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Beginner struggling

 
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robey1978
Joined: 05 Apr 2012
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2012 10:39 pm    Post subject: Beginner struggling

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Hi All,

My name is David. I'm 34 and from Dundee, Scotland.

I've tried golf several times over the years but never been any good at it and found it frustrating and given up pretty quickly.

My wife and I moved to Christchurch, New Zealand 7 months ago. Since coming here we've had loads of spare time on our hands and I decided to give golf another go.

I'd read on an internet site that it was a good idea to get a cheap set of clubs to begin with and find out whether I would stick at it before investing a lot of money in expensive equipment. Given my past experiences I thought this was a good idea.

I bought a cheap set of second hand Spalding blades on an auction site. The grips were shot so I had them re-gripped. I've been playing for just over 3 months and I've had 5 lessons from 2 different instructors (one a registered pro, another not). I understand what they require me to do and when I'm with the pro I notice a difference, but when I leave and try and put it in to practice on the course it all goes pear shaped.

I'm hitting around 120 consistently. I'm finding it really difficult to bring my score down at all. The frustrating thing is that I've parred every hole on the course on seperate occasions so I know I'm capable of it but I can't seem to pull my game together.

I'm hitting around 135m at best with my 6 iron and around 50m with my SW and everything else in between. I'm struggling with my 3, 4 and 5 iron. I don't have a driver and I can't hit my 3 or 5 woods.

It seems that my short game is ok (by my standards) but my longer game is terrible. I can't hit further than 135m and I'm not consistent with my clubs.

Saying all of that, I'm still really enjoying the game and I can't play often enough! After playing 18 holes on a Sunday morning I go to the driving range and hit 200-300 balls. My enthusiasm for the game is greater than it's ever been. I just need advice on the best course of action. I was considering ditching my 3, 4 and 5 and getting a hybrid club but I don't know if this will help. I don't want to speand a lot of money and find out I am still just a terrible golfer.

I'd really appreciate some advice. I don't want to give up but I'm not sure how many more rounds of 120 I can take!

Many thanks in advance for all your help.

David
 
jev

Joined: 17 Apr 2010
Posts: 699

PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 4:13 am    Post subject: Re: Beginner struggling

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robey1978 wrote:
I bought a cheap set of second hand Spalding blades

David, do yourself a favour and get some cavity-backs instead. Blades are not easy to play with and as a beginner you won't have the ability to work the ball to enjoy the advantages of blades. You would probably do best to get a set of "game improving" irons, that have their weight distributed over the toe and heel of the head so that a little mis-hit won't immediately spoil the shot. Your pro should be able to guide you in this.

Also, 50 meters sandwedge tells me you have a wedge (or maybe even a set of wedges) that do not match your capabilities. You should be able to easily hit that 70 meters.

About distance: no worries, 135m with a 6-iron really isn't bad or anything. Don't compare yourself to the pro's, the low-handicappers or the hole-19 scorers. A 135 meter iron 6 is average territory for male amateur players. Check out the table here: http://golf.about.com/od/beginners/l/blclubdistance.htm (note this table is in yards, not meters, 150 yard = 136 meter).

About the longer clubs: you'll improve with time. Since you effectively started playing just half a year ago I would not expect you to be able to consistently hit a 4 iron. I play for 6 years now, the longest iron in my bag is a 4-iron and I don't use it on many rounds.

It may be a good idea to get yourself a hybrid instead of the longer 3- and 4 irons for now.

Don't expect to be able to consistently hit a driver or even a 3-wood for another year or so, it's just not realistic.

Scoring: 120 is to be expected for someone that plays for just half a year. Assuming you play an average course, that is a 48 handicap. In my country, one has to pass an ability test before being allowed to get on the course. The limit for that is handicap 54 and most players need more than 10 lessons to get to that level.

Now, if you do an 18-holes around on sunday morning, it really makes no sense to hit such a large number of balls afterwards. Hitting balls on the DR is good, but don't overdo it. Hit two buckets maybe, than work on your short game instead. Putting, chipping, pitching, bunkers, that's where you'll win the game. Add course management and you'll improve in no-time.

Set yourself realistic goals; golf is a difficult game that takes time to master. Expect to break 100 in a year from now maybe, than 90 in another year or two.

So, to sum it up: get that set in line with your capabilities, take lessons from a good pro and set realistic goals. Play at heart's desire, but do take the time to practice.
 
