Off work for 4 days, woohoo! Spent a full day at the golf club yesterday and came back home broken and sore from so much practice. Think the combination of hot weather, lack of fitness and carrying the club’s for a lot of the day left me a broken man last night. It was so much easier as a teenager!
Got to the club at about 9.30, stocked up with some water and headed for the practice range to work on my ball striking with my pitching. Not catching it consistently which is making distance control very difficult. I wasn’t trying to do anything too technical, just concentrating on maintaining my back at the same height and being smooth through the ball. I have caught myself getting very stabby through the ball and dipping into it so this was the only thing I was focusing on. Swing mechanics went out of mind for this morning.
Started hitting it a little better but as I was hitting balls I noticed that I was strangling the grip like I was hanging on for dear life. Eased up the grip pressure and hey presto started striking it a lot better. There’s another lesson learned, always go back to basics when something isn’t working and don’t get technical or mechanical too soon.
Spent about 3 hours on the range and went back to the pro shop to get some more water when the pro told me that there is an extra hole that is used as a short game practice area with bunkers and a proper green, off I trotted to that for another couple of hours of putting, Chipping and bunker shots. Was a bit of a walk to get there though, it’s next to the 2nd green which is probably about 900 yards from the clubhouse. Clubs on the back in the heat of yesterday it was a long walk.
Played 18 after that, wasn’t the best of rounds at all. Long game was shocking but short game was much improved and bailed me out quite a few times. Maybe one day both will be working well at the same time! Course has dried out massively since last week and I’m starting to see just how quick the course will be during the summer, ball is running a lot further now and was bombing the driver miles. Longest of which was the drive at 9 that seen me officially join the 300 yard club. That left me 220 yards into the green which I hit 3 iron to about 10 feet or so and holed the putt for eagle. (See pic below, I was that proud of the 3 iron I took a picture!)
Had 3 double bogeys on the card which is 3 more than I have had all season, all came from slightly errant shots putting me in impossible positions behind trees then failing to tidy up. Also caught myself not concentrating over the ball a few times, this has been creeping into my game a lot seems like I just switch off and hit the ball without working out what I want to do. Definitely another thing that needs work.
Managed to scrape my way round in 76 which wasn’t bad considering the 3 double bogeys, short game saved a 80+ round. Back was in tatters for the last 6 or 7 holes through carrying the bag, I have been using a trolly for the last few seasons but gave it back to my dad to try get him back out playing again and now remember why I stopped carrying in the first place. Even with a double strap it’s no good on my back at all, still sore from it this morning some stretching required now to ease it off a bit. Was that bad that before I even got back to the car I stopped in at the pro shop and bought a new trolly so that’s one less excuse for poor play!
Conclusion from today is more effort on hydration, didn’t take on nearly enough water and struggled as a result. Fitness needs more work than I first thought. Mental side needs a lot of attention. Short game is definitely the key to lower scores.