Keep It Simple and Keep It Fun

Back when I was an amateur, I remember playing golf with my friend on a lovely sunny afternoon and watching him really struggle with his game and he wasn’t enjoying being out on the course. I gave him a quick tip and immediately this made a massive difference and his golf improved, and his enjoyment! This was the time I realised how rewarding it was to help someone with their golf swing and see their face light up after hitting a good shot.

Now I’m a Professional, it has got to the stage where I actually enjoy helping people hit great shots more so than when I do myself (Not that I hit many!). The game of golf has been so good to me, and now I want to do everything I can in order to help as many people as possible achieve their goals. Golf is supposed to be fun, but the amount of fun a player experiences quickly diminishes as soon as they make things more complicated for themselves. Whether you are a very keen golfer, someone who is not able to play as often as you would like to, or someone who is starting out and thinking of taking up the game, the key to enjoying the game on a higher level is “SIMPLIFY”!

Simplifying your swing thoughts will not only speed up the rate at which your swing improves, you will also improve your confidence and therefore enjoy the game a lot more! For example, many players who come to see me for a lesson are quick to blame their bad shots that go left and right on certain flaws in their golf swing. They immediately start to change things in their swing when the problem might actually be taking place before the swing even begins. If the shots are not going where you want them to, first check your grip, stance, and set up to ensure that you are setting yourself up properly for a good shot. Many of my lessons come to me complaining about consistently hitting the ball left or right of their intended target, yet as I watch them hit the shots, it is clear they are consistently aiming exactly where the ball goes. They do not realise that they are aiming in the wrong direction, so when the ball doesn’t go where they want it to, they automatically assume there is a fault in their golf swing.

Another way to enjoy the game of golf more is to have realistic expectations. Golf is not how good your good shots are, it’s how good your bad shots are during a round. We need to expect that we are going to hit some bad shots during the course of the round and not every shot is going to be perfect. Many amateurs always come up short when hitting a shot to the green, because they choose a club which needs a perfect strike in order for it to go the required distance. They swing the club as hard as they can and then wonder why the consistency suffers. Instead choose a club which goes a little further than the intended distance and swing easier and more within yourself. This will make it possible to incorporate proper swing mechanics which will automatically improve your consistency, and improve the odds that your ball ends up on the green. (Of course you need to access the trouble surrounding the green for example, if there is water behind the green, you might want to stick with the original club to make sure you have no chance of going over the green and long). Since “feel” is so important in the golf swing (long and short shots) the less technical you can make things, the easier it will be to incorporate good rhythm, timing, and tempo.

The game of golf has so much to offer people of all levels, and we can enjoy the benefits of the game to its fullest if we just don’t over think things and simplify our overall approach.

I hope this blog has been helpful to you. Please call 613131 to book lessons with myself. Thank you

Christopher Reed

PGA Professional

Westridge Golf Centre

Dan’s Weekly Top Tips

Congratulations

Congratulations to Louise Webb and Derek Allen for coming 1st & 2nd in the recent weekly competition and Derek coming in with an impressive 43 points in this week’s competition. Both Derek and Louise are amongst a selection of golfers who are having regular lessons, where their hard work is paying off!

There are many people that have already achieved their yearly goals in a few months and we have now re-aligned the goals to achieve higher.

Since around late November 2018, I have started to offer lesson packages to anyone who wanted to commit themselves to improving their golf.

Packages include lessons and range balls, however,  they can also include membership if you wanted to. Prices for these packages start at only £40!! Saving you a minimum of £233 a month!!

Please call me on 01983 613131 if you would like to know more about the various lesson packages available.

The Masters is upon us!

The Masters is upon us

This week for lots of people defines the start of the golf season when The Masters is on! A tournament set in the most beautiful of golfing surroundings of Augusta National the world’s top players assemble with the dream of lifting arguably the most coveted trophy in golf. But who is going to win it? Is it the year of the Tiger after Tiger Roll’s victory in the Grand National yesterday? Will Rory roar back to his previous best? My top picks are as follows

Hideki Matsuyama - Always seems to raise his game for the major events and is often a great each way bet.

Tony Finau - A big hitter who is more than capable of tearing up the course, tied 10th in 2018 expect him to improve on that this year.

Ricky Fowler - A nearly man in the majors so far I think this is the year he will break his duck.

Angel Cabrera - I wouldn’t bet your house on this one but with previous decent form at Augusta and with odds of 1000/1 might be worth 50p each way.

Whoever you think is going to take the trophy this week you have an opportunity to try some of the clubs used by the world’s best players.

On Tuesday evening we have Wilson with us along with their range of D7 irons and they are challenging anybody to bring along their own 7 iron and they believe they can find you a club that will go longer so if its distance you are after make sure you are here Tuesday 9th April between 4pm and 7pm or Wednesday 10th April between 10am and 2pm.

