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Last update: 2013-06-28

Can Youth Revitalize Women's Golf?

2013-06-28 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

LPGA golf superstars like Cristie Kerr have been playing as a professional longer than the ages of many of the hottest young golfers standing beside her on the tee box. With eighteen teenagers poised to make history at the 2013 U.S. Women's Open, can youth revitalize a sagging Tour?
Golf Channel's "State of the Game" Roundtable Discussion at the U.S. Women's Open asked Kerr, Annika Sorenstam and Mike Whan about the state of the Ladies' game and whether teenagers are prepared to take on this revitalization movement.

Cristie Kerr mentioned that sponsorships and resources are now more available to younger players. Add to that the numerous mental and swing coaches that accompany each player and "they are a lot more equipped to play professional golf as a young age."
Annika Sorenstam believes that the younger golfers "bring a lot to the game"; they are mature and hit the ball a long way.
Mike Whan explained that, although you might see more teens competing in this event, it is because it is a USGA event as opposed to an LPGA tournament. Strict guidelines have been put into place to ensure that the LPGA is accessible to youth players, "but we kind of draw a line between access to play and be a member, because with membership, comes a lot more responsibilities and these two know better than ever."
Advice from Annika? "Just have fun, enjoy. You have so many years ahead of you, don't rush it, because it's hard to be out there."
This week at Sebonack GC, Paula Creamer and Matt Lauer were on hand to participate in a golf clinic where over one-hundred youngsters attended, most of the kids from LPGA-USGA Girls Golf. Is this solid proof that the game is growing and moving forward for the youth of America? Jeanne-Marie Hamilton-Moore of the First Tee of Essex County said about Creamer after the golf clinic “She’s famous and she’s amazing, and I know that I can achieve that one day.”
It is inevitable that younger golfers will play a big role in the advancement of women's golf and, in my opinion, as long as teens are brought into the sport and moved along at the proper speed and with the right frame of mind, the game will continue to prosper.

photo credit: LPGA, Golfweek AP

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U.S. Women's Open Golf Preview With Annika Sorenstam

2013-06-21 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Three-time U.S. Women's Open Champion and fan favorite, Annika Sorenstam, recently opened up to Golf Channel about her thoughts on the upcoming major as well as the mindset and preparation needed to become the winner of this sought-after trophy. Kay Cockerill, the lead analyst for Golf Channel coverage, joined in the interview.

Golf for Beginners selected choice opinions from the Sorenstam - Cockerill interview and have posted a few notable quotes below in the hopes that it will stir up excitement in the 2013 U.S. Women's Open, scheduled for the week of June 24, 2013.

Moderator: Just an opening question, what was your mind set and preparation going into U.S. Women's Open?

ANNIKA SORENSTAM:  Well, thank you, and good morning, everyone.  The U.S. Open certainly has a special place in my heart, and growing up in Sweden, I always thought it was the biggest tournament.  As a little girl, I dreamed about winning it, and like you said, I had a chance to do that a few times.

You know, certainly I think it's the toughest tournament for women's golf throughout the year.  The courses we play on are always immaculate and challenging, and it tests you in every aspect.

Moderator:  What are you hearing from the players on the anticipation heading into next week?

KAY COCKERILL:  Everyone is very excited and there have been a pretty good handful of women that have gotten out and played Sebonack already, and they are very impressed with the golf course. I think everyone is in agreement that it's certainly wide open off the tee, but it's about placement of the second shot, just enormous undulating greens.  And the greens, and the shots around the greens, are going to be very critical.

Moderator: Could you just talk a little bit about what kind of game, particular skills Sebonack might favor, and which players might there for seem to have a particular advantage or chance for this week, next week?

KAY COCKERILL: What I gather from what the players have said, there are some seaside holes.  It's a coastal type golf course, but then, pretty generous off the tees.  ...and I asked a couple players, if it's the kind of course where you can hit low shots and bounce it in.  And they said, not really, because of all the slopes on these greens and the wave like nature of the greens, you kind have to shape your shots in and it's going to be really quite a shot makers golf course.

