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What's holding your junior golfer back from achieving their goals?


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My son is a new golfer.  13 years old.  Just really started playing this summer.  Started off shooting around 110 and has quickly knocked off 20 strokes.  His biggest hurdle in my opinion is letting a

His brain. He is a +3 or +4 kid in practice and drills without anything glaring holding him back from getting to par golf and a cool bogey golfer or worse in tournaments. He over thinks and does very

Same. It's demoralizing when she has to hit woods or hybrids when other girls are hitting irons.  She hits driver on some long par 3s.  She's already a shot behind on many longer holes, and she has to

Agree 100%. He will 3 putt (Bogey) then takes two holes to get over it.

Two tournaments ago was the worst I've never seen my son mentally (other than the first time). He birdied the first. Thought he should have birdied the next two. He was -1 thru 5. Bogey back to even. 3 putts number 8. 1 over. You would have thought he wasn't going to break 100.

Told me last weekend on the ride home he learned alot from that round. He thought he was going to shoot in the 60s then when it wasnt possible. He let the round get away.

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Putting and chipping, mostly.

Today neither my son or daughter sank a putt outside of 4' and each four-putted once. They also were uneven chipping from inside 35'.

They shot a 45 and 46 respectively from 1500 yards, but to make that leap to 40-42 the putting is just going to have to make a leap somewhere.

Practicing in this low 90s heat isn't all that fun, but it is what it is.

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54 hole Tournament

Day 1 +7. Was +7 through the first 7 holes with two double bogeys, two 3 putts and a 4 putt. Plays the next 11 holes even with 3 birdies and one 3 putt. 3 Birdies on the day.

Day 2 +7. Was -1 through the first 7 holes with 4 birdies and three bogey 3 putts. Plays the next 11 holes at +8 with 3 doubles (all back to back) and two more 3 putts. 5 Birdies on the day.

Day 3 +5. Was +6 through the first 7 holes with 3 doubles, one 3 putt, and 1 birdie. Plays the next 11 holes at -1 with 2 birdies. 3 Birdies on the day.

Was top 10 in the tournament in birdies but was probably close to the lead in 3 putts and doubles. Was the dumbest 3 rounds of golf I have ever witnessed him play. Course was hard and greens were fast and massive. The good news was he was able to grind and not put up a terrible score. The other good news was this is probably the worst score he can shoot.

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Recent and temporary situation (hopefully), but injury has struck this summer and significantly impacted his playing schedule. My son partially tore his left pectoral in a tournament going down for a ball a deep in the rough - although he completed the first day of a 3 day regional Am event, he had to pull out of the final 2 days. It has been a 3-4 week injury and he is just starting to play again and will hopefully be ready for his fist AJGA event at the end of the month. He had to withdraw from the State AM where he shot (-2) to qualify, and was also forced out of the New England PGA Jr. Given that we now have a much shorter golf season after moving from TN to NH in January, you hate to see a significant chunk of it go away that quickly.

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GREAT Topic. Son is 9, his top 3

1.) Bounceback - needs to learn how to bounce back quickly from adversity. And not with a hero shot, but with trust in his game and Patience for the Strategy/plan. Getting better since playing more 18h tmnts now where it is a little more important.

2.) Wedge Play- still in USKG mostly ,, so much success depends on throwing darts with wedges.

3.) Practice Time - this ties into # 2 above. This is more out of his control and on me. We go to course 2- 3x week usually During season (spring- summer, including practice and play). Considering this compared to what I’ve read on Other threads here about kids practice/play time he has done exceptionally well over last few years. No doubt in my mind he could be better with more practice time, but he plays football, bAsketball, and soccer seasonally. It’s a good balance for him for now . It’s hard sometimes , but try my best to stick to this plan for now. In the coming years years the time will come that he can bear down on golf if he wants to.

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I understand where you from came as a parent, but I disagree. You have to adapt and overcome. You need to teach your kids the same.

We can't just lay down and give up for the whole year (sure be smart about it). Throwing the arms up and saying well boy 2020 is a wash isn't good. Sure its a bad year, but you take the good with the bad.

If you have a coach that isn't giving lessons. (example your daughter playing while he is 20 feet away) Find a new coach. Insist on facetime or something.

In January we had my son's schedule all planned out (like most you). Well it over before it started. We scouted for tours playing and readjust fire. USKG saved my daughters season. COVID actually helped her game. Bored 14 yo with nothing to do but hang out with brother all day at the golf course.

 

@tiger1873 I always value your comments, but never give up or give in. Settling is just the first step in eventually defeat.

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The problem is with COVID-19 the GOVERMENT is involved. I can't control a stupid local official who can shut down the golf course at moments notice.

Earlier this year I nearly got arrested for practicing golf with my kids because it was against the law and police officer decided we should not be out there at all. We were stuck inside for 2 months around here.

