Posts Tagged ‘golf clubs’

Junior Golf: Buy The Right Golf Bag

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will open up some ideas for gifts that may not have been on your radar. Let’s think outside the box and buy something different, like a new golf bag! Which style is the best for a junior golfer?img_0102

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will open up some ideas for gifts that may not have been on your radar. Let’s think outside the box and buy something different, like a new golf bag! Which style is the best for a junior golfer? (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)

We don’t think about golf bags too often in our house, partly because S3 had school-issued bags in high school and college. Another bag can come in handy, however. If your son has gotten bigger, he probably needs a larger bag.

Depending on his skill level, strength and typical weather conditions, his required features on the bag can vary. If for example, he’s not carrying 14 clubs, buy him an ultra lightweight adult bag with just a couple of pockets. It likely won’t have a stand but that’s OK. The very light weight combined with a limited number of clubs will make it a pleasure to carry. There are a number of adults who like to walk and prefer these bags to stand bags because they just weigh little to nothing. Also some of the walkers don’t carry 14 clubs, sometimes to reduce weight, but sometimes to force creativity by having only a few clubs. This is a ton of fun, by the way!

Next size larger would be a stand bag, a bag with collapsible legs that extend out to keep the bag “standing” when it is set down. These bags are 1 of the great golf inventions of all time. All school bags are stand bags and your son will love having 1.image

Now a school-issued bag gives you no choice, but when you pay for a stand bag on your own, here are the things to pay great attention to. 1. Make sure the rubber tips on the ends of the legs are seriously attached, not just slip-ons over the metal end. When these come off, replacements are difficult to get and the bag will want to slide when your son attempts to stand it on a slick surface. For something so minor, it is a real pain. 2. Check the weight. Some bags are amazingly light, while others are ridiculously heavy. 3. More pockets are better. Really your son will want a pocket to put a water bottle in and depending on the make and model of bag, it may be an insulated pocket or just a stretch web pocket. This is a must have. Most bags will have enough other pockets for extra gear plus an umbrella slot. (image: affordable golf)

The next 2 larger sizes of golf bags are the cart bag and the Tour bag. Neither is appropriate for your junior golfer. They are too big and not practical.

Please follow the golf equipment sales going on right now. Be patient and you will find some golf bags on sale. Have fun!

See you on #1 tee with that new stand bag… Sam

 

 

 

Junior Golf: Save Money Now

In today’s Black Friday Flop Shot we will look at some of the ridiculous sales in the world of golf that are going on right now and save some money! (image offcoursegolf.com)fimg_0106-1

Let’s see what 1 of our favorites, The Golf Warehouse, http://www.tgw.com has to offer: Titleist Pro V1 or Pro V1x custom name and numbers for $39.95 per dozen. A personalized very unique gift! Also Ecco, top quality golf shoes, Biom Hybrid 5.0 style for $119.99. And 3 different Caddytek push carts from $99.99-119.99. Big savings on these and a lot more items.

How about Golfsmith, http://www.golfsmith.com, being bought by Dick’s Sporting Goods: this is a special situation since Golfsmith is closing about 80 stores from California to Massachusetts. See the list of stores being closed here. If you are near a store that is closing, get there ASAP. Big savings are at hand. And the stores remaining open have a ton of great prices too!

And another of our favorite online stores, 3 Balls Golf,
http://www.3balls.com, has some killer deals: 20% off used irons, Oakley Sunglasses $59.99 and up, 30% off Adidas apparel and 15% off Puma golf shoes and much much more! Another trusted vendor!

Additional stores to check out are Golf Galaxy, Edwin Watts Golf, Dick’s Sporting Goods and Academy Outdoors.

The point is Mom and Dad your active junior golfer is always in need of balls, gloves, tees, clubs, clothing and outerwear. It’s just part of the deal. So plan ahead and save some money now. (image gfore.com)image

Final thoughts. I think we’ll do something we’ve not previously done. Get S3 some customized Pro V1x balls and get us all 1 of the beautiful colored Golf gloves, made by Footjoy and also by GFORE, pricey but gorgeous!

See you on #1 tee looking well-equipped… Sam

Junior Golf: Final Exam

In this Wednesday Waggle we look at the end of the semester, actually a year-long semester for The PGA Tour. The Finals are here for the FedEx Cup and play starts tomorrow. (photo golfdigest.com)img_0102

Only the top 30 players based on FedEx Cup points have qualified to play in the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta. The purse is $8,500,000 with $1,530,000 and 2,000 FedEx Cup points going to the winner. It is possible to win the 4-day tournament and also end up with enough points to be FedEx Cup Champion, meaning the best player over the year-long PGA Tour schedule. That’s a paycheck of $11,530,000.

