Archive for December, 2015

Junior Golf: Buy A Fun Gift

In today’s Monday Mulligan we will consider buying something different for your daughter, something fun and unexpected. The nuts and bolts routine of buying white golf balls, white golf gloves and tees is just taken for granted. Well, Mom and Dad, this is the time of year to get a bit more creative with your golf purchases for your girl.image

Christmas shopping is in full speed ahead mode and stores already have plenty of discounts and sales going on. This is 1 of those times to buy an off-the-wall gift or 2 for your daughter. So what are things you could buy that would be at least half-way useful and not totally embarrass your daughter out in public? Those of you with teenage daughters know that they very well may believe that a parent’s sole goal in life is to publicly embarrass her. That being a given, let’s proceed.

Think about what she wears and uses on the range and on the golf course. Here are some easy suggestions: buy a new crazy or animal head cover for her driver. I mean if you look you can find at least a half-dozen different animal heads, plus a couple of bird heads, including roosters. There are college mascot head covers as well. And there are some head cover designs you would never have imagined in your wildest dreams. So this is just fun.

Also there are now a couple of golf glove makers who offer colors in addition to white. You know what her favorite colors are, so buy her a couple of gloves in bright colors and surprise her. Also be certain, and we have mentioned this before, to buy some of the wet or wetter is better gloves and tell her to keep them in her bag and remember that they are in there. Most major glove makers have these and most are sold in pairs, as in a right and a left hand glove, and are black. Just buy these and put them under the tree. If she already has a paired wet gloves, buy her another pair from a different maker so she can decide which brand she prefers. These gloves are absolutely essential in damp or wet weather.

Now, it’s time to really get crazy. Linda, my dear wife, just loves to play with colored golf balls. I mean if there’s a yellow, orange, hot pink or purple golf ball handy, she’s teeing it up! Frankly those purple balls are hard for me to see and I think for us that color slows down play. And of course, I can’t say to her if she would just hit it in the fairway and on the green it would be much easier to see!!! Linda and I were playing recently and I found 1 of those Callaway Truvis Chrome Soft White red and white golf balls. They are quite striking to look at. Linda immediately put it in play. I’m not sure if for me, those 2 colors make it harder for me to focus at 1 spot on the ball. And then maybe with my golf game it doesn’t really matter.image

For those of you with sons instead of daughters you can still use this information. Just consider what your son likes, or what would embarrass him in your buying decisions, just kidding, well maybe. I mean, if Tom Watson can wear beautiful and colorful golf gloves, your son can too. The point here is to break out of your normal buying habits without breaking the bank. A sleeve of colored golf balls and a colorful golf glove might be $35.00 total at most. Head covers range from inexpensive to ridiculous.

Have fun. Show your fun self to your daughter or to your son. They’ll love it!

See you on #1 tee looking colorful and fun… Sam

Junior Golf: Get Out Of The Rut

In this Friday Flop Shot we are going to explore the possibility of playing some different golf courses, places that you and your son have never played. There are 100’s of great golf courses all over the US and in nearby vacation destinations.image

This time of year we expect to be inundated by ads for every type of gift and present imaginable. You know what, I’m getting more than a few offers from amazing golf courses and resorts. Really Dad and Mom, other than upcoming tournaments, nothing is more exciting for your son than to dream about playing a new golf course or perhaps even playing a legendary golf course. So in addition to the emails from retailers, including golf retailers, I am getting special offers from our local Alamo City Golf Trail and the First Tee of Greater San Antonio as well as offers from the TPC Network and the PGA TOUR Experiences. And there are also the constant offers from the hotel groups offering their golf vacation packages.

So the thing to do is find your local and state golf groups and get on their email lists. Then do the same with the hotel groups that are resort oriented like SPG/Starwood, Hilton and Marriott. And TPC Network and PGA TOUR Experiences mentioned above. Friends of ours have gone to Alabama to play the 9 courses on the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail.

imageSit down with your son and start looking at courses that work for your schedule and budget. Some might be a bit of a tough day trip, maybe a 3-hour drive, 1-way, but will create memories for both your lifetimes. And others offer exotic locales and all the other big resort benefits. The point here is that there are affordable courses not that far from you that will allow your son and you to play different turf. There’s really nothing quite like playing a course for the 1st time.

Get out of the rut. We all have our regular courses. Remember that while no 2 golf shots are ever the same, playing a new golf course can stimulate your son’s creativity. So whether you’re driving a couple of hours or flying for a week’s stay at an exotic golf resort, the 1st step is to get on email lists so you know about good deals when they are available.

Where is the nearest course that has a PGA, Champion’s Tour or LPGA event? Which TPC Network resort is near you? What is the current offering of the PGA TOUR Experience? You won’t know if you don’t get on some email lists. You can ask your local PGA professional, but he will likely have local and limited input.

See you on #1 tee, on a new course… Sam

Junior Golf: Clubs, Clubs, Clubs

imageIn today’s Wednesday Waggle we are looking at clubs, clubs and more golf clubs. This is an amazing time of year and the sheer number of different makes and models of golf clubs that are available can be overwhelming.

Dad and Mom there are a few new golf clubs that trickle onto the scene throughout the year, but now is when the old clubs, new clubs and used clubs are all for sale. And the good news is that you and your daughter can get a great education. Learn the terminology of golf clubs. There are club heads called cavity backs, muscle backs, blades and more. Shaft stiffness from less stiff to more stiff are: ladies, senior, men’s regular, men’s stiff, men’s extra stiff and more. Golf club grips come in undersize, standard, midsize and oversize. An putter grips are another world all unto themselves. (photo golfdigest.com)

So what is a parent to do? If you already have a go-to PGA Professional, go see her and ask her to explain some of these parts of a golf club and the different designs and terminologies and how your daughter can try different clubs to see which ones are best for her skill level, which ones she likes and which ones she hits the best. In other words, there is a style of club that looks good in theory, but hitting balls with different clubs is the only real way to home in on what club design is the best fit for her.

Soon you daughter will have some time off for Christmas break. If geography is an issue and you are in an area with a limited selection of golf clubs, this is the time to plan a day or overnight trip to a city that has at least 1 or more of the big golf retailers. We’re talking about Edwin Watts Golf, Golf Galaxy, Golfsmith, and Dick’s Sporting Goods to name a few. While these stores will not have any used clubs they may very well have some of last year’s discontinued models on sale and the brand new latest and greatest clubs likely not on sale, but looking very tempting.image

Finding used clubs so that your daughter can hit them can be a challenge. When you know which city you will be visiting, do a search for used golf clubs for sale. There are usually several stores which specialize in selling used golf clubs. Have an idea of what you are looking for before you go and know that they may or may not have a hitting area or driving range. Once you have some clubs in mind, check prices online before going to the used club store. (photo 2ndswing.com)

Couple of tips: never buy golf clubs until your daughter has hit that specific make and model. Buying used anything is risky and golf clubs are not different. Only buy used from a trusted friend or a source that can be vetted. 3 Balls Golf is a great online source that always has thousands of used golf clubs for sale.

See you on #1 tee with some nice looking golf clubs that you can hit… Sam

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