Posts Tagged ‘Jordan Spieth’

Junior Golf: Is There An Afterlife?

 

Now before any of you start thinking I’m getting all ethereal and deep-thinking on you, I’m just having some fun with ya!

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Photocredit:jennleforge.com

Yeah, probably I should have said is there a life after, as in after junior golf and college golf?

Advance planning, as in plan ahead is the key. It is never too early to ask your golfer where he/she wants to be after 4 years of college eligibility have expired. The options are endless: play professional golf, work in the golf industry, take a break from golf, get an interim job to make some money, pursue another career path or move to Timbuktu and just veg out for a while? There are options and the earlier you bring them up, the better.

Our eyes were opened wide over the years as we heard so many talented college golfers talk about their post-graduation plans. Our brother and sister golfers from Spain, are pursuing their engineering careers and the brother is showing an incredible talent in robotics!. Another teammate is in the golf industry near Houston working on golf videos, coaching and training, although he’s always loved politics and something in me thinks he might dip his toe in that water at some point. AJ is back in the down-under getting a law degree and making custom golf clubs. And we have a couple of friends trying to get on the web.com Tour.

Our personal frame of reference is of course, unique to us, but not really unusual. Graduating from college in 4 years with a degree is a big deal in our family and we wanted to celebrate. Sammie asked Linda and me to join him on his graduation trip so we went to Florida and played a bunch of golf and had a great time. Upon returning to San Antonio, S3 was ready to take a break from 16 years of non-stop golf. In our talks about his future I mentioned that it took me a couple of years after college to find my niche in the business world and that while he needed to get a job to support himself, I suggested he take a breath and keep his eyes and ears open. And he has ended up with a great opportunity in management training with Chick fil A.

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So we recently entered an 8-week 2-man best ball tournament at the newly renovated San Pedro Golf Academy playing the excellent and challenging par-3 course. After our 1st match, S3 said to me, “Dad, playing competitive golf again really gets me going. It makes me realize how much I miss it!” What does this mean? I have no clue, but it’s sure fun to hear!

Dad and Mom, there is certainly a life after all those years on the golf course. There’s nothing wrong with your son/daughter not wanting to be the next Jordan Spieth or Lexi Thompson. They can surely enjoy playing golf with the Peeps and maybe enter a tournament now and then.

See you on #1 tee knowing what you want to do… Sam

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Junior Golf: Inside The Minds Of Champions

 

In this Friday Flop Shot we will see how winners think by taking a quick look at how they really approach this game. Let’s look inside the minds of some champions.

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Dubai Golf

I sincerely hope you are recording The President’s Cup. While the US has a big lead, there is some great golf being played and some wonderfully insightful quotes from the players.

World Golf Hall Of Fame member and captain of the Internationals team, Nick Price, was asked about his team’s mental state prior to Thursday’s start. “It’s good. We love to play golf, we love to compete and we want to win!”

Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed were asked why they had been such a successful pairing
in international competition. Patrick, “I’m kind of firey and Jordan’s always calm, so our personalities help each other to calm down or get revved up!” Then Jordan, “There’s also this competition within the competition where each of us wants to be the one who hits the great shot, makes the winning putt. We push each other like that.” Folks, this is a paraphrase and you could attribute these words to either one of these guys because they are asked about this all the time and this is always their answer.

Let’s stay with these two. After making a great comeback to get 1/2 point from Friday’s four-ball match, they were asked how pleased they were with a tie rather than a win. It was obvious that while a 1/2 point was better than no points, they really wanted to win. So here’s the great quote: Interviewer asks if it’s more satisfying to make an amazing comeback, 2 down with 4 holes to play or to win in a runaway. Patrick’s classic response (paraphrased): “Making a comeback means you’re playing a lot more holes to get something out of your round. Winning in a runaway means you’re playing great golf!”

These quotes are right in line with Bubba Watson’s statement of a few years back’ “Nobody out here’s playing for 2nd place!”

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Photocredit:Golf Channel 

Parents, start with Nick Price’s 3 things. Hopefully your youngster loves golf. And is getting used to competing and is starting to enjoy it. And has a desire to win welling within. With some kiddos this is more of a process than with others. Love the game, love to compete and want to win. Perfectly stated!

