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Tmnt. Practice Rounds and getting in "the zone"


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#1 hangontight

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 09:27 AM

Have noticed a trend with my son that it takes 3-4 holes to get in the groove on multi-day tmnts.  This is probably not uncommon, so curious to see what your practice is with your juniors for tmnts....

1.) Tournament Practice Rounds (at Tmnt Course, day before tmnt, not casual practice round at home)-  Do you (your kid) play one ball and keep score to get in the groove....or do you play multiple shots, different putts, chips, relax, etc?  We've always played a few balls here and there, especially around the greens.  I am thinking though, that this may be a bit too loose and maybe playing practice round as if it was a tmnt round would be better. Thoughts?

2.) Pre round Focus / "The zone" - we have a pretty good pre tmnt round routine - not too long, just enough to get warm and build some confidence with the swing he brought to course that day.  Try to keep a level , yet motivated demeanor and build him up with compliments about how good he is swinging today, etc.   Do your kids listen to music before tmnt rounds ?   Does it help or does it just look cool, haha? Probably to each there own, but would love to hear if anyone has noticed any trends with play - good, bad, or indifferent .


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#2 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM

1.)  A tournament practice round is just what it states.  It is a tournament practice round.  I usually take him a week to several weeks prior to playing the tournament.  Will play multiple shots only if it is holes where there may be danger.  He is playing a tournament coming up and there are two Par 5's he can reach with Driver/Iron.  The tee shots and approaches are dangerous as there is water left on both drives and water surrounding the greens.  He will take 3 tee shots from each tee box and 5 shots on each approach trying to get comfortable with both.  If he isn't successful or doesn't feel comfortable the he will probably end up laying up.  He uses multiple shots to instill confidence.  They aren't difficult shots but water comes into play about 220 out and a little left and he can reach it.  One of the par 5's is reachable with a 3i/4i, but there is water left of the green so you have to put it on or miss right.  The other par 5 is a 7i/8i, but you have to carry onto an island green where the green is also protected be an 8ft high bunker face.  Other than tough holes like these, we just play the rest of the course.

One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.

We never keep score when he plays, ever.  Only time he keeps score is when he has to in a tournament.  He knows where he is in his head and that is it.  Try to teach that score doesn't matter, playing golf and making birdies is what matters.

2.)  We get to the course an hour and a half before tee time.  Bathroom, loosen up, warm up.  Usually spends more time in the bathroom than any part of the warm up.  Chip/Chip/Bunker for around 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Range for about 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Putting for 15-20 minutes.  Eat a banana or nuts on the way to the first tee along with drinking water.  He does not like to listen to music.  A lot of sports psychologists do not think listening to music is a good thing because depending on the music or the memories related to you subconscious it can have a negative effect.  My daughter's college coaches allow music while practicing and doing drills, but on tournament days no head buds at the course.  Practice rounds no head buds at the course.

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#3 hangontight

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:28 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM, said:

1.)  A tournament practice round is just what it states.  It is a tournament practice round.  I usually take him a week to several weeks prior to playing the tournament.  Will play multiple shots only if it is holes where there may be danger.  He is playing a tournament coming up and there are two Par 5's he can reach with Driver/Iron.  The tee shots and approaches are dangerous as there is water left on both drives and water surrounding the greens.  He will take 3 tee shots from each tee box and 5 shots on each approach trying to get comfortable with both.  If he isn't successful or doesn't feel comfortable the he will probably end up laying up.  He uses multiple shots to instill confidence.  They aren't difficult shots but water comes into play about 220 out and a little left and he can reach it.  One of the par 5's is reachable with a 3i/4i, but there is water left of the green so you have to put it on or miss right.  The other par 5 is a 7i/8i, but you have to carry onto an island green where the green is also protected be an 8ft high bunker face.  Other than tough holes like these, we just play the rest of the course.

One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.

We never keep score when he plays, ever.  Only time he keeps score is when he has to in a tournament.  He knows where he is in his head and that is it.  Try to teach that score doesn't matter, playing golf and making birdies is what matters.

