Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Can Michelle Wie and Natalie Gulbis find happiness outside the ropes of the U.S. Women's Open? Also weight shift drill

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After watching the struggles of both Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson (among the other great golfers) at the 109th US Open, it can be said that this was the year of the initiate, not the veteran. Lucas Glover, who had only won once in his career on the PGA Tour astounded and amazed the crowd with his steely gaze, focus and lack of emotion while both Woods and Mickelson fell short of the basic skills needed to get the job done.

One can almost compare Glover to the lovely Natalie Gulbis who has also had a single victory but who, along with Michelle Wie, failed to qualify for this year's U.S. Women's Open and may be watching from the sidelines. Will either be offering Twitter commentary? Not likely!

What separates golfers who qualify from those who don't?

When John Daly missed qualifying for the U.S. Open, he remarked that his feet were tired and the greens over in Europe were much slower than those in the States adding, "talk about not even sniffing a putt!" Solid putting, therefore, is the single most important part of any player's golf game.

Glover, who had missed the cut in three previous Opens acknowledged that his lead "can be attributed to putting and patience" and is currently "ranked seventh in putts made from between 15-20 feet."

Now, considering why Michelle Wie, for example, did not qualify for the Women's U.S. Open, she revealed that she was swinging really well but "just couldn’t get anything going, and some of the putts didn’t drop."

Should the USGA bend the regulations to assist the LPGA (and NBC) retain a slipping fan base or are the rules the rules? Originally, the policies stated that the top thirty golfers would be admitted to the U.S. Women's Open but now only the top ten automatically qualify. Well, the USGA says that it is for the good of the game...

You certainly wouldn't need to bend the rules at the U.S. Open to accomodate Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson because of the excitement factor of the entire field but, for the U.S. Women's Open, it could be the difference between increased ratings and hearing crickets chirping in the distance.

Would it have mattered if Gulbis and Wie played in the U.S. Women's Open? Not likely as both missed the cut last year. Michelle's quintuple bogey on the ninth hole at Interlachen said it all.

Golf for Beginners also discusses a weight shift drill which will allow you to stop that 'reverse C' and point your club more directly at the target.




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Photo Credit: © Sj-r.com

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Woods, Mickelson pairing at U.S. Open? Kodak golf shots worth $1 million, casting drill

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What do Tiger Woods, Padraig Harrington and Angel Cabrera all have in common? Aside from major victories in 2008, all three will be grouped together during the first two rounds of the 109th U.S. Open.

This was a smart pairing by tournament officials as each has a story to tell.

Tiger Woods is not only the defending champion (holding off Rocco Mediate and a bum knee) but also held on to victory (and a score of par) in 2002 at Bethpage with Phil Mickelson on his tail. With fourteen majors under his belt, a fresh win at the Memorial and a great family behind him "I couldn’t be happier than where I am right now", Woods is ready to tackle Jack Nicklaus' record.

"It's five to pass him, four to tie him," Woods said. "I'm healthy enough where I think I can give it a go."

Harrington is one of the odds favorites this year (+2500 for a payout potential of US$2500 on every US$100 bet at SBG Global.) Paddy should be as he has won the past two British Open Championships as well as last year's PGA Championship. Sure, Padraig may be a bit stale coming out of the gate (his best finish this year on the PGA Tour is a tie for 11th) for but make no mistake; when the chips are down, Harrington goes into champion mode.

Cabrera has made five cuts this year on the PGA Tour but his crowning achievement for 2009 has to be victory at the Masters. Going for an Angel-slam, Cabrera should think back to his 2007 US Open win (his first in the U.S.) where he bombed drives and putted with aplomb in spite of hitting only five fairways in the final round to beat Woods and Furyk.

Where does Phil Mickelson fit into the U.S. Open fervor? Paired with golfers equally qualified to get the job done (Goosen and Els) he has taken second place in the Open four times, with three of those battles taking place at Bethpage. Always a bridesmaid? This could be the year for FIGJAM's vindication on the Black Course.

Will any of the golfers read the warning before stepping out onto the first tee? Will being a "highly skilled golfer" be enough this week to escape the treacherous conditions at Bethpage? Tiger Woods' belief that the Black is "as big as they come" and a course where "you have to hit the ball well all week." will certainly come in handy.