See you on #1 tee loving to play golf… Sam

Junior Golf: 5 Ways The PGA Championship Encourages Your Junior Golfer

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will begin our look at The PGA Championship with play starting tomorrow from Quail Hollow Club in North Carolina.

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Photocredit:Golf Digest

This is the final men’s major of the year and you must be a member of the PGA to be eligible to enter. This means no amateurs are in the field. There are some valuable takeaways for all junior golfers this week. Here are some things your child can learn.

Let’s have a look:
It’s the last major of the year
. Every golfer craves to win a major and this is the last chance until the 2018 Masters next spring. There’s a sense of urgency!
It’s a major! What else needs to be said?
Almost all entrants are members of the PGA. This means that in addition to being excellent golfers, they had to work their tails off to earn the prestigious status of PGA member and it’s not easy. There’s a strong work ethic involved!
There are a number of special invitations to players and golf champions from all over the world so if you’re not an American you still have a chance to play in this event.
There is a special qualifier for PGA professionals who do not play on the PGA Tour. The 20 low scores from the PGA Professional Championship, in effect the pro at your local golf club, are eligible to play in The PGA Championship. This gives basically every PGA member an opportunity to play in a major. Great stuff!

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Photocredit:From the Rough-Wordpress.com

So here we go again. Set the TiVo. Play starts tomorrow on TNT, DirectTV Channel 245 from 12:00noon-6:00pm, central time. Same channel and time for Friday. Saturday and Sunday are a bit different with play running from 10:00am-1:00pm on TNT, then switching to CBS for coverage from 1:00pm-6:00pm. Be sure to record at least 1 extra hour from 6:00pm-7:00pm on Sunday in case of a playoff.

Many folks will be watching to see if Jordan can keep up his great play and complete his grand slam of majors. There will be plenty of big names to follow and there will also be some guys you’ve never heard of making a good challenge. It’s always encouraging!

See you on #1 tee looking encouraged… Sam

 

Junior Golf: 3 Big-Time Lessons From Jordan’s Win

In this Wednesday Waggle we can look at 3 huge revelations that your junior golfer can use right now in his/her junior golf career.

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Photocredit:golfdigest.com

Jordan’s final round on Sunday was so full of educational moments that I hope you and your young golfer and your whole family watched it and that it is still on your TiVo so you can scan through it once more! This is 4 hours of golf greatness and golf lessons and golf memories that you may not see again for a number of years.

Here are 3 gigantic golf/life lessons that your kiddo can accept and use immediately:
Everybody hits bad shots
. Jordan’s 1st 12 and ½ holes were a mess and after his win he mentioned he had a bit of nerves at the start of the round, but when he and Matt’s scores became tied, the nerves went away and he got back to playing his game. Lesson: the sooner your boy/girl accepts that bad shots will be a part of golf, the sooner they can begin dealing with them appropriately.
Everybody has emotions. Jordan’s drive on #1 appeared to be on a perfect line, and it was, but it ended up just short of the fairway in some very long grass. This pretty much meant bogie instead of par or birdie and Jordan was ticked off. By his own admission he already had a slight case of nerves and this didn’t help and he ended up with a bogie. Some people control/hide/suppress their emotions better than others. Emotional highs and lows are readily available on the golf course and there are times when every golfer just wants to bite right through his/her lip or bang their head against a tree in frustration. This behavior however, is not helpful and it hurts! Lesson: decrease the intensity of the highs and lows. Find a spot in the middle of that emotional range, not too high and not too low and that is where the kiddos need to be/stay.

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Photocredit:Stewart Franklin/Getty Images

It is possible to turn a poor round into a better round. Yes, Jordan is exceptional and not every PGA Tour pro can turn a golf game around like he did on Sunday. It is possible though to hit a good or great shot after hitting a bad shot. Simply put, this is what Jordan did after his ugly tee shot on #13. He was able to leave the bad shots behind and refocus on hitting good shots, really amazing, mesmerizing shots to close out his win. Lesson: the sooner your son/daughter can forget about, leave behind, erase the bad shots from memory, the sooner they can focus on hitting a good next short. Having a very short memory in regards to one’s previous shots is very beneficial. Focus on hitting a good next shot, period!

