Blackjack Don

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34 Plays from the Tips

About Blackjack Don

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  1. Thanks for all the help I've gotten in my swing thread. Today's practice was the best yet, I was hitting the ball very well. Even the driver, which almost qualifies as a miracle. The misses I can live with. I'll keep working on the pivot. Get stronger with core exercises, too. Thanks for all the fish. Don
  2. I don't always agree with you, but this time I am completely in agreement. That may come as a surprise to a few people, but I have seen the light! (praise the <insert word here>). I have been diligently practicing the fifteen things my instructor has told me, and after much practice, realize that if I fix the one thing he told me to fix when he first saw me at the range, I might even be farther ahead than I am. I have to concentrate on a centered hip turn. We'll see next week when I go see him if I've managed to improve. Not saying it would work for everyone, but if one is ignoring the person he's employed, then he needs to find someone else. Otherwise, do what you're told. Be a kid, not an adult who has seen it all. Be curious. I guess I'm lost, too.
  3. Video from today. My wife took charge of the camera, so some of the angles are a little off.
  4. Sorry, man. I'm just a poor blackjack dealer who makes minimum wage. I'm old and not very athletic anymore I'm stiff and I am doing the best I can. I appreciate the help. I can't for the life of me understand why there is only one way here, but okay. I spend time standing at a dead three card poker table turning my hips. I don't even have a wall in my apartment to do the wall drill! But I'm trying. Lighten up, Francis. If you haven't figured it out yet, different people have different ways of learning. It's been studied. But I'll keep doing the drills I can do. Thanks. I got video today to post. If it doesn't look like I'm making progress, then I'll just move along. All I can say is I'm hitting the ball better than I ever have.
  5. In the voice of Bill Murray, "Are we talking seven days or a business week?" It has been recorded that becoming an expert at something takes 10,000 hours of practice. So good enough to break a hundred? What a thousand hours? In poker we found that how much we won wasn't the information we needed. It was how much an hour? That was the data that worked best. How many hours of practice to get a good enough swing? I doubt this data has been collected.
  6. Okay, I get that part. I wouldn't argue that point at all. I'm still gathering all the parts of the full swing. There are a lot of moving parts, aren't there? But I do get that everyone who knows what they are doing is contributing, even when it's later discarded. So sorry, man, but if I can't figure out the system, I'm going to find it much harder to make the system work as a whole. Missing pieces and the whole thing will fall apart. One thing leads to another, then to another--from when we step up to the ball until we finish, as long as the finish isn't cut off--it's a process with a lot of moving parts. I'm not sure if I have them all, yet, and which ones are more important than others. For instance, where are you on aiming point? Forward divot? Hitting down on the ball? Is that important if the angle is too steep? The left arm isn't on plane? Etc etc. Everything has to flow, but there are many parts to practice individually, no? We think statically. This is how the brain operates. The swing is dynamic, and happens faster than the conscious mind can handle. It has to be done by the autopilot. We practice one thing at a time, so the mind doesn't have to intercede. It "knows." That's what I think. I could be wrong, but not so much about how the mind works.
  7. Honestly, I'm not sure this is as big a swing key as I had been led to believe. I have even gone so far as putting a belt around my waist and upper arm. I have shoved a towel and club covers into my armpits. I've been working on an inside out swing, and have improved. Believe it not, I give more credit to doing a lot of stretching exercises and yoga. As I've become more flexible, I'm able to get the club higher, without as much left arm bend, and without raising my elbow. I let the club drop into the slot, bring my elbow down and in and turn. Keeping my shoulders in front of my hips is another of my mechanics to often time leads to me lifting. This is probably due to my head not staying steady. One thing feeds into another. Whenever we make a mistake in the swing, we have to pay for it someplace else, and mistakes are costly to the whole swing package. I'm just not sure the flying elbow is that big a deal, since arguably the best golfer ever was known for having it. If he could have such a big swing flaw, and be Jack, then how much attention should we pay to it alone? Just askin'.