Tweeting from the golf course is not permitted however there should be plenty of fist pumps.

Bethpage Black warning


Golf for Beginners also discusses the odds of the only male contestant remaining on the Big Break and offers a golf drill from Rick Smith for those who fish better than they golf. We also wonder if Chris DiMarco can hold on to his lead at the $1 million Kodak Challenge?


Tweet this blog… Your followers will thank you!
Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Click Here to receive our archived podcasts and 100's of easy golf tips free!

Get to know us on You Tube and MySpace and TWEET US on Twitter!

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"


This podcast is supported by Arizona Golf Packages, 1-866-444-0992.


Photo Credit: © Golfdigest.com

Sunday, June 07, 2009

John Daly interview. Also, an environmentally friendly mosquito repellent that works!

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John Daly says that he is finally done with the "drama" in his life, has signed an endorsement deal with both an energy drink company and Loudmouth Clothes and is returning to the PGA Tour at the St. Jude Championship next week courtesy of a sponsor's exemption. He will also attempt to qualify for the U.S. Open. Another major win? Daly maintains that his confidence, his fighting spirit and his "feel for the game" will direct him in a positive direction.

Daly has played solidly in Europe, honing his skills with the assistance of golf instructor Rick Smith and believes he is "ready to play" on the PGA Tour. After the BMW Championship, JD mentioned to the Associated Press, "I'm not going to be (half-trying) like I've done in the past. I know I may not play the tour if something good doesn't happen. It's making me work harder."

John enjoys connecting with his fans on a regular basis through social marketing websites, Facebook and Twitter, tweeting to keep them up-to-date on his life journey. In fact, that is precisely how I met Daly. His responsiveness is precisely why I decided to follow him on Twitter.

After communicating for some time, I asked him if I could email him a few sentences longer than 140 characters. Well, the Lion responded and here is the result of our email contact.

John Daly
What are you and Coach Rick Smith working on?
Daly: Finish the backswing and shorten my putting stroke.

It seems almost every one on Tour these days pairs a mental coach alongside of swing coaches. Do you have a mental game coach and, if so, what kind of thoughts are you instilling?
Daly: I use my golf coach Rick Smith and we try to set goals and positive re-inforcement.

What charges you up during a tournament?
Daly: Having a good round prior to a tournament start.

How do get rid of negative thoughts during a round?
Daly: Make a birdie.

Are you afraid of anything?
Daly: Snakes, gators and ex-wives.

Golfers always played in funky clothes. Now that you're playing in Loudmouth Clothes, people are taking notice. Do you think its the clothes or that you are wearing them or both?
Daly: Both

Do you think it's becoming a necessity for sports celebrities to connect with their fans or are you just interested in what your fans are thinking?
Daly: I have always been interested in my fans.

Does Twitter fascinate you and why?
Daly: I like that I can send messages direct to my fans and it comes from me.

Do you use other social networking sites?
Daly: Facebook and JohnDaly.com Follow John Daly on Twitter.

A 66 at the Italia Open, good results all around on the European Tour with the BMW PGA Championship just around the corner. Do you feel the European Tour is affording you a way to hone your game for when you are reinstated into the PGA Tour?
Daly: The European Tour guys are just as great as the US PGA Tour guys.

Have you had any conversations with the powers that be on the PGA Tour regarding with which event you will be reinstated?
Daly: Yes, June 1st.

Do you think your suspension was fair and, agree or not, do you think the suspension helped you as a person?
Daly: No, I don't think it was fair at all, further mentioning to the AP, "I don't really feel I deserved to be suspended, but I'm not going to dwell on it. I'm going to turn it into a positive. I'm getting my life back in order and I'm more organized."

Does good golf mimic good life or is one of the qualities of being a successful pro the ability to overcome it (obstacles)?
Daly: Good Golf means a more confident life both personal and in my game.

Right now, if you could choose the Race to Dubai or FedEx Cup which one would you dedicate yourself to and why?
Daly: I would like to do both.