Duke of Hazards

Joined: 07 Apr 2008
Posts: 625

PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 5:11 pm    Post subject:

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Spalding? I just googled 'When did Spalding stop making golf clubs' and it spat back a newspaper clipping from 1983.

My friend - spend $150 and get yourself a cheap set of current cavity back clubs with maybe a couple of hybrids thrown in. You're torturing yourself trying to play with ancient Spalding blades, although there are several masochistic golfers on this website that might think it's cool.

Your 6-iron in that set probably is equivalent to today's 8-iron (with equipment changes over last 30 years) so you're not comparing apples to apples with distance.

Hold on to those Spaldings, though. As you improve, they're likely to be an interesting gauge of your progress.
 
jev

Joined: 17 Apr 2010
Posts: 699

PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 5:39 pm    Post subject:

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Duke. Spalding these days is a low-budget brand, they still produce sets: http://www.thesportdepot.co.uk/m-100-spalding.aspx

It may very well be they produced said set just a couple of years ago...
 
Duke of Hazards

Joined: 07 Apr 2008
Posts: 625

PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 5:51 pm    Post subject:

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hmm. technically I stand corrected. However, from his description of the grips and the fact that they're players' blades, I'm thinking these are some garage sale classics from the same era that brought you disco and bell bottoms
joe jones
Joined: 10 Sep 2011
Posts: 656

PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2012 6:13 pm    Post subject: Robey1978

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Welcome to oobgolf.
Try to remove as much pressure as you can while on the course.
Try to make no more then 6 on any hole. Anything lower will be a bonus.6 X 18= 108. If you can't do it don't worry you will. Then you can try for 5s.
Don't concern yourself with distance. Most beginners are unrealistic about how far they hit the ball. If a hole is 350 meters long divide it by 4 and try to hit each shot approx. 85 meters. If you can get on in 4 stroke you can sharpen your putting to make 2 putts.
Don't compare yourself to anyone else until you feel more comfortable with the game. I doubt you will be playing competitive golf for a while. If you take lessons invest in a series of 8 or 10. The pro will feel that you are serious and give you the attention you deserve. Do,t expect too much at first.Many of us have been at this game for many years and it can be a very humbling experience.
 
player

Joined: 31 Jan 2009
Posts: 480

PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 5:57 pm    Post subject:

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meters?
sjduffers

Joined: 31 Aug 2009
Posts: 176

PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2012 7:24 pm    Post subject:

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player wrote:
meters?


Get off your couch playing the PS3 and open a book once in a while, will you? Here is a hint: there are 1000 meters in one kilometer (hence the name, duh!) and 1609 meters in a mile. Now what's a meter, in yards or in feet? I will be collecting the quizz tomorrow. Can you pass that test? I somehow doubt it... lol
Dusty23
Joined: 06 Aug 2009
Posts: 362

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 7:33 am    Post subject:

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Hey OOB Admin, I think the punk, Georgiakid needs to be bounced
joe jones
Joined: 10 Sep 2011
Posts: 656

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 8:16 am    Post subject: Georgia kid

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Second the motion!
dmcadow

Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 3:09 pm    Post subject:

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I guess I'm somewhat of an "advanced beginner" and your situation sounds familiar.

It took me a few months of practice and playing before I began to understand what I could do with different clubs in different situations. At about the same time I developed a general idea of how far I could hit each club, and which ones I was most consistent with (when I die, I want to be buried with my pitching wedge).

I didn't start hitting my 3-wood consistently until very recently, and I couldn't hit my driver at all until last month. Up to this point, I relied exclusively on a 5-hybrid or 6-iron to get me down the fairway.

Keep practicing and playing, especially if you can find some other beginners to play with - there's less pressure, they're more willing to share info (and I've found they're more likely to empathize with my golf sob-stories Wink). Fortunately for me, my local course has a "beginners' league" in the summer and it helped me tremendously. And take lessons when you can.


Last edited by dmcadow on Wed May 30, 2012 1:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
 
Duke of Hazards

Joined: 07 Apr 2008
Posts: 625

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 3:23 pm    Post subject:

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@dmcadow, Davis alumni here. go Ags!
dmcadow

Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2012 12:43 am    Post subject:

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Duke of Hazards wrote:
@dmcadow, Davis alumni here. go Ags!
How about that! I've been working at UCD for 10 years and love it. I'm a CSUN alum, though.
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