From “Seeing the Field” to “Activate My Glutes”

The Legend of Bagger Vance, DreamWorks Pictures (2000)
The Legend of Bagger Vance, DreamWorks Pictures (2000)

Golf Writer, Keith Cook, examines the complication of the modern golf swing and how it’s hurting our game.

I love the game of golf, I really do. I’ve loved it from the first time I picked up a club, to the time each year I pause for winter, to the excitement I feel for the season to be. However, golf right now seems to be less about the game I recognize and more about a fog of numbers, the glaze of technical perfection, and the E=mc2 precision of math.

Golf plus science and technology has made a game once played by fundamentals, feel, and intuition . . . “Seeing the Field” as it was described in, The Legend of Bagger Vance, to one of technical calculations and scientific descriptions like, “I tried to activate my glutes,” used by Tiger Woods, to describe a tight back.

WHERE DID IT GO

I’m not exactly sure when we turned the corner and lost the natural beauty of our game, but it was sometime between the invention of Trackman© and a golf instructor on the Golf Channel actually demonstrating how to “activate your glutes.”

I’m not saying numbers and science don’t have a place in golf (at times they enhance our understanding and knowledge of the swing), but golf is beginning to be overrun by data, by scientific analysis, and by a majority of instruction, which is based on hitting the right numbers on your golf swing, vice hitting the golf ball.

SEEING THE FIELD

I began golf a little later than most at the age of 22. I had never played before and knew very little about the game, its rules, or its history. When I was introduced to golf, I was handed a club, told to grip it like a baseball bat, and hit it hard. There was no talk about axis, pronation, supination, or plane. Not one time did someone talk launch angle, ball speed, or the degree of open or closed on my clubface.

The beauty of golf was it was both easy and hard. No one needed to explain anything technical to me. It was about the joy of hitting the ball and the joy of hitting a good shot. It was about realizing hitting that one good shot, that perfect shot, would bring you back the next day.

GETTING BACK TO AUTHENTIC

It may seem unnecessarily dramatic, but golf, in fact, all sports come to us naturally. We can catch without having the technical parts of “how” we did it explained to us. We can throw without understanding arm angle, inclination, or elevation. And we can once again bring the authentic nature of our game back to the masses by remembering golf – at its core, is simply about hitting the golf ball from one place to the other. Swings can be flat, upright, one-plane, two-plane, whatever! Let’s get back to learning, teaching, and loving golf for the natural game it has always been . . . and will always be.

GolfSunrise

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BIO: Keith Cook has been a writer/blogger/contributing editor at localgolfer.com since 2013. He is a retired U.S. Military Veteran and Ashford University Graduate living in Michigan. Follow Keith and Local Golfer on Twitter @_KeithCook and @LocalGolfer.

Read more from Keith, Click here

Weekend Wrap-Up In Golf (8 Feb 2015)

Golf Writer, Keith Cook, provides the Weekend’s Wrap-up of the Winners, Losers, and Other News from the PGA, LPGA, Champions, and European Tours!

PGA TOUR

Farmers Insurance Open

Jason Day, 2015 Farmers Insurance Open Champion Photo: PGATour.com
Jason Day, 2015 Farmers Insurance Open Champion
Photo: PGATour.com

SAN DIEGO, California /// The week began with yet another unexpected Tiger Woods moment. With the fog-delayed first round underway, it became apparent Tiger Woods was again in pain on the golf course. With obvious flinches of pain on each swing and prior to finishing his 12th hole, Woods had his caddie pick up his coin on the green and promptly withdrew . . . his third WD in his last eight starts.

If the WD wasn’t enough to put the golf world in a tailspin, Tiger’s impromptu press conference in the parking lot, brought with it one of the greatest quotes thus far in 2015. “I tried to activate my glutes” was the description Woods used to explain how his lower back tightened up and how he could not get it to loosen up again before the round. Woods’ quote, which is right there with “I’m just here so I don’t get fined,” has now made its way into golf speak and (I’m sure) will be heard at golf courses all over the world in 2015.

However, all Tiger Woods news aside, there was still a golf tournament to be played.

This year’s Farmers Insurance Open brought with it difficult conditions and presented the players with challenging course setups, which included; tight pins, hard greens, and thick rough. Some of the players compared the conditions and setup, of the Torrey Pines South Course, to something on the verge of a U.S. Open track. When the final round ended, Australian Jason Day and Americans Harris English, J.B. Holmes, and Scott Stallings all finished at -9 under par / 279 and headed to a sudden death playoff to decide the victor.

After the first playoff hole, both English and Stallings were eliminated with pars and Holmes and Day moved to the second playoff hole, the par 3, 16th. Holmes was only able to manage bogey on the par 3 and when Jason Day finished off his short par putt, he captured his third win on the PGA Tour.

“It’s an amazing feeling,” Day said. “I’ve been working so hard for this. I was visualizing myself holding the trophy, just like I did at the Match Play. I’m really proud of myself to hang in there and grind it out.”

Win the win, Jason Day moves to Number 4 in the Official World Golf Rankings and deposits a first place winner’s check of $1,134,000 million dollars.

NEXT UP: AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, Pebble Beach, CA (Feb 12 – Feb 15)

LPGA TOUR

Pure Silk Bahamas LPGA Classic

Sei Young Kim, 2015 Pure Silk Bahamas Champion Photo: Associated Press
Sei Young Kim, 2015 Pure Silk Bahamas Champion
Photo: Associated Press

PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas /// Sinking a birdie putt on her final hole in regulation, South Korean rookie Sei Young Kim vaulted herself into a three-way playoff with fellow countrywoman, Sun Young Yoo and Thailand’s Ariya Jutanugarn.

Playing the par 5, 18th hole once again, Kim carded her second birdie in a row to take home the title, in the setting sun, after both Yoo and Jutanugarn were only able to make par.

The victory on Sunday is the first for the 22-year-old rookie and brings with it a nice payday of $195,000 dollars.

NEXT UP: ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open, Melbourne, Australia (Feb 19 – Feb 22)

EUROPEAN TOUR

Maybank Malaysian Open

Anirban Lahiri, 2015 Maybank Malaysian Open Champion Photo: Associated Press
Anirban Lahiri, 2015 Maybank Malaysian Open Champion
Photo: Associated Press

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia /// Overcoming a 5-shot deficit to begin the final round, India’s Anirban Lahiri fired a -4 under / 68 to win the Maybank Malaysian Open by 1-shot over Austrian Bernd Wiesberger. Weisberger, the leader by 2-shots when the day began, fired a final round +2 over / 74 to lose the lead.

Ranked 73rd in the Official World Gold Rankings heading into the week, Lahiri’s win moves him inside the top 40 and right in line with one of his greatest goals of playing in the Masters in April. “That’s definitely one of my targets,” Lahiri said. ”I don’t know how far I’ve moved up (the rankings), but I’m pretty confident now with this win I should have a good chance.”

Win the victory, Anirban Lahiri wins for the first time on the European Tour and takes home the first place prize of €439,796 (~$497,000).

NEXT UP: True Thailand Classic, Hua Hin, Thailand (Feb 12 – Feb 15)

CHAMPIONS TOUR

Allianz Championship

Paul Goydos, 2015 Allianz Champion Photo: PGATour.com
Paul Goydos, 2015 Allianz Champion
Photo: PGATour.com

BOCA RATON, Florida /// Paul Goydos fired an impressive 3-under / 69 in the final round to capture his second Champions Tour victory in just 12 career starts on the over 50 tour. With the victory, Goydos has now equaled his career win total on the PGA Tour, where he won twice in 507 starts.

“Statistics are a wonderful predictor of the past,” Goydos said. “Part of it is experience and maturity. If I played like I did today 10 years ago, I don’t think there’s any way I would have won this tournament.”

Goydos finished the week just one stroke ahead of his closest competitor, Gene Sauers, which was just enough to earn the first place winner’s check of $255,000 dollars.

NEXT UP: ACE Group Classic, Naples, Florida (Feb 13 – Feb 15)

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BIO: Keith Cook has been a writer/blogger/contributing editor at localgolfer.com since 2013. He is a retired U.S. Military Veteran and Ashford University Graduate living in Michigan. Follow Keith and Local Golfer on Twitter @_KeithCook and @LocalGolfer.

Read more from Keith, Click here

DSCF4949

2015 Spokane Golf Show Is Here!!

www.spokanegolfshow.comThe 2015 Spokane Golf Show promises traditional and additional features in the new expansion of the Spokane Convention Center!

Spokane Golf Show dates image 2015The waiting is over! The 2015 Golf Season is officially here. The Spokane Golf and Travel Show, in its 17th year, has become an Inland Empire tradition, evolving into the largest consumer golf and travel show in the Spokane and Coeur d’Alene region.

