Posts Tagged ‘Titleist’

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

This Could Happen To You

In today’s Friday Flop Shot I’m going to share a once-in-a-lifetime experience that S3 and I had 2 days ago. It was unexpected and the kind of thing that money, at least for most of us, can’t buy.

Here’s our story:

S3 and I volunteered to caddy in the Valero Texas Open Pro-Am held Wednesday, April 18, 2018. The mindset is “hope we have some decent amateurs and a pro whose name we have at least heard of.” You never know what you’re getting. That was for sure the case today but on the other side of the coin.

So we found our group’s bags and were reading the tags to see who we each had. My guy was Martin Parrish, ok. Then S3 starts reading the rest of the tags and says, “Dad, come here.” He points to the spot that says Professional. And we do the classic Looney Tunes doubletake because it says Adam Scott, on all 4 bags, so it must be true!

It was five and a half hours of incredible memories. Oh, as I found out after the round, my player, Martin Parrish, is a top Valero officer and Chairman of this year’s VTO, the biggest dude at the tournament other than the players. He’s a great guy and brought 3 good amateurs with him. They were all fun to be around!

Now to Adam Scott and his caddy David Clark. I can’t imagine that there are any nicer, more helpful and genuinely patient and good guy professionals to be around than these two. Refreshing to say the least! It was just like talking to regular folks, no pretenses, amazing men, looked you in the eye and engaged when we talked to them. Wow, we are bigger Adam Scott fans than before, if that’s even possible!

As some of you may recall, our family has been active in golf in this city since 1925. The Executive staff at Golf San Antonio, a little birdie told me, wanted to put someone in the Chairman’s group they could trust to support and fit in with this marquee 4-some. They hand-picked us because they know us and were comfortable that we were the right guys for the job.

I told S3 this is a classic example of who you know and who knows you and what they think of you. I emphasized that this is a testament to our family’s golf heritage over all these years, but more recently to his, mine and Linda’s involvement over the last 20 years. Great life lesson!

Our group actually was third to pick a pro. Valero CEO played with Greg Norman who designed the course and manages the whole event. 2nd took Sergio and Martin chose Adam. Not bad.

I don’t have the words to convey how great this day was and getting to spend it with my son was so special. Incredible memories.

Next year we’ll reset to our original premise. Just hope we’ve heard our pro’s name beforehand.

Parents, let this be encouragement for you and your junior golfer to volunteer in big events. Something like this can surely happen to you, particularly when you least expect it.

Man, what a day! See you on #1 tee standing next to your favorite pro… Sam

Junior Golf: Have More Fun, Change Something

As we get the new year off and running, let’s use this Wednesday Waggle to have more fun and change something. (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)img_0102

Rock singer Cindy Lauper’s song, Girls Just Want To Have Fun, really applies to all of us. Most of the time our junior golfers are eager to get out on the course and play a few holes, have some fun. But there’s the drills that need to be done to develop new and proper habits and techniques so your son’s time on the golf course actually has an opportunity to be fun.

Some drills/practice regimens are more fun than others and all of them can get monotonous at some point. Chipping and putting are easy places to start. There are a ton of very short videos on the Golf Channel Academy App (free), the golf magazine sites, many manufacturer’s sites and on Utube.

Where to start? Simple, ask your son if he would prefer to improve his chipping or his putting. If he says putting, but you feel like his chipping is not as good as his putting and you, in your wisdom, would prefer he work on chipping, get his attention by saying this, “Good chipping really improves your putting!” He says, “How’s that, Dad?” Your response, “Good chipping leaves the ball closer to the hole, so you have shorter putts. And you’re good at making those!” (image DWQuailGolf.com)image

There’s so much information. Look for something that is practical and addresses an area that can be improved in your sons golf game. If you’re in a cold climate, perhaps an indoor putting drill would work. Or chipping whiffle balls off a matt in the garage into a bucket. Get creative, do something, something new and different.

See you on #1 tee using those new skills… Sam

Junior Golf: I Just Cried About Golf Balls

In today’s Monday Mulligan we will take a quick look at our family’s Christmas happenings yesterday and enjoy a special moment or 2. (image jennleforge.com)image

The plan was to get up and Linda and I would go to church and S3 and his girlfriend, Yessie, who was visiting us would meet her ex-husband to pick up her son. Then around noon we would open presents, have guests join us for a Christmas meal, then S3 et al would drive to Laredo to spend time with her family and then turn right around and return to San Antonio.

Well, the ex was late and it threw the whole day off. Lunch was on time followed by a bit of game-playing, but no present opening, then S3 and Yessie and her son drove south, spent a few hours and got back to us around 9:45pm.

Now we could open our gifts. It was an interesting time as Linda played Santa and passed around the presents. Really, while there had been a couple of casual conversations of, “l’d kind of enjoy getting a——-”, mostly we all didn’t know what we might receive.

You might recall that several times I encouraged you to consider getting personalized and custom-numbered golf balls for your junior golfer. Linda and I did this for S3 and here’s how it went.

I knew we would put SG3 for his name, but I wasn’t sure about his number. A couple of months ago we very briefly touched on this subject and he said it would be cool to have his lowest score, 67, as the number on a custom ball. So there you go.

And the color selection for his name was a no-brainer. Probably when he was a junior in high school he was playing in a tournament at Plum Creek and stated that he had lost his blue sharpie. 1 of the guys in his group had a bunch of sharpies and gave S3 a hot pink 1. He loved the color and has marked every ball with hot pink since then. Imagine our excitement when Linda and I saw that hot pink was 1 of the personalization colors offered!

So we ordered a dozen Titleist Pro V1x’s with SG3 in hot pink and the number 67 in, of course, the standard Titleist red. Linda reminded me to turn the middle ball in each sleeve so it would show either his name or number through the viewing film when he opened the box. It worked like a charm. Linda handed S3 the wrapped box and he tried to guess it’s contents. As he tore the paper off, he saw the Titleist logo and now knew it was golf balls. But when he opened the box and saw his initials and number 67, he teared up and said, “Dad I remember talking about this but I forgot about it soon afterwards. And it’s even in hot pink!”image

For the next few minutes, every time he looked at those golf balls he got teary-eyed. Something as simple as golf balls with a personal touch brought back all those years of memories, the highs and the lows, what was, what could have been and what might still be. As we were finishing up and talking about what a long, exhausting and wonderful day it had been, S3 said, “And look at me, I was crying about golf balls!”

Mom and Dad, these moments are not in any store! They are the precious times that are only available every once-in-a-while between parents and our beloved kids. A true Hallmark Moment!

We hope you had a Merry Christmas and we wish you a very Happy New Year! See you on #1 tee with your name on that golf ball… Sam

Junior Golf: Still Time To Buy Customized Golf Balls

In this Friday Flop Shot we’re helping you strategize your Christmas shopping over these final busy days. If you buy something on the Internet today and over the weekend, most stores can still guarantee arrival before Christmas. Starting Monday, you’re getting into high dollar freight rates.img_0106-1

Customized golf balls, and I mean custom numbers and custom names/words are still being offered on www.tgw.com at $39.99 per dozen (Pro V1’s, other brands may be cheaper) with delivery before Christmas. S3’s customized Pro V1x’s have arrived and they look amazing, he’s going to love them! This is the 1st time we’ve done the custom ball thing, but I fully expect it to become a new Christmas tradition. (photo offcoursegolf.com)

Linda has been fascinated with the Callaway TruVis Chrome Soft Golf Balls which come in yellow with black and also white with red. When we were in Golf Galaxy getting her new golf bag we wanted to see if we could find either of these color combinations in stock. It was our day as a delivery had just been unloaded and both were in stock. The yellow with black was what we bought, but the white with red seems to be easier for my eyes to see. Next time for white with red.image

When I mentioned to the young man helping us that these balls weren’t all that easy to find, he said that they had been the fastest/best selling golf ball in America for the last year. They were flying off the shelves. (image tgw.com)

Our helper mentioned 1 man came in and asked for the yellow with black combo and the employee said they were bringing in 12 dozen off the truck and the guy said “I’ll take them all.” Those balls never even made it onto the display rack. They were gone! Can’t wait to get on the course and try these balls! Buy some if you can find them. Don’t know if customization is available for these.

A quick trip to www.amazon.com searching for customized golf balls brings up several pages of options including ladies balls, and brands like Callaway, Bridgestone-Tiger now plays their B-300S, Srixon, Wilson and more. There’s a great selection.

Dad and Mom, give this a try. Buy his/her favorite ball or experiment with a different ball. If your young golfer doesn’t like it, he can give them away as mementos. Have some fun! Do something different!

See you on #1 tee with a custom golf ball… Sam

Junior Golf: There’s Still Time

In today’s Monday Mulligan we will take a look at the calendar and see that we still have time to order a customized gift for our junior golfer.image

There are several places offering Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls personalized with both name and custom numbers at no upcharge from the regular price. Mom and Dad, this is a great deal! This is something we have never done before and really I don’t know why. S3 has played Pro V1x’s for years, so this Christmas Linda and I ordered him a dozen with his special number and his nickname on them. He’s gonna love them! (jennleforge.com)

The Golf Warehouse, www.tgw.com, was where we ordered ours, but a quick glance around www.amazon.com, showed that Srixon, Bridgestone, TaylorMade and more also offered some type of personalization. If you aren’t finding your junior golfer’s specific ball offered for customization, buy a new brand. Just match it to your junior’s swing speed and compression requirements. These are so cool! Your kiddos will show these balls to their friends and everyone will want to get some! What fun!

Something else there’s still time to do is get some special monogramming or embroidery on a piece of clothing. Would your daughter enjoy a new cool weather golf vest, sweater, pants or windbreaker? It’s easy to get some special details put on these items and with most online retailers it only adds a day or 2 to the shipping times. Be advised that doing this to rain gear is likely to invite leaks, so let’s keep our good rain gear waterproof.image

This next suggestion is just so simple and inexpensive, you’re going to certainly want to give this to your young golfer. For years we have had S3’s name or initials embroidered on his caps and visors. It looks great, is inexpensive and you can get everything done in your area. Buy the cap/visor, find an embroidery shop, select font, font size and color. Pick the finished product up in a couple of days. So easy!

See you on #1 tee looking customized… 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: Love Your Golf Ball

In this Monday Mulligan we will continue our look at golf balls and why your daughter needs to really like/love the ball she plays with. It’s her most important piece of equipment so let’s treat it as such. (image jennleforge.com)image

Yes, if your girl is a beginner and struggling to make contact with the ball, please buy some inexpensive balls until she starts smacking the ball on the clubface, hopefully near the middle, and is getting it up into flight. Then it is the time to get some education for both of you in the world of golf balls.

Last post we talked some technical things and most of the balls for your beginner to intermediate skill level young lady would be the common 2-piece variety. At this stage of her golf development what would cause her to enjoy/like/love a particular ball? The easiest benefit to see is increased distance. 1 ball may stand out as going farther than the other balls she has hit. Buy some. Let her enjoy her new length. As she get used to this ball, ask her how it feels when she hits a good shot. If she says it feels good or I barely feel any contact, you have a ball to stick with for a while, at least until the more sophisticated area of spin levels comes into play.

Another thing that simply makes golf more fun is the color of the golf ball. I can assure you that my wife Linda, really enjoys playing with colored golf balls. It’s easy to see that it makes golf more fun for her. There are bright yellow, bright green, pink, deep-rose colored balls and more. Ask your daughter if she would like to play with a color other than a white golf ball. Buy her some. Please be aware everyone’s eyes are different. I personally still see white balls quicker than any other color. Then yellow and green and frankly the pink, deep-rose colors are very hard for my eyes to pick up.

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A hybrid type of ball is the Callaway Chrome Soft Truvis Ball offered in red/white and yellow/black. These are easy for my eyes to see and the color pattern looks kind of like a soccer ball. They are pricey at $39.99 per dozen and may not be appropriate for your girl’s swing speed. It is incredibly easy however to see the spin with this ball. Buy 1 sleeve for putting and chipping practice. (image golf balls.com)

The bottom line here is buy her a sleeve each of several of the top brand names like Titleist, Callaway, Bridgestone, Nike-while you can get them, Srixon and TaylorMade. At some point she will tell you which 1 stands out to her. And buy her some colored balls for fun. Who knows what her final choice will be, but at least she has had the chance to audition a variety of quality golf balls. You’re putting her in a position to succeed!

See you on #1 tee with a golf ball you love… Sam

Junior Golf: The Right Ball-Better Golf

In this Friday Flop Shot we will discuss the positive difference that the correct golf ball can make in your son’s game. The right ball equals better golf and here’s why.img_0106-1

It was perhaps 6 months ago that Ryan Moore began playing considerably better on the PGA Tour. Something changed and he was finishing in the top tier, even top 5 or top 10 in almost every event. What’s going on? It turns out that 1 of the golf announcers, I can’t recall if it was Johnny Miller, Nick Faldo or who said, “He (Ryan Moore) has made some equipment changes and is now playing a ball which he is more comfortable with, and it is a better fit for his game and the golf ball is every golfer’s most important piece of equipment.” Wow, great stuff! (photo offcoursegolf.com)

I don’t know his previous ball but I think Ryan changed to Titleist Pro V1 or Pro V1x. Look at his record for the last few months including his dramatic Ryder Cup final round victory. The right ball makes a huge difference for the pros and it will for your son too.

