Sunday, May 10, 2015

The Final Post

You are going to miss this. Am I?
I will be quite straight forward with you throughout this post. I was not at all excited to start this project for my English class. However, Mr. Parker, through writing almost a whole school year; I have come to the conclusion that my statement at the beginning of the school year was correct. To be perfectly honest, I have not really enjoyed writing blogs. To also be honest, writing this post does not quite sadden me. Really I am pretty happy.

Despite this fact, I have changed a ton throughout this blog. Though I may have not liked the assignment it does not mean that it did not shape me as a person or as a writer. Don't get me wrong, I love creative writing and that is exactly what this is. However, through this project I came to the realization that writing creatively about a specific subject is extremely hard and yet extremely fun. I have noticed a definite change in my writing and in my tone. It is interesting how not only a person can change and develop, but their writing can as well.

You may be wondering how this post has anything to do with golf. By you I mean me, because frankly I feel like I am my only viewer. So to all of you who want to understand what this has to do with golf, I am here to tell you. I started blogging in September of last year. For those of you that do not understand the golf season, that was about the beginning. Not only has my writing experienced a change but so has my golf game. Last year I averaged around a 50 on nine holes and a 100 on 18. This year, I have been averaging around 45 on nine and 90 on 18. It may not be a huge differences but it is a change. And a change for the better.

Thank you (me) for allowing me the opportunity to blabber on about golf for give or take 7 months. I really appreciate your (my) support and patients. Again, though I did and do not particularly care for the blog that I have been writing on for the past seven months. I do care for the things that it has taught me. It has taught me how to be a better golfer, how to be a perfect procrastinator, and also a really amazing advice giver. Seriously, I have changed a lot. This blog has helped me see that.

Thanks y'all for the ride,

"Turn out the lights. The party's over"

- JT

Olympic Golf

The Course Layout: Image Courtesy French Creek Golf
It is official and it has been for a while. Golf will be a sport in the 2016 Summer Olympics. This is pretty cool for golf fans everywhere.

Has golf ever been in any of the Olympics? The answer is yes. Though most and even the best golf historians will tell you it has not. This is not true. In the Summer Olympics of 1900, held in Paris France, golf was apart of the Olympics. It is true that since then golf has been excluded from all the other Olympics, until this next year. Rio De Janeiro has planned and constructed a course for the games. The course looks decent. I do not know how the professionals will react to it, but I believe they are just happy to be playing. Despite condition, I am ready for it to open and be played. I am very excited to see players from all different countries doing so.

Got a Little Ways to Go: Image Courtesy Golf Digest
I have heard from many people that as soon as an activity is entered into the Olympics, it is an official sport. So, Mr. Parker, there you have it. Golf beginning the summer of next year will be an official sport. Oh wait, silly me, it has been for the past 115 years thanks to Paris. I can wait a year for all of those golf haters to see it reoccur in Brazil.

This "new"sport brings many questions into my mind. What made Brazil want to bring golf back into the Olympics? Also, why has it taken 115 years to reenter golf into the Summer Olympics? How will countries compete?

Getting Closer: Image Courtesy Inside Golf
If you have any other questions please comment them. If you know any of the answers to mine, please answer them also in the comment section.

Bears and Golf?

This past week has been an interesting one for Park City Utah. Extremely interesting! It all started around Monday of last week in Jeremy Ranch. A black bear was spotted in the area.  There happens to be a golf course right there in Jeremy Ranch. Therefore the chances that this bear went for a stroll at night or during the day on the course are very likely.

Image Courtesy: KSL 
The story of this two year old black bear just gets better and better. Tuesday the bear had disappeared and all seemed well until Wednesday when another report of the bear came into police. Park City schools were under lock down as police searched for the black bear. Though it was never found, you will never guess where the black bear was spotted at first. The black bear was spotted in Park Meadows! This doesn't have any relevance unless you live in Park City. Coincidentally, Park Meadows also has a golf course. And it turned out that the bear was sited near the course. I'm just guessing that this bear had walked the course as well.

As of Thursday the bear was gone. Though the DWR set traps to catch and relocate the black bear. I do not believe that we should call it a black bear anymore. I think we call it the "course bear". The course bear has disappeared. And though the DWR is asking where he has gone. I think the real question is where is the nearest course. I wonder which course the course bear will choose next.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Is Practicing Bad?

It is interesting to note that Monday I shot 46. It is also notable that I practiced three days after that. However, when the next Monday came, I shot 56. Now, did my practicing degrade my game? Is practicing bad?

Practicing is not bad. Practicing is most essential to your golf game. You cannot do well in the game without practicing. I figured this out. What did I do differently Monday, that I did not do the next Monday? This is the question I asked myself over and over again. I have only came to conclusions. These two conclusions have allowed me to understand how you can add or subtract ten strokes.

Image Courtesy: Harris Internet 
Don't let your first tee shot do this to you.
First: On Monday I warmed up. I took 45 minutes before my round to warm up. I took a wedge, iron, putter, and finally my driver. I spent about ten minutes on each club and then spent the last five minutes on whatever I did the worst. Then I headed out and played decently. In contrast, the next Monday I teed up not having shot any practice shots and cut it far right. This put me in a bad state of mind and the game got to my head. I couldn't believe myself. I let my first shot control the rest of my game. This is something I need to let go of, but often I cannot help it.

Second: On Monday my mind was in the game. What does it mean to have "your mind in the game?" This is simple. You need to have your mind focused on golf. When playing your round you need to let go of all other thoughts and focus on every shot. Make every shot count, and "keep your mind in the game." The following Monday my mind was far from the game. I couldn't think about my shots. And frankly I did not care how I played. I needed to though. It is not that having other thoughts is bad in any way, because they are not. You just need to balance them with golf, or just not plan on shooting well.

