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My Swing (klineka)


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Continuing to work on the full turn on the backswing with driver along with a feeling of "slowing down" the follow through. The thought in my head is "Coil, uncoil" reminding me to make my full turn, but then to just let myself uncoil naturally and feeling like I'm slowing down on the downswing/not adding and extra effort for the downswing, which is making the ball flight much more neutral and having just a couple yard fade instead of big slices. Wasn't on a launch monitor so I'm not sure if I was actually swinging slower or if it was just the feeling, I know feel isn't real so I'd guess the uncoil/slow downswing feel was still within a couple mph of my normal speeds.

Spent some time practicing and getting comfortable with 3 wood and 3 and 4 irons off the tee again, had been feeling uncomfortable with those shots lately. 3 wood swing thought is same as driver, and 3 and 4 iron swing thought is more of just "full turn" just making sure I get a full turn instead of just lifting with my arms.

Irons have been "meh" lately, not great but manageable, mishits were really high on the face, swing was getting way too long so worked on feeling like I was doing a half swing even though it actually looked like a normal full swing and strike came back almost instantly.

Wedges, short game, and putter have been dialed in lately, got down in two shots from ~100 yds multiple times in rounds on friday and saturday, including a par 3 that was playing 112 to the pin and my tee shot took one bounce just short of the hole and bounced up and hit the flagstick before settling down about 6 feet away. On the greens I knocked in a few 30+ footers and hit two 60+ footers to tap in range twice in my last rounds over the weekend.

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Time for a little recap from my Pinehurst trip. Somewhat unexpectedly, that was the best I have ever driven the golf ball for a multiple round stretch. I didn't lose a single ball off the tee or

Have played 4 rounds so far this year using my own ball, below are some stats around those rounds.  Putting has been the weakest area by far, my make rate from 6-9 feet is only 30% and 9-15 feet

Visited @iacas along with @georgep and @saevel25 up in Erie at Golf Evolution yesterday. Working with Erik in person was awesome and really helpful. I have a few things to work on in my setup and

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Continuing to work on making the iron swing more compact, when the swing is more compact and I feel like its a half swing, the shaft doesn't get laid off as much. Also feeling like my hands are going "in and back" towards my right hip/pocket on the way back has helped too, similar things that I worked on in Erie last spring, just slipped back into some old habits with the irons recently as I had been focusing a lot on wedges and tee shots.

Speaking of wedges, I went and did a Callaway wedge fitting yesterday for the MD5 Jaws, decided to keep my current 50 degree for now, but got fitted for 54 and 58 degree wedges.

I knew I had a gap right around 80-90 yards in my current make up of 54 and 60, it was tough for me to take that much off my 54, and it required a pretty hard swing to get my 60 degree that far, but the 58 fit perfect, a nice smooth 3/4 feeling swing was 90 yards consistently.

Stayed with the 10 degrees of bounce and the S grind in the 54 degree, but went with 12 degrees of bounce and the W grind for the 60, I really liked how it interacted with the turf especially on pitch shots and I really noticed a difference in quality and consistency of strikes using that grind compared to some of the others that were available. 

Placed the order this morning through Callaway pre-owned, who had "Like-New" condition for roughly $60 cheaper per club than brand new. They dont have the MD5 listed on their website, but if you call they have them in stock and will place the order for you. 

Pretty excited to have these arrive before heading down to Pinehurst July 9th.

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Hit the new wedges for the first time tonight and they weren't bad, I was hitting almost all of my "full" shots with both clubs off the toe which was unusual for me, hit some knock down 100 yarders with the 54 and some 70 yarders with the 58 and those were more centered strikes so it was just the "full" shots that were off the toe. I compared the new head shape to the MD3 when I got home and the MD5 is a much smaller head overall and isn't as wide in heel to toe length as the MD3 so I'm thinking they will just take me a few sessions to get used to. 

Driver still needs some work, but for the moment am switched into more of a "play" mode since I'm heading to Pinehurst late Thursday night, I just worked on getting my swing thought down and practiced swings and hit shots where I felt that feeling, which is hands in/club more vertical on the way back, then keep right elbow under the left arm on the downswing and rotate my body through. 

For the Pinehurst trip, below is our schedule

Friday PM - Talamore 

Saturday AM - Mid South

Saturday PM - Tobacco Road

Sunday AM - Mid South

I'll probably add onto my existing Pinehurst topic after this next trip with any updates on Talamore/Mid South and then my thoughts on Tobacco Road too.

