2020 Golf Thread

FL4WL3SS

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Jul 31, 2006
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Andy Brickley's potty mouth
My guess is that he means position it off your body, not your foot, as body/torso position can change relative to feet and negate what you're trying to do.
In all seriousness, yes this.

If you use foot position, but have terrible setup, eg your trying to put the ball in the front of your stance but your torso is over the ball then ball position off the front of your foot won't do anything. You should try and use the space between your armpits to position the ball.
 

Zomp

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Golf is a funny game.

All my life, particularly when I was a good player, I played a draw. Then after having my first son and taking essentially the year off, I came back and I hit a huge cut. My divots were going left, the ball was going right, it was ugly.

I tried every drill I could to get that draw back. It never happened.

I've been going once a week, 2 hour sessions on a trackman sim with a buddy. The other night he said "You're all arms when you swing." Right before I pull the trigger, I changed my first thought to rotating my belly button away from the target.

The draw is back and its back big.
 

TFP

Dope
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Dec 10, 2007
18,192
It constantly blows my mind that tiny little swing thoughts make enormous difference in results. Golf is indeed a funny game.

As an update on the woes of my driver, I am working on hitting up on the ball (without really changing much else in my swing) and the results are already improving. Was back to a more reasonable distance last week, and there's still more to be gained.

Right now, I'm just counting down the days until my golf trips. Seattle/Bandon the first week of March, Palm Springs the first weekend in April, then i'll be Masters weekend and officially golf season. February is gonna be a drag.
 
I just bought my first smartwatch. Does anyone have any recommendations about smartwatch-compatible golf GPS apps for measuring distances to the green? (Unfortunately the relatively cheap deal I got on the watch was for a Wear OS device, which I gather is mostly inferior to what Samsung is doing these days.)
 

88 MVP

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I just bought my first smartwatch. Does anyone have any recommendations about smartwatch-compatible golf GPS apps for measuring distances to the green? (Unfortunately the relatively cheap deal I got on the watch was for a Wear OS device, which I gather is mostly inferior to what Samsung is doing these days.)
I have used a few different apps over the years, but have settled on 18 birdies the past two seasons. It works well in conjunction with Apple Watch, though I can't speak to Android/Wear OS. The watch gives distances to front/middle/back and you can enter basic scoring info (score, GIR, number of putts, penalties) on the watch. You need to pull out your phone to use other features or to check distances to specific hazards or points on the course.
 
I have used a few different apps over the years, but have settled on 18 birdies the past two seasons. It works well in conjunction with Apple Watch, though I can't speak to Android/Wear OS. The watch gives distances to front/middle/back and you can enter basic scoring info (score, GIR, number of putts, penalties) on the watch. You need to pull out your phone to use other features or to check distances to specific hazards or points on the course.
Thanks, but FWIW, 18 Birdies doesn't appear to be compatible with Wear OS.
 

yeahlunchbox

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Jan 21, 2008
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I'm looking at finally updating my clubs (I'm still playing a 300 series TaylorMade driver and hand-me-down Lynx Black Cat Tour irons from the late 90's). I've lurked here for a while and have a few questions. I'm based in RI if that matters on any potential answers you might have.

1. Ideally I'd like to get properly fit, but financially it isn't feasible for me to get properly fit and get new clubs. How easy is it to take what you learn in a fitting and apply it to buying used clubs or are you kind of fit into new clubs? Would going to Joe and Leigh's where they fit you and already have a used selection be helpful for something like this?

2. Another reason I'm thinking of not spending the money to get fit is I'm a pretty poor golfer (I've never broken 100). It seems like the best thing to do would be to get some numbers on a simulator to get a base of what type of clubs i should get, get some clubs that have relatively recent technology, get lessons, then do a real fitting. Is my thinking ass backwards on this or does this seem like a solid plan?

3. Is it normal to be stiff flex shaft in irons and regular in woods? On a simulator recently I had iron numbers that seemed to put me on the border or stiff and regular leaning toward stiff but the driver speed seemed to have me in regular flex.

4. If I go with the DIY fitting and buying used, should I stick with one brand when buying to minimize differences between various clubs? If I opt for going with irons from one company, woods from another, maybe wedges with another, what are some things to look at to make sure I'm getting proper gapping between the different types of clubs?

5. Is adjustable weighting in woods as daunting as it seems? My mishits tend to be slices, but I certainly can miss in a variety of ways. It seems like the adjustable weighting could help on a slice but really make my other misses even worse than they are now, and maybe even screw up the shots I'm currently hitting properly now. There's got to be a reason almost every new wood has it, but I feel like just using a standard club might be easier.

6. Does anyone have any experience with BombTech clubs? With the variety of specials they run the price seems right, but how much of the price being right is due to the lack of expenses they claim to incur and how much (if any) of it is due to being an inferior club?

Thanks for any insight you can give me.
 

Comfortably Lomb

Koko the Monkey
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Sooo... if you’re not playing a ton, still finding your way out there, and are on a budget I’m not sure I would dive in on a fitting and all new clubs. Used feels like a better option.

Find a driver that’s a few years out of date and grab it. Even something from 2015-17 will be a massive improvement.

Find a set of irons from the past decade that are on the game improvement side of things and you’ll see some serious help on poor contact. Tech gains have been minimal in irons but they’re there relative to old 90s Lynx cavity backs (those were nice clubs back in the day btw). For example, anything in Ping’s G line.

Don’t worry about brand. I‘ve got 4 different club brands in my bag. I’m not sure you’re good enough to worry a ton about gapping yet. You’ll get there but by then you’ll be ready for new wedges anyway.
 

Doug Beerabelli

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You can get a fitting and buy used clubs. Some places will do free fittings, or credit it toward purchase. Chris Cote's golf shop in CT (Portland) will do that; not sure about RI area.

I was told a good time to get price discount on previous year's clubs was March at the golf shows. CT has one weekend of March 21 in Hartford. I'm guessing there will be shows in MA and RI too.

I've not been fitted for about a decade (Calloway X-22 irons), and my fitting indicated I could buy off the rack, so can't say too much from recent experience. I am strongly considering getting a fitting and new irons this year, and seeing if my driver and hybrids will still work - I've upgraded those over the years.
 

jercra

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6. Does anyone have any experience with BombTech clubs? With the variety of specials they run the price seems right, but how much of the price being right is due to the lack of expenses they claim to incur and how much (if any) of it is due to being an inferior club?

Thanks for any insight you can give me.
I agree with everything Lomb said above. He nailed it. I'll address the quoted specifically though. Bombtech makes great stuff. I'm a 2-3 handicap and currently have a Bombtech 3-wood and 5-wood in my bag. I've had everything from their drivers to their wedges to their putters and all of it has been quality stuff. I have a buddy (about a 12) who plays their 1st gen iron set and loves them. I have bunches of their wedges un-opened in my garage because it's cheaper to buy a set of their wedges than a single wedge from the big boys. I don't generally play them because I prefer a heavier wedge with a different bounce, but at least once a year I'll switch to them when I'm not feeling my current wedges or when I need new ones. In short, at your level, they're absolutely good clubs.

One other note, unless it says "Trackman" on it, don't believe a single thing you see from a simulator. Even with Trackman, if you didn't use it outdoors or with the little metal dots on it, then it's not that accurate either. Clubhead speed is also not the sole determination of what flex or type of shafts you should use.
 
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Light-Tower-Power

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Jun 14, 2013
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As a fellow poor golfer I'd suggest you buy either a used or cheaper set and spend the difference on some lessons. I spent a bunch of money on brand new Mizuno irons and Cleveland wedges and a Ping driver a few years ago and guess what? It didn't help. Speaking of lessons, maybe this is the year I splurge on some serious lessons so I can stop managing the course like a 75 year old man.
 

Comfortably Lomb

Koko the Monkey
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Feb 22, 2004
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A lot of 75-year-old men actually manage their way around the course incredibly well, because they know their limitations and how to mitigate their weaknesses. ;)
There are a lot of older guys who live in the 80s because, while lacking power, they dump short drives in/around the fairway, leave themselves in the fairway short of the green most of the time rather than with some hellish greenside shot, get really good at mid range pitches/chips and sink a few 10-footers.
 

Light-Tower-Power

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There are a lot of older guys who live in the 80s because, while lacking power, they dump short drives in/around the fairway, leave themselves in the fairway short of the green most of the time rather than with some hellish greenside shot, get really good at mid range pitches/chips and sink a few 10-footers.
Well, yes, but as an in-shape 26 year old I want to stop having to do this.
 

Over Guapo Grande

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I plunked down a whopping $179 for a 3 year membership at a local semi-private course. I really don't care for the course, but I play it enough that the price made it a no-brainer. Walk it 6 times in 3 years, and it pays for itself. Even dropping $20 for a cart makes it still affordable. The only restriction is that I can't play before 11AM on the weekends, which is fine with me. Hopefully, this will help my short game-- which I think of as my bread and butter- get back up to...par.
 

yeahlunchbox

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Jan 21, 2008
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I was told a good time to get price discount on previous year's clubs was March at the golf shows. CT has one weekend of March 21 in Hartford. I'm guessing there will be shows in MA and RI too.
Thank you to everyone who replied. The golf shows are partially what made me finally ask the question, because I'm probably going to the Boston one in a week and a half. RI used to have one but it doesn't appear there's been one in about 4 years now.
 

steveluck7

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I plunked down a whopping $179 for a 3 year membership at a local semi-private course. I really don't care for the course, but I play it enough that the price made it a no-brainer. Walk it 6 times in 3 years, and it pays for itself. Even dropping $20 for a cart makes it still affordable. The only restriction is that I can't play before 11AM on the weekends, which is fine with me. Hopefully, this will help my short game-- which I think of as my bread and butter- get back up to...par.
Where are you? I bought a similar deal 2 years ago at a local course here in RI, Foster CC. Felt the same way about it that you feel about yours. More than paid for itself in year 1.
 

Lupe Whalewatch

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Have there been changes made to the handicap calculations that I wasn't aware of? I just got my updated number, and its over a stroke lower than it was previously and I haven't posted a single score.
 

Comfortably Lomb

Koko the Monkey
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There's some background here: https://www.golf.com/instruction/rules/2019/10/17/golf-handicap-about-to-change-what-to-know/

Switching from lowest 8 of last 20 rounds from lowest 10 of 20 should reduce handicap for many folks. You're punting 2 higher scores after all. There's also apparently an adjustment for scores registered for different players on the same course each day to deal with harder/easier playing conditions. Not sure if that's retroactive or going forward. The buzz I saw last year was people will see changes but they won't be massive. Maybe for folks who only play days when conditions are hardest or easiest?
 

jercra

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There's some background here: https://www.golf.com/instruction/rules/2019/10/17/golf-handicap-about-to-change-what-to-know/

Switching from lowest 8 of last 20 rounds from lowest 10 of 20 should reduce handicap for many folks. You're punting 2 higher scores after all. There's also apparently an adjustment for scores registered for different players on the same course each day to deal with harder/easier playing conditions. Not sure if that's retroactive or going forward. The buzz I saw last year was people will see changes but they won't be massive. Maybe for folks who only play days when conditions are hardest or easiest?
It's more than just 8/20 vs 10/20. It's a whole new formula, it's calculated daily and course handicaps are vastly different. There's also a new rule for equitable stroke control of net double bogey for all handicap levels. I highly recommend any who plays competitive rounds of golf to read about the new world golf handicap system.
 

yeahlunchbox

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Where are you? I bought a similar deal 2 years ago at a local course here in RI, Foster CC. Felt the same way about it that you feel about yours. More than paid for itself in year 1.
Foster Country Club is running a similar deal now. Two years for $198, carts not included, good anytime Monday-Friday and after 10 weekends and holidays. Definitely thinking of pulling the trigger.
 

Leon Trotsky

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Foster Country Club is running a similar deal now. Two years for $198, carts not included, good anytime Monday-Friday and after 10 weekends and holidays. Definitely thinking of pulling the trigger.
A friend of mine has that deal at Foster. He lives in outer Johnston, so its great for him. I have no idea how they make money with deals with that, but I guess drives people to their bar and restaurant? The place is truly in the middle of nowhere.
 

steveluck7

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A friend of mine has that deal at Foster. He lives in outer Johnston, so its great for him. I have no idea how they make money with deals with that, but I guess drives people to their bar and restaurant? The place is truly in the middle of nowhere.
That's exactly it. When i got mine a couple of years ago, i was talking to the Tavern staff and that was their answer. trying to drive traffic to the restaurant. I'm in Burrillville so it's not too far for me.
The first year i got it, the course was super buys through mid-June then, presumably, once people felt that they got their money's worth, it eased up.
 

steveluck7

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Foster Country Club is running a similar deal now. Two years for $198, carts not included, good anytime Monday-Friday and after 10 weekends and holidays. Definitely thinking of pulling the trigger.
It's a good deal. Course is good, not great and has some unique holes so it's not boring.I'll be there this spring / summer!
 

Zomp

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I have a driver/3 wood fitting on Friday night at Newport Indoor Golf. Will post a write up if there is interest. The owner, Max, is also the club fitter. From our conversations he definitely knows his shit so I'm excited to see what I can be placed into. He's already asked me a bunch of questions on preference, problems, budget, etc... From going there myself and trying the demos I'd like to go with Ping or Titleist but am open to anything that works.
 

Over Guapo Grande

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Where are you? I bought a similar deal 2 years ago at a local course here in RI, Foster CC. Felt the same way about it that you feel about yours. More than paid for itself in year 1.
For some reason I just saw this-- it is at Pine Ridge CC in North Oxford, MA. It is a short course, (6000 from the tips) but the greens run hard and fast, and are all crowned.
 

Over Guapo Grande

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Fun (to me) story about Pine Ridge. They used to do a "buck a hole" deal after 5PM on the weekends during the summer. My brother and I would take that opportunity to do a 3 club challenge. Grab our (literal) Sunday bag, and toss in 3 clubs a piece -- putters counted as one if you chose to do so. It really helped with decision and shot making. I learned how to intentionally blade wedges to putt. Hit half or 3/4 shots. It obviously didn't make me a great golfer, but it certainly helped my game, and I would recommend that challenge to anyone as a change of pace.
 

yeahlunchbox

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I have a driver/3 wood fitting on Friday night at Newport Indoor Golf. Will post a write up if there is interest. The owner, Max, is also the club fitter. From our conversations he definitely knows his shit so I'm excited to see what I can be placed into. He's already asked me a bunch of questions on preference, problems, budget, etc... From going there myself and trying the demos I'd like to go with Ping or Titleist but am open to anything that works.
I'd be interested in hearing about it. Any particular reason you chose Newport Indoor Golf for the fitting?
 

Zomp

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A few reasons, really. I like their facility. I mentioned up thread but a buddy and I have been going once or twice per week for the past two months. I like their trackman bays, particularly bay 5 which is in its own fully enclosed room with a bunch of chairs, a big screen tv, spotify sound system etc...

Max, the owner, is on the younger side. I'd say mid to early 30s and seems to really know the industry. Even while my friend and I have been there, Max is always suggesting clubs/shaft combinations. Last time he was there with us I mentioned wanting to get a fitting, and we actually did an impromptu one then and there, with him staying with us for well over an hour having us try different clubs.

I had shoulder surgery a few years back and my swing has definitely changed and gotten slower. I don't think I can swing a 2x4 driver shaft like I used to. The numbers, I think, show that.

Also, going once a week this offseason has been the most I've ever practiced during the winter. I feel like my swing, particularly with my longer clubs, is as consistent as its been in a long time.
 
This morning I played my first round of the year - and I think for maybe 5-6 months, as I'm no longer interested in winter golf - here in Scotland. I booked the first official tee time of the day, at 8:00 a.m., and even though the temperature was just above freezing and most of the course was covered in frost in the absence of any wind or cloud cover last night, a) there were four groups already out on the course in front of me, and b) we were allowed to play on the course with no restrictions. No temporary greens, no forced use of mats, nothing. I couldn't believe it...I figured I was going to have to wait a while before teeing off while the ground began to thaw, not that I was going to have to wait a while behind the threesome that teed off right in front of me.

That said, I still got around all 18 holes in just under three hours, playing through one group and listening to the latest No Laying Up podcast between shots and when I had to wait behind another group. It was sunny, there wasn't much wind and so it didn't feel that cold, and it was really pleasant to be back; I made one birdie, hit a few solid shots, had a two-putt from 30 feet after ramming the first putt 12 feet past the hole, and I broke 80, albeit from winter tees which are mostly well in front of the normal markers. (That said...it's a LOT of fun for a relatively short hitter like me to play the course from the front tees. I should do that more often, even when it's not mandatory.) And now I generally feel like I want to make more noise in competitive golf this year than I have in the last few years. We'll see.
 

