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Parents, Your kids don't need to be reminded......


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#1 heavy_hitter

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 08:56 AM

Thought long and hard about this topic over the weekend.  Learned a lot from my daughter and trying to do things differently with my son.  "Parent's, You don't have to remind your kids after every bad shot that they hit a bad shot."  You don't have to tell them they just pulled it, sliced it, pushed it, shanked it after every bad shot or diagnose the solution to the problem.  You don't have to tell them they hit a bad putt, that they ran it 10 feet by, that they need to be careful of the downhill slope, that their tempo is off after every bad putt or diagnose the problem.  You don't have to tell them they hit a bad chip, they decelerated, that they were too handsy, or that they chunked it after every mistake and try to diagnose the problem.  They know these things because they just saw and felt the shot.  Your kids want you to be their parent and support them.  You are not their coach, you are their parent and they just want you to be mom and dad.  Your kid is going to hit bad shots.  The sign of a good golfer is someone who is going to recover from a bad shot.  Ben Hogan said "A good round of golf is if you can hit about 3 shots exactly the way you planned them."  He also said "The most important shot in golf is the next one."  It doesn't matter what your kid just did even if it was a great shot because the next shot is more important.  If you keep reminding them of this and that after a bad shot you are only going to frustrate them and they aren't going to play well.  They have to learn on their own without you doing it for them.  If you are in their ear about a bad shot, how do you think they are going to have the ability to recover when they hit the next one?  Keep your mouth closed and enjoy what they are doing.  Encourage your junior golfer.  After the round Ask them if they knew what they did wrong, don't tell them.  Let them engage you and if they don't want the answer, don't tell them.  50% of the time you are going to be wrong anyway because you aren't a trained PGA professional.  In the long run your kid will be better off learning from their failures on their own rather than you telling them.  If they have a bad round, they have a bad round.  Colleges know who they are and what they are capable of.  One bad round isn't going to make or break their chances of having a collegiate career.

If you want to engage them during the round as a caddie or question them after the round try to keep it mainly about course management issues.  Talk to them about eating and drinking on the course to keep their energy up.  Talk to them about going through their pre-shot routine (this irritates me to no end).  Talk to them about being to quick or playing too slow.  Ask them about judging the wind or slope on a whole and why they were short or long.  Your conversations need to stay in this area.  Let them talk to their coach about what they are doing wrong in full swing, putting, short game areas.  If they ask you, then you may give minor suggestions like "I think you may not have your eyes in the right position over the ball when putting."  Here is the biggest advice I can give, if they seem irritated at you, YOU as the PARENT need to lay off of them because YOU are the problem, not them.  They do not want your advice so don't force it on them.  Your job isn't to criticize them even if it is constructive criticism.  More than likely you are paying a coach for that.  You are their parent and that is who they want you to be, their parent.  

Kids need a break from their parents.  When they play team sports the kids have a coach and you sit in the stands.  After the game you ask them questions and move on.  Golf is different because when they are young you caddie.  Be their caddie, not their coach.  Clean their clubs and balls, give them yardage, talk about pin location then be quiet.  In golf, parents are around their kids all of the time.  They get tired of you being around them.  In basketball, baseball, football, soccer you are just dropping them off at the park for practice  or they are playing pick up games in the neighborhood.  You are not their every second telling them you did this or did that.  They need to learn things on their own without their parent always hovering over their shoulder.

I know a lot of this is rambling, just something I thought I would share.  "Your kids don't need to be reminded after a bad shot that they hit a bad shot or why they hit that bad shot."

Edited by heavy_hitter, 27 March 2018 - 09:32 AM.


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#2 BrianMcG

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 09:26 AM

But then how will children learn to base their self worth on what their last score was?


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#3 heavy_hitter

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 09:33 AM

 BrianMcG, on 27 March 2018 - 09:26 AM, said:

But then how will children learn to base their self worth on what their last score was?

Yes, I caught the sarcasm.  That is an entirely different subject.  Love you kid and support them no matter the score.  Don't let the bad days outweigh the good days because they aren't shooting the score YOU think they should.

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#4 j.b.newton

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 09:35 AM

Man, I dont know if there is any room on an internet golf forum for a person with sensible reflection and thoughts of others....

Well said, and I could not agree more!

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#5 cardoustie

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 09:40 AM

great post

i try to be the person you describe with my nephew

His parents can be very hard on him

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#6 wfwp

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 09:55 AM

Great post.  I agree having awareness of roles and the ability to separate roles is key.  Be a caddie during the round and be a parent after the round.  