ANNIKA SORENSTAM:  I think overall, the way the USGA has set up this course, whatever type of golf course it is, they want you to be, you know, you need to be able to fire on all cylinders.  You need to be most of the time pretty long off the tee.

You look at the previous U.S. Women's Open, and it's getting longer and longer.

Moderator: I wonder what you can tell me about...just thinking of people that might have been No. 1 at some point, about Michelle Wie's putting stance and stroke these days, and just generally some thoughts about where she stands these days.

KAY COCKERILL:  I've known Michelle Wie for a very long time.  I've watched her play since she was ten years old, and she was at the time the youngest to qualify for the women's Public Links which has now been eclipsed by Lucy Li. I personally do not like her putting stance.  I find it amazing that she can even stand in that position for an amount of time.  Maybe it doesn't bother her back very much.  I have to tip my hat to her because it takes a bit of guts and bravery to do something very different and risked being made fun of.

She has committed to this.  She seems to; I think she's been told what to do so much that if this was truly her own idea and her own experiment that she felt strongly about and she's committed to it, I applaud her for that.

ANNIKA SORENSTAM: Right now, she has a lot more doubt than confidence, and it's hard.  She's trying something new.  Standing the way she does, it probably stabilizes her upper body a little bit more.  She has a strong back, so good for her (chuckling).

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Mount Airy Resort Casino and Golf Course Redefines Itself

2013-06-15 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

A multi-million dollar upgrade worked wonders on a tired yet "beautiful" Lodge, reinventing itself as Mount Airy Casino Resort. The former hotel, as it was told to me, had to be demolished by the owners, the DeNaples family, and with it thankfully went the days of the “honeymoon-hideaway”; red, heart-shaped tubs and Poconos 70's "kitsch". 
Owner Lisa DeNaples’ personal touch throughout the rebuilt Mount Airy Casino Resort hits the jackpot, from glittering chandeliers and glistening glass fireplaces in the entry to pure chic décor at Gypsies Night Club (with cages tastefully surrounding the stage for the dancing girls). 

Top-name entertainment performs weekly (check the schedule) and includes a special surprise for the ladies with the Thunder from Down Under revue throughout the summer.  

The resort is clean, has all of the comforts of home and then some; super-comfy plush bedding, flat-screen televisions and digital Cisco phone systems in each room provide weather and wake-up calls at the touch of a button.
Like a phoenix from the ashes, Mt Airy sacrificed itself in order to save and reinvent itself... which was probably for the best.
Mount Airy Casino Resort Dining
Mount Airy Resort served well as a birthday destination for me: who doesn’t love a great meal served by waiters and waitresses who seem genuinely happy to assist (with piano music playing gently in the background?) My special occasion dinner was served up at Red’s, named after the owner’s patriarch. Steaks were cooked to perfection and the cheesecake was delicioso.

I’m hard-pressed to say which restaurant served up the preferred meal during my stay but, if it was based on the quality of the Veal Marsala, I might have to choose Le Sorelle Cucina…I would journey back here just for the Veal…so tender!
There are several other options on the premises: Betty’s Diner is furnished with what else but a 1950’s theme and a Buffet where my husband and I gravitated to while waiting for our room to become available. Although we didn’t eat at the Buffet, we were impressed by the quality and with only small portions left out in order to keep the food fresh.
A Noodle Bar and Starbucks round out the dining options.
Framed in Betty's Diner was this photo of what looks to be 1970's poolside splendor at Mount Airy Lodge..and the reminder that today, all photos are digitized and in color.

Mount Airy Casino Resort and Gaming
There is a reason this Resort is called a Casino but I am disappointed to say that, for us, the machines were very tight; we hardly got any play. 

