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Golf for the rank beginner

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by dixiehack, Apr 28, 2009.

  1. dixiehack

    dixiehack Well-Known Member

    Is it possible for someone in their 30s with little athletic ability to take up this sport and not embarrass themselves?

    I found myself with two hours to kill on Sunday, and did something I've never done ... stopped by the local driving range and invested in a bucket of balls. Despite the fact I had zero clue what I was doing, it was strangely entertaining. I've played a grand total of nine holes in my life, and that was 15 years ago, but now I'm kind of interested. The guy at the range, who looked like Carl Spackler's first cousin, said they are doing a group lesson night in May, where you get a group lesson and a meal thrown in for $25.

    Understand that I have no illusions of grandeur. I would not be able to invest in more than 3-4 rounds per year, and would need to find some thrift store clubs to do so. Mostly I don't want to totally humiliate myself, which means I couldn't stomach shooting more than 120 for very long. I can tell that I have very little power, but don't know how much of that is the product of never having a lesson.
  2. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Yes. Yes you can.
    And take video. Post it here.

    We'll help.
  3. Wenders

    Wenders Well-Known Member


    Take it from the most uncoordinated person you will ever meet, golf is insanely easy. Go to the group lesson because once you get the basics, all it takes is little tweaks to your swing to be able to get better. And don't neglect your short game - spend quite a bit of time around the putting green. Chipping, putting, etc. Start with short distances and work up. Really work on reading greens and where the ball should go.

    As for clubs you'll need, I'd say a 1 and 3 wood, a 5, 7, 9 iron, sand wedge and putter is basically all you'll really need. And depending on what kind of course you're going to be at, lots and LOTS of balls.
  4. finishthehat

    finishthehat Active Member

    Synchronicity -- my wife is taking golf up for business purposes, so last weekend I went to a driving range for the first time ever. Hit a lot -- a lot -- of ground balls, and whiffed an embarrassing number of times.

    I just don't see how you can keep it on the course. But I may have to find out.
  5. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    If you hit a bunch of ground balls or whiffed a lot, I'm guessing you were pulling your head - like you would in baseball. Try staying down in your backswing and you shouldn't top the ball so much*.

    * - take that advice for what it is worth from someone who regularly fires 110.
  6. Cosmo

    Cosmo Well-Known Member

  7. Barsuk

    Barsuk Active Member

    Yeah. Written like someone who hasn't played much golf. It can be the most frustrating thing in the world -- but when you hit one on the sweet spot, it can be the most rewarding thing in the world.
  8. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    I think you should go to the Big Local Public Expensive Course and say you want to hit from the tips.
  9. qtlaw

    qtlaw Well-Known Member

    Yes. Do not think about how others are playing or what level you "should" be playing at, enjoy golf for what it is, the opportunity to be out in the sunshine with a good group of people (hopefully, you will at some point choose the other 3 who you play with) and attack the most difficult sport imaginable. Like the others have said, when you hit it right, its purer than most any other sport. (And if you are fortunate to have generous friend(s), you can start your day with 18 at your friend's pristine private country club, with lunch in less than 4 hours!!)
  10. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    Get the lesson.

    Going from 10 strokes to finish a par four to six strokes to finish the hole is pretty easy. Taking away those last two strokes to reach par, not so much.

    A person giving you the basic foundation of a swing will be very important. All you need to do is get the ball in the air and make it go straight. Once you can do that, the game starts to become very fun.
  11. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Beware -- golf is a disease. You say today that you can't invest in more than 3-4 rounds and will play with junk clubs, but soon you'll be rearranging your life to get to the range to try that new swing tip you read about, you'll long for a driver that costs more than a car payment and you'll own more pairs of golf shoes than dress shoes (OK, maybe that one's just me).
  12. Wenders

    Wenders Well-Known Member

    Or written like someone who was forced to play golf from a young age because not just one, but two of her parents have worked on a golf course since she was 3 years old. I have had golf balls hit through my bedroom window because we lived in a golf course. I laid irrigation on the course my parents built in Kansas.

    Take it like this: golf is one of the only sports where you have control. The ball does not move. No one else influences your game or how good you are that day but YOU. You might have to deal with hazards and weather and all sorts of other things, but it's one of the only sports where the intangibles are not based on what other people are doing to make you look bad. What score you happen to shoot that day isn't based on other people making it that way. It's based on your personal ability and how you deal with it.
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