come back to it with a fresh attitude. But definitely stick with it.

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Way back when I was learning, I had a full length mirror to check various positions in the swing I was learning from a great instruction book.  It really helped me  ingrain the fundamentals in my muscle memory by watching myself do them in the mirror.  Basic fundamentals are SO important, and must be learned early on - bad habits get harder and harder to break as you go.

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Rustopher! Quote: the doc said nothing but swimming or biking, which is when I decided to take up golf! Haha, my doc told me I had to lay off eggs and milk, so I thought about this whilst eating omelette!

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To the thread starter, I feel your pain! I am a weekend warrior. I love my golf, but fully acknowledge that I have WAY more enthusiasm than talent!

I started playing (9 holes once a week) about 5 years ago, and spent the first 2 years just hacking my way around, wondering if I would ever be able to play this game. I did eventually get better, but my progress did not come in a gradual curve; it came in a series of steps. It is these steps I want to share and hear any comments about.

The first step was when I saw a Mark Crossfield clip on Youtube about the right hand grip . Like many beginners, I was gripping the club with my right hand rotated too far clockwise, under the club. This was closing the club face during my swing, and causing all sorts of horrible compensations in my swing. Adopting a fairly weak right hand grip felt awkward at first, but it almost immediately straightened out my shots.

The second step was when I read on Bob Jones’ Recreational Golfer blog that the famous British instructor Vivienne Saunders had once said that the average beginner would make the most progress by paying attention to their follow-through position . If your setup is OK, and your follow-through is OK, the bit in between should be OK too! So I scrunched up pieces of a4 paper (they go nowhere and can’t break anything on the way!) and practised swinging through them and into the “pro pose,” balanced on the front foot, rotated through to face the target. I soon learned to stop swinging at the ball, but rather to swing towards my target and into my follow through. This immediately made a big difference to the consistency of my ball-striking. Many less fat shots.

I was hitting the ball much straighter, and striking it much cleaner, but still found that I would often hit the ball straight left, or right. So the next big step was sorting out my alignment . I came across a Youtube clip by Steve Bann on alignment. He said its difficult to judge when you are parallel to an imaginary line on the ground. He said to try aiming the club face at the target and then aligning yourself square  “across” the club face, while it is right under your eyes. He is right. It is MUCH easier. Centering the club face in my stance also sets the perfect ball position for me (slightly forward of center) for shots off the ground.

The beauty of this method is that alignment and ball position are set at the same time.

So there are the three steps which have made a huge difference to my game:  Right hand grip, swinging through to a correct follow through, and alignment by club face. Probably discovered in the wrong order, but so it goes! And, of course, it still takes practise.

I already know that the next step will be a mental one. I tend to fall into the trap of playing faster and faster during my round (especially if I become conscious of players behind us), and then not setting up properly. I need to discipline myself to follow my method on every stroke, for the entire round. I don’t have enough natural talent to simply walk up to the ball and swing. Hence one or two “blowup holes” each round.

Any thoughts? Do the instructors out there also find that their pupils progress in steps, or is this unusual?

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HI I had the same problems but i never really had the time to get any lessons. I did not want to take time out of my playing time for lessons and i could not go after work. On a tight lead at home with two small kids. Found the app Golf121.Lessons by Pga Pros straight back to your phone. They are personal lessons . Really good. They also picked for me practise drill and practise game.I am using it about once a month but it works for me because each lesson is always on my phone so i can never forget what the pro said.

Worked for me on the range as just kept replaying lesson till i got it. Worth a look.

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Now maybe this is a bad example, but I don't care...it's an inspiration to me.

Do you happen to know a man named Henrik Stenson?

Less than 2 years ago...Henrik slipped to 230th in the world rankings. Horrible rank for a man of his talent IMO. But then what happened this year? He's the only person to win the Fed Ex cup AND the Race to Dubai in the same year. Flew up to 3rd in the world rankings and is #1 right now, also my opinion.

"Life is ups and downs—stock market, golf, everything kind of goes in cycles," "There's no magic potion," he said about breaking from the doldrums. "It's just hard work on the right things that eventually pays off." -Henrik Stenson

6 months is a very short amount of time to expect to be good at something. Especially something as difficult as golf. Even the pros make errant shots. Have you seen Tiger hit the fairway lately? Neither have I.

