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Time On The Driving Range

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12 hours ago, Vinsk said:

I’m not (getting better) for the most part. But again I’m not hitting hundreds of balls thinking I’m getting better and better. I do it because I love it. I’m much better with my ball striking overall on the DR. I hit much more better than poor than I used to. I still have bad days where nothing seems to flow. Unfortunately it is most apparent when I play a round. 

There’s nothing wrong with what you’re doing IMO, but it never really worked for me in the past.

I agree that it can get kind of addicting especially when you hit them reasonably well 😁

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I've found that hitting balls before the round tends to disrupt my timing and I start to over-think swing issues. Better for me to chip and putt, take some practice swings with several clubs and stretch before hitting first tee.

When I do go to the range to practice, I try to have a specific point to work on and quit when I comfortable with the result. I only use a small basket of balls -with a big basket I tend to stand there and just pound balls one after another in a rush to get them hit. Lastly I always try to end on a good hit. Walk off with a positive thought - leave those extra balls for the next person.

 

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enjoyment of life is about staying motivated about things.  Whether that be your pursuit of of meaningful relationship, or just finding a hobby and wanting to be the absolute best you can be at it.  I go to the range far more often than I play rounds these days. I usually hit 60 balls to start, and if at the end of 60 I feel theres something specific I'm noticing at the end I want to keep working on, I'll hit another 30.  I usually spend about 60 minutes or more hitting those balls, although it often seems like I'm hitting 5 balls a minute.  I typically don't take a ton of practice swings unless I hit a few bad ones and I can I feel my movements getting really sloppy from fatigue or complacency, and I just need to step back and reset.  Golf is such an addicting game because it can essentially never be 'solved'.  Even the professionals are constantly struggling with things and theyll 'find something on the range' before a round and shoot a low score, which is the same type of tinkering a lot of amateurs do.  The only difference being when a pro is off his game, you rarely even notice as opposed to the weekend warrior who misses every fairway and green and shoots 90.  Anyways, for myself, and many others, it's the fun of constantly trying to improve that is so frustrating, yet so addicting and rewarding about the game.  It's no different from the guy who lifts weights, but is clearly never going to be a professional body builder, or the guitar player who just plays in his house for fun, or the jogger who runs for miles but won't break a 5 minute mile.  You do it cause you like it and it gets you out of bed and keeps you from shooting up a highschool or shooting up drugs. 

On 5/30/2018 at 11:36 AM, RWC said:

I've found that hitting balls before the round tends to disrupt my timing and I start to over-think swing issues. Better for me to chip and putt, take some practice swings with several clubs and stretch before hitting first tee.

When I do go to the range to practice, I try to have a specific point to work on and quit when I comfortable with the result. I only use a small basket of balls -with a big basket I tend to stand there and just pound balls one after another in a rush to get them hit. Lastly I always try to end on a good hit. Walk off with a positive thought - leave those extra balls for the next person.

If i have the option I'll always hit a small bucket before a round just because I never start off a range session by taking a full swing with a driver, so nothing makes me more nervous than to stand up at the first tee on a par 4 withing having worked my way through the bag to know I at least have made good swing on a ball already. 

On 5/30/2018 at 11:36 AM, RWC said:

 

 

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I hit a medium bucket. I'm much more effective when I bring my camera, but recently it's been once every three trips. Usually I will hit 10-20 half shots out of the bucket so I don't hit more than about 50 full shots.

Last trip a guy showed up at 9:30pm with a fresh jumbo bucket and one single club. Honestly I don't think I've ever hit a jumbo bucket. Some people are just there because they were arguing with their wife, or wanted to get away from their kids, and I wouldn't deprive them that method of venting frustrations.

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On ‎5‎/‎27‎/‎2018 at 7:53 AM, Patch said:

Anyone else spend a large amount of time, full swinging on the DR? Does it help?

