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Play forward or back tees to improve?


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Best way to improve is to mix it up so play both. You can also stay at the same tees but vary how you play the hole. For example, some days hit Driver+Wedge and other days hit 4iron+7iron. You can even play holes "backwards" to really work on your long game accuracy and short game. For example if the hole is normally Driver+8 iron you tee off with a 6 iron and hit 3w into the green. It helps you learn how to score when going for par 5's in 2.

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Play a round from the forward most tees & see what you shoot   Play a round from the tips & see what you shoot   Keep track of these stats   Ball in Play off the

If you need to test your game and improve your shotmaking and short game, move back   if you are a mental midget who has a habit of blowing up good rounds when you’re going low, move up

Play both. In addition to the occasional irons-only round from the reds, the not so fun irons-only round from the tips (long iron ball striking practice, also positioning, unusual places, etc.) 

11 hours ago, North Texas said:

Normally play our middle tees at 6500+ but will occasionally play the back tees at 7000 with my son. Here's something we've both observed about my driving when playing the back tees. Overall, I will hit my drives farther. Instead of my usual 230 to 240, I will hit my driver more like 240 to 250. And occasionally there will be at least 2-3 holes where I hit my drives as far, or even farther, from the back tees than I do from the middle tees. 

 

Another thing that I do from time to time, when playing 9 holes by myself, is hit 2 balls and play the worst shot. Now, that will really make you focus and will definitely test you. 

That's interesting about your drives. 

 

Playing worst ball is an interesting idea. Assume that really helps your mental game. 

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12 hours ago, acekun said:

That's interesting about your drives. 

 

Playing worst ball is an interesting idea. Assume that really helps your mental game. 

 

My son's theory is that normally I tend to get lazy with my driver but when playing the back tees I get more honed on being more aggressive with my swing. 

 

And, yes, playing worst shot definitely helps mentally. For example, you really have to focus on your second shot when you've hit a good first shot. 

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On 10/20/2020 at 2:10 PM, acekun said:

I play the blue tees at my course and it's on the short side at 6300 yards. I hit one driver on trackman Saturday and it carried 244 yards. Except on Par 5s, I typically don't hit anything longer than a 7 iron on my 2nd shot and oftentimes it's nothing longer than an 8-iron. I'm getting better but still not scoring like I want-- mainly low 80s and sometimes in the 70s. Last weekend I shot a 79 but had to shoot even on the back after a rough front 9.  I want to shoot in the 70s more consistently. 

 

I read the "Breaking 70" thread and some people suggested playing the whites to get used to shooting low scores. So I was considering playing from the white tees (5,650 yards) but my buddy, who is scratch, has been giving me a hard time about playing the blues and saying I need to move back to the gold tees (~6,900 yards). I was thinking about it and it would definitely put more pressure on my short game, which does need improvement. I remember reading about Jack Nicklaus who said he grew up playing the back tees which forced him to learn the short game.

 

Anyway, curious if anyone has thoughts or experience with either strategy. 

I say both is the way to get better.

Play back tees occasionally to force yourself to hit longer clubs into the greens so you can practice.

Play forward tees to learn to go low. I have heard several coaches make players play up tees to learn to score. Play women’s tees until you break par for 9 holes then move back to next set of tees until you break par. 

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On 10/21/2020 at 3:57 PM, goaliedad30 said:

Santiago has a good set of ideas above. To get to where you want to be, you need to know things like:

  • In play off the tee with a reasonable shot at the green (fairway or easy rough)
  • Greens in regulation (you're shooting for 50%+)
  • Up & down when missing greens (again, 50% plus)
  • Penalty strokes (needs to be pretty close to zero)
  • Putts (total < 30, very few misses inside 4 feet, no 3 putts)

These are all good data points to track. Now, one system to track improvement is Pareto Analysis. Review the above metrics, and find which one gives you the most trouble. If one stands out, focus work on that as first step to improvement. Then do it again and again until you're a scratch golfer.