When we got tired of losing, we tried to find outdoor space to catch a bit of sunshine but noticed that there is limited seating on the premises unless you take a short stroll just across from Mount Airy Resort to the golf course. There you will find very restful outdoor seating/dining overlooking the lake. I understand that there is also a walking and bicycle path at the entrance to the Resort …but I was later warned to beware of tics and bring  bug spray (and sunscreen) for protection.

An indoor, outdoor pool is currently under construction and set to open around Labor Day which should take care of the lounging issues. The pool is located by the Spa and Fitness Center which looked like a serene place to get away from the hustle of the machines.

Mount Airy Resort Golf Course
Eighteen holes of golf were designed by architect Hal Purdy in order to recreate some of the Top Golf Courses in the Country. 

Of course, these golf holes were "inspired" by Purdy and loosely based on the top eighteen (and do not necessarily follow the numbers on this card) but there are similarities. The 18th on Pebble Beach is recreated for example, but the water is on the opposite side of the fairway. 

Whether or not you can see the similarities, you will find yourself tested from the first tee box to your final drained putt. The Palmer Golf Course at Forsgate CC, Burning Tree in Greenwich CT and Fox Hollow in Somerville are among Hal Purdy's memorable golf course designs.

Although there are currently plans on the table for a putting green and range, for now guests who arrive before 11AM can walk or drive a cart to the 18th green for a warm-up (who doesn’t want to practice on Pebble Beach GC 18th green?)

New irrigation system has been added and the course is in great condition. It is a busy golf course, and rightfully so as blind holes and twists and turns take golfers on a journey which frustrates for errant shots and rewards the player for smart play. The rough is thick, there are a number of doglegs and the greens are tricky.

Barry and playing partner pointing out best place to land the shot.

After our round of golf, although tempted to play another nine, we decided to have a snack by the lake and venture into the Clubhouse to relax and watch a bit of golf. This Clubhouse was a total redesign watched over in its entirety, I'm told, by Ms. DeNaples who gave this Clubhouse the feel of a Lodge.

All in all, I would say that Mount Airy has morphed into a present day Casino Resort with a focus on the Casino and with all of the comforts that you would expect from a Resort destination. For me, I felt as if I could stay perhaps a night or two and then be on my way to my next destination. In other words, this is a great travel stopover while passing through the Poconos. If you are a golfer, you will not be disappointed.

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Disclosure: This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Follow @Golf4Beginners on Twitter and friend us on Facebook! …


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Can the Right Golf Shoes Really Improve Your Game?

2013-06-11 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Do golfers take their golf shoes for granted? Players may opt for style in a "tried-and-true" shoe but, what if a golfer could have it all...and more? The line of Adidas Golf Shoes promises function, style and comfort for a more natural movement.
Walking eighteen holes can take a toll on any golfer but with proper cushioning, flexibility and support, the stroll - and the recovery shots - become more bearable. Bill Price, VP of adidas Golf Footwear claims that a player will not only be comfortable out on the golf course but will walk more naturally with the new adicross design. “With this revolutionary new shoe, a golfer can freely flex and rotate from the ground up to the shoulders, resulting in a more efficient, natural swing.” 

The Adidas adicross Tour Spikeless Golf shoes promise a new ripstop nylon saddle for improved upper flexibility and lightweight FITFOAMâ„¢ PU insole which is said to provide everlasting cushioning, support and comfort. 

The limited edition Adidas adizero Tour, says TaylorMadeGolf.com, is "specially-engineered to include only what’s essential to perform, and deliver everything a golfer needs to finish strong when it’s needed most."

Here is a picture of the new adiCross Tour Golf Shoe in White/Uni Red/Aluminium found on the Function18 website. Enhanced stability, flexibility and, in my opinion (as I found was needed while playing a round of golf this weekend), improved ground contact throughout the swing, are probably three of the most important reasons to compare this shoe to what you are currently wearing out on the golf course.

The red spikeless sole also makes quite a fashion statement, don't you think?

If you think the adiCross is a winner, take a look at the new Adidas AdiZero Tour Golf Shoes. The AdiZero is said to be thirty-eight percent lighter than its predecessor with technology that is used to create football shoes. 'SprintWeb' helps with swing support with a durable outer layer.