For a few years in my early 30's I was in full golf mode which included DR time 4-5 days each week.  There was a practice facility close to where we lived and I could stop by after work or go after dinner during summer months.  This was during what were my peak years of best play/scoring.  Looking back, I'd say it was a split decision on whether it really helped that much as it was more often than not I was not able to replicate DR shots on the course.  Just this past Thursday, I experienced the opposite.  I was hitting poor quality shots at the range and did good on the course.  If this is a new trend, I'm going to spend more time on the DR. :dance:

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I am now breaking my practice down into four areas: Putting, short game, ball striking, and driver. That's the order I practice, too, most of the time. If I have more than an hour of energy and concentration, I'll start with chipping and shot pitches, move to the range and go from wedge up to driver. Sometimes I start with wedges, ball striking and driver, go to the pitching green for sand and chips, or clear my mind of swing thoughts with putting. Then, I'll go back to the range for more swing work. By breaking it up, I don't get too tired or too bored. I love practicing.

 

PS--Is there a thread for camera suggestions? I can't find anything that isn't years old. I use my phone, but my Galaxy J7 doesn't do slow mo.

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I should put in more range time than I do but I just don't do it any more.  I would much rather go out and play.  If I go to the range before my round, I generally hit 5 shots each with 7iron, 4hybrid, driver, 9iron...in that order.  Then I go hit 3 or 4 sand shots and chip 3 or 4 shots.  And, lastly go putt a few.  

This is a vast difference than when I was younger.  Back when I had just turned 30, I moved to Houston and began playing with my boss and some of the other guys I worked with.  I could beat everyone except my boss and the difference in my game and his was like night and day.  I wanted to get better so I spent 5 nights a week for 6 weeks at a driving range working on my game.  It made a huge difference.  I never did beat him but I sure narrowed the stroke difference margin significantly.  He had held his tour card at one time.

We have a few people at my club who hit probably 150 shots or more every day the range is open.  One is a young high school golfer and he is quite good.  The others are old buzzards like me except in the fact that they put in range time and I don't.

 

Edited by RickK

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19 hours ago, Blackjack Don said:

PS--Is there a thread for camera suggestions? I can't find anything that isn't years old. I use my phone, but my Galaxy J7 doesn't do slow mo.

Its possible that you can download an app to get slow-motion video, even if its not supported in the based camera function:

https://www.91mobiles.com/questions/is-there-slow-motion-recording-in-samsung-j7-max

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I don't know if my phone technically supports slo-mo, but an app that I use on android is Hudl Technique and you can slow it down or go frame by frame with the base software there.  Still depends on the framerate that your camera can record at but it's better than nothing.

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I seldom hit more than 50 balls on the range. After that I'm bored. I've always believed in a 1-2 practice session -- for every hour hitting full shots on the range I spend two hours chipping and putting. That's where I will see the most improvement. Some days the only reason I hit a small bucket first is because it's required at my semi-private course before you can use the putting and chipping greens. Some days I'm just going through the motions on the range in order to get to the chipping green, and that short time on the range is probably not helping much. 

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5 minutes ago, RandyBobbitt said:

I seldom hit more than 50 balls on the range. After that I'm bored. I've always believed in a 1-2 practice session -- for every hour hitting full shots on the range I spend two hours chipping and putting. That's where I will see the most improvement. Some days the only reason I hit a small bucket first is because it's required at my semi-private course before you can use the putting and chipping greens. Some days I'm just going through the motions on the range in order to get to the chipping green, and that short time on the range is probably not helping much. 

Its funny, my practice is completely opposite this.  Almost all of my practice time is spent doing work on my full swing.  I'm a pretty solid putter, I doubt that practice there could gain me any more than a single full stroke per round.  Our chipping green has been reconstructed over the past year, so I've lost a little bit due to lack of practice, I'll pay that part of my game a little more attention when it opens up in the next month.  But full-swing is where I've been working on changes, and where my game has the biggest potential to improve.  Reading LSW, full swing is where most players have the biggest room for improvement,  Short game and putting work can pay off pretty quickly, but there's a limit on how much improvement is really possible.

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17 minutes ago, DaveP043 said:

Reading LSW, full swing is where most players have the biggest room for improvement,  Short game and putting work can pay off pretty quickly, but there's a limit on how much improvement is really possible.

+1

I agree there is a quick plateau for the short game and putting. Improvement from there is really hard. Chipping to four feet is pretty easy, with enough practice. Chipping to two feet might be a much higher plateau. So I work hard on making as many four foot putts as possible in practice.

To me, "the range" is a holistic approach. Some days I try to do nothing more than focus on focus, with all four areas places to practice focusing. (Sitting on my cushion and meditating helps, too. The range is an extension of my practice.)

