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#1 heavy_hitter

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 08:30 AM

https://www.golfgoor...golfing-parent/

Good stuff


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#2 leezer99

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 09:18 AM

If you've caddied then you've seen this dad.  If you haven't then you're this dad.

I will only give my son one swing instruction throughout his entire round... 'Finish your swing'.  Gets him less focused on all the parts of the swing and solely focused on getting to his finish.  Everything from takeaway to impact will sort itself out.

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#3 BeerPerHole

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 09:52 AM

I might have an interesting perspective on this topic. When my son was 3 he was very ill. We weren't sure he'd ever speak, feed himself, be able to put on his clothes. We poured every bit of energy (and resources) we had into healing him. Just so happened that I started taking him to the range with me at 4. He'd stand there, quietly watching everybody swing. Then, he'd pick up a club and start trying to mimic. Never expressed displeasure in the activity at all. Each session was concluded with a large order of fries at the clubhouse - almost no words ever spoken. He was walking, observing, and swinging a club. Good enough for me. Now, he's 13 and he's outplaying me - has a swing that gathers small crowds of admirers. I've probably told him how to correct something maybe 3 times over all the years. I have heard about, and seen a little of, the US Kids caddying dads at our local course. Gives me the chills. Saw the same thing in youth soccer - parents acting like their kid was the next Pele. It's easy - very easy to lose your grounding. I see healthy, normal kids get completely turned off to their sport... It's been a long, strange trip... What did I teach the boy? Only 2 things: 1-the grip, and 2-what a lag is. Oh, and French fries...
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#4 Shanks2424

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 11:32 AM

View PostBeerPerHole, on 31 October 2018 - 09:52 AM, said:

I might have an interesting perspective on this topic. When my son was 3 he was very ill. We weren't sure he'd ever speak, feed himself, be able to put on his clothes. We poured every bit of energy (and resources) we had into healing him. Just so happened that I started taking him to the range with me at 4. He'd stand there, quietly watching everybody swing. Then, he'd pick up a club and start trying to mimic. Never expressed displeasure in the activity at all. Each session was concluded with a large order of fries at the clubhouse - almost no words ever spoken. He was walking, observing, and swinging a club. Good enough for me. Now, he's 13 and he's outplaying me - has a swing that gathers small crowds of admirers. I've probably told him how to correct something maybe 3 times over all the years. I have heard about, and seen a little of, the US Kids caddying dads at our local course. Gives me the chills. Saw the same thing in youth soccer - parents acting like their kid was the next Pele. It's easy - very easy to lose your grounding. I see healthy, normal kids get completely turned off to their sport... It's been a long, strange trip... What did I teach the boy? Only 2 things: 1-the grip, and 2-what a lag is. Oh, and French fries...

This is what I am finding out about my 8 year old son. I used to be a assistant PGA Pro but never went any farther with my teaching career after I left that job. I see sometimes I give my son too much info. Now I tell him to just swing. We use a few drills now and thats the extent to my teaching i try not to bogg him down with all the swing talk. I just focus on two things now on his swing his grip and grip it and rip it.

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#5 leftyDH04

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 11:41 AM

I'm not a parent, so usually I refrain from talking about child rearing because the average parent assumes the only way to know anything about kids is to have one.  Having taught a lot of athletically difficult sports like downhill skiing / snowboarding, whitewater kayaking / rafting, I can understand the tendency to micro-manage technique from a coach's perspective.  The thing that kills me, is that the greatest thing your kid is getting from childhood golf is repetitions of something that takes a lot of hand eye coordination.  I went to school with a kid who started playing kid's golf before there was kid's golf (in the early 80's).  His geeky dad had all of his equipment handmade and exposed him to the best coaches.  At the age of 9 he was one of the best golfers in our state and probably the region.  By the age of 16 he was largely irrelevant at the state level and he didn't even get a good scholarship to college.  In the end, he didn't have a lot of the tools.  Basically you're investing a ton of money, depriving the kid of having fun, and it's a crap shoot at best.  Let them have fun.  If they're not having fun, you're losing.  Period.  Doesn't matter if it's learning to ski or learning to golf or anything else.  If you can't make sport fun you've lost.  There's a fine line in EVENTUALLY introducing some consequence and discipline to the practice, but I think high school is as early as that's really appropriate.


