The Secret in the Dirt Blog

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Who I Am

I'm a history teacher at a Alexander Hamilton High School in Milwaukee, WI.  I'm 29 years old and I've been playing golf for the past three years.  I am someone who for the longest time had no idea how the guys on tv hit the ball so high and far.  Golf to me was magical.  Three years ago my father in law gave me his old set of clubs and I started playing around, trying to figure out how to hit the ball.  I was on a path towards probably struggling with the game and never being any good at all.  The only advice I got from people was to practice and play a lot and I'd get better.  Thank goodness for the Internet.


What This Here Blog is About

I want to do something to help people have as much fun as I've had.  I was going to start a topic on one of the forums for Dirters who are new to the game, but I didn't see any clearly marked threads devoted to that topic.  I want to share my experiences with beginning players in particular because I feel like a lot of the forum content on the Dirt is geared towards people who know a ton about the game.  It's not easy to navigate the world of golf when you're a beginner.  Just visit the PGA website sometime and try to learn something useful.  Or read a golf magazine full of "tips."  Its almost like the golf world doesn't want people to learn to play for free.
I also want to record my thoughts and ideas as I learn more and more about golf.  I want to be able to look back and laugh long and hard at all the crazy ideas I had.
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Posted by on in Village Blogs

First Things First

     Golf can be really complex and unpredictable.  The possibilities for any given shot during any given round are pretty much endless.  How can you possibly enjoy something as crazy and seemingly unpredictable as golf?  It's simple, but it's not easy.
     The most important thing you must do in order to enjoy golf is be patient.  Golf is a very unforgiving game.  You need to be able to forgive yourself over and over and over again in order to learn to play well.  Without patience, you will never give yourself the opportunity to learn and make progress.
    The second most important thing you must do is understand that knowledge is power.  Understanding that there are reasons and causes for everything in golf helps to build up the skills you need to be successful.  Read as much as you can about how to play.  I like to read fairly simple stuff like Hogan's Five Lessons.  Some people might like more technical explanations about what's going on.  If you browse through the Dirt forums you will find a plethora of information explaining things as technically or nontechnically as you like.  Test the ideas of other golfers to see if it works for you.  The more you know, the better you will be because each day you play is different.  Your body can only do what your brain tells it to do.  Learning as much as possible is critical to having success.  Good players know what to tell their bodies to do.
     Mental and emotional health are invaluable.  Getting angry about the wrong things will destroy your chances for enjoyment and success.  Be patient, keep your eyes and ears open and you'll have a lot of fun.
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