Golf’s False Assumptions

Every golfer understands the main premise of playing is to hit as few strokes as possible. It is the one sport where less is more. My best rounds have been subpar and those scores brought me the most joy. It is kind of an odd approach to a sport, yet it is the foundation of participation. Keeping this in mind, I have a few false assumptions that amateurs make that flies in the face of the core tenet of golf. Additionally, the same amateurs focus their approach to golf that actually elicits higher golf scores; kind of strange, right?

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Playing In The Senior Scramble At Osprey Links

Today Rick and I play in the Senior Scramble at Osprey Links. With both of us being over 55, we qualify to the event. Actually, this is our second year in a row where we get to pit or skills against the rest of the pack. Last year we were in the prizes, so we are hoping that this year we will be able to repeat our previous success. As always, there is a strategy to playing in these types of events and this year we are going to try something new.

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Course Management: Picking The Proper Aim Line

If you research course management, most topics will discuss hitting to a distance and avoiding hazards. In most cases, course management is all about what you leave for your next shot. Of course, I subscribe to these concepts of course management, but I think there are other important aspects such as picking the proper aim line. Why is this important you may ask, well that is a great question and worth further analysis.

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Learning Course Management Lessons From Other Golfers

Every round of golf has the potential to teach me a golf lesson. Whether it is in the area of swing mechanics, ball striking, club selection or course management, an observant golfer can learn something from their playing partners. In many cases, we do not understand the lesson until we face the situation ourselves, but the knowledge is there just waiting to bubble to the surface. These golf lessons are most prevalent in the area of course management. Watching other players navigate the round opens many doors to the possibilities of making a different shot to improve our score. For me it is all about being a student of the game.

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Choices Choices Choices

Recent adventures on the links makes me wonder if I really have a handle on golf or have I been kidding myself for years.  Course management is definitely a key aspect to success on the links. Knowing when to press or play defensively can determine whether you score a birdie or a bogey.  But is course management really important to having fun and improving your game?

Smart Shot Out of the Sand

Smart Shot Out of the Sand

Well of course it is!  Or at least I thought so!

It is the distinguishing factor between low and high handicap golfers. Determining how to play a hole, which club to use, whether to fire at the pin or to lag putt are all aspects of course management that are developed over time.  Thus, experience and the willingness to improve your course management skills are extremely important aspects of successful golf.

So, why am I going on about course management and its importance.  On the weekend I was playing with my friend and his brother.  As per normal, we were talking golf and how best to improve our game; which shot would be best in certain situations; and which club to use at certain times.  Through our discussion, we were basically talking about course management.

As we plodded along, the conversation turned to a earlier shot where my friend chose a 3 wood instead of an iron out of the long grass.  Additionally, he went on to describe how the ball was in a bit of a hole, but he really wanted to get to the green that was 220 yards away.  When challenged about his selection he responded, “I knew what the smart shot was but chose to not to do it!”  I stopped dead in my tracks and looked at him and said what?  He coolly said, “I know, but I just wanted to put the ball on the green and the knew I would not make it with an iron….it was not the smart shot, but oh well, I am still having fun.”  I chuckled out loud and walked to my ball with a smile on my face.

So my friend chose not to make the right shot!  Never a good idea to throw stones when you live in a glass house, I think we have all been in that situation.  Taking the low percentage shot over the smart play….it still makes me laugh.

The “so what” to this story is that choosing to actively participate in course management is the first and most important step to course management.  Although I never really thought that it was an option, apparently it is. Sometimes playing golf is about making the impossible shot and having fun doing it!  I guess that day was not wasted because I learned something new!

I am a grateful golfer!  See you on the links!