In conclusion, if you want to add ten strokes to your game then I have the perfect solution. I recommend you go to the course without practicing for a week. Next get your head out of the game. Don't focus on your shots, and think about all the other things happening in your life. Some of your thoughts
should include friends, school, and work. I guarantee you you will play terrible!

Good luck!

Friday, March 27, 2015

The Most Essential Element of Golf?

All professional golfers understand the most important part of golf. Though, what is the most important element of golf? I have a specific element of golf that I believe is the most important. However, I really am curious as to if this belief is the same that professionals believe.

I believe that your short game is the most essential part of golf. Chipping and putting are where strokes are added on or taken off. I can see some golfers believing that your tee shots are the most essential. However, I find you need to be better at putting than hitting a good tee shot. I find short game interesting. For beginner golfers, short game is probably the easiest part of golfing. Putting is basic and I can guarantee that every person on the earth can putt. Putting alone is easy, though having the ability to putt with precision is difficult. Chipping is a bit harder than putting, but can still be easily developed within an hour of practicing. Just the same as putting, being able to chip is easy, but being capable of chipping with accuracy can be hard. 

First Method
There are multiple ways that you can turn your putting from lucky to precise. I first, will start by explaining ways that putting can be improved. First, I recommend when practicing putting you make every shot count. Take your time, imaging that you were actually playing in a tournament. This way you literally practice how you play and play how you practice. Second, I would suggest a few "drills." The first of which is a simply drill in which six tees are evenly spaced and placed about four to six feet from the hole. Once this is done go in a counter-clockwise direction making every putt until you get back to where you started. The second drill that can be done is by using two alignment rods. Align the rods making a "railroad track" that your putter is going to "ride." Make sure that these are aligning your putter head directly to the hole. Next place a mark down where your ball will be and one in front to where you will follow through to. Start by backing up to and hitting the tee while staying inside the alignment rods. flow through while keeping in them to the marker closest to the hole. This will help you get a feel for a perfect putt. This drill can be used to practice lag puts and also to practice your short puts. Using the railroad tracks will insure a straight putt. Finally, to improve your putting you should be putting in a sufficient amount of time into practicing your putting. A sufficient amount of time depends on the person. Typically for me, I tend to spend fifteen minutes per every hour on my putting. This goal can be accomplished all at once, or in five five minute increments.
Second Method
Do you agree that your short game is the most essential element of golf? If not, which do you think is? 

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Learning to Cope With Annoyance

Have you ever been over on the range with a group of men and women. All of you are practicing and getting ready to go out and play a round. Everyone is respectful and courteous of everyone around them. People mind their manners and keep a quiet profile. All is well, until two people walk onto the range and start to enjoy a conversation that they seem to want everyone to hear. These two can't stop laughing out loud and they are getting on everyones nerves. Your tee time finally comes and you think all is well. You have warmed up, and now you are able to get away from those people that just did not seem to stop annoying you. Though just as you thought it was beginning to get better, things took a turn for the worst. These two people are now playing on your tee time with you. Several questions are racing through your head. The most distinct question is what to do and how to handle this situation?

Image Courtesy: For The Win
This situation may happen. It may not be this extreme, but it is guaranteed that eventually you will play or practice with an annoying golfer(s). There are several approaches to dealing with annoyance. The first of which is the polite way. This method is one in which you physically approach the two people and kindly ask them to stop. You explain that you and others around you would appreciate it if they could keep it down. If you are more of a shy person, this approach could be hard. Use it as a way to build your confidence and conquer your fear.

The second technique to coping with annoyance is to ignore it. Let this be a distraction, let it make you mad. Let these people bug you. If done correctly this approach will build your mental endurance and strengthen your ability to ignore distractions. All golfers could use help with this part of their game. Distractions in golf are not good things to have and by ignoring this one, you are doing yourself a favor and building up your tolerance level.

The third and last approach that I would recommend, is to just ignore everyone. This can be done in a number of ways, though I find that the easiest way to ignore everyone is to plug in headphones and listen to music. This allows for you to be completely oblivious to what is going on around you.

In conclusion, avoid being the golfer that annoys everyone. Mind your manners and be courteous. Know and understand the rules and etiquette of golf and you will have an easy time not being the annoying golfer/golf pro that everyone hates.

Follow Up

I have lately received a question repeatedly. I felt that I had cover this question though now reflecting on my past blogs, I found that I have not answered this question fully.

Image Courtesy PCHS: Boys State
Golf  Team
"Is golf fun?" Such a simple question. Though this is short answer, there is more depth in it. Yes, golf is extremely fun. However, it is not just fun because you get to hit a ball. That is boring. There are certain things that you come, as a golfer, to enjoy about the game. People enjoy golf for multiple reasons, though some of the reasons that I really enjoy golf are as follows. Obviously when you have a really good shot, it makes you feel successful and it also helps you to realize that practice does actually pay off in the long run. I have also come to love playing in the evening and walking the course as the sun sets. This really gets me in a good mood and the views that are seen from holes on The Jeremy Ranch golf course are amazing. I usually golf around six on the weekends and it extremely fun. Another aspect of golf that fun, is when you are golfing with friends and or team mates. Golf you could say is a social sport. It allows for conversation. I enjoy playing golf with my friends and being able to talk and play is a ton of fun.

Though I have mentioned a few things that make golf a fun sport there is one part about golf that really makes it the most enjoyable for me. I have not yet mention it, though it deals with golfing with people and more specifically friends. Some of my best friends are my siblings and parents. I really do find that my best memories golfing, have been with them. When we are all together and out on the course I never have had such a great time. Playing golf with my family is what I golf for. It makes golf worth it. So, yes golf is fun. If you want to have an enjoyable time out on the course, I recommend you grab a friend or family member and head out. Enjoy!