Today I took the second in a series of four full swing lessons. In lesson #1 I told my instructor my goal was to average more than 10 GIR per round this season. I have been stuck between 8 and 9 for the last seven straight years. 10+ should improve my proximity, provide more birdie looks, and help lower my scores. Lesson #1 was difficult because we focused on trying to break a bad habit. I played the day after lesson #1 and you can imagine the result – two GIR. I played a week later after some practice and saw some positives with my driving and fairway woods, but struggled with my irons and wedge play. Still, I managed to hit seven greens.
Lesson #2 was much better. I latched onto a swing key after my instructor manipulated my hands where he wanted me at the top of my back swing. This allowed me to only think of one thought during the swing and helped immensely. I was probably picking up an additional 10 yards with my 8-iron and hitting about 80% of them within my target range (10 feet to the right or left of the flag). Then we moved to partial wedge shots with the new change. The difference was weird at first but significant. I tried to hit 40 yard pitches with my 56 but hit it so solidly that I couldn’t keep it under 60 yards. Then I shortened my back swing so I almost felt like it was a long chip, accelerated through the ball and managed to control the distance better. My contact was consistent and much improved. He told me I hit a lot of good shots and I left the golf course pumped.
Then I made a mistake. I went out after lunch for some more practice with the intention of cementing the lessons into memory and didn’t hit nearly as well. I failed to realize how gassed I was from the lesson because I had warmed up for a half hour and the lesson took an hour. I had hit the equivalent of an extra large bucket of balls. So I didn’t even try to finish up and went and hit some putts for half an hour. You have to know your limitations!
I’m playing again tomorrow and am hoping to see additional improvement, especially with the short irons and wedges. Play well if you are too!