Dave, you say "full swing." I honestly don't know what this means anymore, since half- and three-quarter-swings are as important for me to practice as full-swing, which is why I've broken it into short game, pitching and chipping, and ball striking. A full-swing pitch is not the same as a full-swing chip, right? Maybe it's semantics, but there is a difference in the details.

Good post.

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1 hour ago, Blackjack Don said:

." I honestly don't know what this means anymore, since half- and three-quarter-swings are as important for me to practice as full-swing

Well it basically means any time you’re swinging a club with the intention of using for maximum distance for that club. You can chip with 8i, obviously not a full swing. But if you’re going for a green 145yds (for example) with your 8i ..you’re making a ‘full swing.’ 

Yes you can make a full swing for a pitch shot but you’re not taking a square face and compressing the ball. You can full swing a SW and pitch the ball 40yds...different technique as your max distance for the SW is more than 40yds.

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About 4 dozen balls is it for me. I feel I get stale too easily. Have a general sequence:

3-balls per club; short-iron, 5-iron, hybrid, driver, then some short pitch shots. Feel I get into a rhythm if I hit too many of the same shot, with the same club, in a row; prefer to break that rhythm to more simulate playing conditions. 

I use a camera a lot (slo-mo on my phone) as I'm trying to work on one specific thing (like, forever). Video shows me that I'm still "ball bound" - swing with a ball in front of me is never the exact same. Someday I'll beat this out of me. That's the hardest thing for me in golf.

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Well, I went to the range yesterday afternoon until it got dark. I hit over 350 balls just to see what it’s like.

I managed to stay focused for about 60 balls :-P

The other 290 didn’t help with my form nor practice at all. I played “holes” hit the metal targets with my wedges, peppered the tree in the distance with my newly shortened driver (1” off the tip).

The story behind my driver is that the shaft fractured at the hosel and the salesman told me it was normal for them to wear, got into an argument about how long golf equipment should last, tried selling me a new shaft, then decided to chop an inch off the tip and  reuse the old shaft. Heck, I almost never use my driver anyway 😂 Well I got it back an inch shorter, so it was about the same length as my 3W. The resulting driver hit great. Straight and lower spin according to Mevo. 2000 rpm, off from 3000 rpm average. Carry is about the same as before but the total distance increased dramatically according to Mevo.

Anyway, after 60 balls the “practice” became more about figuring out how not to get bored 🤪🤪😜

If I didn’t die from boredom first, I think double the number of balls is possible, but then there’s the risk of developing really bad swing habits. Not for me, my attention span is too short. :-P

 

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41 minutes ago, Lihu said:

Well, I went to the range yesterday afternoon until it got dark. I hit over 350 balls just to see what it’s like.

I managed to stay focused for about 60 balls :-P

The other 290 didn’t help with my form nor practice at all. I played “holes” hit the metal targets with my wedges, peppered the tree in the distance with my newly shortened driver (1” off the tip).

The story behind my driver is that the shaft fractured at the hosel and the salesman told me it was normal for them to wear, got into an argument about how long golf equipment should last, tried selling me a new shaft, then decided to chop an inch off the tip and  reuse the old shaft. Heck, I almost never use my driver anyway 😂 Well I got it back an inch shorter, so it was about the same length as my 3W. The resulting driver hit great. Straight and lower spin according to Mevo. 2000 rpm, off from 3000 rpm average. Carry is about the same as before but the total distance increased dramatically according to Mevo.

Anyway, after 60 balls the “practice” became more about figuring out how not to get bored 🤪🤪😜

If I didn’t die from boredom first, I think double the number of balls is possible, but then there’s the risk of developing really bad swing habits. Not for me, my attention span is too short. :-P

 

I would need to fill the tub with ice water and immerse myself in for an hour  if I did this!

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I now use the range primarily to check ball flight.  Have a net at home and pretty much hit balls every day it's not raining.  That's where I do most of my "thinking." 

Trying to hone a consistent draw and/or fade right now and I'd say what I see on the range carries over to the course about 25% of the time.  Really only thinking about different grips and alignments to change the path and face angle.  If I find something that is kinda working, I really try to stick with it on the course for the whole round.  Can't give up on it after one bad shot or you'll never really know for sure.

Hit balls at home most days and hit the range maybe once a week.

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