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#7 leezer99

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 10:02 AM

Great post HH.

I haven't seen my boy play tournament golf in five or six months now.  I just get the recap of bad and good shots when he gets home so he has already had time to process what happened.  He'll then fill out his five post tournament questions journal thing and we talk about it.  We'll go out and play a few holes occasionally but that's just filled with some good hearted ribbing after a bad shot which goes both ways. I do get to caddie for him in a few weeks which will be super exciting for him I'm sure.

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#8 Belmont148

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 10:48 AM

Great post!

This is exactly what I just took self reflection on over the winter and made a change with my son. The rounds have been much more enjoyable for both of us. I have stopped being coach, and have just starting being dad and giving him the tools he needs to practice and play and be there when he has questions. It was hard in the beginning for him I am sure after hitting a chunky wedge having to hear dad give him a wedge lesson and talk about what he did wrong. Now I just say you'll get it this time, I know you can stick right up by the flag and he recovers so much faster.
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#9 heavy_hitter

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 11:06 AM

 Belmont148, on 27 March 2018 - 10:48 AM, said:

Great post!

This is exactly what I just took self reflection on over the winter and made a change with my son. The rounds have been much more enjoyable for both of us. I have stopped being coach, and have just starting being dad and giving him the tools he needs to practice and play and be there when he has questions. It was hard in the beginning for him I am sure after hitting a chunky wedge having to hear dad give him a wedge lesson and talk about what he did wrong. Now I just say you'll get it this time, I know you can stick right up by the flag and he recovers so much faster.

Helps a lot.  Encourage.  I definitely haven't been the best at this over the years.  Have really been trying to learn and be dad.

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#10 darter79

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 11:19 AM

 heavy_hitter, on 27 March 2018 - 08:56 AM, said:

Thought long and hard about this topic over the weekend.  Learned a lot from my daughter and trying to do things differently with my son.  "Parent's, You don't have to remind your kids after every bad shot that they hit a bad shot."  You don't have to tell them they just pulled it, sliced it, pushed it, shanked it after every bad shot or diagnose the solution to the problem.  You don't have to tell them they hit a bad putt, that they ran it 10 feet by, that they need to be careful of the downhill slope, that their tempo is off after every bad putt or diagnose the problem.  You don't have to tell them they hit a bad chip, they decelerated, that they were too handsy, or that they chunked it after every mistake and try to diagnose the problem.  They know these things because they just saw and felt the shot.  Your kids want you to be their parent and support them.  You are not their coach, you are their parent and they just want you to be mom and dad.  Your kid is going to hit bad shots.  The sign of a good golfer is someone who is going to recover from a bad shot.  Ben Hogan said "A good round of golf is if you can hit about 3 shots exactly the way you planned them."  He also said "The most important shot in golf is the next one."  It doesn't matter what your kid just did even if it was a great shot because the next shot is more important.  If you keep reminding them of this and that after a bad shot you are only going to frustrate them and they aren't going to play well.  They have to learn on their own without you doing it for them.  If you are in their ear about a bad shot, how do you think they are going to have the ability to recover when they hit the next one?  Keep your mouth closed and enjoy what they are doing.  Encourage your junior golfer.  After the round Ask them if they knew what they did wrong, don't tell them.  Let them engage you and if they don't want the answer, don't tell them.  50% of the time you are going to be wrong anyway because you aren't a trained PGA professional.  In the long run your kid will be better off learning from their failures on their own rather than you telling them.  If they have a bad round, they have a bad round.  Colleges know who they are and what they are capable of.  One bad round isn't going to make or break their chances of having a collegiate career.

If you want to engage them during the round as a caddie or question them after the round try to keep it mainly about course management issues.  Talk to them about eating and drinking on the course to keep their energy up.  Talk to them about going through their pre-shot routine (this irritates me to no end).  Talk to them about being to quick or playing too slow.  Ask them about judging the wind or slope on a whole and why they were short or long.  Your conversations need to stay in this area.  Let them talk to their coach about what they are doing wrong in full swing, putting, short game areas.  If they ask you, then you may give minor suggestions like "I think you may not have your eyes in the right position over the ball when putting."  Here is the biggest advice I can give, if they seem irritated at you, YOU as the PARENT need to lay off of them because YOU are the problem, not them.  They do not want your advice so don't force it on them.  Your job isn't to criticize them even if it is constructive criticism.  More than likely you are paying a coach for that.  You are their parent and that is who they want you to be, their parent.  