What you should do if you haven't already is film your swing and post it here. That's helped me way more then my PGA pro teacher did.

and the last thing you should do? HAVE FUN. Stop practicing if you're getting burnt out...just go to the course....way more fun. You hit a bunch of bad shots? That's fine...you'll get damn good at hitting from the rough :)

Keep with it my friend, it's worth it.

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I come close to quitting many times. Sometimes listening to this helps.

Nothing is impossible I have found
For when my chin is on the ground
I pick myself up, dust myself off
Start all over again

Don't lose your confidence if you slip
Be grateful for a pleasant trip
And pick yourself up, dust yourself off
Start all over again

Work like a soul inspired
Till the battle of the day is won

You may be sick and tired
But you'll be a man, my son

Will you remember the famous men
Who had to fall to rise again?

So take a deep breath
Pick yourself up, dust yourself off
Start all over again

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Thanks for this post!  I have been struggling lately with my swing and it turns out, my right hand grip was way too strong.

After reading this post, I went back to more neutral right hand grip and my swing came back.

It's amazing some of the little things we forget that causes all the turmoil and heartache!

 

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To the thread starter, I feel your pain! I am a weekend warrior. I love my golf, but fully acknowledge that I have WAY more enthusiasm than talent!

 

I started playing (9 holes once a week) about 5 years ago, and spent the first 2 years just hacking my way around, wondering if I would ever be able to play this game. I did eventually get better, but my progress did not come in a gradual curve; it came in a series of steps. It is these steps I want to share and hear any comments about.

 

The first step was when I saw a Mark Crossfield clip on Youtube about the right hand grip. Like many beginners, I was gripping the club with my right hand rotated too far clockwise, under the club. This was closing the club face during my swing, and causing all sorts of horrible compensations in my swing. Adopting a fairly weak right hand grip felt awkward at first, but it almost immediately straightened out my shots.

 

The second step was when I read on Bob Jones’ Recreational Golfer blog that the famous British instructor Vivienne Saunders had once said that the average beginner would make the most progress by paying attention to their follow-through position. If your setup is OK, and your follow-through is OK, the bit in between should be OK too! So I scrunched up pieces of a4 paper (they go nowhere and can’t break anything on the way!) and practised swinging through them and into the “pro pose,” balanced on the front foot, rotated through to face the target. I soon learned to stop swinging at the ball, but rather to swing towards my target and into my follow through. This immediately made a big difference to the consistency of my ball-striking. Many less fat shots.

 

I was hitting the ball much straighter, and striking it much cleaner, but still found that I would often hit the ball straight left, or right. So the next big step was sorting out my alignment. I came across a Youtube clip by Steve Bann on alignment. He said its difficult to judge when you are parallel to an imaginary line on the ground. He said to try aiming the club face at the target and then aligning yourself square  “across” the club face, while it is right under your eyes. He is right. It is MUCH easier. Centering the club face in my stance also sets the perfect ball position for me (slightly forward of center) for shots off the ground.

 

The beauty of this method is that alignment and ball position are set at the same time.

 

So there are the three steps which have made a huge difference to my game:  Right hand grip, swinging through to a correct follow through, and alignment by club face. Probably discovered in the wrong order, but so it goes! And, of course, it still takes practise.

 

I already know that the next step will be a mental one. I tend to fall into the trap of playing faster and faster during my round (especially if I become conscious of players behind us), and then not setting up properly. I need to discipline myself to follow my method on every stroke, for the entire round. I don’t have enough natural talent to simply walk up to the ball and swing. Hence one or two “blowup holes” each round.

 

Any thoughts? Do the instructors out there also find that their pupils progress in steps, or is this unusual?  

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I've never wanted to quit golf but I would have liked to have improved more than I have.

This is the first year that I've played where I played more than a round or two in a year.  I became a weekend warrior.

I showed some big improvement as I played more earlier this year and for the last three or four months, gradual improvement on my scores.  My goal when I first started this season was to shoot under 100 and, considering the first few times I went out I shot a 143, 130, 132, and 135, I felt a real sense of accomplishment when I did it five months later.  I did it again a month after that and felt some validation.

My next goal is to shoot consistently under 100 and break 90 but that will likely have to wait until next spring.  I think taking some indoor lessons and practicing some things indoors will certainly help with reaching my goal.

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