John Daly is currently focusing his efforts on the Race to Dubai where he has a shot at the $1.6 million dollar prize. Daly is ninety-fourth in the standings and only the top seventy competitors are eligible to compete in the season-ending Dubai World Championship. There is plenty of time left to make a move and, with Daly's commitment to his future growing day-by-day, we might just see the Lion roaring in the winner's circle!

Golf for Beginners show also includes a discussion about the new, environmentally friendly Bug Bam mosquito repellent.


Tweet this blog… Your followers will thank you!

Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Click Here to receive our archived podcasts and 100's of easy golf tips free!

Get to know us on You Tube and MySpace and TWEET US on Twitter!

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"

This podcast is supported by GolfCalifornia.com, 1-866-351-1688.

Photo Credit: © JohnDaly.com

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Would trash talking tweets help Michelle Wie's performance? Also the cheapest putter may be right for you.

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The public usually sees LPGA and PGA Tour golfers as an illustrious and highly regarded group, quotable and predictable in their demeanor. You rarely hear about an offensive or derogatory slur and, if you do, it is quietly handled by the powers-that-be (unless John Daly is involved and then it becomes fodder).

Michelle Wie, for example, is becoming one of the more quotable golfers on the LPGA Tour. She is highly visible to the media and her public image is full of aplomb. Her most recent stylized excerpt?

"You know, like I always say, dream high and stuff, set your goals up high, and I think it's definitely - I'm not saying it's an easy goal to achieve" ...Stanford?

That's all well and good but how would Michelle Wie, and the LPGA Tour in general, handle a dose of "trash talk" amongst each other? Does any of that occur on or off the course and would it make the LPGA more interesting?

Charles Barkley, during a recent media conference stated, "The best part of sports, number one is winning. The second best part is trash talking with your teammates. But they’re trash talking in every single sport. Let me tell you something, I played golf with Phil Mickelson, Tom Lehman, Billy Mayfair, Dudley Hart. I’ve played with a lot of pros. And if you don’t think there is some trash talking going on out there, you’re crazy."

Would you tune in to more LPGA events if microphones followed the ladies and if you could overhear their little digs at each other? Usually trash talk is all in good fun but highly effective. I think that it would increase ratings!

Carolyn Bivens said she would "love it" if some of the more outspoken Twitterers such as Christina Kim and Morgan Pressel would reach out right in the middle of a match. As Bivens related, "fans are 12-, 13-, 14-year-old girls and boys. They're not waiting for the golf broadcast on Saturday and Sunday."



"They want to know what's going on in the middle of the round," asserted Bivens, "we're going to get out of the collared shirts and khaki pants and make golf chic, hip, happening." The LPGA frontwoman also maintained that Kim and about 30 other LPGA pros will help to make LPGA golf more "relevant".

Pressel was waiting at the 14th teebox during a practice round yesterday, chatting it up with Michelle Wie, another tweeter who has links to several other LPGA golfers including Jeehae Lee and Paige Mackenzie (who mentioned that her 8-iron head just fell off as the grips were being changed!)

Imagine the number of fans who would follow the LPGA if Pressel and Wie went head-to-head during a match and bantered "tweety trash talk" to their fans!

"Hit 'em hard - they'll land somewhere," Pressel may click to MW's Twitter page.
"#1 BABY! you know... its hard 2 b humble," responds Wie, trying so hard to keep her tweets UNDER 140 characters.

Perhaps Carolyn Bivens should encourage this new media correspondence although the PGA Tour does not allow communications devices on the golf course. But, just as the LPGA now allows bloggers to cover events, it is only a matter of time before we see golfers clicking away to their opponents on their qwerty keyboards during an event typing, "You're away Michelle!"


Tweet this blog… Your followers will thank you!


Send your golf questions and comments to golfforbeginners@aol.com.

Subscribe to our weekly podcast through this RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/golfforbeginners or through iTunes. Click Here to receive our archived podcasts and 100's of easy golf tips free!

Get to know us on You Tube and MySpace and TWEET US on Twitter!

"Shiny Tech" courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)"

This podcast is supported by OrlandoGolf.com, 866-443-8566.

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/more_sports/2009/05/30/2009-05-30_tweets_on_golf_course_are_for_the_birds.html

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