3 Helpful Tips From Tiger’s Win

In this Monday Mulligan we’ll look at 3 things from Tiger’s win yesterday that you can immediately use with your junior golfer.

The last few years for Tiger Woods have been difficult, to say the least. Speculation has been rampant with so many reasons that he could never be the Tiger of old, much less win anything, much less a big tournament. He proved the doubters wrong and won a tiny event called The Tour Championship. This, his first win since 2013, has been called the greatest comeback of all time.

Certainly it’s a very big victory, requiring excellent application of massive amounts of every skill, mental and physical, that a professional golfer has.

Here are 3 lessons from Tiger’s win that you can use with your son/daughter: 1. He kept his passion for the game, the competition, being in the hunt on Sunday. Your child’s passion/love of the game is a major driver. Please stay on task and be aware of this. 2. He believed he would come back. Through all the messiness of life and the injuries, surgeries and rehab, Tiger relentlessly stayed on a comeback path. Encourage your kiddo. Help him/her stay positive when “life happens”. 3. He continued to do golf things. Tiger always asked his doctors what golf functions he could do. Can I putt, chip, hit wedges, do something with a golf club or golf ball. And he also kept up with new technology and innovations, evidenced by his new Bridgestone golf ball, the Tour B XS, and his bag of TaylorMade clubs. Yes, some of this is because Nike left the golf ball/equipment business, but still, Tiger had to spend time on research. Go shopping with your junior golfer. Hit some new clubs. Read up on new golf balls. Staying current is critical.

Photocredit:espn.com

Tiger’s playing great and the crowds are huge. Should be an exciting Ryder Cup, September 28-30 from Paris!

See you on #1 tee unfazed by life’s intrusions… Sam

Junior Golf: Please Take A Moment

In this Monday Mulligan I want to ask you to take a moment to consider the plight of those impacted by hurricane Florence.

The impact of this storm is still growing as flood waters inundate huge chunks of geography along the Carolinas and other parts of the Eastern U.S. Millions of people are watching their lives being totally turned upside down. So much loss as homes, cars, beloved momentos, pets and more are destroyed.

The aid agencies and private groups that are on-hand are very helpful but can’t do and replace everything that these folks need to get back to some sort of normal resumption of life.

There are 2 realistic ways that many of us can help: 1. If you are a spiritual person/family, you might consider praying or at least, thinking of these folks or sending “good vibes, good wishes or good luck”. 2. Please consider a cash contribution. Any amount helps. $5, $10, it all adds up.

Two organizations our family is comfortable donating to, because a very small percentage of the revenue goes to salaries/administrative costs, meaning that the great majority of their contributions goes directly to help people, are The Salvation Army and Samaritan’s Purse.

Your kids can surprise you. All of our four children loved helping people. When they were presented with an opportunity to help people in need, they are experienced a deep-seated sense of knowing they had done something , however small, that would have a genuine positive feedback on someone who needed help.

Give your youngsters a chance to help. Mow an extra yard, do one more chore, do something to make a little extra money so they can give it to someone in dire straights.

See you on #1 tee after you’ve helped someone… Sam

Junior Golf: 3 Reasons For Variety

In this Wednesday Waggle we’re looking at the benefits of offering your child several different extra-curricular activities.

Golf is our family sport, no doubt about it, but Linda and I decided early on that S3 would have to choose golf as his sport, we weren’t going to force it on him.

When he turned 5 years old, S3 was playing golf and soccer. He liked his soccer and he had good speed and excellent endurance. Hand-to-eye coordination came naturally to S3 so he picked up golf quickly.

The soccer went away after a few seasons but he stayed with his golf. The next progression was to martial arts. He really enjoyed karate, but that too faded away while golf stayed.

Continuing with the hand-to-eye thing, S3 wanted to be a percussionist, so he joined the band in junior high. As a result he learned how to read music and genuinely knew his way around the percussion section. Next we bought him a full drum set, metallic burnt-orange Ludwig’s, of course, and man, was that a natural fit for him. Here he was, the next Keith Moon!

Photocredit:papyblues.com

When he entered high school, the golf team was a given but the band director also wanted him for the drum line. At this point, S3 knew golf was his future and there was no way to do both golf and drum line, so he graciously declined the band director’s offer.

