Yesterday was a great day! I headed to the course to get in a quick round, but that was not the case. The course was full and I had to wait my turn like everyone else! Not to be deterred, I asked to go out the back as no one was walking down the 9th or 8th fairway; normally, I do not jump in, but the back was open and front was very slow. The starter let me go, so off I went.
As I started off number 10, I decided to focus on what I was practicing. I had nothing to lose and besides if I was going to practice things, I might as well use them in my game. I have used many of my newer techniques, but I have not used them with focused intent! Yesterday was the day!
During my round, I decided to focus on three things. Only three, but they are significant changes to my normal routine. I decided to focus on a wider shoulder turn, my weight distribution when chipping, and taking more break on putts. I have to say, that it finally all clicked.
The full shoulder turn produced positive results, but not to the level I want. However, my swing was softer, faster, and had a greater arc. This change resulted in my ball travelling a bit farther and rolling more. Unfortunately I was a bit erratic. That is something I can fix!
I adjusted my weight distribution while chipping. I adjusted so that 60% of my weight was on my front foot. I played the ball 3/4 back in my stance for most shots. I found that I was hitting the ball crisper and was able to put more backspin on the ball. Many of my chips finished within 4 feet!
I purposely decided to take more break. I was a bit concerned about the results of this change, but I quickly realized that I did not have hit the ball as hard as normal to be effective. As a result, the few putts I did miss were at tap in length.
The entire back 9 was smooth and natural. I was not in any real trouble and when I needed a good shot, it seemed to magically appear. As the round progressed, my confidence grew to a point where I had no negative thoughts. It was a very special round.
I finished with 8 pars and 1 birdie for a 35. I hit 5 greens in regulation and had a 100% scramble percentage. The longest putt I made was 12 feet and my closest approach shot was 4 feet which resulted in a birdie.
The point to my grateful diatribe is that my practice plan is starting to pay off. During my practice sessions, I work on one skill with intent and follow it up during future practice sessions. Sometimes it is difficult to keep my ego in check, but if I want to be a scratch golfer, I need to make subtle changes that have a positive impact on my game. So, yesterday was the first step of many towards lower golf scores!
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!