2.)  We get to the course an hour and a half before tee time.  Bathroom, loosen up, warm up.  Usually spends more time in the bathroom than any part of the warm up.  Chip/Chip/Bunker for around 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Range for about 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Putting for 15-20 minutes.  Eat a banana or nuts on the way to the first tee along with drinking water.  He does not like to listen to music.  A lot of sports psychologists do not think listening to music is a good thing because depending on the music or the memories related to you subconscious it can have a negative effect.  My daughter's college coaches allow music while practicing and doing drills, but on tournament days no head buds at the course.  Practice rounds no head buds at the course.

Thanks for the response.  At our level, most of the multi-day tournaments are weekend deals out of town, so practice rounds are limited to day before.   Interesting on Never keeping score in practice rounds, I see your point.  My son is very much a score keeper - always seems to want to know how far above or below par he is (really isn't too concerned with his competitors scores usually).  Good that it sometimes motivates him to grind harder to get to a score, bad that it can be distracting from just playing.  I may give the no score keeping method a shot.

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#4 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:40 AM

View Posthangontight, on 10 April 2018 - 10:28 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM, said:

1.)  A tournament practice round is just what it states.  It is a tournament practice round.  I usually take him a week to several weeks prior to playing the tournament.  Will play multiple shots only if it is holes where there may be danger.  He is playing a tournament coming up and there are two Par 5's he can reach with Driver/Iron.  The tee shots and approaches are dangerous as there is water left on both drives and water surrounding the greens.  He will take 3 tee shots from each tee box and 5 shots on each approach trying to get comfortable with both.  If he isn't successful or doesn't feel comfortable the he will probably end up laying up.  He uses multiple shots to instill confidence.  They aren't difficult shots but water comes into play about 220 out and a little left and he can reach it.  One of the par 5's is reachable with a 3i/4i, but there is water left of the green so you have to put it on or miss right.  The other par 5 is a 7i/8i, but you have to carry onto an island green where the green is also protected be an 8ft high bunker face.  Other than tough holes like these, we just play the rest of the course.

One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.

We never keep score when he plays, ever.  Only time he keeps score is when he has to in a tournament.  He knows where he is in his head and that is it.  Try to teach that score doesn't matter, playing golf and making birdies is what matters.

2.)  We get to the course an hour and a half before tee time.  Bathroom, loosen up, warm up.  Usually spends more time in the bathroom than any part of the warm up.  Chip/Chip/Bunker for around 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Range for about 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Putting for 15-20 minutes.  Eat a banana or nuts on the way to the first tee along with drinking water.  He does not like to listen to music.  A lot of sports psychologists do not think listening to music is a good thing because depending on the music or the memories related to you subconscious it can have a negative effect.  My daughter's college coaches allow music while practicing and doing drills, but on tournament days no head buds at the course.  Practice rounds no head buds at the course.

Thanks for the response.  At our level, most of the multi-day tournaments are weekend deals out of town, so practice rounds are limited to day before.   Interesting on Never keeping score in practice rounds, I see your point.  My son is very much a score keeper - always seems to want to know how far above or below par he is (really isn't too concerned with his competitors scores usually).  Good that it sometimes motivates him to grind harder to get to a score, bad that it can be distracting from just playing.  I may give the no score keeping method a shot.


The thing about keeping score in practice rounds is, how is it relevant?  Does that mean that is what you are going to shoot in the tournament?  I can guarantee you that it doesn't.  I have seen my son/daughter play horrible the day before a tournament, then show up the next day and shoot under par.  When you show up with lower expectations it is easier to play because you are free to play.  By the same token, I have seen them play great the day before and play the first tournament round and play terrible.  When you show up with high expectations you have them subconsciously and put more pressure on yourself to perform.  If you don't keep score then there is no expectations.

Stopped keeping scores years ago because it was a cry fest/meltdown when he wouldn't make a par.  Took the emphasis off of scoring even though he always knows where he is in relation to par.  Also try to get him to not think in terms of bogey, par, birdie.  Try to get him to focus on a number just being a number without it being relative to par.  This is a very difficult task that takes maturity and he/I really struggle with it.

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#5 Belmont148

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:45 AM

Any tips to convincing a young kid to not keep score? I know they will still keep up with it in their head, but do you still do birdie counts or closest to pins, or GIR hit when playing golf with him? Maybe fewest putts of the day? Sure they need something to compare their round and be competitive against dad. After all, how do you know who picks dinner?

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#6 hangontight

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 10:57 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 10:40 AM, said:

View Posthangontight, on 10 April 2018 - 10:28 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM, said:

1.)  A tournament practice round is just what it states.  It is a tournament practice round.  I usually take him a week to several weeks prior to playing the tournament.  Will play multiple shots only if it is holes where there may be danger.  He is playing a tournament coming up and there are two Par 5's he can reach with Driver/Iron.  The tee shots and approaches are dangerous as there is water left on both drives and water surrounding the greens.  He will take 3 tee shots from each tee box and 5 shots on each approach trying to get comfortable with both.  If he isn't successful or doesn't feel comfortable the he will probably end up laying up.  He uses multiple shots to instill confidence.  They aren't difficult shots but water comes into play about 220 out and a little left and he can reach it.  One of the par 5's is reachable with a 3i/4i, but there is water left of the green so you have to put it on or miss right.  The other par 5 is a 7i/8i, but you have to carry onto an island green where the green is also protected be an 8ft high bunker face.  Other than tough holes like these, we just play the rest of the course.

One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.

We never keep score when he plays, ever.  Only time he keeps score is when he has to in a tournament.  He knows where he is in his head and that is it.  Try to teach that score doesn't matter, playing golf and making birdies is what matters.

2.)  We get to the course an hour and a half before tee time.  Bathroom, loosen up, warm up.  Usually spends more time in the bathroom than any part of the warm up.  Chip/Chip/Bunker for around 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Range for about 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Putting for 15-20 minutes.  Eat a banana or nuts on the way to the first tee along with drinking water.  He does not like to listen to music.  A lot of sports psychologists do not think listening to music is a good thing because depending on the music or the memories related to you subconscious it can have a negative effect.  My daughter's college coaches allow music while practicing and doing drills, but on tournament days no head buds at the course.  Practice rounds no head buds at the course.

Thanks for the response.  At our level, most of the multi-day tournaments are weekend deals out of town, so practice rounds are limited to day before.   Interesting on Never keeping score in practice rounds, I see your point.  My son is very much a score keeper - always seems to want to know how far above or below par he is (really isn't too concerned with his competitors scores usually).  Good that it sometimes motivates him to grind harder to get to a score, bad that it can be distracting from just playing.  I may give the no score keeping method a shot.


The thing about keeping score in practice rounds is, how is it relevant?  Does that mean that is what you are going to shoot in the tournament?  I can guarantee you that it doesn't.  I have seen my son/daughter play horrible the day before a tournament, then show up the next day and shoot under par.  When you show up with lower expectations it is easier to play because you are free to play.  By the same token, I have seen them play great the day before and play the first tournament round and play terrible.  When you show up with high expectations you have them subconsciously and put more pressure on yourself to perform.  If you don't keep score then there is no expectations.



Stopped keeping scores years ago because it was a cry fest/meltdown when he wouldn't make a par.  Took the emphasis off of scoring even though he always knows where he is in relation to par.  Also try to get him to not think in terms of bogey, par, birdie.  Try to get him to focus on a number just being a number without it being relative to par.  This is a very difficult task that takes maturity and he/I really struggle with it.  

Agree mostly on the point about not keeping score , but my thought to keep score on practice round the day before the tmnt isnt driven by setting a score expectation ,its more about getting him in the right frame of mind - hopefully focused.  I think sometimes the casualness of the practice round, especially if its with a buddy can carry over to tmnt morning.

We have found some success lately in setting tmnt round goals - i.e.. 2 bogeys & 3 birdies.  Its not really expecting a 2 bogeys, but giving allowance for them if (when) they come.  He is a pretty level player emotionally - no crying or tantrums after bad holes, but can get down on himself a bit after a really bad hole.   He is a very structured kind of kid, so this approach as helped him to forget it quickly and move on rather than sort of give up or panic and start pushing too hard for birdies to make up.

Edited by hangontight, 10 April 2018 - 10:59 AM.


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#7 wildcatden

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:06 AM

View PostBelmont148, on 10 April 2018 - 10:45 AM, said:

Any tips to convincing a young kid to not keep score? I know they will still keep up with it in their head, but do you still do birdie counts or closest to pins, or GIR hit when playing golf with him? Maybe fewest putts of the day? Sure they need something to compare their round and be competitive against dad. After all, how do you know who picks dinner?

My 7YO often got caught up in the score when we are just out playing (non tourney). Some of this I blame on my early mistakes of also focusing on score.  Having learned from these forums, I tried letting him know that he shouldn't keep score, but even at that young age they know. The best distraction I have come up with for his young mind is that we play other mini-games from within the game such as playing 2nd/3rd pitches into the greens and we play a second ball chipping game from around the green now that we call "up and down".

These other games seem to distract him from score overall usually because he gets focused on his "up and down" score....LOL.

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#8 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:13 AM

View Posthangontight, on 10 April 2018 - 10:57 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 10:40 AM, said:

View Posthangontight, on 10 April 2018 - 10:28 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM, said:

1.)  A tournament practice round is just what it states.  It is a tournament practice round.  I usually take him a week to several weeks prior to playing the tournament.  Will play multiple shots only if it is holes where there may be danger.  He is playing a tournament coming up and there are two Par 5's he can reach with Driver/Iron.  The tee shots and approaches are dangerous as there is water left on both drives and water surrounding the greens.  He will take 3 tee shots from each tee box and 5 shots on each approach trying to get comfortable with both.  If he isn't successful or doesn't feel comfortable the he will probably end up laying up.  He uses multiple shots to instill confidence.  They aren't difficult shots but water comes into play about 220 out and a little left and he can reach it.  One of the par 5's is reachable with a 3i/4i, but there is water left of the green so you have to put it on or miss right.  The other par 5 is a 7i/8i, but you have to carry onto an island green where the green is also protected be an 8ft high bunker face.  Other than tough holes like these, we just play the rest of the course.

One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.

We never keep score when he plays, ever.  Only time he keeps score is when he has to in a tournament.  He knows where he is in his head and that is it.  Try to teach that score doesn't matter, playing golf and making birdies is what matters.

2.)  We get to the course an hour and a half before tee time.  Bathroom, loosen up, warm up.  Usually spends more time in the bathroom than any part of the warm up.  Chip/Chip/Bunker for around 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Range for about 10 minutes just to get a feel.  Putting for 15-20 minutes.  Eat a banana or nuts on the way to the first tee along with drinking water.  He does not like to listen to music.  A lot of sports psychologists do not think listening to music is a good thing because depending on the music or the memories related to you subconscious it can have a negative effect.  My daughter's college coaches allow music while practicing and doing drills, but on tournament days no head buds at the course.  Practice rounds no head buds at the course.

Thanks for the response.  At our level, most of the multi-day tournaments are weekend deals out of town, so practice rounds are limited to day before.   Interesting on Never keeping score in practice rounds, I see your point.  My son is very much a score keeper - always seems to want to know how far above or below par he is (really isn't too concerned with his competitors scores usually).  Good that it sometimes motivates him to grind harder to get to a score, bad that it can be distracting from just playing.  I may give the no score keeping method a shot.


The thing about keeping score in practice rounds is, how is it relevant?  Does that mean that is what you are going to shoot in the tournament?  I can guarantee you that it doesn't.  I have seen my son/daughter play horrible the day before a tournament, then show up the next day and shoot under par.  When you show up with lower expectations it is easier to play because you are free to play.  By the same token, I have seen them play great the day before and play the first tournament round and play terrible.  When you show up with high expectations you have them subconsciously and put more pressure on yourself to perform.  If you don't keep score then there is no expectations.



Stopped keeping scores years ago because it was a cry fest/meltdown when he wouldn't make a par.  Took the emphasis off of scoring even though he always knows where he is in relation to par.  Also try to get him to not think in terms of bogey, par, birdie.  Try to get him to focus on a number just being a number without it being relative to par.  This is a very difficult task that takes maturity and he/I really struggle with it.  

Agree mostly on the point about not keeping score , but my thought to keep score on practice round the day before the tmnt isnt driven by setting a score expectation ,its more about getting him in the right frame of mind - hopefully focused.  I think sometimes the casualness of the practice round, especially if its with a buddy can carry over to tmnt morning.

We have found some success lately in setting tmnt round goals - i.e.. 2 bogeys & 3 birdies.  Its not really expecting a 2 bogeys, but giving allowance for them if (when) they come.  He is a pretty level player emotionally - no crying or tantrums after bad holes, but can get down on himself a bit after a really bad hole.   He is a very structured kind of kid, so this approach as helped him to forget it quickly and move on rather than sort of give up or panic and start pushing too hard for birdies to make up.

Have you ever watched a Pro play a practice round?  They do not keep score.  They practice.  They hit a few chips/pitches to certain hole locations.  They will hit putts to the difficult hole locations on certain greens.  Can't say I have seen them keep score.  If they are playing money games, that is a different story.

I don't expect my kid to be focused for 4-5 hours on game day let alone during a practice round.  They need to be focused for 30-60 seconds prior to every shot and that is it.

We try not to relate scores to bogey, par, birdie.  We say the number.  Par shouldn't be relative to tournament golf.  It is a 2,3,4,5.  The word can lead to positive and negative emotions.  Want to keep the brain and subconscious mind at the same level.  I/we struggle with this concept though we try.  He sets goals for himself when he plays.  One of them is to see how man Par (already struggle with that concept with this concept) runs he can go on during a tournament round.  If you make a score higher than par then you are trying to start another par run.  His goal is to get it at 3 or more.  When ever he gives his score to a playing partner it is never Par, Birdie, Double and is always the number.

Edited by heavy_hitter, 10 April 2018 - 11:20 AM.


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#9 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:19 AM

View PostBelmont148, on 10 April 2018 - 10:45 AM, said:

Any tips to convincing a young kid to not keep score? I know they will still keep up with it in their head, but do you still do birdie counts or closest to pins, or GIR hit when playing golf with him? Maybe fewest putts of the day? Sure they need something to compare their round and be competitive against dad. After all, how do you know who picks dinner?

Yeah, neither of you keep score and don't compete against him.  I could play with my daughter, but couldn't play with my son.  My son always wanted it to be a competition and would end up whining and crying over score so I just stopped playing.  I don't play more than 2 rounds of golf a year any more.  I drive the cart, listen to music, give mental advice and that is it.  I love going to the course just to be there.  I have a portable chair I carry with me to the range and practice areas and will sit there and watch.  Will retrieve balls on practice and chip greens.  Sometimes I play putting games with him and that is generally the only time I have a club in my hand.  

My personal opinion is that a kid can't get good with mom or dad playing with them all the time.  I think the parent holds them back.  When my daughter hit 14 or so I stopped playing with her.

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#10 MikekiM

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:23 AM

Tournament practice rounds for us involve practicing the shots we need on the golf course.  We'll figure out what irons to hit to the par 3's front or back pin.  We figure out where the ideal places to leave shots are for approaches to par 5's.  And we'll study green contours to determine best places to aim, and how slopes will affect landing spots and such.
We'll practice some various chips on holes we think might be harder to hold.  We'll practice some putts on really undulating greens to get a feel for speed and slope.  Never keep score on tournament practice rounds.

We don't usually keep score on normal playing practice rounds either, as whenever we have a gross mishit I usually let him rehit it.  Sometimes if it's in a real bad trouble spot I'll have him try 2 or 3 balls with different clubs to try things out.


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#11 leezer99

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:25 AM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM, said:


One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.


The only thing I'd say we do differently than HH is hit putts from the center of the greens to the four corners.  If you're going to hit a 'safety' shot to the middle of the green it helps knowing the speed and break to where the hole might be cut.

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#12 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:28 AM

View Postleezer99, on 10 April 2018 - 11:25 AM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 09:54 AM, said:

One of the dumbest things I have ever seen (happens all the time in AJGA and normally with girls) is hitting multiple putts from all over every green.  It is about as irritating as it gets and is not useful.  They may think it is useful, but it is not.  If you get a green that may have a severe up slope or down slope, then yeah, hit a few putts.  Putting for 10 minutes on every green for 18 holes is beyond stupid.  If you want to practice putting, then go to the practice green.


The only thing I'd say we do differently than HH is hit putts from the center of the greens to the four corners.  If you're going to hit a 'safety' shot to the middle of the green it helps knowing the speed and break to where the hole might be cut.

We do do (I said doodoo) this at times if it is a really difficult green.

Edited by heavy_hitter, 10 April 2018 - 11:28 AM.


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#13 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 11:30 AM

I have been to a lot of practice rounds at courses including day before and week before where either of my kids were paired up with another kid and their playing parent (usually a dad).  I have NEVER been to that practice round where the playing parent played and the kid was any good.  Just saying.

Edited by heavy_hitter, 10 April 2018 - 11:55 AM.


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#14 Belmont148

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:09 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 11:30 AM, said:

I have been to a lot of practice rounds at courses including day before and week before where either of my kids were paired up with another kid and their playing parent (usually a dad).  I have NEVER been to that practice round where the playing parent played and the kid was any good.  Just saying.

Playing with your kid at a practice round is just strange. I was talking about casual rounds outside of playing a course to prepare an upcoming tournament. You stated you never keep score, so I figured this was for all rounds everyday, regardless. I assumed you played with them as it is a bit unusual for a parent not to play golf with their kids. But I get what you are saying about not playing with them if you want them to be any good.

George Bryan played golf with all of kids all the time from a very young age, and they turned out alright. I get the thing about stopping play with them because they get too emotional, but I think a parent playing golf with their kid is one the best things you can do for children.
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#15 MadGolfer76

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:13 PM

Having been a golf coach before, my experience has been that the amount of time it takes a kid to focus in on the match is almost directly in proportion to the amount of "stuff" put in his/her head beforehand. Not pointing fingers, just speaking generally.

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#16 CTgolf

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:24 PM

Very interesting thread here

With respect to not keeping score, does this only apply to Tournament Practice Rounds, or playing in general?

Also, what if the parent is an outstanding golfer (not me) - do people still think playing with the parent holds the junior back?

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#17 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:34 PM

View PostBelmont148, on 10 April 2018 - 12:09 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 11:30 AM, said:

I have been to a lot of practice rounds at courses including day before and week before where either of my kids were paired up with another kid and their playing parent (usually a dad).  I have NEVER been to that practice round where the playing parent played and the kid was any good.  Just saying.

Playing with your kid at a practice round is just strange. I was talking about casual rounds outside of playing a course to prepare an upcoming tournament. You stated you never keep score, so I figured this was for all rounds everyday, regardless. I assumed you played with them as it is a bit unusual for a parent not to play golf with their kids. But I get what you are saying about not playing with them if you want them to be any good.

George Bryan played golf with all of kids all the time from a very young age, and they turned out alright. I get the thing about stopping play with them because they get too emotional, but I think a parent playing golf with their kid is one the best things you can do for children.

Parents playing practice rounds happen more than you think.  Played a practice round at Pinehurst last summer with the kid who ended up in last place.  His dad and granddad played.  The kid wasn't the worst one in the group and he was in last place for the tournament.

I think if the parent can play, it is a different story.  I am talking someone that can consistently shoot in the 70's.  Anyone can learn from that person.  I started out playing with my kids, just got to a point that I knew it was holding them both back so I stopped playing.  It didn't do any good me hacking, dropping a ball out of frustration, shooting 85-95 while they are shooting in the 70's.   I now spend my time just watching my son play and helping where I can.  I also spend my time on the course making fun of other people in the privacy of my own mind while wondering why they don't tee it forward.  When you watch a kid that is 12 out drive the adult and the kid is playing from 6000 yards while the adult is playing from 6500 yards it really makes me wonder.  More people know nothing about this game than people that know something.

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#18 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:36 PM

View PostCTgolf, on 10 April 2018 - 12:24 PM, said:

Very interesting thread here

With respect to not keeping score, does this only apply to Tournament Practice Rounds, or playing in general?

Also, what if the parent is an outstanding golfer (not me) - do people still think playing with the parent holds the junior back?

We never keep score on a card when playing any round.   He just keeps it  in his head if he is over or under and how many.  Very rarely is he more than 5 over in an 18 hole round.

