Posts Tagged ‘golf clubs’

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: 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: Make Three Changes For More Fun

In today’s Friday Flop Shot we’ll look at three simple changes you can make to freshen up your junior golfer’s routine.

It’s the middle of summer and the same ol same ol may be more tedious than exciting. The good news about summer is that there is all this extra time available for your daughter/son to play in tournaments and work on their golf skills.

The bad news is that doing the same routines for days and weeks on end can become drudgery for even the most dedicated students of the game, so let’s make things fun again. Let’s change things up.

Here are 3 simple ways to put a new twist on the summer golf experience:

1. Book a tee time at a course your youngster has never played. The thought of playing a new course always fires everybody up.

2. Learn a new putting drill. PGA Tour winner and The Golf Channel Academy at San Pedro Director of Instruction, David Ogrin offered this one: practice distance control by putting to the edge of the practice green from 20 to 30 feet away. Because you’re not trying to make the putt, you’re able for focus on how the greens are rolling and get a feel for distance. A great first/lag putt makes for an easier second putt. We want to avoid 3-putts at all costs. Feel free to vary the distance to the edge of the green.

Check out Coach Ogrin’s video.

3. Check how far his/her clubs are going. All this good summer work has many positive results including increased strength and better form which can certainly result in increased distance. It is imperative for your child to know how far they hit each club. To see that the 7-iron is flying 5 yards farther is exhilarating for any golfer!

See you on #1 tee excited about your golf game… Sam

Junior Golf: 3 Tips For Summer Golf Success

In this Friday Flop Shot we’ll look at 3 simple ways for your junior golfer to have a successful summer of golf.

Ok, school is out for just about everybody so let’s get after some fun summer golf planning!

1. Start with getting the whole family together to go over summer calendars. Prep for this by having dates of tournaments and golf camps on hand. If you’re planning a major vacation for the family, be sure to include the golf clubs.

2. Mom and Dad, review the summer budget. Then decide how much discretionary money can go towards golf. Know costs of tournaments, golf camps, clubs and lessons. Remember that summer is a time when major advances in skill levels can occur.

3. Be aware that your non-golfing kids need attention too. Balance your time and money as best it’s possible, among the youngsters.

There you go, quick and easy. If college golf is a goal, I encourage you to spend as much time and money as you can, in a prudent way, to immerse your kiddo in summer golf. Amazing things happen with immersion!

S3 took this photo of my shot on this par 3 at the beautiful Nicklaus Ocean Course at the Hammock Beach Resort in Palm Coast, Florida. This was during his college graduation trip in 2016.

The summer between his junior and senior years of high school, S3 had 23 days of tournaments. Yes, this is a lot of golf but we had budgeted for it and he played some of the best golf of his life. It was fun!

See you on #1 tee with a better game… Sam

Junior Golf: Please Get Your 7-iron

In this Wednesday Waggle we’re going to use your child’s 7-iron to put us on an informative and educational path.

Today’s point is that our clubs, for this post, our irons, may not always be what they seem. If you’re asking yourself, “Where on earth is he going?”, fear not, clarity is on the way.

You may recall my post of May 25, “Use Demo Days to Lower Your Scores”, where I described the excellent club fitting I received from a Wilson Staff rep. I filed his suggestions for future use as I decided to continue to explore more options rather than buying a new set of irons, although it was very tempting.

Upon returning to San Antonio I went to see Ben, a highly recommended club fitter. I told him my 7-iron didn’t go anywhere. It was at least 15 yards shorter than it’s predecessor and I really didn’t have confidence in any of my irons, even though this set was made for me by a good friend.

As he put it on the loft/lie machine, Ben found my 7-iron to have a loft of 37-degrees, basically an 8-iron’s loft. That’s why it didn’t go anywhere. Once corrected to the typical 34-degree loft and along with a lie adjustment of 1-degree upright, I went to the adjacent range to hit. My “new” 7-iron was wonderful, the ball flew beautifully and carried much farther than before.

Photocredit: bettershotgolf.com

For the record, all my irons were off and Ben put them back to typical specs and a 1-degree upright lie. Then I thought about my driving iron I’d never been comfortable with. It was too flat/strong and he fixed that. On my first swing I hit that driving iron better than ever!

So this is a bit embarrassing that I hadn’t done this before but at least it’s done now. Out of the 10 irons in my bag, only my 2 Cleveland wedges were the correct loft, requiring just the lie adjustment. My driving iron and 4-p all needed a loft correction plus the 1-degree upright adjustment. No wonder I couldn’t get any confidence with those clubs!

My investigation into what to do with my irons has taken a fun turn. Instead of spending big money on new irons, I’m hitting these for a few weeks to see how I like distance, ball flight and feel. Then Ben and I will discuss whether a change of shafts or heads might be beneficial.

Parents, please ask around about recommendations for club fitters in your area. Then take your kiddo’s irons in for a loft and lie checkup. You may be surprised at what you learn. You and your son/daughter will at the least leave with confidence that those irons are now the correct loft and lie. Go hit ’em!

