In January 2010 I was able to nail down sponsors for the year’s fantasy golf. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get Rife Putters to come through with a prize at the end of the season after my contact left the company.
Of course, the buzz was the Tiger Woods scandal and I blogged about it a lot.
I started a new gig, working as national sales manager for Sumi-G. Over the course of the year I’d build up a rep force in the USA for the company, as well as work on many media related items like the company web site etc. That gig ended (on good terms so no worries) in October.
January saw me traveling to the PGA Merchandise show with Sumi-G and experiencing a perspective to the PGA Show which I hadn’t seen before. That was one of working very hard for 15 hour days on and in the booth, meeting and talking with potential customers.
February I continued to blog and review gear.
Tried to tune in to Pebble Beach but couldn’t stand all the hack “stars” like George Lopez.
While in Puerto Rico, I shot a two part series of videos, interviews and photos of The Golf Channel. It was a very cool “behind the scenes” look at a live broadcast by TGC and the people who make it happen. Months later, I was contacted and asked to pull it because nobody had “permission.” Party poopers if you ask me.
SHOTmaster is a 99 cent iPhone/iPod/iPad golf application which provides some good basic instruction and golf tips. The application provides textual as well as video golf instruction for nearly every type of shot a player may encounter on the golf course.
From the main menu the user can access the shot category, video list and golf tips list. Some of the data overlaps between the selections.
When sleeting a shot from the main menu, like a 50 yard bunker shot, the next page displays text pointers and a supporting image, or may contain a link to view a video.
“Golf is 90% mental, and the other 10% is in your head.”
I’m capable of hitting great golf shots. I’ve hit thousands of them. I’m also capable of completely gagging and hitting horrid golf shots, like today when I limped to the finish line on the last two holes with bogey and double bogey to make a good round turn into a mediocre one. So why can’t I hit good shots more consistently? Why is it that I can play great golf for 15-16 holes but gag the last couple? How can I be -7 after 12 holes and shoot 74? How can I shoot a 31 on the front and a 41 on the back? How can I shoot 68 on a course one day and then shoot an 85 on the same damn course the next? Sometimes it seems like I can’t stand success during a round. It is all mental baby.
I do have the physical ability and the coordination to hit a great golf shot. Many people do. But why don’t they do it more often or more consistently? Their brains get in the way. During rounds I know my focus drifts and bad swing faults and bad habits take over.
Golf State Of Mind
David MacKenzie’s Golf State Of Mind is a program which coaches and teaches the mental side of golf. It is about cultivating the right mental approach to the game and building trust in the player’s ability. The program is intended to help players play without fear, and reach their full potential.
Remember the Medicus from years ago? The SKLZ Refiner series are clubs with a similar concept. The Refiner Driver is a hinged training driver which shows breakdowns in your swing.
Two huge factors in the golf swing are tempo and swing plane.
Many players’ tempos are way too fast or jerky at different points in the swing. The Refiner driver breaks down when the following tempos are too quick:
Take away tempo
Top of the swing pause
Start of the downswing
Pronation or follow through
I thought I had a very smoothly timed wing, but the Refiner had a different story. I found that my takeaway was too quick. My “normal” swing had the hinge breaking down between the start of my takeaway and the first foot or two back. I really thought I was slow and smooth here but I wasn’t. Since adjusting that small part of my swing I’m hitting the ball higher and father. The rest of my swing was fine, according to the Refiner.
If you swing the club with a bad swing plane the Refiner will also break down. This helps players get on plane, especially slicers. If you are coming outside in, the usual cause of a slice, the Refiner will let you know.
You can actually hit shots with the Refiner Driver, as seen in the video below
While out testing a myriad of golf gear on a cold cold day at the south range of my home course my pal and mini tour pro Luke Swilor stopped by. I put Luke to work testing the Refiner. Luke is a high level player and I was anxious to see what happened in his swing with this unit.
In the video below Luke and I test out the Refiner and give some off the cuff reactions and opinions. Luke crushes the Refiner, almost hitting the the range shack on the north end of the range. I might add there was a head wind as well. That answers the question, “can you hit real shots with this thing?”
For hammering out swing plane and especially tempo issues, I’ll always keep the Refiner handy. I’m sure if things go a bit bad with my swing, the Refiner can tell me where the breakdowns are occurring.
There are systems out there which are thousands of bucks, designed to analyze golf swings. They can draw lines for posture, swing planes etc. They also have super slow mo for capturing crucial points in time during the swing.
Enter the Casio EX-FS10
Now Casio has a pocket sized, point and shoot camera which could replace many of those high end pro analysis system’s features. The EX-FS10 has all the features a normal camera would have, plus high speed movie capture of up to 1,000 fps (frames per second). That is amazing. For reference, standard video is 30 frames per second. At that speed you’d better have a big memory card though. There are also settings for 210fps, 420fps and variable 30-210fps.
The Casio web site doesn’t show the lines in the photo here, the digital golf pro. I’m gathering that though the camera is available now in the USA, that feature isn’t available in models here, yet.
Perhaps I can get my hands on one of these babies soon and give it a test run.