My very first day on the golf course!

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Scott Wong, May 1, 2003.

  1. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    After a year or so of coaxing, my two good friends and co-workers have finally convinced me to take up golfing. That's all they seem to do in the summer and without being left out, I decided to give it a shot. They both seem to shoot consistently in the 80's with an occasional high 70 score...

    I went out and purchased a starter set of golf club from Golf Galaxy. They're made by Hippo. I got all of my irons, a 1-wood, 3-wood, and a 5-wood with a two-strap/stand up bad for $149. I don't know much about clubs yet but my buddies kinda steered me in that direction and are impressed with how far my dollar went. I also got a Wilson putter for $39. I've also gotten great deals on ebay with lots of name brand golf polo shirts, Nike and Titleist golf balls, a Nike Elite Feel golf glove and a bunch of tees. I'm pretty much all set except I'm lacking golf shoes. I'll be picking those up sometime next week.

    Anyway, my buddy has been meeting me at the gold range for the last couple of weeks or so. I'm hitting the ball okay and have been practicing my chipping and putting on my own. I do seem to have a slice but for now, I am just working on making good, clean contact with the golf ball. On my own, I've hits approx. 5 large buckets for golf balls within the last week or so. I have also been practicing my chipping and putting quite a bit, as well.

    Today was the day where the three of us went out together. We went to this Executive Par 3 course not far from me. I've been going to this same course and doing my practicing. I did have some ugly shots. Some *real* ugly shots. But I also have some really nice ones. Shots that made me feel comfortable and almost seemed effortless. I actually made par on one of the holes!! I was so excited!! I didn't do very good, overall though. I shot a 60. [​IMG] The course was a Par 30. [​IMG] :b Hahaha. [​IMG] My buddies seemed to think that's pretty good for my first time out but I've no idea. It seemed like I completely sucked. I can think of a handful of good shots that were decent.

    *shrug*

    It's an awesome game though and one that definitely takes a lot of practice and patience and perserverence. I like it though. I also had a blast with my buddies! The weather was perfect. 68 degrees. 5 mph winds out of the NW. There was a hardly a cloud in the sky. It'll definitely be a day I'll remember. I'm just 28 years old so I've got plenty of time for practicing...

    ...I'm so thristy for knowledge and practice right now. And short of Home Theater, it's the one other thing I've been obsessed with lately. [​IMG]

    Scott.
     
  2. CaseyLS

    CaseyLS Second Unit

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    Hey just have fun when you're starting out. My dad and I picked it up a few years ago. It's fun and relaxing. My dad likes because he can't beat me at basketball anymore.
     
  3. Bruce Hedtke

    Bruce Hedtke Cinematographer

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    As Casey said...just have fun for now. You are still very green at the game and what you lack most is muscle-memory so you won't be able to make a consistent swing time after time. Hence, the "ugly" shots with a handful of decent ones. Once you train your muscles and coordination to swing the club along a consistent path, you'll make better contact and produce better shots. They always say golf is a game of a lifetime and it is. You'll be working on your swing until you are in your grave.

    Some things I've picked up over the years that might help:

    Tempo-I don't buy into the advice that every player automatically has to slow their swing down. Alot of it depends on your personality. If you are a laid back sort of person, a lazy, laid back swing will probably be what you use. If you are more of a hyper, tuned up person...a faster, quicker swing will likely be used. It is up to you to know how fast you can swing and still produce a good ball.

    Forget showboating-Most courses aren't set up for US Opens, so you'll probably encounter plenty of 310..320..330 yard par 4's(or shorter...I know of a couple 250 yard par 4 holes), especially in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Now, everyone you meet will tell you they can drive those greens and it probably looks tempting to pull out the 1 wood and smash it as hard as you can. Resist and aim to make a 3 on those holes. Put the driver away, take out a 4 iron and leave yourself 110 yards out. Hitting half wedges is one of the toughest things in golf and even the pro's avoid it. Instead, go to the range until you know your wedges distance and then play from the tee's to that distance. If you can hit your wedge 130 yards, on a 350 yard hole, you only need to hit something 220 yards to leave yourself a full wedge shot home. If you want to really get anal about it..keep a notebook and log with you. Note everytime you have to hit a half wedge and what the score on the hole was versus the times you hit a full wedge and what the score was. Dollars to donuts, the holes you played full wedges will be a stroke or more lower. Averaged out, that can save you probably 10 strokes a round.

