Golf lesson #4

I managed to get to the driving range on Sunday – the first time I’d picked up a club since the first lesson. I decided to hit off the grass area which unfortunately was very bare and rock hard. The first few hits from the grass with my 7 iron were awful, so I tee’d up and got out the 3 wood. This was a little better but my slice was as bad as ever. I hit a few with the driver and then tried some chipping – trying out the techniques Joe showed me last time. It was awful. I moved inside onto an artificial surface and things improved. My chips with the sand wedge were going brilliantly – lovely high lobs consistently.

I arrived a little early for todays lesson so went out onto the practice chipping area and hit some more from the rough. These were ok, but I found it hard to judge length to the flag well. I found myself starting to stop my backswing too early rather than committing to the shot and letting it go naturally.

Onto the lesson itself.

After hitting a few with the 7 iron Joe decided to try and sort out the slice. He set me to work with a drill that involves placing a head cover under my right armpit. The aim of this is to stop my right elbow from splaying outwards on the backswing which takes the club off plane. Joe was awaiting the delivery of his Explanar device but the head cover would suffice in the meantime and is something I can do at the range anyway.

The first few hits of my 8 iron with a three quarter swing were sweet as a bell and straight up the middle of the range. We moved onto the 3 wood and again with a three quarter swing things looked ok, though there was still some slice there. In an attempt to keep the shoulder in I was taking the club off plane towards the vertical too much – basically overcorrecting the initial error! I was now trying to think about and control two variables and that got me thinking too much, to the point where I took a couple of air shots.

I got it back together again however and struck two of the sweetest shots I’ve ever hit. They flew straight and true on a fairly low trajectory and carried nicely past the 200 yard marker with a range ball. Not a bad way to end the session.

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