Ok that’s it for now. Hope you can go back and take another look at some of those incredible highlights!

See you on #1 tee ready to be on the highlight reel… Sam

 

Junior Golf: Perseverance Changes Everything

In today’s Monday Mulligan we will take a look at how it is possible to move past bad shots and get back to hitting good ones. Perseverance is a big key.

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Photocredit:jennleforge.com

Yesterday’s final round of The Open Championship was an absolutely amazing display of many aspects of this game we love. It was a classic, in it’s own way every bit as good as last year’s epic battle between Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickelson. It was filled with highs and lows, patience and excitement, classy behavior and good manners. Wow! This final round was all about 2 battles: one between Jordan Spieth and Matt Kuchar and one between Jordan Spieth and himself. Oh, and Jordan won them both!

Mom and Dad, this is why we have TiVo! So much happened during these 18 holes, there is not nearly enough time or words to address everything. My best advice is if you have a recording of the final round, make sure you and your junior golfer watch it. This is a ton of life lesson stuff and it is filled with so many highs and lows let’s get started. Your whole family will find this video to be very inspirational, enjoy!

Jordan and Matt were in the final pairing and Jordan hit a really good-looking tee shot on #1 and Jordan was smiling and feeling good about the shot. Unknown to him, his ball ended up in some very long grass about 3 feet shy of the shorter grass. When he got to his ball, his demeanor changed. He was not happy. Jordan bogied 3 of the 1st 4 holes. He seemed to lose his confidence and missed short putts that he usually makes. Tee shots were errant and the neck-and-neck battle between these 2 guys took at turn in Matt’s favor when Jordan blew his tee shot on the 13th hole nearly 100 yards to the right of the fairway.

It took more than 20 minutes before Jordan played his 2nd shot and he managed to get off of #13 with just a bogey. Something changed during that time span. Jordan played holes 14 through 17 in 5-under par, making 70 feet of putts on 14, 15 and 16 alone. His attitude was completely different. A par on 18 gave him a 3-stroke victory over Kuchar.

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How did Jordan change his demeanor? Folks, he’s done this before. He kept his eye on the prize, persevering through those rough initial 13 holes. Somewhere on that huge sand dune on 13, he “shook”. With all due respect, that’s a term we use in our house when an attitude changes. It’s what dogs do when they change their mind, they “shake.” And whatever it was that Jordan found within himself to change from the erratic, not very confident player he was through his tee shot on 13, he became an absolute beast on those last 5 holes. It was a complete turnaround and Matt Kuchar played a decent round of golf but Jordan ran right past him starting on hole 14. Persevere, persevere and persevere some more!

Parents, encourage your kids that they can turn their game around. It is done every day, it’s life. It’s getting back up when those bad shots knock you down. How does your youngster do that? Well, there are lots of sports psychologists and golf books and self-help books that can address this in great detail. For now encourage your junior golfers that it is possible to leave those ugly shots behind and get back to hitting goods shots during a round of golf. It’s done all the time at every level, but not everybody can or will do it. Help your kiddo be a can do athlete! Find a way for him/her to “shake.”

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Congratulations to Champion Golfer Of The Year, Jordan Spieth. And congratulations also to Matt Kuchar for playing some excellent golf and showing genuine class while he waited 20 minutes for Jordan’s ruling, drop and 2nd shot on 13. A fine man!

See you on #1 tee knowing how to shake… Sam

 

 

Junior Golf: How To Give Good Advice-Like A Good Caddy

In this Monday Mulligan we will take a quick look at what happens when the proper kind of advice and support is furnished at the right time during competition.

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Photocredit:jennleforge.com

As parents, we have unending opportunities to offer input to our kids. How effective is that information, that is the real question here? It’s important to understand both your and your junior golfer’s personalities so that your words are offered in the manner which will be most effective for your kiddo’s personality type.

Our young athletes have plenty of pressure and Mom and Dad we are in a position to help them effectively deal with that stress. Whether it’s a tough homework assignment, an upcoming test, a golf tournament or just a part of dealing with everyday life and relationships, our children don’t have the answers. They need our help, proper help.

Today’s example deals with the relationship between professional golfers and their caddies. While we tend to think of our golf pros as stand-alone individuals, they really do have a teammate, in their caddy. This is the only person available to give advice and input during competition. The old school take on caddies was something like, “show up, shut up, keep up.” This attitude is not the most effective. Sometimes you will see the winners of tournaments give praise to their caddies for offering timely and effective input during a round.

The most recent example is Jordan Spieth praising his caddy, Michael Greller. Jordan is known to be an approachable, respectful and polite young man who values all his team members. So it was no surprise when, during his brief post-game interview with Peter Kostis after winning the Travelers event with a holeout from a greenside bunker to defeat Daniel Berger on the 1st playoff hole, Jordan offered great praise about how Michael had helped him, “step back, get my breathing under control and reset during a very tough day on the golf course (paraphrased).”

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Photocredit:golf digest

Talk about proper and effective input at the right time! The result was winning the tournament. Dad and Mom that’s the kind of results we want when we caddy for our kids. Wow, big-time!

All of us, parents and kiddos, need to get better at this. And you know what folks, the better we adults get at doing these 3 things, the better we’ll be at helping our kids.

See you on #1 tee under control… Sam

Junior Golf: 3 Lessons From The Thrilling Final Round Of The Masters

In today’s Monday Mulligan we will take a look at 1 of the most exciting days ever in a professional golf tournament. There were so many incredible happenings that the announcers were peddling as fast as they could just to try to keep up!m

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photocredit:jennleforge.com

Here are some things Linda and I hope you will review with the junior golfer in your family:
Predictions are only worth so much. With a star-studded leaderboard, the announcers were discussing possible outcomes from Sunday’s play. While Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose, in the final group were serious contenders, most of the talk was about Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler in the next to last pairing. The analysts expected great things from these 2 young guns as each was on a roll and playing well. Sergio on the other hand, was playing in his 61st major and had never won. Justin Rose, with a seriously strong pedigree was given due respect as a possible green jacket winner as were several others in the field. Again, most of the talk was about how Jordan and Rickie were primed to make runs at the title. Perhaps you know the results. Sergio beat Justin on the 1st playoff hole. Jordan shot 75. Rickie shot 76. So much for predictions!
Sir Nick hasn’t seen everything. When Russell Henley jarred-holed out his 185-yard approach shot on #5 for an eagle it was a flag-rattling sight. The ball entered the cup on the fly, no bounces. Yes, this has been seen many times previously by all of us. The ball, however, upon entering the hole, actually damaged some turf around the edge of the hole and broke off a piece of the cup, rendering it in need of repair, and of the course, the turf needed to be fixed as well. By rule, a player cannot do these tasks. They must be done by course staff under the auspices of rules officials. So, staff were quickly brought in, the broken tin cup was removed, the turf repaired and a new cup was cut, by rule within the proper distance from the original cup and play was resumed. Sir Nick commented that in all his time around golf and golf tournaments, he had never seen this situation. Very fascinating and interesting stuff!
A very young fan can take home a once-in-a-lifetime memory from The Masters. Matt Kuchar got on a roll on the back 9. On the par 3 16th, he stepped up and hit a 7-iron. The shot looked good in the air, but Matt could only see the flag, not the cup, from the tee box. The thundering roar of the crowd told him his shot had gone in for an ace. What a thrill for all the fans and, of course, Matt. But the biggest thrill, at least for 1 little fan, was yet to come. Kuchar walked up, acknowledged the crowd, pulled his ball from the cup, wiped it off and signed it. As he exited the green he handed the ball to 1 of the youngest golf fans in sight. How old was he? Don’t know but he obviously knew something about golf because he was absolutely elated when Kuchar handed him the autographed ball. What a beautiful gesture by a true gentleman and he gave that boy a treasured memory! That’s what our sport is about! Be sure to check out the link above, it’s worth it!

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photocredit:cnn

There were so many special moments yesterday, there is no way to do them justice here, so let’s wrap up and congratulate Sergio on a great victory!

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

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