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Old 03-24-2011, 12:31 PM   #126
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Finally good weather here in Poland- good I mean no snow, no rain, ultra windy and 15 degree. But you can play some golf so can’t complain.

It’s gonna be my only 2nd season of playing golf. In Poland golf season is from April till late October. I don’t have a handicap card yet, I think it’s too early for it. I played on golf course only like 7 times last season, my best score was lame 112 (should I get HC card and keep tracking my scores from the beginning?)
I’m not sure if this routine not gonna be too hard for me, but I will give it a shot.
Today it took my about an hour to make 25 putts from 3feet in a row. In the beginning I barely could make 10, then few 18s, finally 22 and 24 (that hurt) and 25 But I took quite easy straight line.
From 20feet it wasn’t that good, best I did was 13 (in 30min) but it was so cold I had to stop.

Tomorrow should I start with 3feet again or those lag 20 feet ?
General question: as a beginner how much % of practices time should I devote to short game and how much on driving range?

PS. Dagolfdoc you doing great job here, thx for that!!
PS2. Sorry for my poor English, I'm doing my best. It’s still better than my golf skills though
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Old 03-24-2011, 09:37 PM   #127
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Quote:
Originally Posted by LFC View Post
Finally good weather here in Poland-
...........

PS. Dagolfdoc you doing great job here, thx for that!!
PS2. Sorry for my poor English, I'm doing my best. It’s still better than my golf skills though
I love humble Europeans - your english is more than adequate.

I say there is no need for an official handicap card. If you have a smartphone there are tons of programs for you to track your progress round by round. There are also free computer softwares that can track your scores/stats provided you enter your numbers after your rounds.

You definitely did better than me with the short putts!
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Old 03-25-2011, 07:23 AM   #128
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

any program you would recommend ? (iphone or PC)
doesnt have to be free
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Old 03-25-2011, 08:58 AM   #129
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

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any program you would recommend ? (iphone or PC)
doesnt have to be free
I'm sure if you search for "golf handicap" in the app store you'll find something there (free or cheap). Online, you can create a free account on oobgolf.com and track all your rounds and stats. There's probably a bunch of other sites that offer the same service.
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Old 03-25-2011, 02:51 PM   #130
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

^^ thx

btw made those 20footer today
25footers were disaster

but weather conditions still pretty hard- windy and just 11 degree
they say it might snow tomorrow ....
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Old 03-25-2011, 05:54 PM   #131
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

what ??? germany is 15 degrees celsius (just 500km away)
do you live on some mountain ? :/
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Old 03-26-2011, 08:03 AM   #132
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

It sounds like the 45 foot putts are the most difficult for most of you on here. Unfortunately, that's just outside the average length putt on a G.I.R. for an amateur, so while we need to continue to improve our distance control, I thought of a way that might help you practice them, in addition to understanding the importance of the 3 foot range.

Try hitting 5-10 putts from 45+ feet, then go pick up the balls that are within 3 feet, putt anything that is outside 3 feet, and a keep a record of how many of those you end up 3 putting. To me, a 3-putt is like saying "i'm doing too well today, I should give a shot back to the field."This is why I put so much emphasis on the lag putts. Except in very rare circumstances, is a 3 putt acceptable (huge mounds, Augusta, 100 ft putt, etc).

Also, I believe I might have mistyped/misled everyone on the drill for the lag putting - my intent was for you to roll the ball within 3 feet of the target - which would be a 6 foot circle I believe the way it was written was a 3 foot circle, which would only be 1 1/2 feet from the target, which is too small. On long putts, I want a player to roll the ball close enough to make the next putt, so we practice a bunch of putts from inside 5 feet, and then get comfortable rolling longer putts to that distance. Anyway, I apologize if I mistakenly gave many of you too difficult of a task. You should have 3 feet on each side of the hole on the longer lag putts.

I've been traveling, so haven't had the opportunity to post the past couple days, but I'll reply to some questions later today!
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Old 03-26-2011, 04:00 PM   #133
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Thanks for posting this. Some parts should be really easy for me (pretty much all of the ball-striking ones, pitching, and chipping are all not difficult at all.)