See you on #1 tee with proper lofts… Sam

Junior Golf: Use Demo Days To Lower Your Scores

In this Friday Flop Shot we’ll look at the benefits of Demo Days and how you and your junior golfer can use them to shoot lower scores.

Demo Days are regularly scheduled at nearly every golf course and at some golf academies and learning centers. All the major manufacturers have representatives who put on Demo Days. Please check with the golf facilities in your area for dates of upcoming Demo Days and plan to attend.

Don’t be concerned if you’re not familiar with a certain club manufacturer. Go anyway. It’s great fun! There’s always something to be learned. It will pay off. It’s a free education!

Before you go, you and your kiddo briefly discuss any specific clubs you may want to evaluate. Whether it’s the driver, irons or wedges, have some thoughts ready ahead of time.

Put his/her full set of clubs in the car with you and then take the club you are most interested in with you when you walk up to the rep. If it’s irons, take the 7-iron.

Most reps today have numerous different weight/length/flex shafts that they can immediately screw on to any head. They do it right there and it only takes a few seconds. Let the Demo Day rep look at the current 7-iron and ask for suggestions of what shaft/head combo he has that might improve distance and accuracy.

Recently I was with Wilson Staff master fitter, Jeff Pittillo, at River Falls Plantation in South Carolina. I showed him my current 7-iron and mentioned I wasn’t happy with it because the ball didn’t go anywhere. I’ve lost a bunch of distance. His analysis: the shaft is too heavy. It’s stiff flex and I need regular. And the heads are almost blades and I need a more forgiving cavity-back style club. Wow!

Here’s what we did. We tried a couple of different weight shafts, all regular flex and ultimately Jeff recommended the KBS 90 gram regular flex shaft for more speed. We put it on the new Wilson Staff C300 Forged heads and the C300 Cast heads. The C300 Cast went further, felt better and had a beautiful ball flight. And the Cast is cheaper than the Forged. They’re great!

You can duplicate this scenario with your youngster at every Demo Day. Attend as many DD’s as possible so your son/daughter can get opinions from several club fitters and get a feel for different makes of clubs. At some point, you will hear, “Dad, those xxxxxx’s really felt good and they increased my distance!”

Now it’s up to the golf budget guru to see what can be done. Remember, the PGA publishes golf club trade-in values so you may get some bucks from the current clubs. A few times each year most facilities offer extra value on your trade-ins. Ask and they should be able to tell you when the next extra value trade-in period is and plan accordingly.

In order for your junior to be competitive, it is critical that Dad and Mom plan and commit to provide golf clubs that are correct for your child’s size, strength, athletic ability and skill level. This is a great way to get quality input from multiple sources!

See you on #1 tee with the right clubs… Sam

Junior Golf: 3 PreSummer Checks For Irons That Fit

In today’s Monday Mulligan we’ll look at 3 aspects of your junior golfer’s irons so you can be sure he/she has the correct equipment for maximum summer golf benefits.

Your youngster is growing, needing bigger shoes, new pants, shirts, tops and bottoms. Remember Mom and Dad, that getting taller, faster and stronger likely means different golf clubs.

Irons and all golf clubs that are mismatched to any golfer are a handicap. Your kiddo’s chance of success is poor if he/she is using improper equipment.

Start by asking for the name of the best club-fitter in your area. It’s best to ask the really good adult golfers, the ones who seriously compete and win in amateur events in your area. They know! Not being judgemental, but if you ask your swing coach, he/she will say they can do it. Now, this may be true or not. Perhaps they are the best swing coach around and are capable of doing a club fitting, but are they the best club-fitter, I don’t know. If you ask a junior or their parents, they may say they use their swing coach.

The swing coach will recommend that your child needs this, that and the other in the next set of irons, which should be soon. The club-fitter makes that happen with their own unique set of skills. And the best club fitter is a very talented and well-respected person!

Here’s what should be evaluated and acted upon now, with the current set of irons, to make the best use of your summer golf investment:

1. Iron shafts: are they the correct length, weight and flex? For example: “x” inches long, 100 grams and regular flex.

2. Iron heads: are they matched to the skill level. For example: lighter or heavier weight, cast or forged construction and best for beginner, intermediate or advanced skill level junior golfers.

3. Iron grips: are they correct for your young golfer’s hand size and “feel” preference? For example: too small/skinny, too big/fat, just right/perfect and do they “feel” hard/slick, rough/coarse or pleasant, meaning slightly tacky/grabby.

There will be more than one club fitter in your town. The reality is that most are ok, but one or two are genuinely talented. Those are the folks you want to find.

A simple equation is that as your child’s skill level advances, they require more highly-skilled professionals, including swing coaches and club-fitters. Find out who the best are so you can go to them when you need them. You will need them!

See you on #1 tee with a proper set of irons… Sam

%d bloggers like this: