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Origin of the Game 2013 PGA Tour Schedule Should We Purchase a Country Club Membership? 2013 LPGA Tour Schedule Eastern Amputee Golf Association The Health Benefits of Golf GREAT SCOTLAND!
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Fred Couples: The Gloveless “Boom Boom” Driving Growth with Golf 2.0 2013 Champions Tour Schedule Does Your Swing Tempo Need a Tune Up? How to Lower Your Scores NOW! Primary Care for the 65 (yards) and Under Business Directory
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Origin of the Game
“Dispelling the Myths” When and where did golf begin? Everyone knows golf originated in Scotland, right? Welllllllll ... yes and no. It’s definitely true that golf as we know it emerged in Scotland. The Scots were playing golf in its very basic form - take a club, swing it at a ball, move ball from starting point to finishing hole in as few strokes as possible - by at least the mid-15th Century. In fact, the earliest known reference to golf comes from King James II of Scotland, who, in 1457, issued a ban on the playing of golf and football (soccer). Those games, James complained, were keeping his archers from their practice. James III in 1471 and James IV in 1491 each re-issued the ban on golf. But the game continued to develop in Scotland over the decades and centuries, until 1744 when the first-known rules of golf were put down in writing in Edinburgh. Golf as it was then played would be easily recognized by any modern golfer. But can it be said that the Scots “invented” golf? Not quite, because there’s strong evidence that the Scots were influenced themselves by even earlier versions of games that were similar in nature. Here’s what the USGA Museum says about the issue: “While many Scots firmly maintain that golf evolved from a family of stick-and-ball games widely practiced throughout the British Isles during the Middle Ages, considerable evidence suggests that the game derived from stick-and-ball games that were played in France, Germany and the Low Countries.” Part of that evidence is the etymology of the word “golf” itself. “Golf” derives from the Old Scots terms “golve” or “goff,” which themselves evolved from the medieval Dutch term “kolf.” The medieval Dutch term “kolf” meant “club,” and Priority One Marketing Group, LLC | 5
the Dutch were playing games (mostly on ice) at least by the 14th Century in which balls were struck by sticks that were curved at the bottom until they were moved from Point A to Point B. Sounds a lot like hockey, doesn’t it? Except that it sort of sounds like golf, too (except for that ice part). The Dutch and Scots were trading partners, and the fact that the word “golf” evolved after being transported by the Dutch to the Scots lends credence to the idea that the game itself may have been adapted by the Scots from the earlier Dutch game. Something else that lends credence to that idea: Although the Scots played their game on parkland (rather than ice), they (or least some of them) were using balls they acquired in trade from ... Holland. And the Dutch game wasn’t the only similar game of the Middle Ages. Going back even farther, the Romans brought their own stick-and-ball game into the British Isles. So does that mean that the Dutch (or someone else other than that Scots) invented golf? No, it means that golf grew out of games that were played in different parts of Europe. But we’re not trying to deny the Scots their place in golf history. The Scots made a singularimprovement to all the games that came before: They dug a hole in the ground, and made getting the ball into that hole the object of the game. As we said at the beginning, for golf as we know it, we definitely have the Scots to thank.
Does it Stand for “Gentlemen Only, Ladies Forbidden”? Did the word “golf” originate as an acronym for “gentlemen only, ladies forbidden”? That’s a common old wives’ tale. Or, in this case, more likely an old husband’s tale. No, “golf” is not an acronym for “gentlemen only, ladies forbidden.” If you’ve ever heard that, forget it immediately. Better yet, find the person who told you and let them know it’s not true. Like most modern words, the word “golf” derives from older languages and dialects. In this case, the languages in question are medieval Dutch and old Scots. The medieval Dutch word “kolf” or “kolve” meant “club.” It is believed that word passed to the Scots, whose old Scots dialect transformed the word into “golve,” “gowl” or “gouf.” By the 16th Century, the word “golf” had emerged. Sources: British Golf Museum, USGA Library
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What was the First Public Golf Course in the United States?
When Van Cortlandt Golf Course opened in New York City in 1895, it became the first public golf course in America. There were other golf courses in the U.S. by that time - perhaps 100 or more - but Van Cortlandt was the first built for the masses. And Van Cortlandt Golf Course is still in operation today, the centerpiece of Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx. The park also boasts a lake and two nature trails. In Van Cortlandt Park you’ll also find the Old Croton Aqueduct Trail. The aqueduct, built during the 1830s and 1840s, was New York City’s first major water supply project.
How Did the Size of the Golf Hole Come to Be Standardized at 4.25 Inches?
Question: How Did the Size of the Golf Hole Come to Be Standardized at 4.25 Inches? Answer: How many times have you lipped out a putt and wished that the size of the hole on the green was just a smidge larger? Why is the hole that size to begin with? That’s one of our most frequently asked questions: How did the hole come to be standardized at its current size of 4.25 inches in diameter? Like so many things in golf, the standardized size of the hole comes to us courtesy of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, with an assist from the links at Musselburgh. In new rules issued in 1891, the R&A determined that the hole size should be standard on golf courses everywhere. So the R&A discussed just what exactly that size should be. The size they decided on was 4.25 inches in diameter. The reason is that the folks at Musselburgh (now a 9-hole municipal course and called Royal Musselburgh Golf Club) had invented, in 1829, the first known hole-cutter. That ancient hole-cutter is still in existence and is on display at Royal Musselburgh. That first hole-cutter utilized a cutting tool that was, you guessed it, 4.25 inches in diameter. The folks running the R&A apparently liked that size and so adopted it in their rules for 1891. And as was usually the case, the rest of the golf world followed in the footsteps of the R&A. The exact reasons for why that first tool cut holes at the now-standard diameter are lost to history. But it was almost certainly a completely arbitrary thing, a notion supported by the story that the tool was built from some excess pipe that was laying about the Musselburgh links. 8 | Priority One Marketing Group, LLC
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SHOULD WE PURCHASE A Country Club Membership?
by Max Johnson Are you thinking of purchasing a country club membership at a local country club? Compared to playing at different golf courses all of the time, purchasing a country club membership has many advantages and benefits. What are the advantages to owning a country club membership? Here is a list of five reasons to purchase a country club membership. 1. If you play golf on a regular basis, it could be more cost effective to become a member of a local country club. This way you are not shelling out a green fee every single time you play. In addition, most memberships would include your entire family. This would allow your spouse and children to play or learn to play the great game of golf. The great part about this is that you can get your kids 12 | Priority One Marketing Group, LLC
involved in this great game. Your child or children can become involved in the junior golf program that is offered and this may give you a way to spend more family time or one-onone time with your child or children. 2. Make no mistake, when you purchase a country club membership you are purchasing a lifestyle as well as a new social network. You will meet others with similar interests as yours at the golf course, pool or wine tasting. Many join a club just for the business connections that they are able to secure to help them grow their business. 3. Most clubs administer a handicap system. As you complete rounds of golf, you will turn in your scores and the handicap system will keep track of your handicap according to USGA Rules.
SHOULD WE PURCHASE A Country Club Membership? by Max Johnson The system should give you your monthly handicap as well as a local or a trend handicap. This is important as you begin to play in club tournaments, as a handicap will be required.
club membership, consider the points made above to make the correct choice for you and your family. A country club membership can become an important part of where a family can spend quality time to4. Most clubs have an active golf tour- gether. nament program. The club golf tournaments are administered for Men, Ladies, Seniors, Juniors and Couples. First, opposed to what newer golfers and many high handicappers believe, these club golf tournaments are not scary. Club golf tournaments are a great way to test where your skills are currently. Club golf tournaments are broken down into flights. This simply means if you have a golf tournament of one hundred players, it is typical to have ten flights. This equates to you competing against the nine people with the handicap closest to yours.
EDGE ON YOUR
5. People tend to practice golf where they play golf. Most clubs have good practice facilities that will allow you to practice all aspects of your game. Many country clubs have full service driving ranges that will allow you to practice half-wedge shots to the full swings with your driver. You should also make sure that the practice putting green is in similar shape and speed to the putting greens on the golf course.
If you are considering a local country
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The Health Benefits of golf by: Norleen Gray
BELIEVE IT OR NOT... golf is actually good for your health. Even the United States Golf Association thinks so; they also advise that you should walk the golf course and try to avoid – as much as possible – riding golf carts. Although riding golf carts is the most convenient way to get yourself from one hole to the next, it will actually be good for your body if you walk your legs along the greens. Doing so pumps your heart, circulates the blood all over your body, and is a good and fun way of exercising. David Fay from the United States Golf Association also thinks that the most pleasurable way to play golf is by walking. Riding carts, he said, should as much as possible be stopped now. Walking is a good form of exercise. It is the most basic and easy program of getting fit which almost anyone could do. Simply put, walking is good for you. Although some believe that walking the golf course is a very unhealthy thing to do because of the nature of the game – the start and stop process of golf playing. In actuality though, there have been scientific studies as well as evidence of people actually telling their personal experiences on the positive effects of walking through a game of golf. 18 | Priority One Marketing Group, LLC
In Sweden in particular, there are researchers who discovered that walking through a game of golf equals to about forty to seventy percent of intense workout in an aerobics class. This is assuming that about eighteen holes were played. In another study by a cardiologist named Edward Palank, golfers who walked were found to be in a better state of health because the level of bad cholesterol in their body decreased. Meanwhile, the level of their good cholesterol was steady. Those golfers who settled to ride their way across the golf course on golf carts, however, did not show these same positive health results. Also, according to Golf Science International, four hours of golf playing was found to be comparable to attending a forty five minute fitness class.
The Health Benefits of golf by: Norleen Gray
Another golf association, specifically the Northern Ohio Golf Association, stated that when a golfer walks across a course, it is roughly equivalent to walking for three to four miles. This included walking around hills, over greens and tees. Not convinced yet? Maybe you should try doing the following activities and see, as well as feel, the difference for yourself. During a round of golf, try to walk along alternating holes so that by the end of your round of golf you should be able to have walked through a total of nine holes. If you are feeling not up to it yet as fully as you should, that is okay. Maybe you could try walking on a set of nines while you can ride the other set. If you have a golf partner and he or she insists that you ride along with him or her, make sure that you only ride on the path of the cart. You can then walk down to the fairway towards your ball and then your partner could bring the golf cart up.
Are You Convinced Yet? Believe it or not, golf carts do create damage around sand traps and around the greens. Even if carts are not supposed to ride along these areas, sometimes though, depending on who is behind the golf cartâ€™s wheel, they still at times do. For the sake of the greens, go walk! Because of advances in technology, there are now grasses that are able to grow on areas that they originally are not supposed to grow on at all. As a result of this, golf courses look as amazing as they were before. Unfortunately, these same golf courses are as subject to a lot of wear and tear as well. Driving a golf cart along these beautiful greens subjects them to unnecessary damage. So now that you know, it would not hurt you to consider walking along, across, over, or through those greens now would it?
Are you convinced yet? If not, try to look at it this way. If your health is not good enough for you to settle to walk those legs and pump that good old heart of yours, then at least take pity and be considerate of the damage that golf carts do to fairways. Priority One Marketing Group, LLC | 19
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suzanne hayes merrill lynch
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fast, medium or slow. You have a natural swing tempo, one that feels smooth and rhythmic, that gives you optimal ball-striking ability. When you swing in tempo it feels effortless, while the ball flies straighter and farther than usual.
Have you ever wondered how you play your best one day and the next time you can’t play worth a hoot? You would think that you would be able to take that same swing back to the course and get nearly the same results. How is it that there can be ten strokes or more difference between back to back rounds? Is it that the course is different? Yes, tees and pins are in different positions each day. Conditions can vary day to day as well; things like wind and rain will affect your play. The biggest reason though is that your body is different each day and that makes your swing different as well. The difference can be attributed to your swing tempo. You need to stay in sync and in rhythm from round to round to consistently play your best. It makes sense to pay careful attention to this aspect of your golf swing. So many overlook this swing fundamental, becoming frustrated and confused with an unreliable golf swing. Tempo can be a hard subject to explain because there is a huge “feel” aspect to it. It is not just about speed;
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It might help to define tempo. The best definition I’ve heard is that tempo is the time it takes to complete a full swing beginning at takeaway all the way through to the follow through finish position. It is true that tempo varies from player to player. It is also true that it varies from day to day with the same player. The key here is to recognize when your tempo is either faster or slower than it should be and make the proper adjustments. Wouldn’t it be great if your tempo were at its peak every day? Golf would be a lot easier and handicaps would be lower too. Enough with the daydreaming. The truth is that to be aware of the changes in swing tempo and to know how to adjust or correct is the difficult part. We focus so much on mechanics that we overlook this key aspect of the golf swing.
THE KEY HERE IS TO RECOGNIZE WHEN YOUR TEMPO IS EITHER FASTER OR SLOWER
Follow Through Drill
This is another range drill. Address Four Ball Drill
You should tee up four balls in row at
the range. Begin by hitting one using just 25 percent of you full swing speed. Move to the next and use a 50 percent swing, then 75 percent on the third and full speed on the last. Focus in on the difference in feel for each of the swings. Remember you are to adjust your speed from the beginning to the end. Don’t decelerate on the downswing just pick a speed and stick to it throughout the swing. How did those swings feel? Did you make solid contact with all of them? Notice the distance for each shot?