 

We can practice now but there is still so many issues with traveling and scheduling it's still an issue. With my instructor there effected too. Why because they don't have the same business as they did before and even worse the facilities have so many restrictions it takes away from productive time.

Also like everyone else I am too worried about what the future brings in the economy. If things don't get back to normal soon one has to wonder if you can support a kid who plays golf. I am sure most of will figure this part out but I seen a lot people in trouble out there.

Sure you can adapt but to me everything else seems pretty small when you compare them. Personally I am seeing massive improvement in the last few months and really just need to play more tournaments everything is better distance, chipping, putting iron play and most important mental game. I've seen so much improvement and the guidance I got from my instructor has me hoping that we are going to a lot improvement in tournaments.

So for me right now Covid-19 is a major issue.

 

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Son? Lack of interest in practicing, or even playing, unless his friends are there. He’s only 8 so I don’t really push him too hard.

Daughter? Short game. We both agree on this one. She’s only been playing 2 years and hasn’t played that many tournaments. (She doesn’t really like competing even though she’s done really well when she has. She’d rather just go out with me or her friends from our club.) Her goal is to shoot even par for nine holes from our ladies tees (2800 yards.) She’s getting close but it’s hard when she never has a short iron into a green.

 

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My son's a very good junior golfer, he's a 2023 graduate, current handicap factor +2.4 (low of +3.3 in May 2020) and he's been playing competitively for about 4 years. My personal experience, and I'm still learning everyday and like to believe that I'm getting better and better everyday, is that as a parent, no matter what he scores it's almost never good enough. As parents we have these unrealistic expectations that each time he/she goes out to play that they are going to come back with a PB.

Obviously golf is unlike a lot of other sports in that there are so many outside influences that impact on the score. In running/swimming as an example, as an athlete gets older, stronger and fitter, as an athlete improves his/her technique and mental strength, so their times improve and they continue to improve until a point is reached where that athlete reaches their prime, records the best time of the lives and then it's all down hill from there. Sports like this follow a much more predictable pattern and it's easier to measure the gains/success. Golf is nothing like running and swimming and as hard as it is, we have to find a way to accept the inconsistencies in our children's scores, we have to remember to look at the big picture and not get caught up in the moment.

I think our children get so burdened by just trying to impress their parents that they lose focus on the important stuff, the most important thing is that they enjoy playing, once they loose that, well then the war is lost. Golf is a hard game and even very successful PGA Tour players struggle with consistency. Last week Colin Morikawa won at Muirfield Village, this week, he's in T47 after 2 rounds on the same course. I understand that the course sets up differently this week, but that's the point of the first sentence of the second paragraph of my post. What has changed about Morikawa, in the big scheme of things, nothing, nothing has changed, he's just as good a player now as he was last week. This week though, he's a little off.

Why is my son playing 1 shot worse relative to par now than he was 7 weeks ago? There is quite simply no answer to this question, instead of scores of 66,64,69,70,67,70,68,67, counting towards his handicap at the end of May, these scores 36,67,70,34,70,70,68,36,68,34 count currently. What's stopping my son reaching his goal of +4 or +5 or +6, nothing, if he wants to get there he has to keep playing, keep practicing, keep working hard, keep enjoying it, keep loving it, keep wanting it....and his Mom and I have to keep supporting him, keep encouraging him, keep believing in him and keep showing and telling him how proud we are of him.

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I learned this as well. I lot parents I see think golf is a game of perfection and they keep blaming the time a kid messed up a shot or putt. It unrealistic to expect a perfect game every time. Scores just vary day to day. In very competitive golf you will lose far more then you win.

with golf all you can do is go out play and hope it’s your day.

Every tournament we play I pretty much know what the competition is going to score. The more competitive it is the more important it you have a good day.

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Must read for every junior golfer and their parents.

 

Golf is Not a Game of Perfect Hardcover – May 9, 1995 by Dr. Bob Rotella (Author)

 

Ask my son the question. Answers.

Par 3 scoring needs to improve. Par 5 scoring is usually -1 or +2. Par 3 is usually the same number of holes. Needs to match.

Sub 30 putts each round.

 

 

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Course management, consistency and putting for my son. He just turned 11. He has all the physical tools and shots he needs to score well. Hits it longer and higher than most of the kids he plays against (including elite players). Chips it pretty well. Irons lack consistency at times. Takes way too many risks which makes him make big numbers sometimes. Too many 3 putts (although it has gotten better). Shot 41 today for 9 in a tournament on a pretty tough course. Had three 3 putts in a row and hit it twice into penalty areas because he chose driver off tee when he could have hit a hybrid and stayed short of trouble and had a wedge to green on par 4's. But he also has made really good progress considering he just got serious about the game last June and he only plays May through August and then doesn't play for 9 months (he plays 3 sports). I'm going to ask him what his goals are and what he thinks is keeping him from reaching those.

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