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About xrayvizhen

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  1. xrayvizhen

  2. South Florida

    I just returned from my Southeast Florida golfing “spring training” and thought I would give some course mini-reviews for those who might be interested in the Broward or Palm Beach area. The week was intended to be somewhat frugal in that I definitely was not looking for a golf resort experience. Rather, it was strictly to see if some of the swing changes I had been working on over the winter (ref. my thread in the My Swings forum) had taken effect therefore I didn’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on greens fees if I was going to be spraying the ball all over the place. So I picked out a hotel in Deerfield Beach, and played two rounds at Delray Beach GC (thanks Iacas for the recommendation) a round at each of Pompano Beach’s courses and one round at Deer Creek. Pompano Beach has two 18 hole public courses right next door to Pompano Beach Air Park, home of the Goodyear Blimp, and one of the courses, the “Pines”, within the past 4 years, has been redesigned and rebuilt by Greg Norman’s company. (There are shark logos all over the place.) I last played there over 12 years ago, and the only main difference that I could remember between then and now was several of the opening holes were completely rebuilt with new greens, bunkers, land sculpting and layout. A lot of ugly looking scrub vegetation all over the course was removed, fairway’s completely reseeded and the rough was cleaned up to speed up play, and make it possible to find balls that don’t land in the fairway, which wasn't the case a lot of the time back then. This course is much better maintained than the “Palms”, the other layout there, with fairways in good, but not great condition. Unfortunately, the greens were a mess caused, I was told, by a sprinkler system problem that’s been going on for the past month. If Greg were to pop in to see what’s happened to what is advertised as “The first Greg Norman designed municipal course in the country”, I don’t think he would be pleased, but what has happened to Pompano’s other course, the “Palms”, is a disaster. There are burnt out fairways and an infestation of weeds or some kind of weird grass on both fairways and greens, and from appearances, whatever money both courses are generating for the city all of it is going to the Greg Norman course, which is a shame, because both have some interesting and challenging holes. The cost to play the Palms is $34/$45 (walk/ride) and is not worth it with conditions as bad as they are. The Norman course, is $65 (ride only) and would be a bargain if they fixed their sprinkler system and paid a bit more attention to a modicum of basic maintenance. Thirteen miles north on I-95 is Delray Beach’s muni, designed by Donald Ross in 1923. Whether or not Ross designed all of the holes is a bit murky as it was a 9 hole course originally and then expanded to 18, with I suppose some re-routing, in 1950. Ross died in 1948, so if he was consulted before then, who knows. In any case, comparing conditions between Pompano Beach’s muni’s and Delray’s is like night and day. At Delray the holes and fairways are in excellent condition. The rough has been left on its’ own to either grow or not grow, and in most cases it’s the latter. It’s relatively easy to tell which holes are part of the original Ross design with huge traps, greens in the shape of a saddle or a turned-over dinner plate, and a requirement to stop and think about where and how you want to hit your shot before you pull a club out of your bag. It costs $52 to play whether you walk or ride but the rate drops significantly after 2pm. I enjoyed myself so much I played there twice. Finally, I splurged and paid $105 to play at Deer Creek, a pretty classy joint. Typical country-club conditions (with condos – I don’t like golf courses with condos lining the fairways) with a fancy-shmancy clubhouse, pristine fairways and greens, very tough Bermuda rough and a practice range with real grass. The course is typical Florida with lots of sand and water. Unlike Delray though, there aren’t any particularly memorable holes which is telling, I guess. How did I play? Inconsistent as usual, shooting between a high of 83 on day one to a low of 78 mid-week. My index just ticked up 2/10ths. IE: On one day, I went from an Eagle 3 on a par 5 to a double bogey on the very next hole. I’m having a hard time dialing in the yardages with my new irons and had several pull hooks and a few chunks thrown in. I drove the ball real well though and my short game and putting were great, even on the crappy greens. Not helping things was the wind every day coming in off the ocean between 20-25 knots. I took some videos that I’ll eventually edit and post on the My Swing thread. One final thing I’d like to say, and I don’t know if this is true for all of Florida or just this area, but these folks really motor along when it comes to pace of play. 4 hour rounds were typical, and a couple of crotchety 80 year-olds, who I was paired up with on one day, even complained about that. On my last day I had a late afternoon flight scheduled so I lucked into a 7:30 Tee Time at Delray and was done by 11:15. 3 hours, 45 minutes!!. I was able to eat lunch at the grill, get back to my hotel, shower, pack, check out and get to the airport with time to spare. I don’t know how I’m ever going to be able to put up with 4 1/2 hour rounds ever again.
  3. Ok, I admit it. I was one of those guys who had plastic cylinders in my bag. It made it super easy to slide the clubs in & out without binding or jamming and they protected the grips. But I noticed that after a time they abraided the surface of the graphite shafts of my driver & 3-wood so after switching to graphite for all my clubs I got rid of the cylinders. Now the clubs, specifically the grips, are causing jams at the bottom and this is in a big, wide mouth Ogio, so I'm looking at new bags. I notice now that a LOT of the new bags have 14 or 15 way dividers, some full length, others only at the top with the full length ones made of fabric, nylon I'm guessing. Do either of these styles actually do the job and prevent jamming or does the fabric at the bottom collapse or get bunched together making the club separation feature useless?
  4. South Florida

    Am I reading the Crandon website correctly.....$176??? And then there's a forecaddie on top of that??
  5. South Florida

    Good suggestions. I've played the Biltmore many times when I was in college since it was only 5 mins from the campus. Crandon didn't exist then. I won't play Doral because you know who owns it. I'll be staying in Deerefield so i have Tee times for the new Greg Norman redesign of Pompano Beach's public course as well as Delray Beach. I have time for 1 or 2 more rounds. I might try Crandon Park.Thanks for the idea.
  6. Paulsons tell me "throw away your camera!"

    I don't think that was me because I hit the ball mostly straight. If anything, I'll occaisionally roll my wrists and hit a draw and if I over-do it, a hook. I don't recall any part of my conversation where ball flight was discussed. In any case I'm using my camera over the winter to see if any changes I'm making are having an effect. Once the season begins and I can play for real, the camera will stay home... Maybe.
  7. Every Hole at Pine Valley

    I watched the whole thing a few months ago. Now part 1 is gone which is the segment that shows Littler hitting it into the woods on one of the early Par 3's and instead of taking an unplayable lie and a drop tries to whack his way out...and fails...twice, ending up with a 7. Whoever has the rights wants to sell the video probably.
  8. Every Hole at Pine Valley

    Too bad 99.99999% of us will never get to play it. I know I won't. I'm pretty sure This is a nice video. It actually gives you a better overview of the holes than the old video that’s on YouTube of the Gene Littler / Byron Nelson match on Shell’s Wonderful World of Golf which is grainy, a bit washed out and somewhat out of focus. I was amazed at the difficult time both had playing it. Neither broke par. Nelson came close, 2 over I think, even though he was 60 years old at the time. Littler shot 42 on the front nine and ended up with a 76. These classic courses are a just a tad more difficult than your typical muni, I think. As an example, my son and I played Bethpage Black last year. My son is a bogey golfer and managed to just break 100. I played great that day, and shot an 85, about 6 or 7 strokes more than my average round. I doubt I could break a hundred at Pine Valley. Before I croak (or get too old to play well) I’d love to play PV. Anyone on The Sand Trap a member? If so, I’ll accept your invitation!
  9. If you're happy with your invention, fine, but while it may show you where on the clubface the "ball" hit, it won't show you the spin imparted by the strike, thus, not too useful. I would take the advise of what others have said previously; get some wiffle balls or the spongy foam kind which go further and start whacking away. If you don't like the idea of chasing after the ball (and that's kind of what golf is...Google the Robin Williams golf routine video) when I was a kid our house was on a small quarter acre lot with a bunch of trees so I tied a 20 yard long string to a wiffle ball. That worked. Then take some lessons.
  10. Forward Press to Prevent Casting?