Here’s why this variety is good for your child: 1. Your child’s extra-curricular activity must be his/her choice. By exposing them to different sports and activities, they can choose which one to pursue. The love, desire and passion must be sincere, thus it has to be their choice. 2. By trying multiple disciplines, your kiddo has a chance to develop a reasonable level of skill in a secondary endeavor. This helps greatly with self-confidence and depending on what the activity is, possibly better strength, conditioning and more. 3. Your son/daughter will begin to appreciate the number of hours in the day and will, out of pure necessity, learn an essential life skill, time management. There is no substitute for being able to manage one’s hours and the sooner your kiddo gets on board with this concept, they better off he/she will be.

So while S3 learned a little bit about soccer and martial arts, he really learned a lot about music, particularly, percussion. He could sit at a drum set right now and play very well. Or he could join the church orchestra, read music and play any percussion instrument perfectly. It’s very cool!

See you on #1 tee playing the sport you chose… Sam

Junior Golf: 4 Steps For Tournament Prep

In this Friday Flop Shot, we’ll take a look at 4 things to do to be prepared for an upcoming tournament. This is about inventory prep, not physical prep.

There’s no worse feeling than driving to an event and someone blurts out, “Oh no, we forgot the xxxxx!” In all of S3’s tournaments, I think the only times we had to really scramble was to buy an extra glove 🧤 or two at the course. No biggie other than you’re paying a bit more.

Here’s the routine that we followed to insure that when we left the house we had all the essentials to have a successful day on the golf course.

1. Golf Bag-inspect it and everything in it a week or at least several days beforehand. This allows time for minor repairs and purchases. Count the clubs. Make sure there are at least 3 gloves that fit and are without holes. Have at least 2 dozen tees and 6 to 8 golf balls, more if you deem it necessary. Put 2 ball markers, quarters are good, and a divot repair tool in a ziplock bag. If it’s a stand bag, do the legs work? Are the carry strap and handle in tact? Is the bag hood/top in it? Are 2 towels on the bag, one for clubs and one for the player?

2. Clothing-check the weather and select what he/she wants to wear. Make sure it meets all dress codes, course and event. Is rain gear or a jacket required? Yes, they add weight and bulk, but if you need them and don’t have them, the chances for having a competitive round are poor. What about headgear? There’s a reason the pros wear caps, visors or hats. S3 always had a cap. When you need one because of the angle of the sun or some moisture getting in you eyes, there’s no substitute.

3. Snacks and drinks-your kiddo needs to have 3 or 4 snack items and a full bottle of water or Gatorade to start the round. Depending on the heat, 3 or 4 bottles may be needed during the 18 holes. Check with the tournament director to see if they’re allowing parents to give their kids water during the round. Here in our Texas heat it’s a common practice but does vary among the sponsoring entities. You want your child hydrated, but you don’t want a DQ either.

4. Optional items-this includes sunscreen, insect repellent, umbrella and extra towels. The first 2, in small packaging add little weight or bulk. The umbrella is a pain if it’s not really needed, but extra towels are always a good thing.

Parents, it’s your persistence and responsibility that gets this done. It’s unrealistic to expect your young one to keep up with all this until they reach a certain age of understanding. Be sure to include your son/daughter in the process. Their input is valuable. Pay attention and offer constructive words. You have every reason to arrive at the golf course and know your inventory matches the needs of the day.

See you on #1 tee with everything you need… Sam

Junior Golf: 5 Winning Back-To-School Strategies

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we’re going to look at 5 ways parents can help their junior golfers get off to a good start in the new school year.

Pretty much everybody’s back in school by now so most of the anticipation and confusion of the beginning of a new school year is wearing off and the new routines are forming. There’s always some emotion with new things so right now I’m going to share some ways to ease the transition.

Mom and Dad please: 1. Stay calm, keep the drama to an absolute minimum. Your son/daughter needs a soothing demeanor from their parents. There’s plenty of anxiety whirling around without the family adding to it. 2. Be reassuring when insecurities pop up. For example: “I don’t like my new teacher.” “This coach is different from my old one.” “These new kids are really good golfers, I may never qualify for a tournament.” These thoughts are real and kiddo’s are impacted differently depending on their personalities and levels of confidence. Sometimes you must ask inquiring questions to find out these kinds of things. Please make it a habit to have meaningful conversations with your student athlete. 3. Be even more available than normal during the first month of school. Classroom schedules usually fall in place quicker and easier than athletic schedules. Volunteer to be a team parent. Tell the coach that you are ready to help any way you can. 4. Get a weekly golf schedule locked in ASAP. Make sure it includes after school and weekend play and practice. Double-check with all family members that the schedule works for them.