The lag putting will kick my butt. Also, the course I grew up playing had ZERO bunkers, so I am still awful at bunker play. I can get out of the bunker, but usually have no idea where the ball will end up.
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Old 03-26-2011, 04:17 PM   #134
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Just got fitted for some ping i15's today. Pretty excited to get some new irons that will allow me to do more with the ball... /end brag

As a result, traded my clubs in the deal, so only have my wedges and driver/woods.. Therefore, will be working on my short game alot more in the next week and a half.

Goal, break 80 first day out with the new irons!
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Old 03-26-2011, 10:58 PM   #135
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Quote:
Originally Posted by LFC View Post
Finally good weather here in Poland- good I mean no snow, no rain, ultra windy and 15 degree. But you can play some golf so can’t complain.

It’s gonna be my only 2nd season of playing golf. In Poland golf season is from April till late October. I don’t have a handicap card yet, I think it’s too early for it. I played on golf course only like 7 times last season, my best score was lame 112 (should I get HC card and keep tracking my scores from the beginning?)
I’m not sure if this routine not gonna be too hard for me, but I will give it a shot.
Today it took my about an hour to make 25 putts from 3feet in a row. In the beginning I barely could make 10, then few 18s, finally 22 and 24 (that hurt) and 25 But I took quite easy straight line.
From 20feet it wasn’t that good, best I did was 13 (in 30min) but it was so cold I had to stop.

Tomorrow should I start with 3feet again or those lag 20 feet ?
General question: as a beginner how much % of practices time should I devote to short game and how much on driving range?

PS. Dagolfdoc you doing great job here, thx for that!!
PS2. Sorry for my poor English, I'm doing my best. It’s still better than my golf skills though
LFC - don't worry too much about your hdcp - just enjoy the game and try to get find the most efficient way to get from the tee to the hole - it's not always driver - it's the club that gives you the best opportunity to get it in the fairway (I usually recommend 3-wood or 5-wood for newer players). Play to your strengths & away from your weaknesses! I would spend at least 50% of your practice on shots inside 120 yards, it will help your full-swing working on shorter wedge shots (it's a mini-full swing!).

Thanks for the compliment & don't worry about your English - it's better than my Polish!

I'm glad you're enjoying the game, & I hope I can help you improve!
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Old 03-26-2011, 11:00 PM   #136
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

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Originally Posted by tschubauer View Post
Thanks for posting this. Some parts should be really easy for me (pretty much all of the ball-striking ones, pitching, and chipping are all not difficult at all.)

The lag putting will kick my butt. Also, the course I grew up playing had ZERO bunkers, so I am still awful at bunker play. I can get out of the bunker, but usually have no idea where the ball will end up.
Glad you're enjoying it! I'll post some tips on bunker play over the next couple days - I grew up on a course w/no bunkers as well - I had to learn how to play them when I went to college, so I know your frustration. I'll get some tips up here when I get a little time & hopefully it will make the bunkers a little easier for you!
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Old 03-26-2011, 11:02 PM   #137
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

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Originally Posted by tcope13 View Post
Just got fitted for some ping i15's today. Pretty excited to get some new irons that will allow me to do more with the ball... /end brag

As a result, traded my clubs in the deal, so only have my wedges and driver/woods.. Therefore, will be working on my short game alot more in the next week and a half.

Goal, break 80 first day out with the new irons!
I love it!! You'll love having clubs that are fit for you - it make such a difference! Work that short game & let's set a career low this season!
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Old 03-27-2011, 06:56 AM   #138
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

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try to get find the most efficient way to get from the tee to the hole - it's not always driver - it's the club that gives you the best opportunity to get it in the fairway (I usually recommend 3-wood or 5-wood for newer players).
last year (my first) I didnt even touch driver and hybrids.
I thought they are too difficult clubs to start with so I practised only with irons. don't know if it's a good approach, but this season gonna learn my TM Burner for sure

I would like to set myself goals for this season. Any advices about achievable ones ? Wanna set the bar quite high

and btw dont know why but I feel like I'm obssesed with golf right now
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Old 03-27-2011, 06:59 AM   #139
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

first goal beat 100, after that (you should make this early like may 2011) hcp 20 is a good goal.
You know you need some rounds in the 90s to make HCP 20 (because it always goes just 0,4 points down)
Google "Stableford"
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Old 03-27-2011, 11:11 PM   #140
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Trip Report:

I'm going to log how long it takes me to complete the entire first version of this practice routine. With very little consideration, I'm thinking about 25 hours, with the majority of that time spent learning to do things that I can't currently do (like chip within 3 feet consistently.

