I have to eat some humble pie, but I’m not afraid to out myself here.
I played SO badly this round. Didn’t even score one hole, after I reached 12 strokes.
I haven’t played this poorly in a long time, but I’m undeterred. I will move past this.
All the course management in the world couldn’t help the swing I had yesterday. I literally put an 8 iron mere feet from OB off the tee on one hole. An 8 IRON!!!!!
Here are my excuses, in no particular order:
Started on 18, because of being with a large work group, social outing, all teeing off together.
I hit too many balls on the range the day before playing, and developed blisters, due to..
Grip and swing changes that I tried to implement, but certainly didn’t have grooved by the day of my round.
I had too many swing thoughts in my head on the course (see above).
I was paired with two people who had never ever played before, even once, and required (and received) basic swing, etiquette and basic rules instruction from me.
I had to leave by a certain time to return to work, and was therefore pressured to finish on time.
Pace of play was very slow for everyone. (5+ hour round). Was playing on a military course in Japan, which allows local guests. The polite thing to say is that the elderly Japanese golfers in several groups directly ahead of us were... ‘deliberate’.
I talked so much trash on here about my course management plan, and failed to implement it on numerous occasions because...
I hit bad shots with my ‘safe’ clubs, and thereby lost confidence in all clubs, and so I even hit driver a few times, (predictably) badly, late in the round.
And most of all:
I wanted to do so well, so badly! I psyched myself up and out of this round before I started.
The positives were:
I had a string of four 5’s in a row, and was definitely playing well enough during that period.
I putted decently. Didn’t make any putts outside of 6’, but only missed 1 or 2 inside of 6’.
I hit one drive with my 5w 230 yards or so, and dead straight.
AFTER I hit my 8 Iron next to the woods to a severe side hill lie off the tee (see above), hit an approach well short (of course), duffed a SW 5’ (yuck)... AFTER all that.. I hit my next SW stiff to 2” from about 50 yards, and tapped in for a 5 on a hard, short par 4.
I got to play golf!
As neither a positive, or an outright negative, I confirmed that I’ve developed a consistent one way miss with my irons: a hook. Or as I call it an ‘overcooked draw’, LOL. (Starts straight, or slightly pulled, then curves left, and more left.) This ‘shot’ has almost always been in my bag, but today it’s almost all I seemed to hit!
Now I have something specific to correct as I practice.
The quest continues. Next time I’ll make sure to put myself in position to play well, and to keep the pressure off myself.
I’ve not given up on my course management plan, and I already bought the LSW book. It hasn’t arrived yet. Hope to get it and read it before my next round. Would already have it read if it was available on Kindle, (hint, hint).
Good luck to all!
You and I have similar issues. Think of it this way. Though @iacas and @mvmac will disagree with me. Whether you're swinging a putt or a driver, you're using a swinging hit.
I'm going to give you a small piece of wisdom, a scratch golfer gave me when I was about 13 or 14. Hold the club, like you would hold your wife or girlfriend's hand. I was gripping too tight, and Craig my instructor (whom I've known since I was a teenager).
"Shane, hold the club, like you're holding Alina's hand while crossing the street." (Alina is my eldest daughter).
The golf club only weighs sixteen ounces, you don't need to strangle it to control it. Caress the club just gentle pressure, you don't even need the 3 to 4 most instructors tell you. Just enough pressure to have control but feel the weight of the head of the golf club.
Try that with your wedges and sand wedges. Make sure you can feel the weight of the head, use a swinging hit. Head steady, not still or rigid. A little movement is ok, even rotational movement toward the target after impact is acceptable. Swinging hit, not hitting swing.
Hope this helps.