Usually, the Top 5 players, on a points basis, if 1 of them wins the 72-hole event has an excellent chance of winning both events, because of the 2,000 points earned by the Coca Cola Championship winner. It can be a bit confusing but the tv announcers will keep us endlessly up-to-date with scores and rankings so we won’t have to track it on our own.

Golf is the ultimate performance-based sport since scores are objective and the only subjective possibility might be a rule interpretation which may happen once per round, if that. So the score’s the score. You shoot low, you advance, if you shoot high, you’re out. Very simple.

These pros have had to meet specific points goals for 3 weeks in a row and make the Top 30 in order to get a week off before tomorrow’s 4-day final exam. It’s not like there’s a lack of pressure on the PGA Tour, but not all pros enjoy playing 3 weeks in a row, so this took some of them out of their comfort zone, but it was time to perform or go home.

The Top 5 are Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Adam Scott, Jason Day and Paul Casey. And right behind them are Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth. There are plenty of other big names in the Top 30 and the point is there should be some some great golf from these guys. Every now and then someone runs away with it but hopefully we’ll have some amazing golf and mesmerizing drama! There is not a cut and tv time will be fewer hours than normal because there is less than half of a regular weekend field.

To make the Playoffs a golfer must be in the Top 125 to enter The Barclay’s. The Top 100 then advance the next week to the Deutsche Bank event. And the Top 70 advance to The BMW Championship where the Top 30 are reseeded and move to the Tour Championship in Atlanta 2 weeks later, which is where we are now. (golf week.com)

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Your son has his own junior golf version of this and it’s called PBE or performance-based entry. It means that his ability to be qualified to enter certain events is based on his prior performance. Shoot low scores and he can enter, shoot high scores and he will need to be working on his game.

Much of life is performance-based. Our family is used to it and we encourage all our kids to give their best effort at everything. School, sports, music, and now since they are grown we include work, always give 110%, period. Giving one’s best effort is a very desirable trait and 1 that is certainly noticed and respected.

See you on #1 tee ready to give maximum effort… Sam

Junior Golf: Community Service

In this Friday Flop Shot we will look at an area of responsibility that is often overlooked or barely addressed. Community Service is a critical part of being a good citizen and of being a proper athlete. (photo offcoursegolf.com)img_0106

For those Moms and Dads who have not yet filled out a college application, guess what? There’s a section on community service and it’s important, particularly for those seeking an athletic or academic scholarship.

Colleges want to get the best kids possible and while grades, SAT scores and athletic accomplishments are important, community service can be a major tie-breaker.

There are dozens of activities in your daughter’s area that qualify as community service. A few examples are helping out with special needs kids or at senior citizen activities, being in the church choir or orchestra, helping at civic events, picking up trash in parks or along the roads, and for junior golfers, being a volunteer at area golf tournaments/sporting events. There are a ton of options!

1 very special event that our church has done for 5 or 6 years now is Feed My Starving Children. It is a Christian non-profit which sends dehydrated prepackaged nutritious meals to 70 countries all around the world. FMSC gets no government funds. Individuals donate money which goes towards purchasing the ingredients and equipment required for packaging and packing, which is done at sites all over the US. Linda and I just completed our shift last night and over 3 days our teams will have packaged and shipped 544,320 meals, enough to feed 1,492 kids for a year! And that’s just from 1 church in San Antonio, Texas!image

Sometimes you might wonder what really is the fruit of your efforts? Well, I was in an airport waiting to be called to a flight and while conversing with a group next to me, it turned out they had been on a mission trip to Haiti. I mentioned FMSC and their faces lit up! They had been distributing FMSC food in Haiti! Small world!

Parents, community service can be life-changing and the younger you start your kids in it the more impact it can have on them and their friends and on you too. There is really nothing like helping those in need!

See you on #1 tee with a giving spirit… Sam

Junior Golf:Uniquely American

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we are going to look a the huge sporting events that are place around the world. Depending on the country the sport could be soccer, volleyball, cricket, rugby, ice hockey, water polo or perhaps auto racing. (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)img_0102

Today, however, I’m focusing on America and guess which sport I’m talking about? College football and I’m really referring to the 30 to 40 mega-programs with gigantic stadiums. Certainly there are other schools and the military academies which have great stadium environments, but please allow me to go mega today for reasons I’ll mention.

As a University of Texas grad, there’s nothing for me like being at a home game in DKR Stadium with 102,000 of my Longhorn buddies and getting there early to watch the Longhorn Marching Band entrance. 400 strong the excitement builds as the drum line enters 1st to set a cadence for the others. Then Texas Fight (UT fight song) is played and the crowd erupts and the tone is set for the next several hours. The earth shakes from the band and the crowd, there is truly nothing else like it!