Growing up there were Titleist, Maxfli/Dunlap, Wilson, Spaulding and a few other brands I can’t recall. I always loved Titleist, in fact if I wasn’t playing a Titleist I didn’t really feel like I was playing golf. In high school we jokingly called ourselves “Titleist snobs!” Yes, Titleist was that dominant during the 1960’s. There weren’t any lady’s or youth balls and you just played what felt good. We had no idea of our swing speeds or anything else, we just played what we could afford. I can’t tell you how many times we bought used golf balls from guys who were picking them out of hazards…for like
10 cents each or 3 for a quarter.

Today of course, there are golf balls for ladies, juniors, for any player young or old with a fast or slow swing speed. How do you find the proper ball for your junior golfer? Beginner to intermediate should be trying 2-piece or 3-piece balls if they even still make them. Read the box. Go with slower swing speed balls for 105 mph speeds or less or 95 mph or less. Basically, the younger your son, the slower his swing speed.image

Stick with the name brands like Titleist, Bridgestone, Callaway, Nike, Taylormade and Srixon. Golf ball marketers change the names and designations of their balls all the time. It’s impossible to keep up with so you must read the labels. Unless your son is breaking 80 and has a swing speed of 105mph or higher, you will benefit him more if you buy the lower to mid-price balls. Titleist NXT Tour or Velocity are excellent. Bridgestone e5, e6 or e7 are good for swing speeds of 85-95 mph. Callaway has some balls in their Hex and Supersoft lines that would work. Srixon has some Soft Feel balls as well as their Q-Star ball that your son could try. I have a good friend who plays Taylormade balls and loves them. And don’t forget Nike. Their RZN balls have been favorites of S3 and mine for some time. The Speed Red or Speed White is great for me and S3’s swing speed requires the RZN Tour balls. (photo GolfWRX)

The bottom line is that your son must like his golf ball. And the 1st thing he must like about it is how the ball feels coming off the club face. This list of balls will get you started on a solid path. Have fun!

See you on #1 tee loving your golf ball… Sam

Junior Golf: CustomIrons For Slower Swing Speeds

imageIn today’s Monday Mulligan we will look at the bulk of my custom golf clubs, my irons 4-P. Strategically Adam helped me totally reconfigure my golf bag. His initial question asking me to justify the presence of every club in my bag led to some revealing observations.

My main iron set went from 4-A (A being a wedge of higher loft than a pitching wedge but less loft than a sand wedge, usually around 52-degrees). So I had 8 clubs, TaylorMade Rocketbalz. After talking with Adam we decided to go to 4-P, 7 clubs.

My previous bag was: driver that I basically never hit, 3-wood, 3-hybrid, 4-A, 56 and 60 degree wedges and putter, 14 clubs. My new custom bag is : driver which I love and am getting used to, 3-wood, 5-wood, 21-degree driving iron (3-iron loft), 4-P, 56-degree bent stronger to 54-degrees, 60-degree and putter, 14 clubs. The main reason for the new lineup is to better cover the gaps between my clubs. For my game and S3’s game for now, 3 wedges is adequate.

 

As I get used to these wonderful customized clubs there are a couple of scenarios which may play out. 1 is that as I get used to hitting my driver, how much will I use the 3-wood off the tee?Also how much will I hit our beloved Nike Ignite 5-wood as I learn to hit the driving iron?image

Ok, my Titleist 714CB Irons feel like an extension of my arms. I truly don’t believe I have ever had many, if any, clubs that feel as good and natural as all these clubs that Adam touched. The irons are a dream to hit. I’m still getting used to them, but once I loosen up on the range they really feel sweet. The shafts are KBS Tour which gives shot versatility with a mid-trajectory. All of the iron shafts were frequency matched, which basically means the flex runs constant throughout the set with no outliers, each weighing about 110 grams raw. All of the irons were MOI matched, which basically means that the amount of inertial force required is constant throughout the set as per Newton’s second law. This is really cool stuff!image

The grips are Lamkin and we put a second wrap of grip tape under my low (right) hand. These grips feel great! I went with Lamkin for 2 reasons: first we have never had a Lamkin grip on anything in our house so it is a good time to try them and second, when you go to the Lamkin website, there’s Arnold, Arnold Palmer on the home page. Well, Arnold is my all time favorite athlete and if he is a Lamkin spokesman, I’m trying them! I love these grips! The sensitivity and feel is excellent and having that extra wrap of tape under my low hand actually allows me to grip the club with my right hand more naturally and frankly, easier.

So the question is how am I hitting them? I hit some good shots, but I am still working on getting my swing back and getting used to these clubs at the same time. There’s quite a bit going on. The main criteria was to have a mid-trajectory 7-iron go 150-160 yards. Hopefully this will be the case. These irons are wonderful to swing and beautiful to look at.

See you on #1 tee ready to stick that approach shot right by the pin… Sam

 

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