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Rough Wanderer

The plagues of inconsistency

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Hi everyone. Brand new to the Sand Trap, but have been golfing steadily since 2013 (at least once per week). I have a serious problem with consistency and keeping the ball on the fairway in general. Beginning to get worried I may just not ever be a good player. I average in the mid-90s, and very rarely hit the upper 80's, but still struggle with keeping my scores under 100 from time to time. Lack of consistency has lead to me feeling insecure who I golf with. I know that my partners won't say anything, but I think they are judging me on the inside. While some of my friends who have been playing for the same amount of time are seeing their handicaps lowered to the mid teens, mine has remain unchanged for the better part of 3 years. It stands at a whopping 21! Generally its the drive that causes the most problems. A tee shot that slices 10, 20, or even more yards right lands in the deep stuff (or OB) and sets the tempo for the remainder of the hole. Next thing i know i am hitting an iron fat or shanking over to the other side of the fairway in attempt to correct myself. As a result, I often find my self struggling to a bogey or worse. Its not uncommon for me to have 5 or 6 double and triple bogeys a game. What's sad is that I have about 6-8 holes where things are going good (hitting deep drives down the middle, landing a GIR , 2-putts or less, scrambling for Par, etc.), the constant theme though is sloppy golf and not playing up to my potential. People have told me its practice: Not taking as many opportunities as I should to hit a few buckets or practice my short game. I can't say that's not entirely true, but I don't think that's the whole piece to the puzzle. Something just feels terribly off. For example I played several weeks ago with a relatively new player (maybe a year tops worth of experience). We both had a horrible front nine on a local course, but he finished the back nine 5 strokes lower than me. Plus, I lost about 8 golf balls and he hadn't even gone through a sleeve. If I can't blow away someone new to golf (no offense newbies), its a pretty big kick in the stomach to my confidence. My question is, is there a bigger force at play? Do some people just take longer to progress at the sport? Is it uncommon to have a handicap this high after 4 years and what should I do to correct it? Someone once told me it takes the average golfer about 5 years of steady play to develop consistency. I surely hope that's true. I am finding it harder to want to go out and play the sport I love the most. If anyone out there can share similar experiences it would be most helpful.

Driver and woods: TMD Rocketballz Stage 2, Hybrid: Adams Idea A12OS, Irons: TMD Rocketbladez, Wedges: TMD ATV. Putter: Cleveland HB-1

Ball: Prefer Bridgestone E-6 Soft, but overall doesn't seem to matter much, if it flies, its lost.

Edited by Rough Wanderer

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I can sympathize with you. I can go to the range drive them hard straight and long. Played to day slice after slice and luck to get 125 for distance. Then next hole boom 200 and straight. I'm a bigger guy and am thinking my range of motion is lacking and muscles might be tight and that affects your swing.  So might try good stretching and also just strength training. I play alone and have the luxury of breaking when I want.   I think you got the basics to build on and you'll even out. One day it's all just gonna click!!  Good luck and keep swinging 

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Well, you've come to the right place.  Read the "How to" section.   Post a swing video and you'll be on your way to some help from the membership.    Here in the forum you'll find tips on what to practice, how to practice and how often to practice.   I'd strongly suggest you buy @iacas book "Lowest Score Wins".   

You're doing right by posting and asking questions.  This is highly encouraged.. 

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On 5/23/2017 at 6:13 PM, Rough Wanderer said:

While some of my friends who have been playing for the same amount of time are seeing their handicaps lowered to the mid teens, mine has remain unchanged for the better part of 3 years. It stands at a whopping 21!

If it makes you feel any better know these two things: 1) there are a bunch of us in the same spot. I've been stuck in the 20-22 area for awhile. 2) Nobody else cares. Really and truly, nobody cares how poorly you score as long as you don't slow up the pace. 

Welcome to TST. 

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Welcome!

On 5/23/2017 at 6:13 PM, Rough Wanderer said:

I average in the mid-90s, and very rarely hit the upper 80's, but still struggle with keeping my scores under 100 from time to time. Lack of consistency has lead to me feeling insecure who I golf with.

