If You Had To Start Again - What Would You Do Differently?

I have just been reflecting on my last year's golf performance and I had a question pop into my head... "What would I do differently if I had to start again?"



I thought it was an interesting question so I'd like to hear what others would do if they had to start again but keeping your current knowledge.



If I were to start again I would be way less technical. I would focus on a few fundamentals of the swing and just go and play without filling my head with technical do's and don't's. I would also pick one shape of shot and focus on hitting that over and over again. That for me would be a fade because I've suffered with hook problems over the course of my playing career.



What would you do differently if you had to start again?
«13

Comments

  • oikos1oikos1 Members Posts: 2,270 ✭✭
    Start learning and playing the game at the age of one.
  • nbg352nbg352 Members Posts: 8,320 ✭✭
    I would get lessons from a teacher I can understand and relate to...And I would buy top quality equipment bent 2* flat from the get go.
    R11S 8* square; Stock stiff
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  • ebrasmus21ebrasmus21 Serial Shanker CAMembers Posts: 5,354 ✭✭
    Would have taken lessons 10 years ago if I could have.
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  • RobertBaronRobertBaron Members Posts: 774 ✭✭
    I would have invented the iphone and videoed my swing in 120 FPS much more.
  • Krt22Krt22 Members Posts: 6,504 ✭✭
    I would have started much earlier (started 5.5years ago at 29) and focused much less on ball flight and more on putting together a fundamentally sound swing. Early beginners luck and going purely by ball flight largely disillusioned me into thinking what I was going was correct
  • Santiago GolfSantiago Golf I Strive to make you Better Members Posts: 4,997 ✭✭
    Understand how progression works and would have to par 3 course 5 min away everyday in middle school
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    S Wedge: Scratch 1018 DS 57*; Dynamic Gold S400 Onyx; 35.5", 63.5* lie (85): I HARDLY USE IT IN THE BUNKER
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  • GoGoErkyGoGoErky Members Posts: 1,141 ✭✭
    Pick up the game in high school when I was offered the chance to learn by a buddies dad. Take lessons from jump when I started playing in my early 20s
  • tmfool tmfool Members Posts: 1,828 ✭✭
    read hogans 5 fundamentals sooner



    and once discovering 9 ballflight laws - not become such a slave to analyzing what just happened while walking to the next shot
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  • bober74bober74 Members Posts: 115
    tmfool wrote:


    read hogans 5 fundamentals sooner



    and once discovering 9 ballflight laws - not become such a slave to analyzing what just happened while walking to the next shot




    So true about the ball flight laws. Instant amnesia would be good sometimes.
  • SixtySomePingSixtySomePing Members Posts: 5,115 ✭✭
    I started playing in the spring of '65 at age 14. Some friends of mine and I got some mis-matched clubs, 3-5-7-9 irons, driver, 3 wood and putter, all at a flea market place. Our moms dropped us off, and all we knew about golf was from watching it on tv, Arnie, Jack and the boys. We walked, talked and had fun. We weren't very good at golf yet, we were baseballers. But we had a great time, the sky was always blue, we played all day when we wanted to. We had no bills, no cares, we just enjoyed being on the course, it was the #1 reason for being there. Or course we started learning what we could from watching those pros, and grown ups play, and talking to other golfers. We ate hot dogs and drank Cokes after the first nine. To answer your question, if I had to start over again, I wouldn't do a thing different, those were the greatest golf days of my life. Odd, now that I've been playing for 54 years, I'm back to where just enjoying playing is #1 reason to play.
  • TIM929TIM929 Los AngelesMembers Posts: 441 ✭✭
    edited Jan 8, 2019 7:55pm #12
    I would have made the deal with my wife for my "crack of dawn" Saturday tee time sooner.