Kids need a break from their parents.  When they play team sports the kids have a coach and you sit in the stands.  After the game you ask them questions and move on.  Golf is different because when they are young you caddie.  Be their caddie, not their coach.  Clean their clubs and balls, give them yardage, talk about pin location then be quiet.  In golf, parents are around their kids all of the time.  They get tired of you being around them.  In basketball, baseball, football, soccer you are just dropping them off at the park for practice  or they are playing pick up games in the neighborhood.  You are not their every second telling them you did this or did that.  They need to learn things on their own without their parent always hovering over their shoulder.

I know a lot of this is rambling, just something I thought I would share.  "Your kids don't need to be reminded after a bad shot that they hit a bad shot or why they hit that bad shot."

Really great information here!


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#11 Sean2

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 11:38 AM

I was pretty laid back with my son. The only time I would interject is if he asked me a question about a particular shot/swing. Other than that I just left him alone.
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#12 kekoa

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 12:34 PM

LOL

Did my son tell you to post this?  

One thing that really stuck out in your post was the whole routine thing and how important it is.  Over the weekend, my son hit a drive OB, which was his first OB drive since starting tournament golf 3 years ago.   What happened?  He didn't follow his routine.  I watched him start his routine, but instead of standing behind the ball like he normally does after one practice swing, he stood to the side of the ball and then hit it- pulled left and OB.  On the provisional ball, he did the same thing, but luckily kept it in play.

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#13 wildcatden

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 12:37 PM

Great post HH!! This topic of supporting and encouraging your junior golfer has definitely come up here in a variety of ways.  Took my kid to hit some balls on the range last weekend for the first time in a month(!) now that ski season is over. I had to catch myself wanting to explain/diagnose/correct his swing which was definitely a bit rusty.  Instead of lots of talking and instructing, I simply had him adjust his grip (which was slightly off) and start doing half swings with every club. From there, I let him work out the kinks and ask questions if he had any.  I think I was most impressed in this new "season" with his new found ability to control his emotions after a bad shot.  Pre-shot routine is king!!

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#14 leezer99

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 01:20 PM

 wildcatden, on 27 March 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

Took my kid to hit some balls on the range last weekend for the first time in a month(!) now that ski season is over.

Ok, we've already covered that junior golfers shouldn't ski... don't know how many times we have to go over this.  :wave: What up CT?

 wildcatden, on 27 March 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

I simply had him adjust his grip

If my son and I didn't argue about grip every time we went to the range we would literally have nothing to talk about... every day that right hand creeps stronger and stronger.  Remember how in the old days if a kid fumbled in a football game they'd have to carry a football around all day at school?  I'm thinking about duct taping his hands properly on a seven iron and sending him to school like that.

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#15 wildcatden

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 01:27 PM

 leezer99, on 27 March 2018 - 01:20 PM, said:

 wildcatden, on 27 March 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

Took my kid to hit some balls on the range last weekend for the first time in a month(!) now that ski season is over.

Ok, we've already covered that junior golfers shouldn't ski... don't know how many times we have to go over this.  :wave: What up CT?

 wildcatden, on 27 March 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

I simply had him adjust his grip

If my son and I didn't argue about grip every time we went to the range we would literally have nothing to talk about... every day that right hand creeps stronger and stronger.  Remember how in the old days if a kid fumbled in a football game they'd have to carry a football around all day at school?  I'm thinking about duct taping his hands properly on a seven iron and sending him to school like that.

Hmmmm.....duct taping his hands to a golf club. I like the way you think!!!   The duct tape may also come in handy to rid him of the chicken wing on right elbow (darn baseball season kicking in now also)!!


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#16 byerxa

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 01:58 PM

Not that I am the best parent at this, but I never understood why parents get upset with their kid when they hit a bad shot. It is golf! If it was easy everyone would be doing it! I'll bet most of the "offending" parents are probably not even as good at the game as their kids while touring pros are probably the most laid back parents.  Also, its not like the kid themselves are not trying and they are most likely already PO'd when they hit a bad shot.  If I am playing with my kid and she hits a bad shot I will only offer advice on what I see when she asks, and usually it is to remind her to think of what she has worked on with her instructor. I find I spend more time trying to keep her positive as she gets upset over mediocre shots that are still OK and in play. It is not a game of perfect.  Go find your ball and hit it again.  She is learning a bad shot is not the end of the world and just focus on the next shot.

