Thursday, February 24, 2011

Golfgal In Texas: SECOND LESSON at Oak Hollow Golfcourse

SECOND LESSON: Sat. 2/20/2011. The husband and I scheduled a tee time after the lesson. It was a gorgeous day. The warm breeze was so welcoming after such a cold February in McKinney. I met Travis for my lesson on the driving range.

Today we discussed body positioning in the setup for the swing. This was what I wanted the most help with. I was so unsure how my body was supposed to swing. I knew exactly what I was going for when playing softball. The golf swing was a mystery tour. Until today!!!! I did not realize that I needed to keep my head in the same position throughout the swing. Ackward at first, but it does help you keep your eye the ball.

The backswing: The instruction was to use the left arm only to practice as I slowly went through the entire motion from start to finish (I am a rightsided swinger). Using only one arm will help your brain learn to use this arm for direction and acquire optimal full body rotation. So taking the club back and over the right shoulder, twist only from the waist as the left knee bends to allow the body more twist (which equals more power which equals more distance, oh yea). The clubhead now located behind your head should be pointed directly at the target in front of you before it begins the forward swing motion. You should not be able to see the clubhead drooping over your left shoulder, it should be level.

The forward golf swing: As the club head begins its forward momentum and the body begins to release from the twist, the left knee straightens out, the hip begins a forward rotation that pulls the left arm forward to allow the clubhead thrust downward to make contact with the ball at its highest point of acceleration. It Sounds good, huh.

Followthrough: The clubhead will continue forward through the swing as the body continues to rotate and the arms continue around the body to end the swing with the clubhead again level and in the same position as it was before the forward release pointing in the opposite direction. If you did correctly, you will be standing on a very straight left leg and a pointed toe on the right foot while the body is facing the target.

It is a lot to think about. So that is why I was told to practice this movement slowly and intentional so my brain will learn and train my body to move correctly without over-thinking the process each time I swing. I can say that when by chance I do it correctly... and I did several times while working with Travis....It makes all the difference. I gained about 50 yards of distance several times with my 7 iron and 5 irons.

I learned that this swing is the same every time irregardless which club I use. Incorporating proper form into my swing is challenging. I still want to bring that elbow out....big no-no. Keep the elbow tucked into the body. OK, I am off to practice my swing on the course.

PAIRED UP FOR THE FIRST TIMEAs my husband and I were awaiting tee time, the course marshal asked if we would like to be joined by another fellow named David. We said sure. I never played real golf!!!! You know when someone other than my husband was playing along side me. It was my first opportunity to learn player ettiquette. He was a fairly new golfer too, so we were all in agreement that there was no pressure and we would have a relaxing game to share. I just came off the driving range where I hit the ground a couple of times trying to learn this new rotation method I was learning. Ouch!! It put a burn into my right shoulder blade that was starting to knot up. Not a good way to start 19 holes, but I thought I would just play through it no problem. I am no whiner.

First hole. Women get to tee off from the red zone usually a ten to twenty yard advantage. Both men teed off from the white zone. If you are pro level, you tee off from the blue zone....forget that. We all laid in the fairway. Good start for all. As we played through five holes, everyone had a few problems to resolve, but overall, we stayed very close in play and no one held the team up. I was very proud of myself for that. I actually had better accuracy than the guys at times, but the short game was definately lacking. Glad to know the short game is the topic of my next lesson with Travis. I have not spent much time putting with the new putter I purchased and it showed. Way too many strokes on the greens. Though, I was pleased with a few pretty good long putts.

Around hole 9, my right shoulder was starting to scream from the muscle spasm. I was starting to over compensate and knew I likely was not going to finish the 19 holes. I expressed my concern to my husband and he was very understanding. I just drove the cart while he continued to play. I was glad I stopped. By the time we left, I could hardly move without severe pain. It was time to head home and get iced up:  30 minutes on, 30 minutes off and repeat. That is how I spent the evening...but I had a big smile on my face as I thought about two holes when I actually outdrove the guys.

This week's homework is to slowly swing with the left arm only to train my brain to train my muscles to do it right (without hitting the ground).

By the way, I love the Adidas Golf Shoes. Read about my purchase adventure in my blog posting dated 1/15/2011. 
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