 

The Blue tees seem to set you up for 7i or less into most greens. So, your ability to handle 6,300 yards appears to be good. Using the Miles of Golf  {Driver x 28} formula, consistent 244 yd. drives suggest you could handle a course of 6,832 yards... this yardage is close to your home site's Yellow tees.

 

New ideas have appeared about how to improve one's game. The Lowest Score Wins crowd suggests that Greens In Regulation is most critical aspect of becoming single-digit golfer.   You need to drop your iron shots onto the putting surface to really score well.

 

A related idea: Flaws in putting and game can hurt your score, but good putting and chipping can't help your score as much as accurate approach shots.

 

So, @acekun, which are your strong and weak areas?

 

You might try the Yellow tees and see if the Blue-tee problem areas change. Again, increasing GIR is sure-fire way to lower scores.

---------------------------

Playing from Shorter Tees:  I got to talk to a Pac 12 golf coach at a women's amateur tournament back in 2014.  He said about once a month he has both  men and women play a round from the school course's average women's tees (about 5,000 yards). The players really get excited because they have a shot at birdies or eagles on most holes. The benefit: gives them a day when they can really be aggressive, and helps loosen up the super cautious players. 

Edited by ChipNRun
Add "shorter tees" paragraph.
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12 minutes ago, ChipNRun said:

These are all good data points to track. Now, one system to track improvement is Pareto Analysis. Of these metrics, which one gives you the most trouble? If one stands out, focus work on that while doing general work on the others.

 

The Blue tees seem to set you up for 7i or less into most greens. So, your ability to handle 6,300 yards appears to be good. Using the Miles of Golf  {Driver x 28} formula, consistent 244 yd. drives suggest you could handle a course of 6,832 yards, close to your home site's Yellow tees.

 

New ideas have appeared about how to improve one's game. The Lowest Score Wins crowd suggests that Greens In Regulation is most critical aspect of becoming single-digit golfer.   You need to drop your iron shots onto the putting surface to really score well.

 

A related idea: Flaws in putting and game can hurt your score, but good putting and chipping can't help your score as much as accurate approach shots.

 

So, @acekun, which are your strong and weak areas?

 

You might try the Yellow tees and see if the Blue-tee problem areas change. Again, increasing GIR is sure-fire way to lower scores.

---------------------------

Playing from Shorter Tees:  I got to talk to a Pac 12 golf coach at a women's amateur tournament back in 2014.  He said about once a month he has both  men and women play a round from the school course's average women's tees (about 5,000 yards). He said the players really get excited because they have a shot at birdies or eagles on most holes. The benefit: gives them a day when they can really be aggressive, and helps loosen up the super cautious players. 

That's an interesting calculation. My driver carry was 244 yards. If I use total distance, 260 total yards gets me to 7280. 

 

I'd say wedges are a strength. Everything needs improvement but feel like putting is the lowest hanging fruit -- think I can pick up a couple strokes per round.

 

Last 10 rounds: GIR 43%.  That includes 2 rounds from gold tees, which were 44% GIR. 

 

Since I got my new putter (8 rounds), 32.3 putts (dropped 1 putt vs. old putter). 2.0 for GIR and 1.7 putts for non-GIR. 40% scrambling. I have too many holes where I don't get up and down from around fringe. Also averaging 1.3 3-putts per round.

 

Also have ~2 penalty strokes per round.  If I can get one more GIR, drop to 1 penalty stroke and get to 30 putts, that drops me 4 strokes. I need to drop 2.5 strokes to get to my goal of 5 handicap.  

 

I'm getting fit for irons this Saturday. I'm hoping that helps me improve my GIRs. I'm playing single length cobras and think that is working against me. 

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Play both. In addition to the occasional irons-only round from the reds, the not so fun irons-only round from the tips (long iron ball striking practice, also positioning, unusual places, etc.) 

 

But yeah mix it up. Add challenge, add variety, add fun. I would get bored playing only my home course over and over from a single set of tees. 

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