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10 hours ago, klineka said:

For the Pinehurst trip, below is our schedule

Friday PM - Talamore 

Saturday AM - Mid South

Saturday PM - Tobacco Road

Sunday AM - Mid South

Have fun!

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Hit the new wedges much better at the range last night, the gaping fits much better with the 58 compared to the 60, my "full" 58 is 90 yards which was exactly the gap I needed to fill because using my 54 degree I have a tough time keeping spin up while taking enough yardage off to hit my 54 degree 90yds

I've noticed something interesting over my last 3 rounds, here are my scores in those rounds

35 - 40

39 - 35

43 - 37

The main issue has been tee shots, mainly with me being too aggressive and hitting driver or even 3 wood when I dont need to and instead on some of the holes I should just be hitting my 3 iron out there 220-230 and leaving myself a 9 iron or wedge into the green, especially since my shot zone and misses are quite large with driver at the moment. 

I tend to forget the other important part about distance off the tee being important, so is keeping the ball out of hazards and trees. I typically play from shorter(ish) tees (6,300-6,500) so I just need to remember that laying back isn't always a bad thing, especially for my specific swing right now.

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Time for a little recap from my Pinehurst trip.

Somewhat unexpectedly, that was the best I have ever driven the golf ball for a multiple round stretch. I didn't lose a single ball off the tee or have any penalty strokes off the tee over 3 rounds playing my own ball and one scramble round. I hit 60% of my fairways and averaged 267 off the tee combined with my driver and 3 wood and hit 70% of my fairways with the 3 wood. In terms of strokes gained, over the 3 rounds my strokes gained driving was -0.07 compared to scratch and +0.87 compared to a 5 hcp.

Shot shape was a slight fade, I started it a little left of the target and let it fade back, didn't have a single snap hook or huge slice, both of which had been issues recently for me. The biggest adjustment I made was to stand a bit further from the ball, and just focused on making a full turn on the way back. For whatever reason that really seemed to work so I'm excited to keep that momentum going in my upcoming rounds.

Biggest weakness was partial wedges, which was kinda to be expected since I just moved from a 60 degree to a 58, but I started working on them at the range last night and have a good feel for 50,60,70,80 yd ranges now with my new 58 degree. I did notice now with the fresh grooves I was able to hit really low but high spin 60-70 yd shots with my 54 degree that took one big hop then stopped which I used a couple times to get to a back flag where I didnt want to carry it the entire way with my 58 degree.

As part of the Talamore package each person in the group got a new 2018 Scotty Cameron putter, our group received the 2018 Scotty Cameron Select Fastback. I didn't use it while on the trip, but I tried it out last night and I really like it. I used a mirror and laser at home and was consistently lining it up better than my current putter, and when I tested it out on the putting green, it was really easy for me to aim. I did a 3 foot compass putting drill and I went 36/36 on the 3 footers, and went 31/36 on the same drill from 6 feet. Going to use it on the course for a round or two before I officially decide, but there's a really strong chance it will end up in my bag.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Decent practice session tonight working mainly on my weakest points from my last 5 rounds, 50-100 yd wedges and putting. Started off rough with my 58 trying to hit 50 yd shots, kept hitting them super thin and inconsistent, remembered my last short game lesson with my instructor where I needed to keep my weight more on my front foot and more wrist hinge on the backswing and that instantly made a difference. Most of the time I think I will use my 54 degree and go in lower, especially in the 60-80 yard range, but definitely want to have the ability to use the 58 for those yardages when necessary. 

I'm still mentally getting used to the fact that I don't need to grab my lob wedge all the time, most of the time even around the green I'm better off with my 54 degree.

My biggest issue with putting over the last 5 rounds has been 6-15 feet, from 6-9 feet i'm 0-10 and from 9-15 i'm 2-21. Spent time on breaking putts and actually identifying the spot outside of the hole where I wanted to aim (previously I would just kinda guess and not actually commit to a spot to aim), and making a confident stroke at that spot and I was holing a good number of them. Will be doing an aimpoint lesson with my instructor next week as well so looking forward to that.

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Just did an Aimpoint lesson with my instructor, I really like it so far and my reads were pretty accurate when I was practicing compared to what his digital level said. 

Need to continue to spend time practicing to get calibrate, but I am encouraged by the results so far.

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1 hour ago, klineka said:

Just did an Aimpoint lesson with my instructor, I really like it so far and my reads were pretty accurate when I was practicing compared to what his digital level said. 

Need to continue to spend time practicing to get calibrate, but I am encouraged by the results so far.

