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Falling apart on the back nine


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Hi all,

The last 3 rounds, I have had great front nines ( 38, 39, 38 ). Hitting it solid tee to green.

Then I get on the back nine and it all goes to crap. ( 45, 45, 46 ). Putting has been consistently good ( may have saved me from the 50's in those back nines ).

I've been taking lessons - and they have helped a lot - no doubt about it. But I can not figure out why I feel like I lose my swing on the back nine. I get uncomfortable over the ball and lose any commitment to the swing

Is this just part of re working a swing - anyone else ever go through this?

I'll take low 80's any day - but when I play so well on the front - the 83/84 feels like crap :)

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Hi all,

The last 3 rounds, I have had great front nines ( 38, 39, 38 ). Hitting it solid tee to green.

Then I get on the back nine and it all goes to crap. ( 45, 45, 46 ). Putting has been consistently good ( may have saved me from the 50's in those back nines ).

I've been taking lessons - and they have helped a lot - no doubt about it. But I can not figure out why I feel like I lose my swing on the back nine. I get uncomfortable over the ball and lose any commitment to the swing

Is this just part of re working a swing - anyone else ever go through this?

I'll take low 80's any day - but when I play so well on the front - the 83/84 feels like crap :)

I'm not sure, but some people say that it's important to make sure you eat and stay hydrated while playing. Other than that I can only think of fatigue and/or extra pressure you are adding on yourself because of having a good front and trying harder to make sure you do well on the back? My problem is typically the other way though, I have some good holes and I get over confident causing loss of focus and blow up holes.

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me too - I find it very difficult to hold it together on the tail end of the back 9 ... always !    Especially if I'm doing well - I have to fight off calculating in my mind what I need on the last couple holes to score well, etc

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I try to look at holes in groups of 3. If I have a bad 3 hole run I reboot. There is usually at least one hole in every group that is a problem for me. At my home course I try to play the first 3 no more than +2 because I know I typically get through the next 3 even. If I get to 7, a par 3, at +2 I usually have a shot to keep that side under 40. Eight is a straight forward par 5 and 9 is another bogey hole for me. Rinse and repeat on the back.
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I always go to the tee box with the mindset that Ihave to get the ball in the fairway. Surprising how well you can score fromthe fairway. You should go with a routine on the tee. Focus on a target and swing firm but always under control. When I used to bowl professionally, every frame was a routine and focus on a mark on the lane. Throw firm but always under control.
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I teach at a college, and know members of the golf team. Some of them complain of "blips" on the back 9 when they play. They say they tend to get too "pumped up" and start overswinging.

Make sure you don't get too aggressive - try to keep the same swing tempo.

Also, make sure you're not having fatigue problems on the back nine. If you do workouts other than golf, this should not be a problem.

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me too - I find it very difficult to hold it together on the tail end of the back 9 ... always !    Especially if I'm doing well - I have to fight off calculating in my mind what I need on the last couple holes to score well, etc

That's my bugaboo. That's why my best scores tend to come from my league, since it's match play. It's easy to move on from a bad hole, since it only affects that hole, and not the rest of the round.

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I teach at a college, and know members of the golf team. Some of them complain of "blips" on the back 9 when they play. They say they tend to get too "pumped up" and start overswinging.

Make sure you don't get too aggressive - try to keep the same swing tempo.

Also, make sure you're not having fatigue problems on the back nine. If you do workouts other than golf, this should not be a problem.

I think this is what I'm struggling with. My tempo and rhythm go down the sink and I struggle to find it again.

See what happens this weekend!

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It's a rite of passage....to learn how to finish off a round you have to first blow up a couple times. We've all been there but over time you will become better and better at finishing off your rounds just like breaking 100 or 90. Over time you will learn that hole number one is no more important than 16, 17, or 18 but since those are the holes that separate you from your best ever score you put extra stress in to them.

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I think this is what I'm struggling with. My tempo and rhythm go down the sink and I struggle to find it again.

See what happens this weekend!

What part of your game struggles?

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Everything but chipping and putting

Make swings that feel like 60-70% Make sure you are getting contact as your top priority. When I felt my game slipping on the course during my golf trip, I would just take the next shot what felt like 70% with a 3/4 swing. Shockingly the ball went the normal distance, but the contact was solid.

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I'm not sure, but some people say that it's important to make sure you eat and stay hydrated while playing. Other than that I can only think of fatigue and/or extra pressure you are adding on yourself because of having a good front and trying harder to make sure you do well on the back? My problem is typically the other way though, I have some good holes and I get over confident causing loss of focus and blow up holes.

Hydrated, yeah.. eating I'm not sure.  Normally I eat something small an hour or two before I go play and then nothing for the entire round besides water.  The last round I played I stopped at the turn and got a bratwurst and Gatorade and it made me feel tired and bloated the entire back 9.  It probably varies from person to person but if I'm concentrating on something my hunger switch shuts off completely and if I eat something anyway it immediately makes me sleepy.

Anyway I seem to lose my focus on the back 9 as well and I'm not sure what it is.  I think maybe it's because of all my previous poor shots and making little adjustments to not repeat them-- it just snowballs and makes me forget how to even hit the ball anymore.

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Hydrated, yeah.. eating I'm not sure.  Normally I eat something small an hour or two before I go play and then nothing for the entire round besides water.  The last round I played I stopped at the turn and got a bratwurst and Gatorade and it made me feel tired and bloated the entire back 9.  It probably varies from person to person but if I'm concentrating on something my hunger switch shuts off completely and if I eat something anyway it immediately makes me sleepy.

Anyway I seem to lose my focus on the back 9 as well and I'm not sure what it is.  I think maybe it's because of all my previous poor shots and making little adjustments to not repeat them-- it just snowballs and makes me forget how to even hit the ball anymore.

20 handicap, you are bound to struggle from time to time. It's not a mental thing when the handicap is that large, it's a swing thing.

The OP's handicap is a 7.8, and this seems to just be happening recently. Something in his swing is changing during the round. He should have a decent swing to be shooting single digits.

As for hydrating, big thing. Today it was mid 80's and high humidity. I went through 1 bottle of water on the front nine, and 3 more on the back nine. Then I drank another bottle of water after the round.

As for eating, depends on when I last ate. If I am hungry I will eat something. If not, I can play 18 and not eat anything.

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I yakked on a turd on the last hole today. The wind was howling from right to left and blew my drive in the water. Double bogey for aother 73. Number 17 was a downwind 530 yard par 5. 330 yard drive and a 200 yard 5 iron. Just missed a 20 foot eagle putt. I do not like playing in that much wind. For me, blowing up is usually done with the driver. I suggest working on a goto drive that youcan get in the fairway on those tight holes. I know, easier said than done. :)
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I know it sounds simple, but, do you eat at the turn? Food is fuel! Stay hydrated, get a hot dog or something in you at the turn and get a can of swing lube (Miller Lite). It seems to help me. My front 9 is always in the high 40's and my back 9 is always in the low 40's. Go figure.

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