    Does Golf Galaxy have a department where you can have them adjust things like lie-angle? If you're just going to play for fun and hang out with the guys, off the rack clubs should work great. But, if you want to get serious and get the most out of your game, having your clubs fitted to you is essential. Shaft stiffness, flex-point, lie-angle, offset hosels, heel or toe weighting...this is where a good clubfitter will work wonders. For myself, the lie-angle for my 3, 4 and 5 irons was too steep and I kept digging into the ground with the heel of the club. I flattened the angle and voila, smooth contact and a much better ball flight. If you want to try it at home, put some electrical tape on the bottom of your club and then swing on a board on the ground. If you scrape off the tape on the toe of the club, the angle is too shallow. If off the heel, too steep. If all the tape comes off, brother, don't change a thing.

    Last..the old standby: 50% or more of your shots come from within 100 yards of or on the green. This is where you need to practice the most.

    Bruce
     
  4. Brandon_T

    Brandon_T Screenwriter

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  5. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.
    Take lessons.

    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.
    Practice.


    And when you go out, remember that the real reason you're there is to have some fun with your friends, not to compete. As long as you keep that in mind you'll enjoy yourself.
     
  6. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    I certainly appreciate everyone looking at my topic as well as the replies.

    At this point, I certainly don't expect a whole lot out of myself. I'm thrilled to death when I make solid contact with the ball. And I'm happy to be outdoors and just hang out with my friends. Nothing else really matters at this point.

    I will admit there were a couple of times yesterday when frustration set in, but it passed. After I hit a crappy shot, I'd follow it up with one that was halfway decent. The first hole was a Par 3. And I shot a 5. Since this was my hole of golf... ever... I actually thought that was pretty good. At this point, I don't think there's anything wrong with playing double bogey golf. [​IMG] I completely sucked on the 2nd hole. My first shot off the 3rd hole on a Par 3 wasn't so good at all. It was 142 yards off the tee to the hole. I didn't get a hold of very much ball off the tee on that one so it didn't go all that far. But then, I followed it up with a halfway decent shot with my pitching wedge and placed it 25 feet or so from the hole! [​IMG] I got a bogey on that hole, too. I probably could have saved par but the green was nasty. Ugly break and slightly downhill.

    Anyway, my buddies are gonna find us another Par 3 course that's a bit 'easier'. I lost a half dozen balls yesterday because of all of the water on the course. Of the 9 holes, water came into play on 5 of them.

    With that said, I'm realizing at this stage in my game, I don't need a $30 box of Nike Double C Pro Tour balls in my bag. It just isn't necessary... and I don't see these balls making all that much difference in my game, at least not at this point...? What do you guys think?

    Scott.
     
  7. Shane Bos

    Shane Bos Second Unit

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    Golf is really about getting some sun and drinking alot of beer. I usually play with the slight rule change of -1 stroke for every beer consumed. Believe it or not that doesn't usually help your score. Any sport that has a 2 seater vehicle with 4 cup holders is alright with me.
     
  8. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    Golf's more fun if you don't keep score early on. Just try to hit the best shot you can on every shot.
     
  9. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    Personally I find it appalling that golf courses allow alcohol consumption. It's always bugged me that something many people claim is a sport would endorse this.

    I've played golf for a lot of years, but I don't play or practice enough these days. I normally shoot around 90, with the occasional mid 80's. The only advice I can give is to relax and keep at it. It can be really frustrating thougb sometimes... but it's normally a great way to get out and enjoy the day. [​IMG]



    I disagree strongly, but I guess that's an individual thing. Not keeping score makes the whole game pointless for me, even if it happens to be a really crappy round.
     
  10. Jon_Are

    Jon_Are Cinematographer

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    I've only golfed once, years ago, and had a great time.

    I'll never forget my very first shot: I hit it solid, a pretty good distance and straight and true.

    "Hey", I said, "this game ain't so hard!"