Was this your first Aimpoint lesson? I’ve been curious about it for quite some time. I use my feet heavily to read greens (and have become a significantly better putter since learning to do so) so adding a bit of methodology behind that makes a lot of sense.

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5 minutes ago, Grizvok said:

Was this your first Aimpoint lesson?

Yep, first time. I had occasionally used my feet to help read slopes in the past but hadn't learned how to get the specific aim point with my arm/fingers.

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  • 2 months later...

Realized I haven't posted an update here in a while, although not too much has changed with my swing, I'm still in "play mode" and am not really focused on making any swing changes at the moment, just trying to ingrain the full body turn and getting my back completely turned to the target with the driver, it has helped my consistency of strike a lot.

Handicap has stayed right about the same, no super low scores but nothing super high either. I have been shooting more E, -1, -2 scores over 9 holes in my rounds, just need to put that together on back to back 9s so I can finally break par for 18 holes.

I did swap out my P790 3 iron for an old 3 hybrid and that has filled the distance gap I had at 215-225 perfectly.

Here are my stats over the past 9 rounds since I made my last update. I need to tighten up the short game a bit especially out of the rough, I've been leaving a ton of chip and pitch shots short, giving myself 20-30 foot putts for par which I obviously don't make many of those. The stats reflect this too, as my proximity to the hole from 25-50 yds is 2 feet further than it is from 50-75 yds.

image.png

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  • 4 weeks later...

Now that my season is most likely done for the year, I took a lesson a few days ago and started working on my offseason plan. I'll likely recap my season and talk more about my goals for next year in the 2020/2021 goal threads, but here is the state of my swing right now, I've actually made a few big changes over the past week since my lesson, main focus is to feel like my arms/hands go more up first then my body turns, previously I was turning my chest too early so my turn was done but my hands were only halfway back, so that lead to a lot of lifting with the arms and then super steep on the downswing. Still working on this change, as it is a fairly big change so will likely be my main focus over the next few months, but pretty pleased with the progress I've made on it already. This is a partial speed swing, trying to exaggerate the lifting of the hands/arms before I begin the turn with my chest, or basically trying to keep my chest pointed at the ball as long as possible and stopping my hands when my coil stops. When I do it right I can feel a huge difference in my swing and ball flight.

 

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The thing I wouldn't love about that pattern is that you're steep, then shallow, and then to stay shallow-ish on the downswing you have to drop everything and stay super closed at impact. You can maybe play big pushes, but I wouldn't love that for the contact.

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4 hours ago, iacas said:

The thing I wouldn't love about that pattern is that you're steep, then shallow, and then to stay shallow-ish on the downswing you have to drop everything and stay super closed at impact. You can maybe play big pushes, but I wouldn't love that for the contact.

That makes sense, one thing my instructor mentioned was about working on/keeping in mind was my right shoulder/getting lower and more open at impact but for now he wanted to focus on getting the arms and body in sync first and then worry about the impact after that.

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  • 3 months later...

Have spent the past couple weeks working on the swing and getting ready for the first golf trip of the season down to Kentucky in late March. 

Priority pieces right now are: 

  • Feeling like I am initiating backswing with chest/body, and when the body stops turning, so do the hands.
    • I've done an "ok" job with this one over the past few weeks but it still needs to improve. When I do it right my arms and club dont go as high at A4 and the backswing is much shorter.
  • Right shoulder getting a little lower, right arm more in front of my body instead of trapped onto my side, and being more open especially with the lower body at impact. 
    • Did a pretty solid job of this in my most recent range session. It wasn't perfect when I looked at it on film, elbow and shoulder were better, still need more lower body rotation but the resulting shots were fantastic. Quality of strike was significantly higher than I have had in the past. That was also the best start line control I've ever had with my irons. Everything was dead straight or a slight fade, not a single shot out of ~40 finished left of my intended target. One of my buddies who is familiar with my game said that's the best he's ever seen me hit my irons.

Driver and wedges were solid too especially for this time of year. The shot shape was exactly what I want and expect with driver, dead straight to a slight fade but not really any big slices and nothing hooking/drawing left.

Probably will get another couple practice sessions where I film my swing, but likely around March 1st the camera will go away and will be transitioning into more "playing feels" and less on mechanical improvements for the couple weeks leading up to the trip and really the start of my 2021 season.