Looking for a bold look that is waterproof? Rainy days make these golf shoes a must! Adidas AdiZero Sport TRAXION Golf Shoes come in a stylish yellow with features such as a Triangular spikeless configuration for optimum traction, control and stability, removing heel lift for overall comfort and a 'Cloudfoam' sock liner insole for additional lightweight cushioning...ahhh.

With these selections, it's easy to look good and feel good on the golf course! One (or more) of these Adidas golf shoes would be PERFECT to add to your list of Father's Day golf gifts.

Another great golf gift idea? To celebrate the U.S. Open, designer golf clothing specialists Function 18 are now offering 15% off all orders online at www.function18.co.uk. To receive your 15% off, simply visit Function 18 during the US Open (13th - 16th June) and enter voucher code USOPEN15 at checkout. 

Voice your opinion right here on our golf blog, on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and on Facebook.

Disclosure: This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Follow @Golf4Beginners on Twitter and friend us on Facebook! …


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Golf Gifts Your Dad Will Use

2013-06-07 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

With so many golf blogs coming out with lists of Father's Day golf gifts, Golf for Beginners has also compiled several items which dad will love to use.

1. Quick Spikes:
I love ingenious ideas that serve a purpose and improve the game of golf in some way. I first saw Quick Spikes at the Westchester County Golf Show this year and was enamored with the thought of not having to change into my golf shoes every time I visited the driving range, or if I was at the putting/chipping area and needed some extra grip. Although I would not use Quick Spikes for 18 holes as I found I had to occasionally adjust them, they were great as a casual solution.

2. SlingerGolf InsideMove:
Perfecting two basic swing functions - correct swing plane and release of the golf club - can be a daunting task without an instructor to help guide the student. Although I just received the InsideMove golf training aid, I can see how, through simplicity of design, this easy-to-use tool can improve your swing path so that it becomes ingrained when you play a round.

I also received the Velcro Target so that Barry and I can practice our swing on the road (next stop, Mount Airy Casino.)

3. Mobitee GPS Golf Assistant - The Golf App that Settles the Score:
I use Mobitee when I am walking on the golf course and, aside from the (obvious) accuracy of the GPS, I find that it helps me to avoid bunkers and to find the front, middle and back of the green. The Father's Day promotion from Mobitee is in the form of a cute 13-year-old girl who "settles the score" with her dad during a round of golf.

The Mobitee video is original with a clear-cut message: even a technologically narrow-minded guy like Dad can learn something from his kids, in this case, his 13-year old daughter Emily. The commercial spot helps to humanize the Mobitee brand, communicates well with women and kids while proving that a golf app can be a cross-generational tool that is to be enjoyed by all.

**Mobitee Father's Day Twitter Giveaway: Tweet the hashtag #MobiteeDad to @Golf4Beginners with a funny golf story you shared with dad for YOUR dad to win a Mobitee GPS Golf App for his smart phone!** one app to give away...promotion good through Father's Day...winner will be notified via Twitter.

4. Have you walked through a sporting goods store only to see Dad drooling over the latest golf clubs? Here's your chance to show that you have listened to his by getting him one of the latest golf drivers (or wedge perhaps?) on the market. I'm not making any suggestions here...it's YOUR job to listen to your dad!

5. This is probably the most important gift you can give your dad ...SUNSCREEN! Your dad spends four to five hours out in the sun so, chances are, he will get a pretty dark tan (except of course, on his golf glove hand) and, chances are, he will never go out and buy it for himself. That being said, show dad how much you care, read these facts about skin cancer and include a bottle of SPF 50 on your list!

For more golf gift ideas, take a look through this list of putters and accessories to remember the dad in your life!

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Could YOU Play 100 Holes of #Golf In One Day?

2013-06-03 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

This Golf for Beginners blog not only provides readers with reviews of new equipment and training aids, travel updates and opinionated arguments, but we also are very interested in people making a difference in their golf communities through charitable means. 