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#6 TigerMom

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 12:13 PM

every kid is different

some of the best athletes in the world in many different sports have overbearing parents

many of the best junior tennis players in the country have parents that would be considered worst than the one in the article

some kids have never grown up with anything else so don't know any different

do some of them end up hating it later?  yes - just like andre agassi

even he became one of the all-time greats

others like serena and venus are very happy and well adjusted

to each her own

there is no one size fits all

Edited by TigerMom, 31 October 2018 - 12:14 PM.


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#7 cwglum

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 12:34 PM

There is a fine line of helping and giving too much info.
Taught my fair share of tennis to kids, in my opinion it depends a lot on the personality of the kid.

Another factor ... kids react to instruction differently from their parents than they do an instructor.

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#8 BeerPerHole

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 12:38 PM

View PostleftyDH04, on 31 October 2018 - 11:41 AM, said:

I'm not a parent, so usually I refrain from talking about child rearing because the average parent assumes the only way to know anything about kids is to have one.  Having taught a lot of athletically difficult sports like downhill skiing / snowboarding, whitewater kayaking / rafting, I can understand the tendency to micro-manage technique from a coach's perspective.  The thing that kills me, is that the greatest thing your kid is getting from childhood golf is repetitions of something that takes a lot of hand eye coordination.  I went to school with a kid who started playing kid's golf before there was kid's golf (in the early 80's).  His geeky dad had all of his equipment handmade and exposed him to the best coaches.  At the age of 9 he was one of the best golfers in our state and probably the region.  By the age of 16 he was largely irrelevant at the state level and he didn't even get a good scholarship to college.  In the end, he didn't have a lot of the tools.  Basically you're investing a ton of money, depriving the kid of having fun, and it's a crap shoot at best.  Let them have fun.  If they're not having fun, you're losing.  Period.  Doesn't matter if it's learning to ski or learning to golf or anything else.  If you can't make sport fun you've lost.  There's a fine line in EVENTUALLY introducing some consequence and discipline to the practice, but I think high school is as early as that's really appropriate.
This is the smartest comment I've ever heard about parenting from somebody who isn't a parent.
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#9 kekoa

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 12:45 PM

I give my son zero instruction during a tournament, but have taught him several expletives.  That's something I am trying to work on.

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#10 howaboutme

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 12:51 PM

Wow, great thread.

I posted a thread just below in this section asking for advice for my 9 yr old and got a lot of great responses. Same here.

For my daughter, I only try to remind her of a few pointers at the beginning of our session at the range (haven't hit the course yet) and then let her do her thing. I will admit that I have to catch myself at times from saying more when I see even the slightest hint of frustration. Not frustration at doing the right thing in golf but frustration at not pleasing me. I then relax myself and tell her just to have fun and swing away and the smile comes back. Nothing beats seeing that smile from a kid at the course.


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#11 Sixcat

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 01:11 PM

My older daughter is a pretty talented musician.  She's 13 and has only been performing for 11 months in front of an audience.  Her teacher is a world famous musician who gives her absolutely no instruction.  To watch his methods, you would think the guy didn't know a thing about music, especially teaching it to others.  But to watch her do everything within her power to keep up with him on guitar, it's obvious his style works.  Especially for those kids driven enough to want to get better at their craft.  And my daughter loves him for it!  She only plays when she wants to and never has to be reminded or asked to practice.  He never pushes her and it causes her to push herself.

I asked him about his methods about a year ago.  He said, "if she wants to play, learn, get better, she won't need anyone to push her.  We will have to reign her in a bit."  He couldn't have been more right!

I began applying the same philosophy to my younger daughters golf game last year.  She isn't as dedicated as her older sister so, she goes through long stretches where she doesn't touch a club.  But I'm sticking to the method.

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#12 leftyDH04

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Posted 31 October 2018 - 06:58 PM

View PostBeerPerHole, on 31 October 2018 - 12:38 PM, said:

View PostleftyDH04, on 31 October 2018 - 11:41 AM, said:

I'm not a parent, so usually I refrain from talking about child rearing because the average parent assumes the only way to know anything about kids is to have one.  Having taught a lot of athletically difficult sports like downhill skiing / snowboarding, whitewater kayaking / rafting, I can understand the tendency to micro-manage technique from a coach's perspective.  The thing that kills me, is that the greatest thing your kid is getting from childhood golf is repetitions of something that takes a lot of hand eye coordination.  I went to school with a kid who started playing kid's golf before there was kid's golf (in the early 80's).  His geeky dad had all of his equipment handmade and exposed him to the best coaches.  At the age of 9 he was one of the best golfers in our state and probably the region.  By the age of 16 he was largely irrelevant at the state level and he didn't even get a good scholarship to college.  In the end, he didn't have a lot of the tools.  Basically you're investing a ton of money, depriving the kid of having fun, and it's a crap shoot at best.  Let them have fun.  If they're not having fun, you're losing.  Period.  Doesn't matter if it's learning to ski or learning to golf or anything else.  If you can't make sport fun you've lost.  There's a fine line in EVENTUALLY introducing some consequence and discipline to the practice, but I think high school is as early as that's really appropriate.
This is the smartest comment I've ever heard about parenting from somebody who isn't a parent.

Thanks!  I'm an uncle.  And, I've taught kids as young as age 3 (babysitting really) and as old as 75.  Some folks never grow up.  Occasionally that's a good thing ;)

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#13 leveragedbuyout

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 04:46 PM

Second time poster here, and parent of 2 junior golfers….

Grew up playing hockey and baseball, received scholarship offers in both sports, played minor pro hockey for 5 years and play to a 3 handicap currently.

At 7 years old, my first year playing hockey and baseball I had zero prior experience and I was easily the worst player on the team in both sports. That first year, both sports were anything but FUN for me…in fact I hated both.

After that first year, my Dad being a former athlete himself decided to get actively involved in my development as an athlete, spending his spare time teaching me proper mechanics, pitching me batting practice, playing pond hockey w/ me etc., ending up becoming my own personal sideline ‘Coach’ in both sports. He also signed me up for a number of extracurricular hockey and baseball skill specific camps and programs in the offseason and in the evenings, some of which were tough going, with instructors/coaches who pushed the kids to the limit, especially the hockey coaches.

Did all this extra curricular work take up a lot of my time? Did it require dedication? Was it sometimes tough and tiring? Was my Dad both involved, and emotionally invested in the process?...The answer is YES to all…and I came back the second year much stronger, with a new set of elevated skills and became the best player on both my hockey and baseball teams, moving up to AAA the following season/s.

First year wasn’t FUN at all, in fact I can remember dreading going to the rink and diamond.

Second year however, was a tremendous amount of FUN !! I clearly remember the feelings of personal pride and accomplishment I experienced. I couldn’t wait to get to the rink and diamond. I thank and credit my Dad for this.

My personal experience as a kid was that playing at a skill level equal to, or greater than the other kids I was playing with/against was a heck of a lot more FUN than being the worst player on the team….wasn’t even close.

In my opinion, junior golf is no different.

Both of my kids asked me to introduce them to the game, so I did and became their Coach… (god forbid, a parent coach in golf !!...I know right???). So as they each progressed and improved and got to a playing level where they asked to start playing in tournaments, I obliged. Both of my kids experienced early success via many tournament wins right out of the gate, despite many of their competitors having played junior golf for much longer….and like all golfers they’ve experienced struggles with the game as well.

Seeing that my kids showed a continued strong interest in playing in junior tournaments, I too felt it very important to find out what makes golf FUN for them, because I noticed a pattern that the junior golfers that were consistently finishing at the bottom of the field in tournaments were the ones that eventually lost interest and dropped out of the sport, versus the juniors that were consistently progressing and improving and having a lot of FUN playing this great game

So I did the simplest thing I could think of and separately asked both of my kids what, if anything, about playing golf is FUN for them?  In a nutshell, both of my kids have answered that question the same, as follows;….playing golf to the best of their ability and being competitive in tournaments and especially winning is a lot more FUN than finishing out of the running and playing poorly.    Who woulda thought that???

That being said, both of my kids understand that Golf is Hard, the most difficult game/sport to play at a high level of all, it is unforgiving, ruthless and at the same time the endless search for the game’s holy grail can be joyously addictive and in order for them to continuously improve and to consistently be in the mix to win tournaments they gotta put in the ‘work’ and time via practice and dedication and adopt a never give up attitude…same thing my old man told me when I was 8yrs old.

They both work hard and spend a lot of time practicing and YES I am their only Coach, and at the end of the day their hard work pays off via the tournament results that theyare striving for, and for them that is a ton of FUN.

Bonus for me is I get a kick out of their winning as well (any Parent who says otherwise is lying…sorry but true)…and I also get a kick out of seeing them dust the other kids who’s parents are spending $150-$300/hour on private lessons….not to mention that I’m also a shoulder for them to cry on when the chips are down and they are struggling with their game.

But most of all I get a kick out of seeing the joy, smiles, memories and FUN that my kids experience when they play the greatest game of all really, really well (for their age of course)….

…and in regards to the repeated notion and/or opinion that tournament wins under the age of 15 mean nothing??…that may be the case from a college recruiter’s perspective, but try telling that to my kids, lol…they’d laugh hysterically and tell you to jump in the lake!!  Winning junior tournaments means a whole heck of alot to my kids and so do the memories, pride and FUN they experience as a result.

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#14 TigerMom

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 05:10 PM

View Postleveragedbuyout, on 02 November 2018 - 04:46 PM, said:

Second time poster here, and parent of 2 junior golfers….

Grew up playing hockey and baseball, received scholarship offers in both sports, played minor pro hockey for 5 years and play to a 3 handicap currently.

At 7 years old, my first year playing hockey and baseball I had zero prior experience and I was easily the worst player on the team in both sports. That first year, both sports were anything but FUN for me…in fact I hated both.

After that first year, my Dad being a former athlete himself decided to get actively involved in my development as an athlete, spending his spare time teaching me proper mechanics, pitching me batting practice, playing pond hockey w/ me etc., ending up becoming my own personal sideline ‘Coach’ in both sports. He also signed me up for a number of extracurricular hockey and baseball skill specific camps and programs in the offseason and in the evenings, some of which were tough going, with instructors/coaches who pushed the kids to the limit, especially the hockey coaches.

Did all this extra curricular work take up a lot of my time? Did it require dedication? Was it sometimes tough and tiring? Was my Dad both involved, and emotionally invested in the process?...The answer is YES to all…and I came back the second year much stronger, with a new set of elevated skills and became the best player on both my hockey and baseball teams, moving up to AAA the following season/s.

First year wasn’t FUN at all, in fact I can remember dreading going to the rink and diamond.

Second year however, was a tremendous amount of FUN !! I clearly remember the feelings of personal pride and accomplishment I experienced. I couldn’t wait to get to the rink and diamond. I thank and credit my Dad for this.

My personal experience as a kid was that playing at a skill level equal to, or greater than the other kids I was playing with/against was a heck of a lot more FUN than being the worst player on the team….wasn’t even close.

In my opinion, junior golf is no different.

Both of my kids asked me to introduce them to the game, so I did and became their Coach… (god forbid, a parent coach in golf !!...I know right???). So as they each progressed and improved and got to a playing level where they asked to start playing in tournaments, I obliged. Both of my kids experienced early success via many tournament wins right out of the gate, despite many of their competitors having played junior golf for much longer….and like all golfers they’ve experienced struggles with the game as well.

Seeing that my kids showed a continued strong interest in playing in junior tournaments, I too felt it very important to find out what makes golf FUN for them, because I noticed a pattern that the junior golfers that were consistently finishing at the bottom of the field in tournaments were the ones that eventually lost interest and dropped out of the sport, versus the juniors that were consistently progressing and improving and having a lot of FUN playing this great game

So I did the simplest thing I could think of and separately asked both of my kids what, if anything, about playing golf is FUN for them?  In a nutshell, both of my kids have answered that question the same, as follows;….playing golf to the best of their ability and being competitive in tournaments and especially winning is a lot more FUN than finishing out of the running and playing poorly. Who woulda thought that???

