Archive for the ‘Alamo City Golf Trail’ Category

Junior Golf: It’s Your Serve

In this Wednesday Waggle you may be wondering if I have forgotten what sport this post is about. Certainly junior golf is the target but today will will use some analogies to other sports to make our points. (Dufner photo

Volleyball and tennis are 2 sports that have serves. What is the purpose of a serve? It starts the action and gives the server an opportunity to force the opponent to make a play. Is there a similar situation in golf? Yes, there is, it’s the tee shot which occurs, hopefully, only 18 times during a round. It puts the ball in action, against the course in stroke play and against the opponent in match play.

Your son’s tee shot is the ONLY time during an event that he has complete control over everything prior to taking his club back. It begins the action on every hole. Once he sees the safe zone for the tee shot he can then plan and visualize it. He can tee the ball up anywhere on the tee box within 2 club lengths behind the tee markers and between the markers of course. He can use a tee to stabilize the lie of his ball and place it on the right side if he wants to hit a fade or on the left side if a draw is his choice. A common tactic is to tee the ball up in line with a previous divot or a blade of grass that is on the line that your son wants his ball to take off of the clubface.


So serves and tee shots start the action and servers and golfers are in 100% control until they begin their swing. This is an opportunity for your son to learn how to make a plan, shot by shot for each hole. There are really only 2 steps required to make a good golf shot: the plan and the execution. (photo

A serve out of bounds or into the net is a point for the other side and it is an unforced error. So is a tee shot that goes astray into the rough, a hazard or out-of-bounds. Unforced errors must be minimized in order to be competitive. Encourage your son that having a good plan for tee shots is a great confidence builder for executing that shot and setting himself up to make more good shots on that hole.

See you on #1 tee with a plan… Sam

Junior Golf: Change Things Up

imageIn today’s Friday Flop Shot we will start looking at changing things up in your daughter’s routine. Why should you consider this? What are the benefits?

Let’s begin by examining golf courses that are a reasonable distance from home. Sure, your girl has her favorite course. Perhaps you are members of a country club or junior golf club/team that practices and plays at the same venue most of the time. This is all good, but 1 thing that always invites excitement and anticipation is something new, like playing a golf course for the 1st time. (

S3’s home course until college was Olympia Hills Golf Club in a suburb northeast of San Antonio. It is a municipal course owned by Universal City and it is an excellent track that is always in wonderful shape. It has all the desirable qualities for a home course: close, affordable, challenging and fun! But there are times that a change is needed, just to get some enthusiasm back into your daughter’s game.

Our area has plenty of quality golf courses and most, if not all give junior discounts and juniors who walk, which they certainly should, can get really cheap rates. We bought memberships to our Alamo City Golf Trail, golf courses owned and managed by the city of San Antonio. There are a ton of benefits, including free rounds. With 6 courses total, this package gives us very affordable options to see some different territory.image

Perhaps 1 of the most beneficial reasons to play a different course is that it allows your daughter to enhance her creativity. Every golf shot is different and with the new course layout, new grasses for greens, fairways and roughs and perhaps a different attention to maintenance, this situation requires adaptability and creative shot-making. This helps create confidence and is essential in preparation for upcoming tournaments.

Every now and then she will play a course that is in less than perfect condition. This is a good thing because she will surely play a few tournaments on courses that are not green carpets. Some may not have been overseeded so in the winter she is playing on dead grass and dirt. Some have not had adequate water so everything is hard as a rock and there is plenty of bare dirt and hardpan to hit off of. This is OK. Please be assured, she will end up playing a tournament on a course that is in less than perfect or even poor condition. That’s golf. Her inventory of creative shots can always use 1 more.

Yes, there may be some complaining, but it’s time to make lemonade out of these lemons. Just encourage her that this is a great chance to work on her shots from these types of lies and that this will definitely help her in some future competition. Go find some of those inexpensive less-than-perfect courses and book a tee time. Make it a positive outing!

See you on #1 tee on 1 of “those” courses… 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

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