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#17 heavy_hitter

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 03:01 PM

 kekoa, on 27 March 2018 - 12:34 PM, said:

LOL

Did my son tell you to post this?  

One thing that really stuck out in your post was the whole routine thing and how important it is.  Over the weekend, my son hit a drive OB, which was his first OB drive since starting tournament golf 3 years ago.   What happened?  He didn't follow his routine.  I watched him start his routine, but instead of standing behind the ball like he normally does after one practice swing, he stood to the side of the ball and then hit it- pulled left and OB.  On the provisional ball, he did the same thing, but luckily kept it in play.

I think, at times, we all need to be reminded of this.

It does bug me to know end when my son doesn't go through routine or makes course management mistakes, then gets mad.  
Me:  "Why are you mad?".  
Him: "I hit a bad shot."
Me: "Did you go through your routine."
Him: "No"
Me: "Then why are you mad?"
Him: blank stare and some type of excuse.

The other is course management mistakes.  Especially, when practicing and he won't take multiple clubs with him or is too lazy to walk back to the cart to get the correct club.  Do it right and if you don't, and it doesn't work out then don't complain.  The kid is generally pretty good at course management, just at times the ego gets in the way (I can hit this 8i 135 into the wind instead of an easy knockdown 7i).  Course management mistakes really irritate me though.  It is one thing to hit a bad shot and I really don't care.  I am paying too much money for him to play this game to let course management get in the way.

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#18 maxamillian31

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 03:46 PM

No-caddie tournaments are great for juniors and they can start them from about age 10. Even better, parents, try not watching a round or two and see how they do, they might surprise you, I know mine did! The over coaching and stress put on kids in local tournaments (which really mean nothing in the larger scheme of things) is amazing to me. I read a review recently of junior tournaments across the country and one of them has a policy that caddies are not allowed on the greens, an interesting idea and I am sure helps a little in blame for the wrong read etc. To stop being a parent and start being a caddie can be hard.. if you can remember the golden caddie rules it helps; show up, keep up, clean up and shut up..

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#19 leezer99

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Posted 27 March 2018 - 07:25 PM

 maxamillian31, on 27 March 2018 - 03:46 PM, said:

I read a review recently of junior tournaments across the country and one of them has a policy that caddies are not allowed on the greens...


Future Champions Golf does this and I love it.

Edited by leezer99, 27 March 2018 - 07:26 PM.


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#20 CTgolf

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Posted 28 March 2018 - 08:26 AM

 leezer99, on 27 March 2018 - 01:20 PM, said:

 wildcatden, on 27 March 2018 - 12:37 PM, said:

Took my kid to hit some balls on the range last weekend for the first time in a month(!) now that ski season is over.

Ok, we've already covered that junior golfers shouldn't ski... don't know how many times we have to go over this.  :wave: What up CT?

Juniors with little to lose should feel free to engage in all kinds of risky activities :slow_en:


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#21 jollysammy

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 09:58 AM

Great post!  I always took the attitude that a bad shot was the prelude to the great shot!  Crap happens, it's what they do to extricate themselves that builds character.  I always think that in their minds before they shoot, they aren't envisioning failure, after the shot the most important thing to do is to execute the next shot.  My son told  me about what happenened 2 weeks ago in a high school match against the #1 school in his league. He pushed his tee shot and was in the rough, 189 yds uphill from the pin.  Bad lie.  So he took out a 4 iron and flushed a laser shot to within 18 inches of the hole, tap in birdie.  His partners were stunned.  His worse shot of the day, setup his best shot of the day.  Parents, they are not deliberately trying to play bad golf, this is a hard sport!

Edited by jollysammy, 28 April 2018 - 09:59 AM.


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#22 farmer

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Posted 28 April 2018 - 01:13 PM

HH, what do you do when your child hits a great shot?  Do you respond in the moment or wait for the post round recap?

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#23 bolwin1

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Posted 29 April 2018 - 09:44 PM

My little guy played his first competitive round today as a 6 year old...something I’ve never done beyond club stuff. It didn’t go well. At the end of it, the part he and I were proudest of was him being at the end of his rope after putting it in a deep bumnker and struggling to get out...he wanted to quit...but didn’t. And walked up and canned a 11 footer for 7.

Never, ever give up.

A great lesson. Hopefully better golf ahead, but life is good.
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#24 heavy_hitter

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 08:24 AM

View Postfarmer, on 28 April 2018 - 01:13 PM, said:

HH, what do you do when your child hits a great shot?  Do you respond in the moment or wait for the post round recap?

