April 27, 2012



You don't get 50 balls on the course to hit one chip or pitch shot, so don't practice that way. I favor variability practice. I don't practice the same short-game shot more than two or three times in a row. Fact is, you face a lot of standard tee shots and 5-irons, but around the greens, every shot is unique. When my practice reflects that, I feel like I can get up and down from anywhere. 
—Luke Donald, ranked No. 2 in the world.

April 22, 2012

Summer Plans!

Making a to-do list is not enough.  Listing all the things you want to accomplish won't get you any closer to your goals, but it's definitely a start.  My biggest problem, and I share this with millions of people, is a lack of follow through.  It applies in life just as much as the golf swing.

I'm taking one class over the summer and so far have no plans to work or do anything else law related so my schedule should be wide open for productivity.  I would definitely like to get back in to the MvC3 world since I'm bored with AE12 and SFxT.  But in terms of serious goals, writing down a detailed list would probably hinder me more than anything.

One approach I've learned works well for me is to start small and appreciate the benefits of taking life one-step-at-a-time.  I don't want to focus too much on a goal like breaking 85; instead my number one goal in golf right now is to generally improve my consistency with my irons.  I'm not making solid contact nearly as often as I would like and I know that inconsistency is causing hesitation and resulting duffed shots.

Another important and general goal for me is to get my house in order.  I want to start next fall with a clean slate and good lighthearted feeling that my responsibilities are taken care of.  I want to create and maintain a home that my family enjoys coming home to and spending time in.  Right now there are so many unfinished projects around the house that it's a constant source of unnecessary stress.

I have a few obligations for school, and I'm going to approach those with my best foot forward.  They aren't really goals - they're tasks that I simply must complete by the end of the summer. 

Lots of books to read, lots of exercising to do,... I'm already looking forward to 8 days from now when I'll be done with finals and can begin my running start into the fall semester.

April 5, 2012

Justin Rose explains Fade and Draw

How to Cheat at Golf -- Without the Guilt

This story is from the April 23, 2012 issue of Forbes magazine. Co-authored with Michael Dugan.

Cheating at Golf

UNLESS YOU HAVE A masochistic streak worthy of a DMV clerk, golf is, frankly, no fun. The game is so difficult to
master that even professional players routinely fail to post par, so time-consuming that it takes the better part of a day to
play—and it’s expensive, to boot. All in all, a questionable combination for something billing itself as a leisure activity.
Unsurprisingly, people are abandoning the game in droves. According to the National Golf Foundation, there are
26.1 million golfers in America, which may sound like a lot until you realize there were 30 million five years ago. Last year 3.6 million people took up golf but 4.6 million hung up their spikes. Over the coming decade the U.S. is expected to lose a net of 750 golf courses.
Statistics like that have goaded golf’s traditional establishment into action. The PGA of America, which represents 27,000 teaching professionals, is spending millions to promote “Golf 2.0”—a sweeping strategic plan based on research by the Boston Consulting Group to reengage the country’s 90 million “lapsed” golfers (apparently defined as anyone who has ever seen a golf ball) and target potential new players, especially minorities and women. And, along with the United States Golf Association, it is working to remind weekend duffers that unless they hit the ball like Tiger Woods they should “Tee It Forward” and shorten the course to a difficulty level commensurate with their (lack of ) skills.
Admirable initiatives, but they don’t go far enough—not by a long, sliced shot. So rip up your USGA-issued copy of the Rules of Golf and consider a few ways to make the world’s least fun sport a little more entertaining. Yes, it involves cheating. But fess up: You already do that.

It’s not your golf clubs or that lingering hangover that is causing all those double bogeys. It’s you. You are a terrible golfer. It’s vital to accept this before you can start having fun. If you expect to score well, you are inevitably going to be disappointed. But take comfort in the fact that everyone else is terrible, too. Only 21% of golfers regularly shoot below 90, or 18 over par. The average score for men is 97.

Give it up. Of those golfers who register with the USGA for an official handicap (just one out of five players), a mere 0.7% can be considered “scratch” golfers, meaning they actually have a sporting chance of shooting par over 18 holes. You are not one of these superhumans. Instead try this psychological trick: Consider every hole on the course a par-5. Shoot a 5 on every hole and you’ll get a 90, which is great, all things considered.

Stroke play, the form of golf played on the PGA Tour, rewards the player who hits the fewest number of shots for an entire round. Completely blow a hole with an 8 or a 9 and you are going to be stuck with the bar bill on the 19th. Try match play instead, in which the winner of each individual hole is given a single point and the highest number of points wins.

There are plenty of companies out there making “nonconforming” golf equipment— meaning that the stuff is considered illegal for competitive play by the USGA. Most of it is gimmicky and worthless, but a few items added to your golf bag actually might help.
The Swing Glove ($30) is an extra-long glove with a hinged plate sewed into it that prevents you from breaking your wrist as you hack away at the ball. It will instantly improve your swing.
Polara makes golf balls (from $25 a dozen) that go straighter—really!—using strange dimples that prevent hooks and slices. They work, but they don’t go as far as a regular ball and don’t produce as much lift, so you’ll need to use your 3-wood, rather than a driver, to hit them.
Bushnell makes a GPS Laser Rangefinder ($450), which will wow your partners when you tell them that they lie exactly 143 yards from the pin. How that information will help them actually hit the ball 143 yards is another matter entirely.
Meanwhile: Ignore the super-oversize drivers, the extra-distance balls and the laser-sighted putters. They. Won’t. Help.

The Rules of Golf contain no references to the words “mulligan,” “foot wedge” or “gimme,” yet it is a rare round that doesn’t feature all three. Now go all in.
We recently played a round with the following rules: two mulligans per 9, ten throws per 18 (but no more than one a hole), no more than three putts per green and the option to tee your first shot from the fairway three times per 9. It was a blast and speeded up the round considerably, but it didn’t help our scores as much as you might think. (Hint: When throwing, go underhand; think bowling, not pitching.)


A bit boring, sure, but rumored to work.

Michael Noer, Forbes Staff