Put your swing to the tempo of a song
you enjoy. Choose a song that fits with the desired tempo of your golf swing. I have done this with much success. One is takeaway, two is the top of the backswing, three is impact and four is the finish position. Try singing this in your head in the manner “One and two and three and four”. It will help you find and maintain your swing rhythm.
the ball. Raise the club head off the ground enough to swing it over top of the ball. Swing it forward past the ball about a foot. Then start your backswing back over the ball to a full and complete backswing and then execute the downswing into the ball as normal. Repeat often. You should pay particular attention to the feel of the weight of the clubhead. At the two points where the club changes direction the transition should be smooth and in time with the club. This will help you to get in tune with the club and the proper swing tempo. Swing tempo is an essential but often ignored fundamental. If you want to play well consistently you will need to be in tune with your body and the swing tempo it is producing. Know your best swing tempo and adjust on those days when things just aren’t all in sync as they should be. These drills will help you tune up your swing tempo. We all need a tune up now and again. Improved ball striking and scoring is sure to follow. Priority One Marketing Group, LLC | 35
HOW TO LOWER YOUR SCORES…
Do you want to lower your scores? Silly question isn’t it? Everyone wants to lower his or her scores. High handicappers and low handicappers alike want to shoot lower scores and it’s the lifelong quest golfers search for. The search goes on to develop the ideal swing and lower scores. There are 3 Keys to shooting lower scores and they are keys you can use to shoot lower scores NOW! Here are the 3 Keys #1 PLAY THE SHOT THAT NEEDS TO BE PLAYED... NOT THE ONE YOU WANT TO PLAY
The first way to lower your scores is to be honest with yourself. You need to know your game; wherever it is right now; you need to know what clubs to hit and when. There is no point in using what other golfers are using. If they hit an 8-iron from 155 and you should hit a 6…hit the 6-iron. More scores balloon because players are playing what I call “EGO Golf” instead of “Scoring Golf”. If you want to score well, you must put yourself into the best position to do that. Hitting an 8-iron because someone else is doing it won’t get you what you want. (Continued) 36 | Priority One Marketing Group, LLC
You will lower your scores when you begin playing the BEST shot instead of the shot you want to hit. Hitting the shot you want to hit is not always the BEST shot to hit at the time. Play the percentages. Play the correct shot even if you want to go for the risky or low percentage shot. Take a look at how many times playing the shot YOU wanted to hit has gotten you in trouble. Each time it has, you’ve added strokes to your round. Play the shot that needs to be played in every situation, not the one you want to play. If you don’t have the distance then lay-up and take a bogey if that’s what it means. How many times have you “gone for it’ only to add 2 or more strokes to the hole? You must play the game you know how to play and play within that game. Take an honest look at how far you hit each club right now. As you improve your game, this will change but you must play the game you have RIGHT NOW! #2 KEEP IT SIMPLE: PROCESS VS. OUTCOME Simplify your round of golf. Each hole is presenting you with the exact information you need to make the right choices…for your game! The architect has laid out all the obstructions for you so you know exactly where NOT to go and where TO go. Focus on WHERE TO go.. Simplify your round by thinking simple. “Fairways and greens” is such a simple idea that players tend to either forget it or get TOO caught up in it trying to be too perfect. Simplify your round by thinking fairways and greens. It doesn’t matter whether you are a 30, 15 or 5 handicap. Hit the shots you are capable of hitting and no more! When you try to “outwit” or “outplay” the course or other golfers, you will get into trouble. How can you simplify your round? Easy. Focus on process versus outcome. Process thinking is focusing on what you have 100 control over; at all times. Focus on your routines, your breathing, your pace between shots, visualization, rhythm and balance in your set up and swing. You have complete control over ALL of these things. You don’t have control over things like conditions, course layout, playing partners attitudes, score or any other outcome or result type of thought. You’ll find that when you focused on outcomes in the past, you probably didn’t play as well and your scores reflected that. Keep it simple. Focus ONLY on what you have control over. These are PROCESS THOUGHTS.
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#3 PRACTICE YOUR SHORT GAME!
It’s important to spend time on your short game skills. The tendency is to go to the range, hit the driver and other irons, and then call it a day. Take a close look and you might find that chipping, pitching and putting is where your strokes add up during a round. Imagine what your scores would be like if you learned to chip and pitch the ball closer to the hole? You can lower your scores by taking the time to practice chipping and pitching the ball closer to the hole. The more you do it, the more confidence you gain as well. In addition, your putting can improve because of the confidence gained by getting closer to the hole more often. Great players spend a lot of time on this part of their game because they understand that this is where their strokes can add up. There are professional golfers on the developmental tours who still don’t work on their “weaknesses” in practice and it costs them dearly when they compete. While the long ball looks beautiful, it’s the short ball that brings the numbers down on your scorecard.
You can lower your scores by acting on these 3 Keys right away. Good Luck!
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Published on Nov 11, 2013
The Golf Almanac is published by Priority One Marketing Group, LLC. Priority One Marketing Group is a boutique advertising firm that focuses...