That being said, both of my kids understand that Golf is Hard, the most difficult game/sport to play at a high level of all, it is unforgiving, ruthless and at the same time the endless search for the game’s holy grail can be joyously addictive and in order for them to continuously improve and to consistently be in the mix to win tournaments they gotta put in the ‘work’ and time via practice and dedication and adopt a never give up attitude…same thing my old man told me when I was 8yrs old.

They both work hard and spend a lot of time practicing and YES I am their only Coach, and at the end of the day their hard work pays off via the tournament results that theyare striving for, and for them that is a ton of FUN.

Bonus for me is I get a kick out of their winning as well (any Parent who says otherwise is lying…sorry but true)…and I also get a kick out of seeing them dust the other kids who’s parents are spending $150-$300/hour on private lessons….not to mention that I’m also a shoulder for them to cry on when the chips are down and they are struggling with their game.

But most of all I get a kick out of seeing the joy, smiles, memories and FUN that my kids experience when they play the greatest game of all really, really well (for their age of course)….

…and in regards to the repeated notion and/or opinion that tournament wins under the age of 15 mean nothing??…that may be the case from a college recruiter’s perspective, but try telling that to my kids, lol…they’d laugh hysterically and tell you to jump in the lake!!  Winning junior tournaments means a whole heck of alot to my kids and so do the memories, pride and FUN they experience as a result.

this is a really thoughtful and well-written post that seems to contradict much of the advice that is given on this forum

it really resonated with me as a parent of 3 kids active in sports (2 of whom are playing at a very high level)

thank you for sharing

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#15 MadGolfer76

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 06:19 PM

When I used to schedule sports, I had an undefeated basketball team going into the playoffs. Star player went into a slump in the last few games, and I had scheduled a post-season scrimmage with a tough team that wasn't on their normal schedule. Parents had showed up to every game and shouted directions throughout. Kid was mortified, but didn't know what to do. The dad came up to me looking for advice for how to snap him out of the slump. I said, "I have a great idea!" On the day of the scrimmage, I closed off the event to media and spectators. The parents were incensed, and I had to "encourage" them to get lost because they showed up anyway trying to get in. Kid regains his form and is the top scorer in that game. Dad was waiting in the parking lot the whole game, like an addict waiting on his connection (the "fix" being finding out how junior did).

Next I saw him he asked me, "What did you do?"

I replied by saying, "I removed an unnecessary variable."

I don't think he ever understood what I meant, but there is an old director saying which goes something like, "There is no problem in youth sports that can't be solved by getting rid of the parents."

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#16 heavy_hitter

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 07:02 PM

View PostMadGolfer76, on 02 November 2018 - 06:19 PM, said:


Next I saw him he asked me, "What did you do?"

I replied by saying, "I removed an unnecessary variable."

I don't think he ever understood what I meant, but there is an old director saying which goes something like, "There is no problem in youth sports that can't be solved by getting rid of the parents."

Truth.

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#17 BertGA

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Posted 02 November 2018 - 08:18 PM

View PostTigerMom, on 02 November 2018 - 05:10 PM, said:


this is a really thoughtful and well-written post that seems to contradict much of the advice that is given on this forum

it really resonated with me as a parent of 3 kids active in sports (2 of whom are playing at a very high level)

thank you for sharing

I also enjoyed reading his story, both his own and his children’s. But those stories are his, not mine. Those are the stories of a highly skilled multi sport athlete with what appears to be equally talented children.

I was a rec soccer player, played one season of baseball, a couple basketball, and settled for JV soccer in HS. Never had the motivation or focus to become exceptional, or even above average. Now that I’m older, I understand my own capabilities and limitations. I’m a better soccer player, and golfer, than I ever was at a younger age. I see the same characteristics in my own son, but my insight allows me to help him.

My wife was a state champ softball player. Not the best on the team, but clearly a better athlete at that age than me. What I see in our daughter is a willingness to listen, to learn, and no fear of failing. My son is completely different. but they are both a reflection of us. You hear multiple conflicting stories because there is not one path to greatness, or even success. Same way I read 20 different ways to “fix my slice”. Different strokes for different folks.

When my ride is all done, I care far more about being a great father to my children than I do creating a world-class athlete. I think it is important to understand who you are, and who your kids are, before you commit to a path that may have unintended consequences.

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