Today was the first reasonable day for practice in Iowa City (45 degrees, but sunny with little wind), so off to the course I go. I had a few hours set aside.

3-foot putts - 25 in a row:
Observation: 3 feet is a lot longer than I would have thought. I probably make this putt ~60% of the time on the course. "Obviously, that's going to go better after today," I tell myself as I set up tees in a circle 3 feet from the hole.

So I set up below the hole (it's on a side-hill) and start hitting putts. Here's approximately how many putts I made before missing one:
6 5 8 10 1 0 1 . . .

I'd started working around the hole at this point and realized that it was just to hard for someone of my skill ability to try to do anything but hit the same putt 25 times. That, itself, will do a lot for my game. Changing the putts will become possible later. So I line up below the hole from here on out:
7 9 4 21 6 1 11 . . .

Up until now I'm just standing over them, eyeballing the putt, and hitting them. I then rake another ball into place and repeat. My misses are close. I decide to use the line on the ball for each putt, back away, and approach each show like it was on the golf course. This definitely results in a higher-percentage shot (I will be lining up 3-footers on the golf course from not on), but takes a lot longer:
8 16 21 4 4 20 . . .

Okay, it's been more than an hour and I'm not sure if I'm going to finish this. I go back to putting quickly (I line up a ball to the right of the ones I'm hitting for reference). I start doing pretty well here:
11 15 9 21 (Ugh!)

I'm feeling a lot more confident about each shot. I'm definitely seeing the line better. My back is hurting like crazy. During this time, I realize that most of my misses are when I try to correct my planned line mid-swing. This probably sounds crazy, but I'll get the feeling during the swing that I'm mis-oriented and intentionally try to push or pull the ball. At this point, provided I only swing when I'm ready, I feel about 97% confident about any particular putt (remember, these are straight and a little uphill and I've putted this shot hundreds of times now).

Here's where I really realized I was on the right track: I started getting disappointed when my ball went into the left or right side of the hole. I aimed for, and expected, to hit the middle.

My final series was like the ones immediately before it. I just didn't miss. I sure took my time with the last 3 putts, as I'd been at it awhile!

Here's what I'll try to remember for next time:
1) Line up each putt.
2) If you don't like the line when you're over it, don't try to correct it with your swing or your stance.
3) Follow through.
4) Don't swing until you know what you're trying to do.
5) It worked better for me not to watch the ball. After awhile, I stared at where the ball was and focused on my follow through and listened for it to hit the hole.
**** When I do these things and I've had a few warm-up shots, I'm thinking that I should count on this exercise taking 10-15 minutes in the future. I'm betting that ALL of these 3-foot putt tips will translate well to the rest of my game.

Total time: 1 hour, 35 minutes
...
20-foot Lag Putting: 20 in a row within 3 feet
This was (and probably will be) the easiest exercise for me. I felt like an idiot measuring 20 feet by taking short steps. I felt a little awkward claiming a pretty significant chunk of the green with these lag putts and my tees, especially as it got busier.

My first 3 putts went 10 feet or so, but I got the hang of it quickly (putting from the same spot makes these lag putts a lot easier, I'm thinking). Actually, my biggest problem was my first putt after going to get the balls back. I'd miss that one (usually short) half the time or so. Solution: get 20 balls.

My series for this one was pretty easy:
0 0 0 2 8 1 15 20

I don't know how much this will do for distance control until I do the exercise properly (moving the putts around and worrying about each shot more.

Total Time: 20 minutes.
...
30-foot Lag Putting: 20 in a row within 3 feet
Using the same tricks (and same line), this went pretty quickly. It didn't take me several putts to get a feel for the distance, which was nice:
8 10 11 20

Total Time: 9 minutes
...
45-foot Lag Putting: 20 in a row within 3 feet

This was extraordinarily difficult for me. I felt like I was swinging really hard! The greens seemed slow today.

Here's how it looked after my first attempt:


Pretty terrible, right? So I walked up, and started tapping balls back towards my starting tee. One handed. Not really looking. When I started heading back, this is what I saw:


This game is so strange. I tried this a few more times and called it a day. I'm definitely hooked on this routine, and can't wait to get to the chipping and pitching (where I'll be okay after warm up and practice) the bunker shots (which will be a huge learning experience) and the iron work (where I'm money). I will probably still be working on getting 6 out of 10 in the fairway with my driver when I die of old age.

------
Thanks for the great routine! I'm excited about my next 3-foot putt on the course.

Question: when I get to the sand work, should I be raking between each shot so it's like a fresh trap? Also: the trap that I'm going to be working out of is poorly-maintained. Any advice on making it more like the traps on the course? (Rough it up and rake it? Add water?)

I'm going to keep posting about my experience with this, mainly because it's fun.
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Old 03-28-2011, 04:29 AM   #141
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

scalp, just wanted to post that I enjoyed reading your TP and awesome paint work. The last part is pretty hilarious.

Seems like you "learned" much faster than me - i bet just having the confidence of knowing you make 95% 3 footers and getting to 3 feet 90% of the times from 30 feet will do wonders to your score.
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Old 03-28-2011, 11:31 AM   #142
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

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scalp, just wanted to post that I enjoyed reading your TP and awesome paint work. The last part is pretty hilarious.

Seems like you "learned" much faster than me - i bet just having the confidence of knowing you make 95% 3 footers and getting to 3 feet 90% of the times from 30 feet will do wonders to your score.
Hey, thanks. I'll definitely keep doing this, for my own sake as much as anyone else's. Having to type all this so it's out there and people can see will probably also help me to really grasp how much of my problem is mental.

I don't think I'll be 95% on future three footers. Unless they're a little uphill, no break, and I've practiced a few hundred before. But I bet I'll be more like 80-85%. That's an awesome improvement.

When I play with good people, they're constantly amazed by the scores I turn in. One guy year said he feels like he's playing with a 10. I hit irons well, my trajectory is good, I roll a putt home every once in awhile. I just don't score like someone with my skill set should. Part of that is that I really get in trouble off the tee. Another part is that I manage the golf course poorly (hitting into the woods usually ends up costing my three strokes instead of 1 or 1/2). A huge part is that I have no feel for distance in putting.
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:01 PM   #143
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Just wanted to add my .02 regarding this practice routine for the putting. I've always placed the most emphasis on my practice time with chipping and pitching and the effort has certainly paid off on the course. Putting, on the other hand, has always been a struggle. When I do bad I'm lost and when I do well I'm still kind of lost - it just seems like a little hot streak I'll ride along until it ends. The main problem with my putting practice has been lack of discipline and lack of a plan. Not so much any more though.

I've taken this practice routine to heart and in about 3 weeks I can say that my improvement has been borderline dramatic. The first time I tried this out I spent about 40 minutes before I could make 25 3'ers. A couple of sessions later (different days) it was still taking me 20-30 minutes before I could move on to the lags. Now I'm regularly knocking this out in 10 - 15 minutes. For whatever reason, the 20'ers have been relatively easy. I usually only need to restart 3-4 times at the most, and usually less. The 30'ers have been a little tricky mainly because it's hard to find areas on the practice greens I use for putts this long that don't have significant breaks. While it's frustrating to hit 20 3'ers or 17 20'ers and then have to start over, I'm still getting some satisfaction out of hitting 15+ of the 30'ers even if I have to start over.

While it can get mentally draining to have to keep restarting I've resisted the urge to take any short cuts and it's paid off. I'll play 1-2 rounds a week and lately the 3-5' putts I'd stress over are now dropping routinely with confidence. My expectations for 20'+ putts during a round have now been adjusted to just going for 3' lags that I know I'll simply 2 putt tap in. Also, when I'm going for these 3' lags on the long putts some just happen to go in anyways. Big bonus! Another thing is that during rounds I'm also finding that 10'-ish putts are also going in more often than before.

The only adjustment I've made to the putting practice is that when I make my 25 3'ers or 20 20' lags I won't stop until I miss. I've gotten up to 48 3'ers in a row and 36 20' lags in a row.

The old saying holds: "Practice doesn't make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect"

It's such a nice breakthrough for me that I really look forward to hitting the practice greens now and won't start a round until I at least knock out the 3'ers.

Much thanks dagolfdoc!!!
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:21 PM   #144
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Worked on some putting today and the best I did from 3 feet was 25 out of 27. I missed #13 barely as it lipped out so I decided to see if I could sink the rest and missed #19 or something pretty bad. The good news is I think I have gotten a better grip on the putter and am keeping everything more quiet.

