Finally, a sign of the positive nature

I feel like a weight has been lifted.  I know it’s a bit of a preemptive strike to say so, but over the past two days I have finally had some realizations in my game that I have been working towards over the last couple of months.  And I couldn’t be happier to have them hit.

It’s not there yet by any means, but right now I call it my 50/50 game.  Half of the swings are what I want and half are still old habits creeping in.  But, this 50/50 now comes with a deeper understanding of what it is that I need to be doing.  Before, I was having mixed results and not exactly understanding what it was that I was doing differently.  Now I could be blindfolded as far as the swing is concerned and tell you exactly where the ball is going to land, which is a huge move in the right direction.

What happened was a mix of having a Bruce lesson last week and a fairly regular playing partner (who happens to be a solid plus handicapper) both mention that I needed to get my belt buckle pointing towards the target.  I messed around with that idea and the end result was that I had been getting way handsy with my swing and needed to calm the arms to allow my lower body and shoulders guide the club.  When I let my hands and arms get out of the way and swing with my body I crushed the drive and am so much more accurate with my irons and wedges.  It’s crazy.  This feel of a body swing produces so much more power and allows for better control.  The only problem is that I have a tendency to swing with my arms and when I don’t let my body take over I get handsy and snap hook it.  When I make a good turn and let the body do the work I hit a 300 yard drive and hit short par 5s in two with mid-irons.  Much much better golf.

I’ve had these realization before and they were equally as awesome then as they are now.

Today, I decided to watch the PGA Championship as I haven’t watched much golf in my life and figured it would be beneficial to see what the guys are up to.  After watching for a couple of hours I definitely have a few emotive opportunities for the blog.

First off, I was impressed not by their tee shot skills, but with how well they recover from errant shots.  That being said, it was interesting to see how much velocity they generate in their swing.  Looking at the PGA Tour averages, their swing speeds while playing in competition are about 10 percent faster than mine.  Which doesn’t seem like much, but when you go from carrying the ball 265 yards to carrying it 290 that makes for a much different approach shot into those tough greens.  I look forward to continuing to grow my swing velocity and getting to that level not too far down this road.

The recovery was most impressive.  At times the rough was so thick that the guys wouldn’t even land their chips on the greens, but the majority of opportunities they got the ball to within 10 feet and made the par putt.  At least that is what the top ten in the field were doing and that’s why they ended up top ten.  And even more important was the number of putts made.  All of those guys could hit it far and stick the greens close, but the winner was the one who made the most putts.

I suppose my overall view of the game didn’t change much at all after watching that major.  The important aspects to work on are still everything within 100 yards, putting and working on increasing swing speed.  The rest is 100 percent mental :)

Heading camping for a night.  There’s no place better suited for clearing one’s head and getting ready for the next big push than the Oregon woods.

Hope everyone out there enjoyed that last Major.  It was very inspiring to watch!

  • Simon Schmid

    Awesome news! “Half of the game is 90% mental.” Were you referencing this quote? :D it’s from a baseball player (don’t know which one)

  • davin

    I am really digging your blog and your videos. I just discovered them all today. I don’t golf and likely never will, but your story is shaping up to be pretty incredible. I would love to see a feature film about these 6 years once it is all over.

  • Benny

    Good luck with everything yet to come, Dan! I’m enjoying checking in every now and then to track your progress.

  • Mark Brunkus

    I like looking at your stats like fairways hit. Why did you stop updating that? I thought that was part of the project. Best of luck.

  • thedanplan

    New stats are up.

  • thedanplan

    That’s a great one!

  • thedanplan

    It really is, where are you coming from?

  • thedanplan

    Hi Oscar. What is driver SS?