The 100+ exhibitors represent golf retailers, golf manufacturers, golf travel, PGA quick tip instruction, and seminars by local PGA professionals, featuring a Demo Area, a Putting Contest, Long Drive Contests, Travel & Golf Give-a-Ways,
Junior Golf, Show Only Deals and much more.
Dates & Hours:
Friday, February 20- Ladies Night Out! 5pm-8pm
Saturday, February 21–9am – 5pm
Sunday, February 22–10am – 4pm

Sponsor images 2015-1Sponsored by Legacy Resort at Frenchman Hills, iHeart Radio, Fox 28 TV & The Spokesman Review.

TicketsNowGreenAdmission is only $12. Children twelve and under are FREE, courtesy of Damon Orthodontics.

 

Tickets are available at all TicketsWest Outlets or on the Golf Show web site. www.SpokaneGolfShow.com

Every adult paid admission will receive a free round of golf from Spokane’s Fairways Golf Course, and other free or discounted bonus golf offers from a variety of courses, including Priest Lake, Columbia Point, Bryden Canyon, Redstone, Cascade, Chewelah, Prairie Falls and Colfax.

What’s New at the Show This Year?

• Ladies Night Out–Friday is KISC 98.1’s Ladies Night from 5p to 8p with special retail offers, Women’s Nike store and exclusive access to the manufacturers along with Hors d’oeuvres, drinks, Q and A with Kathy G-Jensen, 2014 PGA National Teacher of the year, and other fun activities. Ladies’ Night Tickets are $25 prior to the show or $30 at the door. Learn more and order tickets at www.SpokaneGolfShow.com
• New Spot/Same Location– The show is strategically located in the new expansion area of the Spokane Convention Center! You will enjoy the new views overlooking the Spokane River.
• The Swinging Doors 19th Hole–Meet your friends at the large raised bar right in the middle of the show and enjoy a cold beverage and a bite to eat. A great place to watch the long putt, long drive or hitting range activities.

New Golf Gear
The Wide World of Golf Demo Zone will have 10+ golf manufacturers on hand featuring the latest models from the PGA show in Orlando on a 14 station hitting net.Wide World of Golf 2015 Golf Mfrs  Try out the latest in golf technology! Find that new driver, a set of irons and putter you’ve been wanting for the upcoming season.

For the Kids
DSCF4968_cropThe Damon Orthodontics Kids Zone features free golf clubs from the PGA Clubs for Kids program provided by Henry-Griffitts (while supplies last). Introducing your child or grandchildren to golf has never been easier with representatives from the First Tee of the Inland Northwest to get them started. Don’t forget, all children 12 and under are free to attend the show courtesy of Damon Orthodontics!

 

Golf Instruction

Kathy Jensen Photo credit: Cliff Cowley
Kathy Jensen

Learn from the best with seminars and the PGA quick tip net headlined by Kathy G-Jensen, PGA 2014 PGA National Teacher of the year. The seminar stage

Gary Lindeblad
Gary Lindeblad

will also feature golf professionals Gary Lindeblad (Indian Canyon) and Steve Prugh (Manito CC) discussing junior golf and how to get your children involved in the game. The Inland Empire PGA Chapter will be providing FREE instructional tips at two hitting nets in the show, staffed by area golf professionals.

Stay and Play Packages

Northwest Region courses from Washington, Montana, Idaho, Oregon and Canada will be offering golf vacation packages and deals throughout the show. Be sure to visit the booth of new arrival, Nevada, Mesquite Gaming.

Traditional Favorites
• Clearance and close out clothing and equipment from over 13 area golf courses and regional golf retailers will be available Spokane Golf Show imagesat the PGA clearance area.
• EWU/Northern Quest Resort & Casino $20,000 long putt contest.
• Fastener’s long drive contest
• Arby’s/Novus ‘Break the Glass’ challenge.
• WSU/Moloney O’Neill putting challenge.

The Spokane Golf Show will feature plenty of vacation prizes. Fun, activities and bargains for all ages!
Plenty of interactive fun for all ages.
For more details go to www.spokanegolfshow.com or call 509.621.0125.

About Vision Marketing:
Vision Marketing started, owns and produces the 17th Annual Spokane Golf Show and the Boise Golf Show. In addition Vision Marketing offers a full range of integrated marketing services – from strategic planning, creating funding to execution – for small businesses, non-profit organizations, and trade associations. For more information about Vision Marketing, call 509-621-0125 or visit www.vision-marketing.net