On Thursday 11th April Taylor Made are here with their range of M5 and M6 drivers as well as the P790 & P760 irons and the rest of the product line so come along between 1pm and 5pm to try them out.

Friday 12th April we have Callaway here with the Epic Flash Driver which was built using artificial intelligence and used 15,000 virtual prototypes before finding the best possible clubface to ensure maximum distance and forgiveness. If you want to try this out then come along between 2pm - 6pm where they will have their full range of equipment with them.

If you would like to join us for any of these then please get in touch to book your space.

A View From The Shed

Next week brings the first Major of the season, The Masters. However, with the course presentation and definition ahead of schedule, due to the relatively mild dry winter. The usual pressure of the “Augusta Syndrome”, is not a concern this year.

 

Going by the old farmers saying, “Oak before the Ash, we are due a splash”, we are in for a dry summer. As the Oak trees are budding long before the Ash trees.

Although i am pleased with the condition of the greens for this time of year, a planned light top dressing, within the next couple of weeks, will true the surface and increase the pace a little.

Learn To Chip….Lower Your Scores!

Almost all of you who reads this blog would have heard the saying “drive for show, putt for dough”? Well, this is definitely the case! Think about a normal round of golf that you play, if you happen to miss a green its almost guaranteed that you will make bogey. If you miss a green but hit a good chip shot to within a few feet of the hole, you have a very good chance of saving your par. So ask yourself how many greens do you miss on average during a round? A good amateur player is going to hit about half the greens, and a higher handicap player is going to miss a few more during a round. For example, let’s say you miss 10 greens on average in a round and are a poor chipper, you may get up and down just twice. If you were to just improve your chipping, you could get up and down six times rather than two, which would improve your score by 4 shots!

No matter how long you stand on the driving range smashing drivers, you will never save four shots as quickly from your game as you would with better chipping. The following are five key chipping tips that should quickly help you to see improvement out on the golf course:

  1. Use Your Hands: The worst thing I hear from amateurs when giving a chipping lesson is that they were told by a friend to chip using a putting motion. Nothing could be further from the truth, because to chip effectively you need to engage your hands and let them work for you. A correct putting stroke uses no hand movement and therefore gets no hinge in the wrists. Hinging the wrists is critical to hitting a good chip shot because it allows the club to get up above the grass level and hit down on the ball with a descending strike.

 

  1. Use One Club: Have you got endless amounts of time to practice working on your game? For most people they only get to practice once or twice a week and for only a short amount of time due to other commitments. Because of this, why try to achieve perfect chipping with several different clubs. Choose one club, preferably a sand wedge or lob wedge and get really good chipping with it. With proper technique, and understanding ball position and weight distribution, you will be able to hit a wide range of shots with the same club. You will also develop confidence in this club the more times you use it over and over again.

 

  1. Make Sure You Get On Green: Not all chips shots are the same, some are from short rough just off the edge of the green with a generous hole position, and others are hit from deep rough off a downslope with no green to work with. When you are setting up to hit the shot your faced with, make sure you evaluate the situation and choose a smart type of shot. There should be one main goal that outweighs all others, and that is to make sure the next shot is a putt. Don’t try to pull off the miracle shot and leave the ball in the same horrid position as before. Even if you leave yourself a long putt, it’s better to be putting from 30 feet than chipping still.

 

  1. Decide Where You Want To Putt From: Unless you actually whole the chip shot your faced with, you are going to have to whole a putt in order to complete the up and down par save. Before you chip, walk around the hole and look at the slope of the putting surface in order to decide exactly where the easiest place will be to putt from. For example if the hole is cut on a flat section of the green, you can take dead aim at the hole and try to chip it as close as possible or inn. However if the hole is cut on a slope you are ideally wanting to make sure your putting uphill as a 10 foot uphill putt is easier than a 5 foot downhill putt. A good leave for par will give you the confidence to knock the putt in and walk off with your par save.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. I hope these tips have been helpful to you and your scores will lower as a result. The short game is a neglected part of the game and I guarantee if you can improve this part of your game only a fraction, you will see big results! If you would like to book a lesson with me please call 613131

Christopher Reed

PGA Professional

Westridge Golf Centre

Fixture Calendar files for your smart devices

To complement the new Season 2019/20 Fixture Book a series of Calendar Files have been created which can be downloaded to your smart devices. Again these have been split into various categories, with approximate times just to reserve a place in the day. A full Calendar is also provided.

9 hole 2019_20 Calendar

alliance union 2019_20 Calendar

full calendar 2019_20 Calendar

juniors 2019_20 Calendar

ladies 2019_20 Calendar

majors 2019_20 Calendar

mens league 2019_20 Calendar

seniors 2019_20 Calendar

sundays 2019-20 Calendar

wednesdays 2019_20 Calendar