Today we ventured out to the course to see if Adam could put into practice what we have worked on at the range in the endeavor to see if he could break 100. We had a very similar game plan to previous in that if there was danger left and right of the fairway such as water or Out of Bounds, we would hit 5 iron off the tee.
If Adam wanted to hit driver we identified that the 2nd and 9th hole at Emerald Lakes would be the best holes. This is because the only danger on these two holes is trees or another fairway. Identifying where you will take risks and where you will be conservative is a great strategy to ensure blow-out scores are avoided as much as possible.
The other game plan I had with Adam was to make sure that he didn't 3 putt and that his worst score would be no more than triple bogey (3 Over Par). The worst score goal I believe is a very good thought to have when playing golf and what kind of worst score is dependent on what score you're trying to achieve. For example when I play I make sure my worst score is a bogey as I'm trying to shoot around par.
For those who want to break 90, their worst score score goal should be Double Bogey (2 Over). When this goal is at the forefront of your mind, it allows you not to get caught up in the moment. For example for myself I don't want to have a double bogey therefore when I am in trouble on the course, it allows me to make more sensible decisions. If I am just playing in the moment and not concerning myself with a worst score, I could have a rush of blood and try and pull off a shot that could ramp up shots for that hole and make it difficult to salvage my round later.
Having a worst score goal for Adam is very good because as long as he can stay in the present and ensure he doesn't have a blow-up hole, he will no doubt have other holes that he may make par, bogey or double bogey which will not impact his score for the negative. The other aspect as mentioned in breaking 100 is making sure he doesn't have a 3-putt. The most important aspect of not having a 3 putt is distance control. I taught Adam a system in putting in which I have done for many of my students.
The first task is to go onto the practice putting green on the course you're about to play. You then step out 4 steps to the hole. Your whole goal is to not necessarily make the putt but to have exceptional distance control. The goal of eliminating three putts is to make sure that after your first putt to the hole, the second has as little stress as possible.
The two main constants that you should always have is ensuring the tension in your hands is down to a 3 out of 10 (10 being the tightest) and keeping the same speed in your stroke no matter what distance putt you have. So when you are starting at 4 steps your whole goal is to work out how far to take the putter back for that distance. Once you have mastered that distance, then step out to 8 steps and simply double the length of the stroke. Use this same method then for any distance putt.
The other important note is make sure that whatever length you take the putter back, swing through the same distance. As long as the constants are the same, you will have very good results. The reason why I say go to the practice green in which you will play is because some greens are faster or slower than others. Therefore your 4 step distance may vary depending on the course. Obviously when out on the course and you have an uphill or downhill slope, you would make the adjustments by lengthening or decreasing the length of the stroke.
For Adam's game this day considering the goals we had in place was very good. He hit 5 iron off the tees in all except the 2nd and the 9th. On the 2nd he hit an awesome drive which set him up to make bogey. I could tell Adam wanted to hit Driver again but was disciplined and made sure that hitting the fairway was the priority. He did make a couple of three-putts and did put the ball into the water on the 6th but didn't lose his head and still kept his average to just over a bogey per hole. We haven't completed the round yet as we were only able to get in 7 holes but he is in a good position to break 100.
Tune in next time to see if Adam can do it!!