4 6 3 DP

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Zomp hope the fitting goes great- I'm a club ho and buy and sell equipment with regularity... There's a ton of great stuff out there right now. And you really don't need after market shafts anymore for the most part- the stuff you can get stock is great.

Just looking at cshea's post in the other thread, I had a 9 hole stretch last year in which I made triple, double, bogey, par, bird, eagle.... The pupu platter of golf instability...
 

Zomp

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Thanks. I'm looking forward to it. I actually tried the TS1 the other night. I know its meant for low swing speeds but I was getting it out there. The draw bias seemed to help as well for some reason.
 

Gunca

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Mar 5, 2020
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I have a driver/3 wood fitting on Friday night at Newport Indoor Golf. Will post a write up if there is interest. The owner, Max, is also the club fitter. From our conversations he definitely knows his shit so I'm excited to see what I can be placed into. He's already asked me a bunch of questions on preference, problems, budget, etc... From going there myself and trying the demos I'd like to go with Ping or Titleist but am open to anything that works.
I’m also interested in a write up. Fittings are always a lot of fun.
 

Bosoxen

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Just looking at cshea's post in the other thread, I had a 9 hole stretch last year in which I made triple, double, bogey, par, bird, eagle.... The pupu platter of golf instability...
I came close to that - sans eagle - last Saturday where I walked up to #8 and proceeded to go triple-double-double-birdie-par-par-bogey. I did manage to stay on the latter end of that trend to salvage the round for a respectable (for me) 87 but I was ready to throw my shit in the water and go home after that second double.

Also, hi! First time poster in this thread.
 

4 6 3 DP

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I'd argue that if you play a lot of fourball - I'd much rather be a 10 handicap that makes doubles and triples and a bunch of pars than a guy who makes 7 pars and 11 bogies....My blowup holes now end up being mental errors more than physical ones - if I don't lose my mind I can usually save bogey on everything but the par 3s.
 

jercra

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I'd argue that if you play a lot of fourball - I'd much rather be a 10 handicap that makes doubles and triples and a bunch of pars than a guy who makes 7 pars and 11 bogies....My blowup holes now end up being mental errors more than physical ones - if I don't lose my mind I can usually save bogey on everything but the par 3s.
Yup. This is why being a low handicapper sucks for everything but stroke play events. Let's say you're a 10 and I'm a 2 and I need to give you 5 a side. In stroke play, that can happen on 3 or 4 holes. In match play, you make a 9 and I make a 4 and I win one hole. I wish there was a defined percentage of full handicap defined for non-stroke play matches.
 

The Needler

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Dec 7, 2016
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Yup. This is why being a low handicapper sucks for everything but stroke play events. Let's say you're a 10 and I'm a 2 and I need to give you 5 a side. In stroke play, that can happen on 3 or 4 holes. In match play, you make a 9 and I make a 4 and I win one hole. I wish there was a defined percentage of full handicap defined for non-stroke play matches.
Yeah, but it’s not true at all. Match play using handicaps significantly favors the lower handicap.

From Dean Knut:
Although handicaps are supposed to equalize matches, it's not always true, is it?
Unfortunately not. The scale is tipped in favor of the better player.

The way the formula works, for every six strokes difference in handicap, the better player has a one-stroke advantage, because the lower handicapper is more likely to play at or near his handicap than the high handicapper. In a match between an eight handicapper and a 14 handicapper, the better player is giving away six strokes, yet the odds are still 60-40 that he will win the match.

Why?

As we explained in part one ("Handicaps 101," Apr., p. 97), the USGA set up its system to favor better players. Its philosophy is that handicaps should be based on potential rather than average ability.
Anecdotally, my club runs a net match play championship every year. Although there‘s an even spread of handicaps at entry, not only has a double-digit cap never won, one has never even made the final.
 

jercra

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Yeah, but it’s not true at all. Match play using handicaps significantly favors the lower handicap.

From Dean Knut:


Anecdotally, my club runs a net match play championship every year. Although there‘s an even spread of handicaps at entry, not only has a double-digit cap never won, one has never even made the final.
Interesting. I get the point about better players being more consistent, but I I guess I still don't understand how it's not an advantage to essentially get more strokes than your stroke play index. The consistency aspect would seem to harm the better player in that better players are less likely to make > bogey on a hole. I guess it will be interesting to see what the new handicap system does since it's no longer intended to reflect potential but average.