Launch monitor technology has long been in a price range far beyond what the average golfer could spend, as in “should I buy a car or buy a launch monitor?” Technology is advancing quickly and now we are to the point where products which may have cost thousands a few years ago are now a few hundred bucks.
Swing Caddie SC100 Golf Launch Monitor
Case in point is the Swing Caddie SC100 Launch Monitor, which I’ll be putting to the test for the first time this morning before my regular weekend game. This unit is placed behind the ball and will give the the player carry distance, swing speed, ball speed, and smash factor. The unit also has other neat features like practice modes, random mode, target mode.
I can’t wait to test this unit out. Stay tuned for my review soon. Sight unseen, I’d consider this for a an upcoming Father’s Day golf gift.
I know many amateur and pro golfers often have a “swing thought” they choose for the day or the practice session. A swing thought can be one word, a phrase, or a key to focus on, which helps get rid of many other negative thoughts and keeps the player focused. I’ve never been one to try a swing thought during a round, nor have I tried to work on technical parts of my swing during a round. I believe once you start going “Johnny Miller” in your head and thinking of 27 different things, you’re toast.
Yesterday I was playing okay, but realized I was throwing my (massive) weight around in the swing. I tend to sway forward. Someone years ago told me you can gain power by shifting your weight. I do that too much, and often end up off balance. Out of the blue before one swing I said the word “balance” to myself out loud just before I took the club back. The result was a towering drive straight down the middle of the fairway with zero side-spin. The contact mark was dead center on the club face. The takeaway, downswing, and follow through were all smooth with no over-shifting of the weight. The finish was comfortable and easy, like Ernie Els or Freddie. I’m sure it looked just as good or better.
A light went off in my head, and on every swing I could the rest of the round I said the word balance just before pulling the trigger. I’m a hack amateur, so not all the swings were perfect, but the overall result was a marked improvement in contact, swing quality, accuracy, and distance.
The word balance is great because it can cover so many parts of the swing. Proper balance means not shifting the weight too far back or through. It can mean bringing the club back nice and slow. It can mean a smooth transition at the top with no jerky or fast motions. It covers a lot.
When all was said and done I had shot a decent round, but was thrilled about the quality of the ball-striking.
Yes, I’ll be saying “balance” before my swings for the next round. I plan on using that thought until it wears out. Hope it doesn’t.
In for review is a DVD called Creating Young Masters by junior golf instructor Kent Chase. Here’s a paragraph about the DVD:
This series is a combination of documentary, learning, and insight to what it takes to be a great golfer. It is the confluence of teacher, student, and parent who embark on the journey to reach lofty goals such as winning championships, obtaining college scholarships, and qualifying for professional tour cards.
With all the talk of “growing golf,” getting youngsters involved and into the game is certainly a big part.
Stay tuned for my review of Creating Young Masters soon.
How can I not post this video of Miguel Angel Jimenez teaching his world famous “Most Interesting Stretching Routine in the World” to a crowd of golfers?
For many golfers it is their dream to play golf with their idol Jack Nicklaus or Tiger Woods. I think my biggest dream (other than the one with all the Sports Illustrated swimsuit models, the rose petals, incense, circus swings, and body oil), is to have a glass of wine and a cigar with Miguel Angel Jimenez.
What an honor it was last week to spend a few minutes interviewing Mr. Fitness, golf legend Gary Player. Interviewing the Black Knight is certainly one of the best highlights in the history of this modest golf blog.
In the interview below I discuss fitness with the 9-time major champion and member of the “Big Three,” the other two of course being Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus.