Tiger’s Ten Yard Rule

Well, I golfed – solo.  Nine holes under surprisingly spectacular skies for this time of year.  I wore long pants and regretted it immediately.  The temperature got high into the 70s with sun beating down and halfway down the first fairway I was stuffing my fleece vest into the long, zippered bag compartment.

It was one of those nine hole rounds in which I played pretty well but the score didn’t reflect it.  Flubbed tee and fairway shots here and there plus a few very close putts and bogeys easily became doubles and triples.  Although I only three-putted once.

I counted my good shots and there was at least one per hole and on the par-five seventh hole, they were all good!  (But I still made a 7, with a two-putt.)  My criteria for calling the shot good was only that it be well struck.  If it went offline or came up short but was well struck, I counted it.  By the same token if it was poorly struck but had a good result, I didn’t count it.  There were a few of those too.

I read recently that Tiger Woods only gives himself 10 yards walking away from a miss to be upset about it and then he moves onto the next shot.  I tried to practice that today.  No cussing myself out.  No calling myself nasty, obscene names.  Instead, I focused on what I did well.  It didn’t show in the score but it sure helped my enjoyment of the game!  I had a good time out there.

When I had the luxury of no one pushing from behind, I hit second shots as correction exercises and executed a few of those to perfection.  (Interestingly enough, this good mood lasted the rest of the day.)

There were thankfully NO out of bounds shots and some of the tee boxes that play with my mind like the one on eight had no effect on me today.  I teed off on eight with my trusty five iron and hit it bone straight right down the middle and precisely where I aimed it.

On the long par five I often flub my tee shot with a wood as I try to hit it to the moon I think.  I chose my five-iron there as well and though I pulled it left, it was struck solidly and I got good distance out of it.  It came about ten feet from the OB stake but hey, that’s a playable lie!  I did incur a “take your medicine” shot though as there were trees present and I had to pitch it low and back out onto the fairway.  Hence my score of 7 on the hole.

There is a curious thing that has happened to me on the same 130-yard par three hole several times in a row.  I hit my four or five iron (I’ve tried them both) wildly to the right with a slice to boot.  Luckily this is one of the few holes with a free drop if the ball goes past a certain point because there is a big maintenance shed there.  I earned myself yet another free drop.  So I guess if you’re going to push-slice, do it there!

All in all, a nice day of golf.   I know my scores will eventually start to come down.  How can they not with all this golfing I’ve been doing?  After 30 or so years of very sporadic play, including half or more of those years with no play and when I did play it was only two or three times, it’s now been only a month-and-a-half that I’ve been working hard at the game.  I’m just getting started.


My day will come.



Stats (I will now regularly post some of the stats I’m following for myself)

Nine hole score:  52

Solid Contact (Tee, fairway and approach shots that were well stuck):  17

Putts:  17.  (one-putts – 2, three-putts – 1)

Shots left:  18

The takeaway:  49% of my shots were well struck!  If you add putts that increases the percentage quite a bit.  Several of the two putts were very close to being one putts as I only missed by inches.  I had but one bad putt, the putt that set up a three-putt on nine.  I hit it way too hard and it sailed past the hole.

Thought of the day:   A one-inch tap in counts the same as a 250 yard drive.  What a game!



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