5. Start preparing for the first fall event. If your youngster is not on a golf team, find the upcoming tournaments in your area and enter your kiddo. Get a September event if available, sooner is better. If there is a team involved, know that the first tournament is going to be in September and it’s usually earlier in the month than you expected. Be prepared.

See you on #1 tee settled into your new school year… Sam

Putting Tips From GCA Coach David Ogrin

In this Wednesday Waggle we’re going to get some putting advice from our good friend, PGA Tour winner and Golf Channel Academy coach, David Ogrin.

Perhaps you’ve seen one of his segments on The Golf Channel. We’re fortunate to have him full time here in San Antonio at The Golf Channel Academy at San Pedro. One of his recent posts caught my eye and I’d like to share it with you.

Today, I have Ogie’s permission to use one of his recent Facebook posts talking about putting. This is addressed to instructors, however, parents and their junior golfers have some excellent takeaways here. Without further ado, in David Ogrin’s words:

“On this putting thing, here would be my preferred way to teach it.

1. Give them your game theory. HIGH SIDE CORRECT SPEED IS NEVER A THREE PUTT. MAXIMUM BREAK, MINIMUM SPEED.

2. Teach them the mechanics. THUMBS ON FLAT OF PUTTER. STRAIGHT BACK, STRAIGHT THROUGH. YOU ARE PERFECTLY DESIGNED BY INSTINCT TO DO THIS.

3. Teach them how to read greens. UPHILL OR DOWNHILL? DOES HILL TIP LEFT OR RIGHT? WHAT SIDE OF HOLE DO YOU AIM?

4. Play for $1 per hole, 9 hole matches until they beat you. PUTT, PUTT, PUTT, PUTT, PUTT, PUTT, PUTT

5. If a student can beat me putting, and I know exactly where I stand on the golf ladder, that student has a chance. THREE FEET 100%, EIGHT FEET 50%, 33 FEET TWO PUTTS

Thanks again Coach Ogrin for the excellent advice!

Dad and Mom, print this out. Hit it with a highlighter. This is valuable information on the basics of putting. To win any golf tournament, the player must make putts and they must make more putts than everyone else.

This is a huge key for winning golf tournaments. Please grasp the inherent value here.

See you on #1 tee ready to make some putts… Sam

Junior Golf: Wise Words From Sir Nick

In this Monday Mulligan we’ll look at some great wisdom shared by TV announcer and 6-time major winner Sir Nick Faldo.

The finish to yesterday’s PGA Championship was wild and very exciting. Early in the day, up until the middle of the round, there must have been a dozen players within 2 strokes of leader and eventual winner, Brooks Koepka.

One of the first players to make a birdie run to hopefully get into a playoff was Thomas Pieters. He birdied 14 and 15 at which point Sir Nick was asked, “What does Pieters mindset need to be here on in to have any chance of winning or making a playoff?” The response, “Hit great shots and make everything!”

That says it all, doesn’t it? Now at this point there were a lot of guys making a ton of birdies. Anyone getting some momentum was going to need to keep it as long as possible to have any chance at all. Brooks was continuing to hit excellent shots. He wasn’t making many mistakes.

Tiger’s game is improving and he ended up in 2nd place after Adam Scott, who was once tied with Brooks for the lead, but missed a couple of birdie putts and lost his momentum. Adam finished 3rd after tugging a couple of drives to the left on 17 and 18, resulting in a bogey on the 72nd hole and moving Tiger to 2nd place by himself.

Tiger had the crowd going as he started 0 for 7 fairways and was still 2-under par. He finished with a 64 and was sticking shots close to the pin and making birdies. He was looking good as he’s sneaking up on playing well enough to win a big tournament.

However, it was Brooks Koepka’s day as he and Adam battled head-to-head for 16 holes. Adam’s miscues on 17 and 18 ended his chances as Brooks cranked out great shot after great shot and made, not everything, but enough key putts to win. Great golf, great drama!

Photocredit:golfdigest.com

So while Sir Nick’s line was initially addressed to Thomas Pieters, it was Brooks Koepka who executed those instructions perfectly. There were a lot of top pros playing really good golf, but you, BK, were the only one living out Faldo’s advice for the victory! You played better than everyone else, Congratulations!

See you on #1 tee ready to win… Sam

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