Anyway I tried some 20 footers and did much better. Was leaving most of them probably within 2'-6" (though more short of the cup than long). Then I hit #19 what looked to be right about 3'-0" and hit #20 a couple inches shorter. I went up and measured and they were about 3'-6" and 3'-8" from the hole. lol. Blah. The good news is with these drills I'm realizing how much work I need on my putting.

Other than that I worked on some bump-and-runs with my S-wedge and had really good control. In fact, better control than with my putter. I had been working on these shots in my house where I've got a 35'-0" stretch of carpet. I tried my 9i, P, A, S, L and seemed to like the loft I got from the sand wedge (as well as the swing control) the most. Anyway this was the first time I've tried these from fringe at a green and it was awesome. I noticed that the furthest I could consistently get the ball to settle without altering my swing too much was about 27 yards. So if I'm playing 18 and the pin is farther away and I don't think I can putt I suppose I can try a less-lofted club.
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Old 03-28-2011, 08:43 PM   #145
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Quote:
Originally Posted by dagolfdoc View Post
We found the "weakness" in your game - well, that and a good pint of Guinness, right?

Work those long lag putts - it will get better quickly!
I feel like you know me too well already.

they hollow tined the greens last week, so I've been waiting for them to return to their former glory before making any serious practice on them. got down to it today. repeated the 3-footers and 20 footers, but then had to go and the putting green was busy anyways. hopefully the chipping green will be free tomorrow. ladies day is on.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:48 PM   #146
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Putting practice into practice:

So I played a round today. It's my day off and the sun was shining. I played the whole round in thirty-something degree weather, which accounts (I think) for a lot of my poor play.

But after trying this workout routine yesterday, I definitely noticed great improvement on the greens. I typically lose a lot of strokes there (to end up with scores similar to those I carded today). Today, I only gave up a few strokes to bad putts, and certainly got a few strokes that I usually wouldn't because of good putts. Pretty exciting.

I did miss my first and last 3-5 footers, but made all the ones in between (6-7). That was nice. I am a lot more confident about them.

My lag putting was also better than usual, which was awesome.

One more brag: On a 480-yard par 5 I was 8 feet past the hole in two. This is obviously not a brag for some, but it's rare that I can string together to great shots in a row, especially in cold weather when I'm tight and sore from putting all day the day before!

54-47=101, playing a 4600-yard par 72 with a rating ~73.
2/15 Fairways 4 GIR 27 putts.

Not bad for me, but there's no reason I shouldn't be routinely in the mid-90's with this better putting. I had one terrible hole (9!) and a few other 7's, so there's plenty of strokes to find.
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Old 03-28-2011, 09:58 PM   #147
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Guys - just got to a starbucks with internet (my house was struck by lightning while I was out of town this weekend - no one was hurt, but no power & a huge PITA!!!), I'm so glad to get on here & see so much improvement early in the season!! I can't wait to hear how many "career low rounds" we get this summer!!

I want to reply to each of you above & will probably get a chance over the next couple days, so please be patient. I'll have internet at work, so I'll try to post on some breaks in the day.

Scalp - what did you use to draw the pics? That would be a huge help for me!

sorry, getting run out of starbucks - they close at 10:00 - I'll post more tomorrow!

great job guys!
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Old 03-28-2011, 10:03 PM   #148
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Quote:
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Scalp - what did you use to draw the pics? That would be a huge help for me!
I used MSPaint. It's definitely pretty easy to use once you get the hang of it. I'm certainly willing to make MSPaints of thing you describe if you want for you, as you're helping so many people out here. I am very much an MSPaint rookie, but it helps to visualize things sometimes.

Terrible news about your house, but yeah for insurance and everyone being okay!
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Old 03-29-2011, 11:44 AM   #149
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

took me about 60min to finish 30footers, feels great

45's went bad (best I did was 9 in a row)

but I guess I need to practise on my shot (I don't call it a swing yet ), now I spend like 75% time on putting green
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Old 03-29-2011, 08:02 PM   #150
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Re: The Ultimate Practice Routine

Did the 25 3 ft putts today. My attempts were something like 2, 1, 3 , 3, 25..weeeeeeeeeeeeeee
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