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The Steve WenPetren Project, Part 3

For those who missed it, check out Part 1 and Part 2 of my series on how to stop being a terrible golfer.

After last week’s somewhat successful lesson (I finally turned my hands over!), I was very anxious to see what this next lesson would have in store.  Especially since I was starting to get the swagger of Chi ChiRodriguez in my game.  Actually that’s not entirely true, but I did spend part of the week practicing Chi Chi’s legendary club/sword swing.

Wrong type of golf swing to be working on.

Unfortunately, although it was my homework, I was only able to get out to the driving range once in between lessons.  Had mixed results, the first ball was beautifully struck, just as I left off from last week’s lesson.  After that, the next 44 balls were pretty much inconsistently all over the place, including one that may have landed behind me somehow.  Hopefully this wouldn’t cause any roadblocks in my (slow but steadily) improving golf swing…

LESSON #3 – ????

I’ve been dreading writing this lesson recap.  Why did I put the question marks?  Well, it’s because we never really got to advance to this lesson, since I spent the majority of my lesson with Steve trying to shake whatever mental block was causing me to revert back to my old swing and inability to turn my hands over.  Unbelievable how one week I can achieve something and then the next week have it completely unachieved.

I think the lesson Steve was trying to teach me was how to hit the ball with a draw, which would be to hit a ball that starts off on a straight path before turning off to the right (remember, I’m a lefty).  Steve brought out this thin plastic board with four colored squares on it that he placed on the ground with the goal of me being able to direct my swing from one color to another and to follow that path.  He also set 5 tees up a couple of feet in front of me in a straight line about 2-3 inches apart from one another.   If I were swinging correctly and my brain wasn’t getting in the way, I should be able to swing inside out (red to yellow) with my ball starting off between the second and middle tee and then drawing to the right.  Again, I said “IF” and that’s a big if.

Steve’s patience with me was greatly appreciate, but something just wasn’t clicking and blocking me from not being able to swing directly.  Every swing, was inside in, and my ball path was going between the middle and the fourth tee and fading to the left.  What was causing this severe mental block?  Was it my lack of a relationship with my mother growing up?  Was it the collapse of the 2007 Mets that was still bothering me?  Or was it a case of another poorly made hoagie that was affecting me?  Whatever the case, it was something that I was going to have to visit the driving range several times prior to the 4th lesson…or should I say 3rd lesson redux.

I won’t even begin to say how towards the end, I was actually beginning to get frustrated with myself and then completely was topping the ball and swinging like crap…whoops, guess I will, but Steve was quick to point out how to overcome that.  By going back to the basics, and just working on keeping my head still and getting back into the appropriate stance/approach, I was able to hit slightly better at the end of the lesson, although still wasn’t able to turn my hands over.

So this past week leading up to lesson #4, I visited the driving range three times, with fairly decent results.  I also played 18 holes on Sunday morning and almost broke 100.

Maybe if I had Cheech as my caddy I'd do better

I was at a 92 going into the 18th hole before putting three straight drives into the water.  Think of it as me being “Tin Cup” except for the fact that I didn’t hole from 250 yards out after putting all those balls in the water.  All in all though, outside of hitting off the tee, it was a pretty successful round of golf.  I even managed to hit the green/fringe on every par-3 on the course, and parred three holes, but still haven’t had a birdie in almost 3 years.

Hopefully that encouraging play will translate into a much better lesson this week and I won’t have to go back to square one again.  Stay tuned…

The Steve WenPetren Golf Academy is a great place for golfers of all ages and experience (or lack there of) to learn how to become a better golfer. For more information or to book a lesson, please check out www.stevewenpetren.com

One Response

  1. You fit right in our group, you’ll get an invite real soon. Wait by the phone….

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