From USC to Wisconsin to Ohio State to Carolina to Alabama to Florida, all over America there are great marching bands getting their fans ready for a big-time football game. Amazing! (photo wikipedia.org)image

A few years ago our good friends Mike and Sherry invited S3 and me to join them at a UT home game vs Baylor. This was S3’s 1st time at an event of this magnitude and Mike and Sherry always wanted to be in their seats for the band entrance which is usually 30-45 minutes before kickoff, after the teams finish warming up. Well, I can tell you it took my son about 10-seconds to get into it as soon as the drum line entered the stadium. It was so cool watching him enjoy this and seeing him sing along to Texas Fight. He was pumped up the whole game as we watched UT beat the Bears.

A friend’s daughter wanted to be a part of the UT Marching Band. She had to pass 4 auditions before she was accepted and she made the traveling squad. Her timing was perfect as she played in the Pasadena New Year’s Day Parade and at the 2006 Rose Bowl when Texas won the National Championship. Let’s give these band kids credit since they rehearse a ton of hours and are really great at what they do. And the bands provide a level of enthusiasm, enjoyment and intensity that nothing ease can.

Now, please gather your kiddos and take 5 minutes and watch this video. Even if you are not a Longhorn fan it may give you an adequate representation of the feelings I’m trying to convey in today’s post.

Why is this important to junior golfers? It exposes them to new feelings, new levels of excitement and perhaps an appreciation of what it means to live in the USA. Hopefully it will inspire some dreams, new dreams, bigger dreams! Excitement is the most easily transferred emotion so let’s get our kiddos excited! Let’s go play!

See you on #1 tee with big dreams… Sam

Junior Golf: BMW Unbeatable

In this Monday Mulligan we will take a look at the best performance during the next to last event in the FedEx Cup playoffs, the unbeatable play of the BMW Championship winner. (photo jennleforge.com)img_0135-1

We’re talking about DJ, Dustin Johnson, of course. His 23-under par victory yesterday was an all-time record for lowest score in a playoff event. Paul Casey finished 2nd at 20-under which would usually win most tournaments on the PGA Tour.

There are times when your daughter will get beaten and there are times when she will be unbeatable. Sunday’s final round was pretty much a 2-man race as to who would win and included considerable drama about who would make the last cut of 30 to move on to the finals in 2 weeks in Atlanta.

Paul was hanging around within several shots of DJ and then he,Casey, eagled #15. Guess what, DJ put an eagle putt in on top of Paul’s putt on #15 and that meant that unless DJ had a major blowup during the last 3 holes, Casey would not be able to catch him.

Outdriving the field by 30 yards meant Dustin was hitting wedges into holes that other players would hit 7 or 8-iron into, several clubs longer. Big advantage to Johnson and big payoff for all the work he has recently put in with his wedges. He kept hitting big drives, close wedges and was #1 in putting for the event. This is called unbeatable!

BMW Championship - Final Round

How does this help your daughter? Please help her understand that there will be times when she plays well, perhaps very well and still gets beat by someone playing at an amazing level. It happens, but she will have her days where everything goes right and she is the unbeatable player. (DJ photo golfchannel.com)

There’s a reason legendary golf instructor Harvey Penick said the 3 most important clubs are the driver, wedge and putter. Ask your girl which 1 of those she would like to work on and set up a practice routine. Find some drills at Golf Channel Academy or get her some lessons. It will pay off and it’s fun!

See you on #1 tee looking unbeatable… Sam

Junior Golf: BMW Young Guns

In today’s Friday Flop Shot we will take a look at who’s winning and who continues to be in contention in this weekend’s FedEx Cup event, The BMW Championship. The young guns are heating up! (photo offcoursegolf.com)img_0106-1

Roberto Castro led after round 1 with 7-under par, followed by Brian Harman at 6-under and Jason Dufner and Dustin Johnson at 5-under par. Unfinished 1st rounds were completed this morning to be followed by Round 2.

In Roberto’s post-round interview it was interesting to hear his response to the question about how he had dealt with such a lengthy rain delay. To paraphrase his words, “That’s the PGA Tour this year, we’ve had a bunch of rain. We’re used to it. I’ve been dealing with rain delays since junior golf.” What true words. With all the events these young guns on the PGA Tour have played in since and including junior golf tournaments, they have dealt with all these situations a number of times.

The key is patience, of course, and staying loose or at least making certain to get good and loose before going back out on the course and hitting your next shot.

BMW Championship - Round One

How can your son benefit from this situation? 1st, Mom and Dad, tell him that he will have this exact scenario more than once in his junior and college golf careers. Take a breath and relax and understand that everybody on the course is dealing with this exact issue. The ones that deal with it best will finish their rounds with better scores. (Roberto Castro image theindychannel.com)

Remind your son that there is likely someone in his group, usually a 3-some or 4-some, that loves to be 1st to hit off the tee. Let him, learn from his shot. Did he hit enough club or too much club? How did the wind affect the ball? Get a free education.

Pay attention to the young guns, the under-30 year olds. Patrick Reed, Jordan Spieth, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day, Rickie Fowler, Roberto Castro, Daniel Berger and more bring an excitement to the game and more experience than you would think for someone so young. Your son can relate to them. Heck he might be 1 of them someday!

The BMW Championship is on The Golf Channel today and Golf Channel/NBC tomorrow and Sunday. Set the TiVo and enjoy!

See you on #1 tee looking patient… Sam

Junior Golf: What’s The Difference

In today’s Wednesday Waggle will will look at what made a difference. A Tour player is back on top after being kind of in the back of the pack for most of the year. Why is he playing at a high level right now, what’s the difference? (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)img_0102

It’s Rory of course. Mr. McIlroy had a great win at last week’s Deutsche Bank Championship in the 2nd round of the playoffs. He started Monday’s final round 6 shots back of 3rd-round leader Paul Casey. So what enabled Rory to get in the winner’s spot? Putting, putting, putting. How many times have you heard someone say that to win a golf tournament, you have to make putts?

McIlroy has hit a bunch of good shots this year but his putting has not been good. So he changed from a Nike to a Scotty Cameron putter and hired Henrik Stensen’s putting coach. So basically in 1 week his putting improved dramatically to 7th in the field in strokes gained putting. In other words he made a bunch of putts, enough to win! (photo golfdigest.com)image

What does this mean for your daughter? Well, how is her putting? Does she make most of her 3-footers, like 100%? Then look at 8 feet, which she can try for 2 out of 3 and then 20 feet where the goal is to NOT 3-putt.

Remember that the short game, chipping and putting is where she can lower her score the quickest. Have her fitted for a new putter. Get a putting aid, there are a ton of them at all price ranges. And practice. Watch Golf Channel Academy putting instructional videos, they’re free. There’s a lot she can do to improve her score. And yes Dad and Mom she needs your help.

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

Junior Golf: Enjoy Family And Friends

imageIn today’s Monday Mulligan we will be brief and encourage you to enjoy the day with family and friends. Retailers are mostly open today, but financial institutions and federal offices are closed.

There are some very good sales at some of the golf websites. If shopping is not your thing, final round coverage from TPC Boston begins at 10:30am on The Golf Channel and switches to NBC at 12:30pm, all times central. Set your TiVo or watch it live. There are 10 guys within 3 shots of the leaders, Rory McIlroy and Paul Casey. Winds are supposed to pick up later in the day so it could be a wild finish!

Take a breath, relax and enjoy the day! See you on #1 tee, looking relaxed… Sam

Junior Golf: The 100

In today’s Friday Flop Shot we will look at the men’s playoffs now in the 2nd elimination round at TPC Boston. The low 100 scores from last week are competing for 70 spots this week to advance to the next stage. (photo offcoursegolf.com)img_0106-1

Reminder that this is a Friday through Monday event so I slightly freaked out when there was nothing on our TiVo Thursday evening. Aha, it was then I remembered the next morning’s start times.

Yesterday was very interesting to watch. Part of it for me is that to my eye TPC Boston is a very mesmerizing course to look at. Man, it looks tough with winding, narrow, undulating fairways with lots of rough and bunkers and greens that have slopes and features resembling the North Atlantic during a storm. As good as these guys are, this layout really demands accuracy and punishes those who cannot put the ball where it belongs.

James Hahn hit every fairway, an amazing feat in itself and both he and Ryan Moore hit some great iron shots to take the lead at 6-under par. There are another 32 players at 3-under or better so these next 3 days should be exciting! These guys are good!

1 of the reasons Phil Mickelson is so popular is that he is so creative with his shotmaking. He pulls off shots that most other pros won’t even try. Yesterday was both ugly and amazing in this regard. I watched him take an 8 on a par 4, trying to hit a ball out of some cattails and couldn’t get the ball out, had to go back and drop, take a penalty shot, wow, really rough. Then on the 18th hole, his ball was right of the green, about pin high on a very steep slope in some fluff and there was only a small piece of green between a trap and the pin. Phil swung very hard, like out of his shoes hard, with a gap wedge, hit the ball a mile high, landed it just over the trap and almost holed out. What a highlight reel!

So get the TiVo going, enjoy your Labor Day Weekend and go hit some balls or play a round. By the way, just in case you hadn’t noticed, adding to the entertainment mix, college football starts as well, and my Longhorns host #10 Notre Dame on Sunday evening, Hook ‘Em!

See you on #1 tee ready for some excitement… Sam.

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