Posts Tagged ‘Under Armour’

Junior Golf: Wearable Technology-Is It Right For Your Daughter?

In this Friday Flop Shot let’s continue our look at wearable technology and see if there is a valid reason for your daughter to be using it. (photo offcoursegolf.com)img_0106-1

With S3, most of the time the word technology was used was with golf club design, golf ball design or with new high-tech fabrics that kept him warmer or cooler or dryer. Just about the only wearable technology was the wristband golf watches. So there wasn’t an overwhelming number of options to choose from.

So here is the beginning of our adventure into wearable tech. Hand-held range finders were everywhere, being the most utilized distance aid by boys and girls alike. We bought S3 a Bushnell Tour V2 which he still uses today. It is distance only so it is tournament compliant. Be aware that models that measure slope and altitude are not compliant. These rangefinders are not wearable technology. S3 wanted the handheld device rather than the wristband/wearable variety.

What really got his attention was a lesson from his swing coach on how heart rate/pulse and breathing/respiration can affect performance. High readings of either 1 are not helpful for playing good golf. We found a relatively inexpensive digital watch that also measured the heart rate. It worked well for a $65.00 price tag. S3 wore it for several months until he got a good idea of what situations elevated his readings. Then he learned some calming techniques. Not really being a watch guy he quit wearing this device and it sat in a drawer. He learned what he wanted and he was done. That ended this adventure in wearable tech.

What does a parent do? Almost everything is more than $100.00 and where is the benefit for your daughter? Depending on your girl’s age and skill level, a quality, legal/rules compliant distance device is 1st on the list. As your budget allows, buy her the style she prefers, wearable or handheld. Wearables may be slightly cheaper with some models on sale around $150.00. Not everyone is comfortable playing golf while wearing a watch, which is basically what this would be. Sometimes the wrist gets bruised. Talk to your daughter about this before you spend any money.

Handheld devices are prevalent in junior golf and college golf. Expect to pay from $200.00-$500.00 for a name brand. The good ones are waterproof, shockproof and offer better target acquisition and some anti-shake/image stabilization features. And they last. S3 has had his for 5 or 6 years and it still works great. The only caveat with handhelds is your daughter must be vigilant about not losing them or leaving them visibly hanging on her bag where they can be easily stolen. Use a Sharpie to put her name or unique identifying marks on her rangefinder. S3’s has somehow disappeared twice and was amazingly found and returned both times because of his identifying marks.

Of the 2 makes of wearable tech shoes coming out, the Under Armour model catches my interest as being more applicable to golfers of different skill levels. The Samsung IOFIT seems like it is a lot more technical and may work better for the more advanced players. And as far as all our pieces of clothing talking to each other, we’re really not there yet.

If it was me Mom and Dad, here’s what I’d do for my girl. Decide on a wrist or handheld distance device, include it in the budget and buy it ASAP, the best quality you can afford. The shoes, in my opinion, are a bit of a luxury item. If you have the extra bucks, the UA shoes might be fun, but not sure how helpful to playing better golf. And the IOFIT shoes would likely work best for those junior golfers who are of advanced skill levels and are seriously pursuing lower scores and perhaps a college scholarship.

See you on #1 tee with some new technology… Sam

Junior Golf: What Is Wearable Technology?

In this Wednesday Waggle we will have a look at wearable technology and what it is. These 2 words will show up more and more in clothing, accessory and footwear items and it is a good thing to have a basic understanding of these 2 words.img_0102

Wearable technology definition from Dictionary.com: a small computer or advanced electronic device that is worn or carried on the body. While there are some more specific and slightly different definitions, this 1 is perfectly adequate for our junior golfers. (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)

With the rapid advances in digital technology and also the new materials and techniques being used in clothing and footwear, this amazing tech is appearing in more and more places. Perhaps the most common items we all notice are the golf watches/GPS systems that are made by a number of quality companies such as Fitbit, Apple Watch, Garmin, Suunto, Callaway and more.

The next big offering will be smart golf shoes. Under Armour’s smart golf shoes come with a built-in accelerometer that tracks your steps, calories burned and game duration. Sounds pretty neat to me! They are based on the UA Drive One shoes that Jordan Spieth has been wearing and are expected to be on the market sometime this year.

image

Now let’s get really crazy! Samsung’s spinoff company, IOFIT makes a smart golf shoe that analyzes your golf swing and provides instant feedback through a mobile app to improve your game. Coming soon! Learn more at this link: IOFIT Smart Shoes.

Dad and Mom all this tech is coming to you and your junior golfer at warp speed. At some point this subject will come up. In the not so distant future all our clothes will be talking to each other. We will have the opportunity to be monitored from head to toe, 24/7, scary, actually. Oh, and there is some money involved. Currently few, if any of these items are less than $100.00. Get informed.

See you on #1 tee wearing rules compliant devices… Sam.

