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Driving Range Etiquette Question

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I'll echo the others here: don't give unsolicited advice.

You don't know what someone is doing or working on. I usually spend 15-20 minutes intentionally hooking and slicing the ball at random targets. Probably looks ridiculous to a casual observer.

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leave him alone for several reasons

  • it's rarely appreciated even if correct
  • he could be doing a drill you don't know
  • this could be his quiet/happy place and he just doesn't care about anything else
  • It could be a lonely old guy and now he won't leave you alone once you broke the ice
  • you could be wrong for this specific person

My conversation is limited to:  nod and say "hey, how are you", "I'm leaving, would you like the rest of my bucket?" and "Wow, great shot" - and then I stop.    that last one is rare and depends completely on the vibe.  Even if someone asks for advice, I usually just make a comment about being new at it and trying to figure it out myself - but thanks for the trust and I'd rather not mess up one more person's swing.

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1 hour ago, krupa said:

I don't think anything more has to be said.

I hear ya, but you have to admit that it is a very unusual situation and worth mentioning for those that have a sense of humor.

Edited by Carl3

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Occasionally when I see someone with an absolutely gorgeous swing crushing it, I will throw out a compliment, but would never dream of pointing out a flaw to a complete stranger. 

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On ‎5‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 4:02 AM, upndown21 said:

I would tell him then go shank a couple personally for good measure.

I've had similar done to me in the past. One guy was in the bay next to me and i was just minding my own business and hitting it fairly nicely when i get that horrible feeling someone is staring at you. I take a break and before i could move he's leaning into my bay.

He starts going on about how i'll never hit it well unless i do x,y& z then proceeds to skull 5 driver's in a row 90yds or so along the ground then slices one into next week. I then hit a smooth 4h down the middle, he grunts and hurries out of the range to the sound the guy in the bay next to him shouting "Bye then!".

I never offer advice as im not qualified to do so, unelss its pearls of wisdom like "ooh, maybe the middle of the lake with a 6iron wasnt the best play" :-P

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I was on the practice green Monday and a lady was taking a short game lesson which included chipping with three clubs and putting.   She looked so confused after the instructor left I felt sorry for her.  She was blading most of the chips and her putting was in serious help.   

There is no way that I'd say anything to anyone about their game unless they asked.  

I do get some funny looks when I practice my Aimpoint though but as of yet only one query. 

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I mind my own business on the range. Even thought I see most everyone's swing flaws. I just don't care. I never give swing advice. When I see a golfer getting really down on themselves I do try and offer some words of encouragement.

Something like; don't give up, you never know how close you are to that next scoring plateau if you quit, or don't let good shots get to your head but don't let bad shots get to your heart. 

 

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23 hours ago, NM Golf said:

As most have said NEVER give unsolicited advice. Nothing is more irritating.

I do not in any way have a traditional golf swing, it's not pretty, it's not flowing and smooth, but I return the club face the the ball in a manner that allows me to have a handicap better than scratch. That being said I can't count on two hands how many people over the years have tried to give me pointers, all of which I have had to nicely reject. It's just better to mind your business, if they want swing help they need to contact their local professional just like everyone else.

I agree completely. Im (more or less) self taught and i do some funky looking things too. 

I exaggerate things sometimes I'm when i practice to get a better feel of what I'm working on. Perhaps this dude was doing the same with the swing speed. You never know. 

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Yes, I see people at the range who really need help, and I keep my trap shut! I probably need just as much help as they do. The guys I look for are the ones with the beautiful swings. Unfortunately, they are in short supply.

Once, I was at a NE Ohio, REALLY UPSCALE, daily fee course and was warming up on the range. A couple of slots in front of me was a guy who could really swing the clubs. The human gift of mimicry being what it is, I mimicked him! Next thing I know is I'm nailing everything right on the button!

I went out and shot a brilliant front nine. Then, the mimicry floated away, and I chopped it around on the back. With technology advancing as it is, what I think driving ranges need is a holographic projection of someone with a perfect golf swing that other golfers can mimic! That would do more to lower handicaps than any amount of instruction.

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I've always taken advice from people at the range  well when there was a need for it. I've had guys offer me pointers when I'm blasting balls straight downrange and they're just busybodies, but when someone sees you're frustrated it's been welcome on my part.

 

The only time I've ever offered any advice is when someone actually engaged me  with either a question or a "I hate this game" quip. If I'm having one of my "off in the rhubarb" days I'd generally always accept someone's advice since I cannot see myself swing.

Generally it's always best to keep it to yourself until they speak first, though. Prime example the other day this rather large man(I am a big MF'r and this guy was an avalanche waiting to happen) was having a hell of a time. I would only hit when he was teeing a new ball or wiping his dome off because I was watching him just flailing away in every aspect of his swing. Had he asked I would have told him what I saw him doing, but I also think due to his size he was having a difficult time with a fluid swing, so I would have been gentle with any advice.

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I never give advise even to people I know because half the time I don't know what the hell I'm doing wrong, like the other day when the wheels came off. The most I'll ever say, (and only to a friend), is that you pushed or pulled a putt. I have a friend who looks like he is aiming dead right in his set up but somehow hits the ball down the middle, go figure. My advise would have him hitting into the trees on the left. You made the right decision. 

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I was at the DR yesterday. When there, I don't make it my business what others are doing. That said, I am approachable.

I was hitting my LW, which meant I was hitting some pretty high shots. A guy saw me, came over and asked me club I was using. I told him. He too was hold his LW, and ask me hit his, that he believe there was something wrong with it. That it was hitting the ground before the ball. Quiet thoughts ran through my brain. 

I hit a couple of good shots with his club, handed it back to him, and told him there was nothing wrong with his club. 

In my best diplomatic way, I explained the Indian, and the arrow scenario to him. Looked at his swing, and gave him a couple of pointers. After a few more swings, he hit a decent shot. 

We shook hands, and I pointed him towards swing guru's office for further instructions. 

Good ettiquette was served I thought in that change. 

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33 minutes ago, Patch said:

He too was hold his LW, and ask me hit his, that he believe there was something wrong with it. That it was hitting the ground before the ball. 

Ah yes, when the club hits the ground too early there must be something wrong with the club....people are funny, absolutely refuse to accept they're doing something wrong even though the only way the club could get to the ground was a result of his swing.

That said, I certainly wouldn't say there is anything wrong with your scenario and for sure good etiquette, but definitely a big difference between approaching someone to ask for help vs. approaching them to give them  advice.  If that scenario had begun with you seeing him having issues and approaching on your own, I think it goes very differently for most people.

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Generally I think it is better to save golf swing advice for those people who are willing to pay you for it.  For most of us that means nobody but even in the cases where someone is paying, I suspect it isn't always received well.

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3 hours ago, ZappyAd said:

Generally I think it is better to save golf swing advice for those people who are willing to pay you for it.  For most of us that means nobody but even in the cases where someone is paying, I suspect it isn't always received well.

Yep, some people just dont want to hear the truth. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind (in all walks of life, not just golf). I've seen it all, Pro at the range gave one guy some free advice on his swing as he was coming way way ott and the results were horrific. Rather than say thanks to the pro, he basically told him to keep the advice to himself and clear off.

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I spend a LOT of time on the range.  The only rule I apply is...don't speak unless you're spoken to.  I don't want to interrupt someone (even if they are struggling.)  If someone asks me for advice or help, I'm more than happy to do so...but never unsolicited.

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