    Only good one I hit all day. [​IMG]

    Jon
     
  11. CaseyLS

    CaseyLS Second Unit

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    I shot a 12 on the first hole I ever played, and it's been down hill from there.
     
  12. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    What I meant was people get fixated over their score in the early stages of picking up the game of golf, and they don't focus on what is going to lower their scores because they equate scores with ball-striking ability, and lose sight of how to improve their game.

    This is simply for the "getting your feet wet" stage, but once you get a clue (on consistently striking the ball and knowing your yardages/club), sure, keep up with your score and try to figure out what makes your score balloon (errant tee shots, poor approach shots, sorry putting, horrendous chipping, etc).
     
  13. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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    Cool.. i've been thinking of taking up golf as well... well i used to play around at the driving range with my dad, but in the future i'd like to go out on the course.
     
  14. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    I would say STOP playing golf immediately and get some lessons. The more you play, the more you ingrain bad habits and habits are hard to break -- trust me on that.

    I've been playing for over 5 years now and shoot 90's but with the new season starting I'm not hitting a golf ball until I get some lessons.

    PM me if you would like a good source at a good price (I think it's $25-$30) per lesson. My wife and I will get four lessons a piece from him. This guy guarantees that you hit them straight in one lesson or you don't pay him.
     
  15. Brian Mansure

    Brian Mansure Second Unit

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    Scott,

    I'm pretty new to golf myself but I would agree that spending a bunch of money on equipment like golf balls probably doesn't make that huge of a difference in your play. I've only been casually golfing for 3 years (15 times total) and I bought my entire set of clubs for $75 bucks used from a co-worker. Most of the time I buy the cheapest golf balls I can find or use the "scuff" balls that most pro shops sell in that large barrel in front of the counter.
    Who wants to pay $13.00 for a sleeve of three balls when they're going to be lost after the front nine?
    For me, the equipment I currently have is good enough. When my skills improve and my golf game is held back by my equipment, I'll purchase new stuff.
    I've only broken 100 once and it's pretty safe to assume it's not because of my equipment. [​IMG]
    Sounds like you got a good set of beginner clubs and if you were going to spend some money I would suggest a really good pair of golf shoes. Make sure the golf shoes are comfy and supportive, nothing like walking 18 holes in uncomfortable golf shoes.

    Have a great time out on the links.

    Brian
     
  16. Jeremiah

    Jeremiah Screenwriter

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    Scott, glad you injoyed the game of golf, it is truly awesome. So far you have done all the right things, ie getting inexpensive clubs and balls cause right now, quality rerally doesn't mean jack.


    60 on a Par 30?! Ouch[​IMG] You and your buddies are correct, you did well for your first time but at the same time, you completely sucked. Just remember you are not good and it is all your shots are practice. You slice into the woods? It's practice getting a shot out of them, 30 yards from the green it's practice. You are not as good as your best shot and not as bad as your worst shot.

    P.S. your friends are *really* good so don't try and judge your game by their skill. Hey, I am in the mid 90's with some games in the high 80's and some in the low 100's, depending on the course.
     
  17. Bruce Hedtke

    Bruce Hedtke Cinematographer

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    The choice of golf balls is something that you don't need to worry about right now. Go to Wal-Mart and grab a pack of the refurbished ones they sell...the ones that have about 8 different types of balls in it. You will hit a $.75 ball pretty much the same as a $3.00 ball, so save some money there. However, I am in the camp of people that can never seem to be satisfied. I try a variety of golf balls and never really stick with one brand or style. That being said, I think the best ball I've ever played was the Greg Norman "Attack Life" Shark ball:Shark Ball

    Man, I loved those things.

    Bruce
     
  18. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    You guys, thanks for all of the replies. I will definitely be sticking with some less expensive balls. I noticed there are quite a few auctions of golf ball lots in bulk. These seem to be pretty inexpensive.

    Scott
     
  19. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    My favourate ball is the Pro V I when I'm 100yards or closer from the green...it has a lot of feel and spin.
     
  20. Adil M

    Adil M Supporting Actor

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    I've always played w/ "Flying Ladies."
    Yes, I suck as well.
     

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