  8. Indeed. I guess my priority will become hip turn. Get the sway out! I don't know what "stack and tilt" are, having run into and avoided it so far. I'm sticking with the 5 SK's/Bobby Clampett system. To me it is a system, or part of a system. I think they are saying the same thing. In fact, I think most golf instruction has the basics the same. Those who don't are trying a long cut back to the original. There are no short cuts. There never are. I may not know golf, but I'm sure of this one. And thanks for reminding me... Could you elaborate on the other pieces which address impact? Thanks.
  9. After only two lessons, I am agreeing a lot more than I thought I would. There is no substitute for having a pair of experienced-knowledgeable eyes checking out your swing. I probably have gotten farther in the past month that I did previously in six months. I believe it's not possible to consistently break a hundred without a good swing. At least a consistent swing. I haven't seen anyone do it. Breaking ninety takes a good swing and good putting?
  10. From the back tees? What do you think are the causes for this? How's your analysis?
  11. Yes. We're only two lessons in, but the difference is noticeable. Thanks.
  12. Once I understand how you do that, I'm sure I'll be much better than I am. Hopefully, I can also get across how much fun I'm having. I'm sixty-one, so finding something so enjoyable is, well, a real joy. I can't wait to go to the range this morning and get to work. I love hitting balls. I love 'em when they go straight. I love 'em when they stay in the general direction. I even smile when I say "Damn, Don!" and then "shit happens." In fact, I should ask my wife to knit a headcover for me that says, "Shit happens." I know in golf, it does. All the time. Even for the best. I'm a crazy person. I once had fifty bonsai trees. I got into poker, was as obsessed with poker as I was with bonsai. I moved to Vegas, played every day, and owned three-shelves of books about poker. Now, it's golf. I learned patience by playing poker. You can't play every hand and win. You have to be patient. I started my meditation practice in order to stop the mood swings from high to low to high to low, etc etc etc. I hit a bad shot, and it's on to the next one. (I get frustrated and upset and angry, but then I let it go. I practice it.) When it comes to my own experience learning golf, I am able to really focus on what's going on in my head. I have a bit of time practicing that, too. I have lots of swing thoughts. I focus on one or two at a time, for a few balls. Then I realize something else has dropped, and I keep that thought in mind. My goal is for each of these swing thoughts to get enough practice, enough repetitions over time, to become ingrained. I've taught tennis and skiing. I learned that while everyone expects instant fixes, the truth is everything takes longer than we expect. The ones with patience and passion stick with it. We're seeing results every day. It's just getting so much easier. When I first started six months ago, I could not turn. My hips went straight back and straight forward. I came over the top even with an inside out swing. My stance too narrow, my posture too crouched. I still lack balance, but that's a fact of age as much as anything. I didn't know we lose balance so early. We have come a long, long way. Pretty quickly, too. Very pleased. Many, many thanks for all the help I've received here. Hopefully I can pay the universe back. Namasakan, which is Thai for namaste. Peace, all. Gracias!
  13. Never underestimate the pleasure in just hitting balls. My wife loves it. Sadly, the balls are sometimes mine, but that's a whole 'nother story. Hang in there. If you have the right mindset, and willingness to be bad for awhile, you'll get there. Most people give up before they improve. They just can't stand being bad, so they quit trying to be good. Becoming good takes an enormous amount of time, effort, and diligence. I practice five times as much as I play, because the only way to break a hundred is with a good swing. Since I still have driver issues, but everything else is doing much better, I start holes from 200 yards out. This way I can practice playing on the course, practice short game, sand escapes and putting, without having to find my tee shot in the desert. When I can hit the driver with a degree of confidence, I'll be even more prepared to play rounds. As said above, this forum has all you need, and a lot more. Good people. I'm an iconoclast, but they still accept me. Keep working. Best wishes.
  14. Raising hand. My problem, too. The collapsing left wrist. Part of it is keeping the left arm straight through impact. Another is pronating it at the top, whether by turning my left wrist or rolling the left arm. It's still a work in progress. But this shallows out the club, bringing my elbow in, and coming through inside out. Holding the lag, too. Lots of stuff has to come together to make a good swing.