Junior Golf: Last Minute Questions

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will consider some of those nagging last minute questions that go through our minds as we get closer to Christmas.img_0102

So now we’re down to crunch time. What do I still need to get? Have I forgotten anybody? Did I get everyone pretty much what they were hoping for, at least budget allowing? Who’s going to be at our house? Do we have all the food and enough of it? (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)

Man, we can generate a 100 questions and get ourselves all into a tizzy, can’t we? The reality is that more is not better, yes, really. And if your junior golfer gets something that is in their wheelhouse they’ll be excited. Gosh, in my mind, having enough food is more important than having a ton of gifts!

As the main chef in our house, I’m going over our Christmas food list like 10 times a day. My personality is detail-oriented and I really prefer to have all my ducks in a row. So whatever I still need to get in the food category, I’m finishing up today. Got to take a breath!

So Mom and Dad, where can we still buy what’s left on our lists without going insane? Let’s get groceries out of the way 1st. If you’re looking for seasonal food items like special cuts of roasts, hams, organic turkeys or even cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie spice, green bean casserole fixins or such buy them sooner rather than later because those items will sell out.

For gift items, here are a few things from the internet today. Under Armour has up to 40% off at their outlet store. Golf Week is giving away a trip for 2 to the 2017 Masters Tournament. Order today from Costco and get overnight shipping on select items. Golf Now has some great prices on green fees at some legendary courses, check it out. All the golf retailers still have plenty of items at good prices. Get your order in today or you’re on the brick and mortar storefront path to complete your shopping. Yikes!image

While the getting gets most of the attention, it’s actually the giving which can impact your young golfer and all of your family in a more significant manner. From simply putting some money in a Salvation Army bucket to serving meals to the less fortunate, there are ample opportunities to give rather than receive. Linda and I have dozens of examples of kids we have known from age 5 or 6 up to college graduates whose lives were deeply touched when they participated in a giving opportunity. Once they realize that what they, our kids, are doing is truly giving a person a bite to eat or a piece of clothing to ward off the cold, their expressions are all over the place. From excitement that they are helping, to sadness that they can’t do more and perhaps a dose of reality that there is so much more that needs to be done, just look at those faces!

See you on #1 tee ready to enjoy giving me 3 strokes a side…Sam

Junior Golf: Spikes Or Spikeless

In today’s Friday Flop Shot we will look at another criteria for buying golf shoes for your son, those with spikes or the ones without spikes, called spikeless. It does make a difference.(photo offcoursegolf.com)img_0106

In a TV broadcast a couple of years ago, Paul Azinger and David Feherty were talking about spikes and golf shoes. Zinger said, “They’d have to pay me a million dollars to wear a pair of those spikeless shoes!” To which Feherty replied, “Yes, I want nails!”

What does this conversation mean?
The purpose of spikes on golf shoes is basically traction, not slipping. There are a lot of times it’s tough to get good traction on a golf course. Grass, in itself is slippery and the longer it is, the tougher it can be to get solid traction. Loose dirt or sand, mud, small rocks or gravel all present their own traction challenges. So traction in merely walking or taking a stance has its own issues. But what Zinger and Feherty were mostly referring to is stability during the golf swing and follow-through. The forward foot must remain stable for proper distance, direction and balance, as well as helping prevent injury due to slipping.
Watch highly skilled golfers, men or women, and pay particular attention to their balance. It is a thing of beauty and it is essential in order to play golf at the highest level. You can also try walking around the golf course in shoes with limited traction. How is it to walk up a steep grassy slope? Not that much fun? Hard to get traction?
What’s a Dad or Mom to do for their junior golfer? Here’s a real-life example. Our whole family wore Adidas Tour 360 golf shoes for years and loved them. No break-in period, always waterproof and comfortable and good-looking. These are the shoes with the 3 45-degree stripes on the side that you see a bunch of the pros, both men and women wearing. They have soft spikes. They are fabulous golf shoes! (image google.com)image
So about S3’s junior year in college he falls in love with the Footjoy Comfort Spikeless golf shoe, bought 2 pairs and wore them almost 2 years. Now, please understand that while spikeless golf shoes do not have spikes, they do have small nubs on the sole for some degree of traction. It is not close to the amount of traction the your son can get with soft spikes, however. Near the end of his senior year, S3 says he’s going back to soft spikes, from his spikeless golf shoes, because he slipped a couple of times in tournaments, on long grass and it cost him some strokes. Ah, the price of education!image
Even if your son is shooting in the 70’s every round, I still feel you will put him in the best position for success by going with spikes. He needs the traction. The most important factor is proper fit, that the shoes are comfortable and need NO break-in period. With all the comfort technology available today, there is no reason to ever buy golf shoes with a break-in time. Your son should be able to put them on and go walk 18 holes immediately, with no problem. (photo golfwrx)
They must be waterproof. Quality shoes usually offer 1 or 2-year periods of waterproof warranty. Also important for your budget is to buy shoes with replaceable soft spikes. There are some models without this feature and the issue is that when the spikes are worn, the shoes are no good for golf and you now must buy new shoes instead of new spikes, big dollar differential!
See you on #1 tee with a new pair of soft spike golf shoes… Sam

Junior Golf: Christmas Gift Ideas

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will start looking at some possible Christmas gifts for your daughter. Yes, it’s barely into November but there are great sales showing up every day and there are many reasons to start shopping now.img_0102

What does she need in her golf inventory? New cool/cold/wet weather clothing is always useful and the new technology advances mean that last year’s models, some of which are still on closeout are great buys and are still great clothes. Staying current with technology is expensive and frustrating. We try to stay within 2 years on most items and 3 to 4 years on clubs. (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)

Junior golfers get bigger so just keeping up with their growth spurts is tough enough, so spending money on clothing, outerwear and shoes is an ongoing process. In our family we were seemingly always checking S3’s golf shoes for proper fit and cleat length. Good golf shoes are the most important item of clothing for your junior golfer. Her feet must be happy! There’s just no way to play good golf when her feet are hurting, cold or wet.

Start shopping now. Take her to a store with a decent stock of girls golf shoe styles and sizes. She will find a shoe she likes. Take a photo of the label so you have all the descriptive information. Make certain it is waterproof. We do not buy any golf shoes unless they are waterproof. There is always water somewhere on a golf course and wet feet are not a good thing. (image pinterest.com)image

If you are not close to a large golf retailer, go online. 2 great places to start are Amazon.com and tgw.com. Returns are easy so order, always a bigger size, and do the return thing until your young golfer is happy. There are always plenty of quality golf shoes on sale. There is no reason to pay retail. Name brand shoes will run from $100-$200 or more, even on sale. If this is tough on your budget, start putting $20 bills in an envelope to save up. Buy the very best golf shoes you can afford and saving up for a few months is worth it!

See you on #1 tee with some good-looking new golf shoes… Sam

Beat the Heat – Tips for Your Junior Golfer – part 1

Junior golf is not for the weak of heart! Ditto for parenting junior golfers…

Living in South Central Texas means your junior golfer will play a lot of tournaments in hot weather. Heat is a fact of life down here, “hot” is considered 95 degrees and above.
If you live or play where the temperature is a challenge, you need to prepare your JG (Junior Golfer) for the heat.

S3 (our son, Sam III) was five, playing in one of his first tournaments, when he mentioned how hot it was on the golf course. I began preparing him for his future in golf with my answer: “Son you live and play golf in South Texas and it is hot here most of the time. Together we will learn how to deal with the heat and the fact that it is hot, will not affect your game.”

Though he didn’t realize it, S3 was already beating the heat by being properly hydrated and in “golf shape”. In this post and the next, I’ll share some beat-the-heat tips; you can use to prepare your JG.

The Beat the Heat List:

1. Be physically prepared: Your Junior Golfer’s goal is have basically the same energy level at the end of their round as they had on #1 tee. Physical conditioning is paramount. There are a number of convenient ways to get your Junior Golfer in “golf shape”, here are a few:
• He or she should carry their bag and walk rather than ride
• Play 9 holes at least three times a week
• Eat healthy on and off the course (limit processed foods)
Many tournaments are won or lost on the last few holes and being in “golf shape” is a great advantage.

2. Wear light-colored clothing: Choose the dri-fit/quick dry/wicking type of polyester fabric. Be sure to include “wicking” socks…they really help keep your Junior Golfer’s feet comfortable. Nike, Adidas, PGA Tour, and Under Armour are just a few of the great brands we prefer. Check out their websites.

3. Hydrate in advance and during the round: Advance hydration means having your Junior Golfer drink about ½ their body weight in ounces of water every day…for at least 2 or 3 days prior to their event. If he or she weighs 80lbs, it would be 40 ounces. (As a fitness specialist, Linda teaches that everyone should be drinking this much water daily) Hydration choices during the round include: water, sports drinks and green tea (without artificial sweeteners). Our Junior Golfer prefers the original Gatorade or water. Encourage yours to drink throughout the round. Don’t let your Junior Golfer wait until they are thirsty to start drinking – by then they are becoming dehydrated.

4. Be mentally prepared: Following the first three tips will give your Junior Golfer a physical advantage in the heat. He or she also requires mental preparedness and you can help by saying, “You have really prepared well, now let’s go out, have some fun and play golf!”

5. Carry at least 1 large golf towel: A must-have to wipe away sweat, this is invaluable. (Cold watered-down towels are great to place on the neck of your Junior Golfer as well)

6. Keep Energy Level Balanced: Your Junior Golfer is burning a huge amount of calories and they lose many nutrients in their sweat. Performance suffers without nourishment. Foods that hold up in the heat: peanut butter crackers, pb & j sandwiches, fruit snacks, jerky (without msg) and whole-grain bars. Eat a few bites every 3 or 4 holes. S3 has made a tradition of eating ½ of a turkey and cheese sandwich-dry, at the turn. Hamburgers are down the list as they sit heavy on the stomach –maybe ½ a burger only. Hot dogs and sausages are off the list as they sit heavy and greasy. No chocolate –too messy in the heat. Remember –eat light and eat frequently!

Okay, my next post will cover six more tips you can use to beat the heat. Let me hear from you –Sam

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: