Golf is a four letter word

Here are my "teachers" and ideas...
  • Leadbetter : Learn component positions of the full swing and take the exams.

  • Mann : Shift-Turn-Shift-Turn the body to produce power in the full swing.

  • Pelz : Find out what's really important in putting.

  • Farnsworth Diagrams : Discover why the target is rarely the hole in putting.

  • Ultimate Touch : Develop guaranteed distance control in putting.

  • My Journey into the World of Golf

    I discovered the wonders of golf at around age 12, quickly became "hooked", and by age 17 shot a round of 77 in Pinehurst N.C. That score stood until June 20, 1996 where I shot a new career low of 72 while playing with the senior vice president of the MITRE Corporation. I'm self taught and learned how to play through a combination of reading books (Square-to-Square Method) and hacking around in a 10 acre field that we turned into a 6 hole course as kids. In those good ol' days we stole the sand from the kiddies sandbox and built a sand trap next to our "green", that was complete with real hole and homemade bamboo flagstick. I was so obsessed with golf that I use to paint balls day-glow orange (before the ball manfacturers caught on) and practice "snow shots" in that field during the winter time.

    I have yet to get my first hole-in-one although I've been soooo close at least a half dozen times. 1994 was the year I claimed my first eagle on a par 5 after nearly twenty years of play. The biggest tournament prize money I ever won was 50 bucks when I shot 77 to net a 66 to claim the spoils of victory in a field of about eighty hackers. It really wasn't about money though... it was about the power, prestige and the glory ;-)

    In the summer of 1996 I began to retool my swing in the image of David Leadbetter's fine book "The Golf Swing" and it has begun to pay dividends. I have a much better understanding of how the swing technically works through the 11 positions that are discussed and heavily illustrated therein. I also picked up Dave Pelz's excellent book "Putt like the Pros" and learned invaluable lessons on what really matters in putting, like speed control and why hitting the sweet spot of your putter is imperative to rolling the ball consistantly. In addition to the books, I spent untold hours chipping, pitching, putting, lobbing and blasting bucket after bucket of practice balls anytime I had free time.

    Here are the 27 most important things that I simultaneously try to do in order to hit the perfect golf shot. Of course it's impossible to think of all these at once but these 27 ideas reperesent keys I have used from time to time. I blame Tommy Smothers for coming up with this notion :-)

    This Laws of Ball Flight table represents the nine possible ball direction combinations.

  • 1996 Stats Handicap index - 7.6
  • 1997 Stats Handicap index - 5.2
  • 1998 Handicap index - 5.9
  • 1999 - about a 7 (didn't keep good records)

    Here are my club distances and specs... [printable distance chart]
    Full Shot Distances
    1 Wood - 8o 240+
    3 Wood - 13o 230
    2 H - 18 o 215
    3 H - 20 o 200
    4 Iron - 23o 188
    5 Iron - 26.5o 175
    6 Iron - 30o 163
    7 Iron - 34o 150
    8 Iron - 38o 138
    9 Iron - 42o 125
    Distance Wedge Matrix
    7:30 9:00 10:30 Full
    P - 46.5o50 75 100 120
    S - 51o43 64 85 105
    S - 56o35 53 70 90
    Release the Tension
    Firm Extension
    Aim is True
    Follow Through