    also, kindly asked my father in law to watch my daughters with my wife while I was gone in exchange for our Saturday lunch sooner as well.
  • llewol007llewol007 4KidsGolfer ClubWRX Posts: 3,357 ClubWRX
    Hard to say since I took up the game of golf as a result of my buddy getting me a job at a golf shop during my senior year of high school. If it were one thing, I would say it would be have to be my mindset of focusing on the short game more than I did back then. In my early years in the game, I just wanted to hit the ball far. If I took as much time back then solidifying by short game, I probably would be a scratch golfer.
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  • b_f_c_99b_f_c_99 No Warm Up Needed. Members Posts: 248 ✭✭
    I would have never cracked open a golf magazine or listened to any tips. Twenty years ago in my mid 30s I had figured out how to match up the parts of my swing. Wasn’t super long but but hitting 15 plus greens per round was pretty routine. I needed to putt better was all. Then looking for affirmation of what I was doing with my full swing led me down the swing theory road where I never found anybody that talked about what I thought was correct but boy did I find all sorts of crap to mess with and screw me up. A trip to one of Montes clinics and spending some time talking about what I use to do vs what I was currently doing I was able to rediscover my old move. Finished last year with my last 6 rounds with 1 over as my worse score. I did learn a lot about golf swing theory though which is nice.
  • Hawkeye77Hawkeye77 Countdown to The Masters! ClubWRX Posts: 17,712 ClubWRX
    Started a long time ago around 10-11 years old playing with my dad, then with my middle school friends and my grandpas when we visited. There isn't one single thing different I would change about any of it, even if magically I was now a better golfer (and really, what would that mean, another 5 off my handicap, or maybe 5 more, who knows - not worth it).



    Leroy Robert "Satchel" Paige is my guide on this. Just don't see anything to be gained by looking back in general on anything.
  • bladehunterbladehunter Today was a good day.... Members Posts: 25,900 ✭✭
    oikos1 wrote:


    Start learning and playing the game at the age of one.




    Bingo. I’d have started at a young age. I can only dream what this game may feel like to an untethered youth. I’ll never know. But I manage to play it pretty well with a full time job, wife kid and everything that goes with that.
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  • ebrasmus21ebrasmus21 Serial Shanker CAMembers Posts: 5,354 ✭✭

    oikos1 wrote:


    Start learning and playing the game at the age of one.




    Bingo. I’d have started at a young age. I can only dream what this game may feel like to an untethered youth. I’ll never know. But I manage to play it pretty well with a full time job, wife kid and everything that goes with that.




    How old were you when you started, BH?
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    TM M3 - Rogue Silver 110MSI 70S
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  • ebrasmus21ebrasmus21 Serial Shanker CAMembers Posts: 5,354 ✭✭
    I have one more. Besides wanting to have taken lessons sooner I wish I hadn’t taken a 6 year hiatus from the game.



    When my fam moved to CA I went to a large high school with a powerhouse athletic program. I chose to play basketball year-round. Gave up golf entirely and didn’t play a single time from the time I was 14 - 20 years old. High school was four of the best years of my life - so I don’t regret much. My HS teammates are still my best friends to this day so it difficult to say it was a mistake. If I could I’d have liked to figure out how to stay active in my golfing life.
    G400 LST - TPT proto
    TM M3 - Rogue Silver 110MSI 70S
    21* Fourteen Type 7 Driving Iron - HZRDUS Black 6.5 105g
    4 - PW Mizuno MP 18 MMC - SteelFiber FC115
    50, 54, 60 RC Dual Bite - SteelFiber i125
    Evnroll ER5
    Snell MTB Black
  • PetethreeputPetethreeput Members Posts: 1,431 ✭✭
    Not sure I would change a thing. I didn’t take lessons until I had already shot par, and the instructor told me I had to change my grip from 10 finger to overlap if I ever wanted to get good.

    So I did.

    What I would change is how and when I decided to try and become good. My quest for improvement put me in a “don’t” mindset. I focused on the mistakes not the successes. I also only started trying “to be good” after my second back surgery. I can’t say it held me back, but I can say I wonder about it still.

    Like 60 said, I am trying to return to just having fun, but the “dont” still creeps into my head.

  • SoCalTitleistSoCalTitleist Members Posts: 3,255 ✭✭
    Take it more seriously at younger age
  • bladehunterbladehunter Today was a good day.... Members Posts: 25,900 ✭✭
    ebrasmus21 wrote:


    oikos1 wrote:


    Start learning and playing the game at the age of one.




    Bingo. I’d have started at a young age. I can only dream what this game may feel like to an untethered youth. I’ll never know. But I manage to play it pretty well with a full time job, wife kid and everything that goes with that.




    How old were you when you started, BH?




    Started in 2014. 39 as of December 2018. Yea I know. I’m like 13 in golf years. Or something.
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    TM Tour 17 M1 14.5* Graphite Design ADDI 8x
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    Ping Glide Forged   54 60 S400
    Cameron GSS 009 1.5 tungsten sole weights, sound slot
  • RichieHuntRichieHunt Members Posts: 3,646 ✭✭
    I started when I was 11 and wish I would have started younger. Pehaps at 8 years old or so.