I've been playing as long as you and have only broken 100 once.  So, while it's easy to compare yourself to your playing partners you're still way ahead of a lot of us.  If you think your playing partners are judging you, then find new partners, but to be honest, they're probably not.  This game is too hard to think too much about the other guy (that goes for you too). 

On 5/23/2017 at 6:13 PM, Rough Wanderer said:

My question is, is there a bigger force at play? Do some people just take longer to progress at the sport? Is it uncommon to have a handicap this high after 4 years and what should I do to correct it?

Of course it takes some people longer than others.  No it is emphatically not uncommon to have such a "high" handicap, as a matter of fact, depending on what source you look at, you're at or slightly above average for shooting consistently in the 90s.  Correct it by taking lessons from a competent instructor and make a My Swing thread.

 

On 5/23/2017 at 6:13 PM, Rough Wanderer said:

If I can't blow away someone new to golf (no offense newbies), its a pretty big kick in the stomach to my confidence.

If you ask me, this is your biggest mental-game issue.  Between being worried about what your playing partners think about your game and trying to "blow away someone new to golf",  you are way too concerned with how you look to the guy next to you. 

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Yes the game is supposed to be relaxing(ha ha) and Fun  give us exercise and well lets be honest it is really a gentleman's game of Fetch  we hit it and chase it  and I chase and chase..lol  but that being said its something that I look forward to all week and in my mind I play the shots, think of all the new things I'll try to alter my swing and yes the occasional delusions of grandeur of playing the perfect round and maybe finally being able to great little dance move I'll do when I make that sweet putt or drop it next to the cup with my drive.  Either way it is a frustrating yet magical game.  

Edited by Maddmaxx63

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Welcome! I've found the only consistency in golf is inconsistency until it gets to a very high level. Best thing I ever did regarding golf was learn to play and manage my miss. Being realistic about what result to expect helped me as I worked to improve ball striking. It still does. Due to a rib and back injury I am nearly 3 clubs shorter than I was 2 years ago and this season my scores have only crept up 2 strokes playing the same tees.

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Unless you are turning 4-4.5 hour rounds into 5.5 + hour rounds I doubt your partners are giving much thought to you or your game. They are thinking about their game. Read the site, post video in my swing, take a few lessons if you can afford them. 

 I generally shoot mid 80's and I fuss about inconsistency too. I imagine an 6-10 hcp feels the same way at times. It's part of the deal

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Golf is a game of consistency/inconsistency...  All high handicappers, myself included are inconsistent.  If I was consistent I'd be a low handicapper.  I figure if I hit 60% of my shots (not including putting) at a B- (grade) or better I'll break 90.  I've lowered my handicap by improving my swing fundamentals which in turn increased my consistency, or should I say decreased my inconsistency.  I still have a long way to go.

Edited by No Mulligans

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Ok so I played tanglewood greens today par 72. I played the 1st nine. A very nice golfer offered to play with me I explained my newness and never having played anything but a par 3. He waved me off and told me it'll be just fine. I had the time of my life. I played well 51 on the 9. He was supportive and encouraging he offered tips and even let me try his hybrid 3 on a few shots as it was funny I just bought a Ben hogan cft hybrid and he had the exact club. Hope all golfers are that nice. Biggest tip for the day. Was my tees were to short for my oversized driver. He lent me a long one and it was night and day who would have thunk tee height would made make that much difference. I'll tell you even though that course is much longer and harderr now.  I'm sold on it bye bye par 3 for now. 

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13 hours ago, krupa said:

Welcome!

I've been playing as long as you and have only broken 100 once.  So, while it's easy to compare yourself to your playing partners you're still way ahead of a lot of us.  If you think your playing partners are judging you, then find new partners, but to be honest, they're probably not.  This game is too hard to think too much about the other guy (that goes for you too). 

Of course it takes some people longer than others.  No it is emphatically not uncommon to have such a "high" handicap, as a matter of fact, depending on what source you look at, you're at or slightly above average for shooting consistently in the 90s.  Correct it by taking lessons from a competent instructor and make a My Swing thread.

 

If you ask me, this is your biggest mental-game issue.  Between being worried about what your playing partners think about your game and trying to "blow away someone new to golf",  you are way too concerned with how you look to the guy next to you. 

Good thoughts @krupa 

It's too bad RW never returned after writing such an interesting 1st post.

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