    Yes, you're right. I am looking for what's hopefully a simple fix or the one swing thought that I can actually think about during the golf swing because I just know that the minute I get onto the course, at least in a "competitive" situation like in my league when it starts up again in May, if I see that whatever I've been working on is causing the shanks or some other malady, I'll just revert back to my natural swing in order to rescue the round. Trying to move my arms faster across my body, isn't really working. They'll only go so fast. There's something else happening during the full swing, either with my hip action, or my left leg bowing out too far to the left, that's throwing things out of sync and causing my wrists to unhinge too soon. I'm doing fine on short little half and 3/4-shots though. I'm not giving up.
  11. I’ve been wondering if a forward press can be a help in eliminating my casting problem. I’ve been working hard to eliminate this from my swing, as documented in the “My Swings” section, but I noticed at the range the other day, on the last ball in the bucket, I figured "what the hell...let's give this a shot." I made a significant forward press (with a 6 Iron) so that my hands were at or very close to the desired impact position ahead of the ball, and THEN started my backswing, retaining the wrist cock that had been established with the forward press throughout. The wrists cocked even more at the top of the backswing, so that the club was close to parallel with the ground but I was able to retain the lag throughout the downswing. The result was a crisp, pure strike with a low penetrating ball flight and about 10 yards more distance. For a second, I had an “Eureka” moment, but I had put away my tripod and camera and didn’t record the swing (I will next time). I sensed that while my clubhead speed was the same as all my previous swings at least it seemed I wasn’t throwing away the lag before hitting the ball and the dynamic loft of the club was improved. So, I ask the experts, could this be a technique that I should follow-up on or will this do nothing to relieve the casting and possibly lead to other problems?
  12. My Swing (Xrayvizhen)

    Here's my latest, but just with the driver. I thought my camera was working with the irons, but didn't find out until afterwards that it wasn't. This is after a few Golf Tec lessons plus lots and lots of indoor practice in my basement with small half-swings with a 7-iron. I don't consider this "good", just a little better.
  13. Paulsons tell me "throw away your camera!"

    As I said at the top, I've made some progress, but only on the small swings. (It's not possible to make full swings in my basement where I'm hitting foam practice balls off a mat.) I know what the proper impact is supposed to feel like There was one relatively warm day recently where I made it to the range and that's when I saw the difference between the small and full swings so I'm heading to Florida in a few weeks. I've got a couple of new swing thought ideas given to me from my Golf Tec sessions relating to the transition at the top, weight shift, hip turn and arm speed and I'm hoping for some real improvement and I'll also try to avoid abandoning the new ideas if they don't work right away. (I'll be taking some videos...I don't care what the Paulsons say)
  14. This shows how desperate I am (or was). I was driving around recently and listening to PGA Tour Satellite Radio. Carl and Dennis Paulson have one of the more entertaining and informative shows on that station and on Tuesdays they take calls from people with various problems and maladies and attempt, over the radio mind you, to fix their problems. So I figured, “what the hell” so I called and within 5 minutes I was on! I’ve recounted in a few threads here about my recent discovery that I was casting /releasing too soon/not enough lag…whatever it’s called and posting in the “My Swings” and “Instruction” sections. I’ve been working on the problem and even signed up for 3 lessons at Golftec, with some small improvement. On the radio, I gave Dennis and Carl a little background, the same that I’ve recounted on TST, how I looked at a videos of my swing and discovered, to my horror, despite my relatively decent scoring and improvement over the past year, that I was casting. Can you guess what their advice was? One of them, I don’t know if was Dennis or Carl, said “Hey man, throw away your camera!” Their point was, I think, that there’s always going to be something that’s not right and as long as the ball’s going where I’m aiming, and I’m scoring well I shouldn’t drive myself nuts (which I am doing). And you know what? I’m starting to think they might be right. I have managed to make some improvements with short punch-shot like swings, narrowing the arc on the downswing and getting the grip to outrace the club-head to the ball at impact. It all works on the small swings, but not yet on the full so I’ll keep practicing but I think it will take lots and lots of work and if I’m on the course and I see that whatever I’ve been practicing is sending the ball off into the boonies, I’ll just revert back to my old swing. So what do you think of that advice? Do we drive ourselves crazy over-analyzing and over-thinking the golf swing? After all, there’s not much time from the top of the downswing to impact for more than one swing thought so in order to ingrain any significant changes, especially since I’ve been playing with essentially the same swing for the past 50 years, it just may not be possible to do much about the casting.
  15. Thanks for all the suggestions. I happened to be in the PGA Superstore today and looked at their bags. They had many of the models you've all mentioned in stock and I gravitated towards the Sun Mountain Sync. Not too big, not too small and has most of the features I'm looking for covered. Now I just have to pay a visit to our pro-shop and hope they carry it. I have a hundred bucks in Closest to the Pin credits from this past season's league play that I haven't cashed in yet which I'd like to apply towards the purchase. I forgot to mention, when playing on the weekend i walk with a push cart but when I play in the league during the week (different course) we ride and my current bag, an almost but not quite staff bag size Ogio, it's too wide for the back of the cart. When with a partner it barely fits onto the cart and it's so squished the side pockets are inaccessible. I'll keep looking but I like the SM Sync.

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