A recent comment on yesterdays post from Rob Courtney sparked this post. His comment: “Congratulations on your win. But we golfers do find ways of finding fault even when we are successful! Cheers, Rob.” is so true regarding the nature of golfers, I just had to expand on it. Golfers are never satisfied with their game; when the conversation starts, we usually shift towards the strokes we left on the course and how things should have been better. This might be a universal trait of all golfers, what do you think?
I recently played my way on to the base golf team. With two scores of 76, I was happy with the first day’s score because of the conditions, yet disappointed with the second day’s score because of the double bogey on the last hole. Regardless, discussing my round with other friends, I inadvertently steered the conversation to leaving strokes on the course.
I mentally review every shot after a round and examine those shots that I consider sub-par (excuse the pun). Sometimes I attribute the cause to my club selection or my aim point was poor or my swing was not as expected, and so on. However, I do not think this thought process is self-deprecating, but healthy method of improving my game. It helps me stay focused on areas of swing improvement and course management.
The problem with this process is that it sounds like bragging or an ego build. Talking to most golfers, shooting back to back 76s is a dream come true. They would be excited and not hesitate to take these scores, regardless of how many strokes they left on the course. I completely understand their view, but success is a relative view. I am happy with the scores, yet I always look for ways to improve; thus, I look at the strokes I left on the course after my rounds.
The lower your handicap, the greater the chance that you will reexamine your round. Even my sub-par rounds were looked at to see where I could improve. Generally in those rounds, it was only one or two strokes where I felt I could have done something different. Mostly, I go through this process to stay on track of continually improving. It is something that helps me focus on my goal of being a scratch golfer. My introspection has nothing to do with ego, but learning how to improve my golf game.
Leaving strokes on the golf course is something all golfers discuss. The number of strokes is relative to your handicap, score, and desire to improve. I believe it is a valid process of improvement and suggest that most serious golfers practice it. This learning tool is important to my game and I will continue to use it; maybe I just won’t vocalize it as much.
Thanks Rob for inspiring this post. I am grateful for your comments.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!