With that said, please read the following blog written by Neil Johnston and, if you can, help him to support Misericordia through his Hundred Hole Hike , which "offers a community of care that maximizes potential for persons with mild to profound developmental disabilities, many of whom are also physically challenged." *************** Guest Blog Written by Neil Johnston: The Hundred Hole Hike (HHH) is a national-network of golf marathons where participants plan to walk 100 or more holes of golf in one day in order to raise money for various worthwhile charitable causes. The Hundred Hole Hike includes events at some of the top golf courses in the country, including many courses listed in the Top 100 by the various golf publications. In its inaugural year, the HHH raised $270,000 for a wide range of charities. 100 golf holes? 1 day? No mulligans? Among those who have seen me play golf, the feedback is unanimous: Optimistic. Impossible. Ridiculous. Dude, lose some weight. While caddying for a friend in last year’s inaugural Hundred Hole Hike, I watched a handful of similarly skilled (and in some cases, unskilled) hikers overcome physical and mental challenges to complete 100 holes. And I thought…hey I could do that. No, I should do that. I live in the West Rogers Park area of Chicago within a lob wedge of Misericordia’s main campus. Misericordia supports individuals in Chicago with developmental disabilities by maximizing their level of independence and self-determination. Put simply, Misericordia believes that people with developmental disabilities not only have a right to life, but to one worth living. Currently, Misericordia supports more than 600 children and adults in Chicago, from all backgrounds, with developmental disabilities. www.misericordia.com Misericordia makes my neighborhood a better place. Hacking my way around 100 holes seems like the least I can do to thank them. As a slightly overweight, 12 handicapper, it’s going to take a lot of help to complete the hike! Please consider supporting my hike and one of Chicago’s most worthy charities, using the following link: hundredholehike.com/golfers/neil-johnston All Golf4Beginners on Twitter readers who make a $25 pledge will receive a signed, unwashed sock of mine from the Hundred Hole Hike....just mention that you saw my blog. This is truly a one of a kind souvenir. Alternatively, if you would prefer a hearty thank you and a tax receipt, then that can also be arranged. 
Your comments are welcome on this blog, on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and Facebook...or wherever you happento see Golf for Beginners! Follow @Golf4Beginners on Twitter and friend us on Facebook! …


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Golf Training Aids for the Beginner AND Serious Golfer

2013-05-29 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Golf for Beginners believes in the importance of going back to the basics in order to refresh the fundamentals of the golf swing. Most players don't have time to continually visit their teaching pro whenever they feel their swing getting "out-of-sorts" so we rely on golf training aids in order to maintain a repeatable swing.

The guest post below is written by Bruce Hubley, single-digit handicap golfer and inventor of The Slinger Golf Improvement System.


You wouldn’t take a road trip without a map…

Yet most golfers attempt to learn a golf swing with little or no knowledge of critical golf swing fundamentals.

The pros I work with tell me that the percentage of golfers who take lessons is around six percent.  Of those six percent, about fifty percent spend more time telling the pro what they are doing wrong then listening to what the pro has to say.

That leaves around ninety-four percent of all golfers that have chosen to learn the game by watching TV, videos, DVD’s and reading magazines, etc.  

Good luck to that idea!

At this point you need to ask yourself …Are You a Social Golfer Or a Serious Golfer?

The Social Golfer plays golf to get out of the house, have fun and socialize with friends, with little regard to improving their golf game.

The Serious Golfer wants to play better and will take the time, spend the money, and make the effort to become a better golfer.  

You know which one you are.     

Okay, you’re a serious golfer.  Now what?

You have probably heard that the best way to learn a complicated body motion...and golf has plenty of them... is by repetitions…hundreds of them.

But, repetitions are only beneficial if it is done correctly, otherwise they can be counter productive ….even harmful.

So, how do you manage to make hundreds, even thousands, of correct swing repetitions without going broke at the local driving range and also be able to improve your golf swing, stay fit and “golf ready” year round, anywhere-anytime?