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#19 darter79

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 12:50 PM

Great stuff here.  We do both play one ball for score, and then normally hit another shot that could be more aggressive to see what happens. Definably chip around some spots where I think she would leave it. On par 3s normally hit a couple shots to try to get the club down to front middle back and how the ball will release on that particular green.

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#20 kcap

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 01:26 PM

Practice rounds are the time to get familiar with the layout and also get a better sense for Par 3, blind holes and undulations on the greens.  We usually play only one ball and he knows his score - we don't need to write it down.  A bad shot is retaken to see where a good ball will land, but we play the hole with the original ball and the hole is scored with the bad shot.   We might hit a couple of tee shots if there is a forced carry to see if its better to lay up or carry..but we always play the original ball.

We have stopped taking multiple putts on a green or chips; We do find it useful to take notes on the green; i.e, sloping Back to Front stay short, or false front 5yds club up.

We do keep score on friendly, weekend rounds  - i think its important to realize that every swing matters whether it is practice, weekend round or a tournament.  The routine is the same, the focus is the same.  The idea being is that you need to play a tournament like it a fun weekend round i.e. stress free and vice versa.


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#21 Belmont148

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 01:53 PM

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 12:36 PM, said:

View PostCTgolf, on 10 April 2018 - 12:24 PM, said:

Very interesting thread here

With respect to not keeping score, does this only apply to Tournament Practice Rounds, or playing in general?

Also, what if the parent is an outstanding golfer (not me) - do people still think playing with the parent holds the junior back?

We never keep score on a card when playing any round.   He just keeps it  in his head if he is over or under and how many.  Very rarely is he more than 5 over in an 18 hole round.

Ah, gotcha now. I don't keep score either then. I know my son loves to get a score card and right down a number. I think taking that away may be beneficial for him. I usually play rounds with an idea of what my score is, but I mainly focus on whether or not I still have the same ball, how many birdies did I make and about how many putts I had.. Going off that, I can walk away knowing what I need to work on. Maybe he would as well if he followed this approach and put down the pencil.
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#22 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 02:01 PM

View PostBelmont148, on 10 April 2018 - 01:53 PM, said:

View Postheavy_hitter, on 10 April 2018 - 12:36 PM, said:

View PostCTgolf, on 10 April 2018 - 12:24 PM, said:

Very interesting thread here

With respect to not keeping score, does this only apply to Tournament Practice Rounds, or playing in general?

Also, what if the parent is an outstanding golfer (not me) - do people still think playing with the parent holds the junior back?

We never keep score on a card when playing any round.   He just keeps it  in his head if he is over or under and how many.  Very rarely is he more than 5 over in an 18 hole round.

Ah, gotcha now. I don't keep score either then. I know my son loves to get a score card and right down a number. I think taking that away may be beneficial for him. I usually play rounds with an idea of what my score is, but I mainly focus on whether or not I still have the same ball, how many birdies did I make and about how many putts I had.. Going off that, I can walk away knowing what I need to work on. Maybe he would as well if he followed this approach and put down the pencil.

We talk about the rounds when he is done. FIR, GIR, Putts, Scrambling, Penalty Strokes, Two Chips/Pitches, Two Bunker shots.  Have been doing it so long really don't nee to write anything down.  During a practice round, we don't do any of this.  If he is practicing and playing on a weekend we always do this to a point.  If he is struggling with a part of the game, sometimes we just stop at a hole and will practice anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes on something he needs to.

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#23 hangontight

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 02:06 PM

So a follow up question to my OP - what tips, tricks, best practices, whatever to help get off to a good focused start in tournament rounds?

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#24 heavy_hitter

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Posted 10 April 2018 - 02:22 PM

View Posthangontight, on 10 April 2018 - 02:06 PM, said:

So a follow up question to my OP - what tips, tricks, best practices, whatever to help get off to a good focused start in tournament rounds?

I think the biggest thing is to get rid of the nerves and less about focus.  I used to tell my kid to think about stupid stuff (what kind of fart noises the starter makes, what kind of underwear people were wearing and if they had skid marks) when he was younger.  Seemed to always work.  He still gets nervous today, but not as bad as it used to be because he has done it so many times.  If he could get himself off of the tee box I knew he would always be OK.  Other than that, I don't think there is any special formula.

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