My Best Game Ever

After four days of training, I play my best game ever.

In the interests of full disclosure, I have to report I didn’t actually score all that well. But as you’ll see, that had more to do with new clubs and a complete failure of the short game. But from tee to approach, my play was stellar. So even with a high score on the day, I was quite happy with my game.

Background

I was playing the Metropolitan Golf Links in Oakland, CA. I was playing in a club “tournament”, which meant playing by strict rules of golf. (I don’t like them very much, actually. So I only report tournament scores, so my handicap reflects the skill I have under super-strict conditions.)

On this day, I had new clubs, which turned out to be a major problem in quite unexpected ways, as you’ll see. Also I had been working with GolfTEC for quite a few sessions, trying to shallow out my swing plane, get a swing path that worked from in to out, and eliminate horrible chicken-wing slice that had bedeviled me for a couple of decades. The swing was better. But I somehow could not my body to produce the “hip shift” that allowed the club to drop into the “slot”, in order to produce a good swing. So my game was better, not great.

Enter Tathata. I had been doing the program for a couple of weeks — but I had only found time to do a session every few days. (At 45-60 minutes per session, it was hard. Some days, I’d do half a session at a time.)

So after a couple of weeks, I had completed all of 4 days of Tathata training. I didn’t have the movement sequences memorized, so I couldn’t do them on my own, as yet. So all I had under my belt were those first 4 training days, following along with the video.

But what a difference it made! In those 4 days, I had learned a step-by-sequence of movements (so I understood them) and I had practiced those movements (so they were reasonably ingrained).

Those movements didn’t even include the hands and arms, actually. Or the “pressure” sensations that are said to be coming in the third set of lessons. I was only halfway through the first series of lessons, working on basic body mechanics, from the feet and knees up through the chest and shoulders.

It’s worth noting, too, that like all good martial arts training, the early sessions are long on talk. Believe me, when you’re doing brand new movements for the first time, even short practice segments seem like a lot! So it doesn’t take long before you’re exceedingly grateful for the explanations!

The practice segments are 2 sets of 10 reps, generally, or a position you hold 2 times, for 10 seconds. That doesn’t seem like a lot. And it probably won’t be, once you’re used to the movements. But at this early point in the training, it was quite enough!

And did it ever make a difference! In those 4 days, I wound up “taking my stance” at least 88 times (12-steps in the movement pattern, times 2 repetitions of each step, times 4 days). So “taking a stance” was pretty well ingrained. In addition, I at last understood how the body has to move to produce a “hip shift” (totally misleading terminology that belies what is actually happening), and I had a sense of what it means to create power in the backswing (rather than merely turning the shoulders).

As little as I had done up to that point, I actually learned a ton. I mean, I had taken more than 50 expensive lessons in my lifetime, and none of them gave me the detailed movement sequences I had learned — and trained — in those 4 days.

Read on to see what a difference it made…

The Story of the Day

Two weeks later, and I’m still bragging about the game I played that day. So it was time to post it. Here’s what happened.

    • I pIayed really well down the fairway.
      (I only lost three 3 shots in that part of the game — mostly from hitting it “fat” off the tee (if you can believe that.
    • I never lost a ball.
      (In fact, I never even had to take my provisional (spare) ball out of pocket! The ball was looking pretty sad  after a while. By the end of the round, it was begging me to put it out of its misery…)
    • I played really well on the greens.
      (Almost all 2-putts. One 1-putt and three 3-putts — along with three lip-outs and two that missed by an inch. So yeah, putting was good.)
    • But my ability to get ON the green was vershtunken.
      • I never had a chance to dial in distances with my new wedges, so I chronically pitched short and chipped long. (I thought I’d figure it out as I played, but that didn’t work out well at all.)
      • There was a 2-club wind, but I only played 1-club so, with the wind behind me every approach was a club long, and with the wind in my face every approach was a club short. (But since I hadn’t had a chance to dial in my distances, I wasn’t sure what distance I was supposed to be getting — so it took until the 14th hole to figure it out.
    • Bottom line: I lost at least one stroke on every hole, in the approach or the short game. On many, I lost more than one. (But those will be easy to get back. I had my distances nicely dialed in with my old clubs. The new clubs give me more accuracy and greater distance down the fairway, but the lack of distance-precision killed me in the short game.)
    • At 105, or some such, I was 15 over bogey. But with only 3 strokes lost in the long game, I could easily have shot bogey or below.

As a result, I played higher than my handicap (or so I thought). I mean, my course handicap was something like 26 (based on a handicap index of 24 and change), which meant that 98 would have been a good round.

So I expected my handicap to go up a bit. But it dropped, instead! How cool is that? Now that I’m getting my short game dialed in with the new clubs, good things should be happening, very soon now. 

AND my swing keeps improving. (The banana slice has mostly been eliminated, but I can still go pretty far left or right, at times. So consistency can improve.) As THAT happens, man! I’m gonna have even more fun!

I owe it all to:

    1. My putting and green-reading analysis (naturally).
      Learn more: Comprehensive Keys to the Green
    2. My short game analysis (even though it failed me, on this occasion, due to the unfamiliar wedges).
    3. New clubs. (Got fitted for a new set of Callaway Steelheads with high performance shafts, at the right length with the right lie angle. Love them! Great distance, lots of carry, and lots of shots going straight-down-the-pipe.)
    4. GolfTEC (a really good video-feedback system, though mega-expensive)
    5. Tathata (Yeah. I signed up for it. Wow. Really detailed movement sequencing, with mild training in performing those sequences, plus one incredible stretching program that you have to take really easy, because it’s intense — sort of a cross between Taiji and Yoga. 60 lessons, 45-minutes to an hour each for $180, and you can review them any time you like. Talk about cost-effective.)
      Learn more: GolfTEC vs. Tathata

Try Tathata

Using my affiliate link, you can save $10 on the program. (I get a bit, too. But I don’t really care about that. The program is that good. I’d happily link to it for free!)


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Learn more: Why I Became a Tathata Affiliate.

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3 Comments

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Tathata Day 8 – A MUST WATCH for Golf Instructors | Treelight.com June 18, 2017 (8:36 pm)

    […] I began to get the move around Day 4 in the Tathata program, as a result of the movement patterns that were being trained and ingrained as part of the process. And that, I believe, is the major reason that I finished my day at Metropolitan with the same ball I started with, and never hit one banana slice all day — after only 4 days! (See My Best Game Ever.) […]

  2. Tathata Day 08 – A MUST WATCH for Golf Instructors | Treelight.com May 6, 2017 (9:10 pm)

    […] I began to get the move around Day 4 in the Tathata program, as a result of the movement patterns that were being trained and ingrained while doing the program. And that, I believe, is the major reason that I finished my day at Metropolitan with the same ball I started with, and never hit one banana slice all day. (See My Best Game Ever.) […]

  3. Tathata Golf Review | Treelight.com May 4, 2017 (9:08 pm)

    […] Next up: My Best Game Ever […]

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