Wednesday, February 21, 2018

The Finest Nine-Hole #Golf Course in the U.S.A.?

AndNine-hole golf courses are regaining popularity - here's why you should consider playing nine.

A lack of time is usually the main reason why many golfers play nine holes instead of the regulation eighteen but there is so much more to gain from a nine-hole course.

The Finest Nines, a book written about the best nine-hole golf courses in North America, states its case for the value of a short course.

A "complete" round of golf today is eighteen holes, which is based on The Old Course in St. Andrews; originally this course had twenty-two holes but, if you look back even earlier into Scottish history (as far back as 1562), golfers played twenty-five holes!

In his book, writer Anthony Pioppi states that a nine-hole round of golf is perfectly legitimate and that golfers should embrace nine holes and give the courses in this book validation as a true test of a golfers' skills.

Did you know, according to the USGA, "the First U.S. Open in 1895 was played on a nine-hole course"?

Nine holes are also great for a quick test of skills, an afternoon walk, and that it is totally "legit" and counts towards your handicap!

According to a press release issued by the USGA and the R&A, in 2020, a universal golf handicap system will take effect. "A minimal number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap; a recommendation that the number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap be 54 holes from any combination of 18-hole and 9-hole rounds."

The courses in The Finest Nines were selected for their architecture; strategy and shotmaking, how a golfer makes his way from tee to green and the diversity of the par-3's, 4's and 5's were the determining factors considered.

So, which course did the author hail as the "finest nine-hole course in the country?"

Pick up a copy of the book and find out! Okay, okay, spoiler alert - it's Whitinsville Golf Club in Whitinsville, Massachusetts!

Add a comment to this Golf for Beginners golf blog below and text us on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Why All Golfers Need to Attend Demo Days

Spring is almost upon us which means (for the most part) golfers will be dusting off their clubs and taking to the driving range.

After reconnecting with your driver and irons, you may think that you need new clubs but, before spending an arm and a leg on new golf equipment, consider attending demo days sponsored by manufacturers or your local will learn much about your swing, the newest technology and you may ultimately walk away with the correct clubs for your swing.

Going to a demo day at a golf course or equipment resaler is like entering a candy store - there are so many different clubs to view and all of the reps are standing nearby, tempting you to try before you buy. Demo Day is a cornucopia of golf bags filled with all the irons and drivers you want to test.

Why test new clubs when you believe your clubs will be perfectly fine for another season?

Your clubs could be costing you shots; just because something is familiar to you or you are comfortable with it, doesn't mean it is still good for your game!

Golf swings change, and so does equipment. What might have suited you up until this point may need some tweaking; your driver, for example, which could be ten years old, may no longer offer you proper distance - time for a new Twist Face or Rogue? Also, pay attention to the weight and flex of the shaft another important update due to changes in the speed of your swing.
“Even with all the latest developments and technology in golf, most golfers aren’t using clubs that fit them,” said Dale Ketola, director of instruction and fitting at Grande Dunes Golf Performance Center. “Even if you’ve been fitted before, mechanics can change.  You should be checked every so often to make sure your clubs complement your game.”
...from press release on 

And if you are still playing with those beginner golf clubs and have taken your game to the next level, a professional should review your clubs to see if they need to be updated.

Read: How to Tell If You Need New Irons

With reps and pros on hand to answer your questions, Demo Day is a perfect time to reassess what is in your golf bag!

Golf for Beginners has compiled a short list of what you should consider when heading out to Demo Day.

1. Determine what you want to accomplish during the event and how much money you want to spend - it is easy to get lost among the shiny, gleaming, new clubs.

2. Talk to a pro about your game (what is good/bad about it and show him/her your current set of clubs.

3. Test the golf clubs - you may be surprised that hybrids feel more comfortable than long irons or senior-shaft clubs feel better to you than a women's set of golf clubs. Grips and shafts are also important. You may like a bigger grip or a lighter shaft - make sure you have the pro or rep help you through the decision-making process.

Also, don't just buy clubs - use this as a learning experience and make sure you get properly fitted for the clubs before taking anything home.

READ: Should You Replace your Long Irons with Hybrids?

What do you learn most about your swing and clubs when you attend a Demo Day? Let us know in the comments section of this golf blog and follow/tag us on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.

Friday, February 09, 2018

How Flubs from PGA Tour Golfers Teach the Rest of Us

Although professional golfers are the best in the world to watch for quality shot-making, they are still human and hit their fair share of flubs, wayward drives, and shanks. How can we use their errors and recoveries to improve our golf game?

From Rickie Fowler blowing a one-shot lead at the Waste Management Phoenix Open to Ian Poulter's shank into the stands, pro golfers' blown opportunities remind you that they're human. Watch how a pro golfer maintains his/her composure under pressure and shakes off blunders to better your round.

Take, for instance, Rickie Fowler's current state of affairs - he is now establishing notoriety as a golfer who "can't always get it done on Sundays." Does he agonize over each shot? When interviewed after his fourth messy round, Fowler looked at the positives of his game.  I "was in a decent position with a few to play and just had a couple — really didn't make bad swings."

Of course, Rickie also mentioned his putting woes using one of the "best clubs in his bag" but that is par for the course ..."I know I'm a good putter, I putted well all week," confirmed Fowler.

Learn from these three famous Ben Hogan quotes; you can then understand the mind of a professional golfer and be a better player in the long run:

"This is a game of misses. The guy who misses the best is going to win."
"A good round of golf is if you can hit about three shots that turn out exactly as you planned them."
"The most important shot in golf is the next one."

Golf is not an easy sport - a positive attitude combined with determination, solid planning and practice will help you to not only improve but to elevate your game.

READ: 3 Steps to Achieving Your Golf Resolutions

Do you watch the pros and what do you learn from them? Leave your comments on our golf blog and be sure to follow us on Twitter @Golf4Beginners for more golf tips!