Are you frustrated?

I posted this on GolfWrx.

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Those thinking about quitting or just those who are in a rut and want to throw clubs and/or cry when they go to the course.

I have said this in many posts throughout this forum and I have even brought this up before. I am not repeating this to continually pontificate about how great I used to be. I was just pretty good and my own stupidity prevented me from possibly being great.

My sincere intent is to share my horror story in hopes to give you all hope and to learn from my mistakes.

It is not an exaggeration to say I was a borderline PGA Tour player. I had a chance to win on the Nationwide Tour a few times and had a couple of close calls at Q-school. So I nearly reached the pinnacle of the sport.

Then the point I do enjoy bragging about (false modesty in this arena is insincere…LOL), I was the longest hitter in the world for about 3-4 years.

Fast forward and I had trouble breaking 80 in tournaments and on the course, I would hit nothing but 280-290 heels all day. Every once in a while I would make a mistake and catch one, but I lost 30-40 yards or more on my tee shots.

Even in fun rounds with friends I would pickup on multiple holes not being able to hit one in play.

In hindsight, I took it too seriously. Even though it was my job, it is still a game and I worked so hard on perfecting my move (swing, chipping motion and putting stroke), I stopped playing the game and having fun at it. I tried too hard to manipulate myself into so called perfect motions and it ended up being contrived.

I basically took a year off from the game to be a father to my new born son, lost all of the bad habits I forced on myself and am finding my own natural swing again. I am definitely working on things, but I am tweaking my natural movements into better places instead of forcing myself to do “what’s right.”

More importantly, I am focusing more on playing the game and having fun…and I am shooting lower than I ever have in my life, even on courses I used to find unplayable. My only issue now is I am a zero on the “tournament ready” scale.

If you are living in frustration central, I have a good piece of advice for you. Put the clubs away and wait till you want to go so badly it hurts. Then wait a bit longer. When you get back, don’t worry so much how your swing looks. Work on getting a setup that suits your body and free your mind…have some frickin fun and learn to play golf again. When you have accomplished this, then maybe a few minor swing tweaks are in order…or even a plan with a good instructor to put you on one track, instead of the 37 conflicting swing thoughts you have now.

If you enjoy the technical side of them game…fine, we all enjoy the discourse, or we wouldn’t be here.

However, if you are frustrated and worrying about whether you should be a one-plane or two plane, should you go to S&T or start with a Golf Machinist, asking questions about the laser plane finder at Edwin Watts, asking questions about spending $2000 to go to TPI or $2500 to get fitted for a new set of clubs because your last fitting was 18 months ago and that might not fit your new swing…it’s time to take a break and clear your mind.

Buying new clubs should be fun, not a way to solve a swing problem.

PS-I am not judging people doing all of the above things. I am trying to send a message to people who are at their wits end and looking to those things trying to pull themselves out of the abyss.

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5 Comments

  1. Wally

    Run five miles at daybreak, it will clear your mind

    Reply
  2. rojoass

    Swingcrack is a terrible thing. If more golfers tried to swing like annika sorenstam or steve stricker they would keep things really simple & have more fun……..

    http://rojoass.com/

    Reply
  3. woody

    “…free your mind…”

    I can suggest two ways:

    1) Don’t interpret the task as doing something with the club. Instead, think of it as doing something with your body. The club is pretty much irrelevant–the club is the last thing to happen in a golf swing, not the first. As long as you are thinking about directing the club, your swing will be some variation of this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RX7uTr3zXA&feature=related (1:00) girl

    2) It’s not how your body looks, it’s what it does. Don’t try to look like Davis Love III if you’re Craig Stadler. I’ve come to the conclusion that Ben Hogan and Moe Norman (two of the best ball-strikers ever) were doing the same thing. That’s what Moe said, and their video explanations are the same. However, differences in body type, stance, setup, and grip made the two swings appear different. But, fundamentally they were the same.

    Reply
  4. Bob Saunders

    Actually thanks mostly to your site Monte, I am enthusiastic about the game.
    Playing as well and more consistently than ever!

    Reply

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