9 times out of 10 I am walking ahead of the group.  I don't stand around and watch.  What I will do is hold my thumb up just so he knows.  When he drains a putt I will normally give a golf clap and say "Nice Putt" or something of that variation.  If he does something like hole out a chip I may get a little too excited.

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#25 propredicr

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 11:54 AM

After reading, I started to get deja vu!   This weekend,  I just stopped doing what I was doing (insanity), that was giving me a headache🤣.   Kid went out and shot a clean tourney round and placed.  Not his best, but, executed on several of the goals he set, prior to the round,  and had fun.

Yesterday, we went out for 18 and he shot +1!  His best ever, with 5 birdies.  So, just want to take the time to thank all of the posters for sharing their stories!   Very helpful stuff for a golf Dad.


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#26 bolwin1

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 07:42 AM

Man, what a cool story pro. HH - thanks for this.
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#27 Mr. Grumpy

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 08:48 AM

Great post,,

And all parents should consider using this as a resource.. https://www.positivecoach.org

Our coaching staff, whole department, find it to be a valuable tool as we usher your kids through HS sports.
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#28 Belmont148

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Posted 01 May 2018 - 09:19 AM

Coming back to this to report how things have been since I made this internal change from this post.

We played a fun round yesterday together and after the past few months of us working together and me not being so hard or judgmental he said it was the best round of golf he ever played. By best he meant fun. We played average. I shot my HC and so did he, but we had positive instruction, and played match play giving him strokes for his HC against mine. I can't remember a time when we had as many smiles, laughs, and high fives on the course. Golf has finally turned back fun for both of us, and as a result he is driving the ball better than ever and chipping/putting really well. The biggest change I saw, is him taking ownership in his own game. Hitting chips and then reflecting where he missed his landing spot, or picked the wrong landing spot. Reading putts on his own, and then telling me where he should have aimed. Before, he leaned on me to tell him what went wrong, now he does it on his own. I can't stress enough how tough it is to let them go through this process on their own, but I can tell you to trust our kid. They know way more than we give them credit for, and can do some amazing things if we just stand back and give them the chance.
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#29 jollysammy

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Posted 02 May 2018 - 04:35 PM

View Postfarmer, on 28 April 2018 - 01:13 PM, said:

HH, what do you do when your child hits a great shot?  Do you respond in the moment or wait for the post round recap?

Whenever my son would hit a great shot, like a tee shot or approach shot that was almost in the hole, maybe a 3 inch tap.  I would try to say something funny like, why don't you just hit it in and save the putting?  Or when he sinks a 60 foot putt, I'll say, why don't you do that all the time?

He's gotten so used to my sarcasm that he just flicks me away with his arm.  I never wanted him to get a big head.  To do great things and to walk off like you do that all the time, its just a golf shot, nothing more, nothing less.  

Inside I might be cheering, but outside he mostly saw me just talking to a mom out there.

Hey, I was setting an example for him, he might have been great at golf, but that doesn't mean much if you don't know how to talk to women...

Edited by jollysammy, 02 May 2018 - 04:37 PM.


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#30 leezer99

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Posted 02 May 2018 - 04:43 PM

View Postjollysammy, on 02 May 2018 - 04:35 PM, said:

View Postfarmer, on 28 April 2018 - 01:13 PM, said:

HH, what do you do when your child hits a great shot?  Do you respond in the moment or wait for the post round recap?

Whenever my son would hit a great shot, like a tee shot or approach shot that was almost in the hole, maybe a 3 inch tap.  I would try to say something funny like, why don't you just hit it in and save the putting?  Or when he sinks a 60 foot putt, I'll say, why don't you do that all the time?

He's gotten so used to my sarcasm that he just flicks me away with his arm.  I never wanted him to get a big head.  To do great things and to walk off like you do that all the time, its just a golf shot, nothing more, nothing less.  

Inside I might be cheering, but outside he mostly saw me just talking to a mom out there.

Hey, I was setting an example for him, he might have been great at golf, but that doesn't mean much if you don't know how to talk to women...

There was a girl (mid twenties) walking her dog past our house the other day while my son was out there messing around and he asked her if he could pet her dog (a beautiful golden).  She say's 'of course' and they chatted for a few minutes.  Meanwhile I'm inside watching all of this go down.  She ends up saying goodbye and he comes back in so I asked him, 'hey, did you get her name?'  He says, 'I think it was Scout'... I replied, 'the girls name knucklehead... not the dog's name!'  He walked away in shame.  I have a lot to teach him still.


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