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 SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective

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Derek
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PostSubject: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Sun Mar 01, 2015 5:42 pm

Course management is pretty broad and means different things to different golfers.  Or even, in my case, different things over the years as my competency level changed.


It is also important to understand that while course management can help, it is not going to magically change you from shooting 100+ to being a scratch player.  However, it can help to minimize those blowup holes like shooting 12 or 13 on a Par 4 to a more manageable double or triple bogey.


And like anything in golf, the incremental benefits (stroke wise) from any improvement (be it technique, equipment, mental preparation, etc…) go down the better you get.  At a skilled player’s level, it might just mean the occasional 1 stroke difference between a Par and a Bogey, e.g. missing the green on the wrong side with a difficult downhill chip with no green to work with compared to an uphill chip with plenty of green to work with. Or a Par Chance/Bogey vs Double Bogey (or worse), e.g. a bad tee shot into the trees, punching out or “going for it”.


I’ll try to recall (and relate) what course management meant to me at different stages of my golfing ability.  Although the actions it translated at various stages were different, the underlying concept was the same, i.e. to identify what was costing me unnecessary strokes on the course and what I could do about it on the golf course (the things I could not immediately effect on the golf course I earmarked to work on during lessons or practice).


In the first couple of months as a beginner trying to break 100, I soon realized what was costing me a lot of strokes on the course (as well as a lot of golf balls)


[color=#999999]1.       Penalty shots off the tee, either OB, Hazards or lost balls[/size]


2.       Wayward tee shots into the trees followed by trying “hero” shots through the trees beyond my skill level


3.       Poor contact off the deck with long irons, 19deg hybrid and 18deg wood, frequent duffs with the ball travelling less than 30m


4.       Penalty shots when trying to hit over water or when the intended landing area is around water due to poor contact/direction


 There are many more reasons, but the ones above relate more to course management.


To address issues 1 and 2, poor direction off the tee, I decided to try and hit it shorter off the tee.  The logic being that even if my direction was off, because the ball did not travel as far, it had less chance of going OB or other sorts of trouble.  The next step was finding a club that I could make relatively decent contact with consistently.  Initially that was a 25 deg hybrid (about 150m) and that progressed to a 19 deg hybrid (170m) as my swing improved and I learnt how to handle a longer club.


To address issue 3, instead of using clubs with the greatest potential distance, e.g. 3 wood off the deck, I started choosing clubs which I felt I could achieve decent contact quite consistently, so that even my bad shots managed to advance the ball enough to make the next shot easier.  In terms of irons, that meant nothing more than a 9 iron, and on bad days, a PW (disclaimer I was using TM XR-08, with extremely strong lofts and longer shafts, PW translates to 9 iron).  I was able to advance the ball about 100m most of the time (7/10).  However, the real saver was the 25Deg hybrid.  9/10 times the ball would go 110m to 150m … with all kinds of trajectories, low or high, pulls, blocks, runners, pop ups, almost every good and bad shot imaginable … but they all went forward.


For issue 4, carrying the ball over water, I decided that if I needed to carry it more than 100m, I would lay up before the water.  And that if there was water next to the green, I would aim 25m away from it, even if it meant aiming away from the green.


Finally I decided to use really cheap balls, whether new or used, in an attempt to eliminate the bad thoughts of “What a waste of money if I hit this shiny new titleist into the water”.  That mindset helped to promote making a swing that had less tension and a smoother tempo on the course (I had already spent quite a lot of time at the range practicing how to swing smoothly to help develop that confidence).


After a while, I managed to break 100.  Shooting consistently in the 90s took a while longer, largely due to anxiety.  I would start pretty well, mostly bogeys with occasion par, then would have a few consecutive big blow up holes, i.e. quadruple bogey and above.

End of Part 1.  If I can ever get back to playing in the 80s consistently then I can post Part 2 with a bit more credibility.


In the meantime, I hope this gives some insight to those who are starting out.

_________________
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What's in the Bag

Driver: Callway X-Hot 10.5 with Fubuki 50S (pulled from a TM Burner SuperFast)
Woods: 19 Deg Callaway X-hot Proj X Stock S Flex
Hybrid: 22 Deg TM SF i70R, Cobra Baffler 25 Deg NS950R
Irons 5-Pw:  Titleist 704 CB NSP950 (Flex Unknown - think it is R)
Wedges: Perry Gear 52 Deg DG S300 and BFG 55 Deg KBS Hi-Rev, Tourstage 60 Deg
Putter: RIFE Antigua Island with Champ Large Grip
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flashpacker
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Sun Mar 01, 2015 6:52 pm

Great post!

Besides avoidance, i think course mgt is also about knowing when to take risks.
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willytan
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Sun Mar 01, 2015 9:29 pm

Derek,

Great sharing of course management in layman terms.

My course management For:

1 & 2. I take it easy by not forcing tees with driver to fly beyond 200m, it will fly forward to ard 170-180m within the fairway.

3. Yeah, take that ego away n keep that wood or hybrid but instead use only up to 8i, did help me keep the figures in check until I can handle longer irons or 4H.

I m still playing like a roller coaster from mid 90s on a good day to 110s on a normal day....
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slinger
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Sun Mar 01, 2015 9:56 pm

how I wish to have derek sit next to me on the buggy.....
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bomby
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Mon Mar 02, 2015 9:54 am

Ego.. we all think we are like the guys on TV. 

Next time I play I shall tee off with my 17* hybrid and try to achieve bogey.. and hopefully can break 100.
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skybobo
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:05 am

Since when u shoot above 100, Mr TS???
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lousyswinger
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:38 am

Losing the 60deg wedge in the bag helps to. Similar to the ego department. Swing
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flog-er
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:40 pm

For me, from short distance to green, instead of using a full or 3/4 shot on a high lofted wedge, I do bump and run on 8 iron

Doesn't give me the satisfaction of a beautiful high ball that lands soft but cuts out the potential blade that ends up even further away than where I was, or even worse in the drink! bounce
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bomby
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PostSubject: Re: SHiC Talk - Course Mgmt from an average golfers perspective   Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:46 pm

skybobo wrote:
Since when u shoot above 100, Mr TS???

Last time play sembwang.. played 100...  Embarassed

Trying too hard to beat my opponent.
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