I also picked up a new hybrid for the bag, replaced my 10 year old chipped and dented Taylormade Rescue TP that I didn't hit particularly well with a Ping G410 3 hybrid. I hit both the regular and stiff flex shafts on a launch monitor and to my surprise I hit the regular flex significantly better, including my last 3 shots carrying 220, 221, 220 with a very tight (<10 yd) lateral dispersion on the 3 shots as well. That is the exact yardage gap I was looking to fill, with my 4 iron being my 205-210 club and my 3 wood in the 230-240 range. Peak height was right around 30 yds, and spin was in the low 3,000s, both of which were close to ideal based on a TXG video I watched talking about ideal numbers for hybrids.

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  • 1 month later...

Got back yesterday from my golf trip in Kentucky, played really well there and also in my first round of the season last week prior to the trip.

Started the season with 30 straight holes without losing a ball or any penalty strokes so the tee shots and new hybrid have been really solid so far to start the season. Drives have all been dead straight or a fade, no draws or big slices which has made it pretty easy to just aim middle left of the fairway and swing away. 

Irons have been pretty good, especially the short irons like 8 through PW. Mid to long irons need a bit of work but still not too bad for this early in the season.

Wedges have been really good from flat lies, put one to a foot from 86 yds for a tap in birdie. Struggled a little with wedges when the ball was below my feet, hit multiple of them really thin.

Putting has been really solid, I am putting with a lot more confidence on the 8-15 footers and it shows, made numerous putts from that length on the trip for birdie or par saves for my team. I'm doing a much better job of making a confident stroke on my intended line. Was overreading some putts slightly, but just need to get back on a practice green with my level and get aimpoint dialed back in.

Overall pretty happy with how I'm playing so far, have about a month or so until my tournament season starts so will continue to work on my mid to long irons and hopefully the short game and practice putting areas will open soon too.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Have played 4 rounds so far this year using my own ball, below are some stats around those rounds. 

Putting has been the weakest area by far, my make rate from 6-9 feet is only 30% and 9-15 feet is only 12.5%. Spent a while on the putting green yesterday though and moved my ball position forward which was something my instructor identified I needed to do the last time he watched me putt but I kept forgetting to make the change. The results were instantly better, my start line was so much better, and I did an 8 foot putting circle where I hit ten 8 foot putts from 4 different locations and made 28/40 for 70%.

My short game, which this app classifies as shots inside 100 yds has been pretty solid so far, 50-75 yard range needs a little work, spent a good amount of time on those yesterday at the range. Chips and pitches around the green have been very good especially since I haven't practiced much on short game specifically this year.

For the approach category I had one bad round where I hit 6 GIR, but the other 3 rounds have been 13, 12, and 11 GIR so I have been striking the ball very solid with the irons overall, shot shape is a slight fade, typically starting most iron shots left middle of the green and letting them fade back towards the center of the green.

Driving has been pretty solid, over 50% fairways hit is a great sign and so far with driver my dispersion is 9.3% left, 55.8% fairway, 34.9% right which has given me a ton of confidence to aim up the left side of most holes and let it fade back towards the middle without really any fear of it drawing or hooking.

First tournament of the year is this Sunday so looking forward to that and will have a couple more practice sessions this week focusing on keeping that ball position more forward while putting, continuing to dial in my partial wedge yardages, and maintaining my full swing feels that have been working so far this year.

image.png

 

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  • 1 month later...

Haven't updated this in a while. 

Went through a stretch for a while where I was just playing and not focusing on my swing much, and I fell back to some old habits, mainly my arms and body were out of sync, I was lifting my hands way too high after my turn had stopped, and my ball striking with irons suffered, as I had about a month or so of rounds in the upper 70s-low 80s where I was hitting like 7-9 GIR per round instead of the mid 70s and 10-12+ GIR like I had been.

Rewatched my most recent recap video from my instructor, started practicing properly at home with the net for a few weeks, then took it to the range a couple times, and ended up firing the best round of my life last saturday, a -3 68, hitting 13 GIR with 4 birdies and 1 bogey.

My priority piece right now is to feel like my hands/arms start moving while my torso/chest is still pointed at the ball, basically feeling no torso movement until P2, then just coil my upper body with no more hand/arm movement, which puts everything in a pretty good position at the top of the backswing. When I do it right, which is becoming more common now, I notice a huge difference in quality of strike, especially with 4-7 irons.

Last night was a great practice session at the range working on it, I was doing 2-3 slow, focused dry reps before every ball, then after every like 6-8 balls I would go through a full pre-shot routine and hit one without the dry reps. 

 

Have spent a lot of time on putts inside 10 feet as well, starting to feel a lot more confident about those.

Biggest weakness right now is pitch shots from 25-50 yds, just dont have a good feel for the proper motion on those, need to spend a little time in the short game area and get that figured out.

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