    Get a good coach. Coaches back then did not have anywhere near the technical/mechanical knowhow that the coaches today have, but there's a lot to be said for a coach that knows how to develop talent. Get somebody that can give some general guidelines with the swing, but more importantly on how to play the game along with navigating the murky waters of junior golf and then college golf. Knowing how to protect a player and knowing what type of failure to expose them to and when to expose them to it. I had virtually none of that. My father was a great guide as far as developing me as a person, but those things as far as developing as a golfer and transitioning to a collegiate career...I was on my own. And when you're growing up in Upstate NY and there were virtually no D-1 programs in the area at the time...it puts you well behind the 8-ball.



    I wish I had a mindset pumped into me that was different as well. A mindset more on being athletic and hitting it long instead of trying to be 'steady' and 'smooth.' Stop worrying about bad shots and playing with great faith in yourself and being fearless out there. Not allowing people to touch my confidence and having people around me that were more into getting me to realize how good I already was instead of crapping on every little flaw.













    RH
  • James the Hogan FanJames the Hogan Fan Members Posts: 443 ✭✭
    Would have played all 4 years in high school. Instead wasted freshman and sophomore years as a baseball bench rider, then from junior to senior year went from a 20 to a 10 hcp playing/practicing every day with free (to me) range balls and a knowledgeable coach.



    I would have also taken some lessons, but I was stubborn then and wanted to be self-taught scratch so I didn’t. And still haven’t... but I will.
    Golfing in Finland!
  • golfAlreadygolfAlready Members Posts: 105
    body arm connection and tempo
  • kejoal11kejoal11 IYAOYAS!!! Yokosuka, JapanMembers Posts: 1,118 ✭✭
    started at a younger age
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  • jgonz69jgonz69 Members Posts: 752 ✭✭
    Get a great teacher and do something like this,

    https://operation36.golf
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  • ezpzezpz Members Posts: 461 ✭✭
    Getting a good teacher when I started out.
  • torbilltorbill Members Posts: 286 ✭✭
    I am 74. Been playing regularly for 30+ years and still play to a 5 handicap. As I look back I can think of two major problems, both of which were in my control had I been smart enough to figure it out.



    First, golf has hurt my back. Gradually. Over many years. It's like smoking cigarettes, you sometimes don't know that you have a bad problem until it is almost too late. Hard rotation did it for me - twist-in-a-barrel, X-factor, and the like.



    Second, the state of golf instruction is a state of total confusion, always has been and maybe always will be. Confusing and conflicting advice everywhere and instruction based on things that most of us find it physically impossible to perform (sorry Jack, but there is only one person who could ever golf your way, and that person wasn't me). I was a victim of all of it, wandering from one unsound set of swing principles to another.



    In the early 1980s Jimmy Ballard was the hot instructor. I tried his stuff, didn't have a lot of luck, and moved on. I rediscovered the method a few years ago, in a desperate search to help my back. Actually it would be more accurate to say that I discovered it for the first time, because I now realize that I never understood it the first time around. It has been a life saver. I cannot imagine still being in golf had I stuck with heavy rotation.



    I regret that I didn't take the time to understand Ballard the first time around. It would have killed two birds with one stone - my back would be much better later in life and I would have saved endless hours of frustration chasing after swing ideas that are unsound or physically harmful, or both.



    So, what would I do different? I would find a mechanically-sound, back-sparing swing method (Ballard is one, there are others) and put on blinders to all other notions of how to swing a golf club. And to anybody who is in middle age and using heavy rotation and beginning to feel back pain from golf I say it is just going to get worse as time goes on. Do yourself a huge favor and give up heavy rotation before back problems force you to give up the most wonderful game that ever there was.
  • mikpgamikpga www.mikedeitersgolf.com Members Posts: 7,368 ✭✭
    Sought after better instruction/coaching, or ask more questions of my coaches...
  • BMCBMC Members Posts: 3,557 ✭✭
    Not sign up at GolfWRX. Too much swing information, good and bad.



    I think playing a more natural game works best. once you reach a reasonable skill level, for recreational players.
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  • uitar9uitar9 Members Posts: 384 ✭✭
    Started late in life, this will be my 8th season. I have learned it know but...learning to enjoy the moment. Golf is hard for most of us and its a journey. Nobody told me the pros you see on tv spend up to 6, 8, 10 hours a day practicing. One round a week and an hour at the range gets me what I have.
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