Pull out the Golf Training Aids There are many golf training aids on the market, so how do you know which one(s) to try?

Portablility, the ability to use indoors, simplicity and feedback are most important when choosing a golf training device.

One excellent way to hit hundreds, even thousands, of correct repetitions is with a portable, indoor-outdoor Swing Practice System.  

The Slinger Golf Swing Practice System includes a Velcro Target and six Velcro balls and the InsideMove.  

The Target has a Velcro stripe sewn down its center. This is what you try to hit, the same as a flag on the green.   

The portable Velcro Practice Target comes with six Velcro golf balls.   Hang it on a wall at home, office, school, fire station, penthouse, anywhere.  Grab your trusty wedge, or any iron and you’re ready to take charge of your swing and finally “Get It Right”.

The InsideMove is an amazingly simple device that teaches a very counter-intuitive golf swing fundamental; how to swing “on plane” correctly.  The InsideMove is placed on the floor and aimed at the vertical stripe on the target: it is a remarkable device that teaches you how to swing “on plane” like all the great pros and is the perfect partner for the Velcro Practice Target.  

Once the nickel drops, and you understand what it take to approach impact with the ball from “inside” the target line, a very counter-intuitive move…nothing will ever be the same for you and your golf game.  It’s a true “Game Changer”.

The Slinger is our most revolutionary product.  It’s designed to be used indoors, it’s only 27” long, it fits in your luggage and goes where you go.  It doesn’t touch the ground and never impacts a ball.  It’s the perfect way to learn and master golf’s swing fundamentals.  It’s a pure training tool, and by far your most important golf club.

Now you have your own portable personal practice area that’s quick and easy to setup and use anywhere you go.  More importantly, the visual feedback of the ball trajectory will tell you if each swing was done correctly or not.  With this precise visual feedback you can self improve yourself to an excellent golf swing.

At Slinger Golf we’re all about swing fundamentals the “road map” to a winning swing. With these products you will have the knowledge, and “knowledge is power”, to become the golfer you always dreamed you could be.

You’re now a charter member of the five percent of all golfers who know what is takes to swing a golf club correctly.  Yahoo!

Bruce Hubley Bio:
Bruce Hubley was raised in San Francisco and began playing golf at the tender age of twelve at Harding Golf Course, producer of many a great player including Venturi, Miller, Archer, and Lema. 

He caddied and was Captain of his High School and College Golf Teams. Soon after retirement as General Foreman of the San Francisco Water Department, Bruce decided to approach the game as an inventor, creating a golf training system that would teach fundamentals of swing plane and proper release. 

Seven years after visualizing his product and working with professional golfers and engineers, Hubley developed the patented “Slinger” training club and formed Slingergolf, Inc. Bruce also invented the patented “InsideMove”, to address the swing plane training issue. Together with Velcro Target System, all three training aids are a complete portable, indoor-outdoor, 24/7, Swing Practice System.

Do you have questions for Bruce about The Slinger Swing Practice System? 
Bruce Hubley and SlingerGolf,com can be reached at:

Website: SlingerGolf.com
Twitter: SlingerGolf
Facebook: SlingerGolf ...and check out customer reviews of The Slinger on Amazon.com.

As always, feel free to share your comments and questions on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and on our Facebook page too!

Disclosure: This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Follow @Golf4Beginners on Twitter and friend us on Facebook! …


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Links Between #Golf and Skin Cancer-Which Tour Players Had It?

2013-05-23 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

After receiving a golf press release about "Melanoma May" I realized that the probability of skin cancer during this season merited another blog which will probably sound more like a public service announcement!

Here are the latest stats about skin cancer and the necessity of athletes, especially golfers, using a serious, water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen.


·         65% of melanoma cases are associated with exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun.

·         Men over age 40 have the highest annual exposure to UV radiation.

·         The majority of people diagnosed with melanoma are white men over age 50.

·         Melanoma is one of only three cancers with an increasing mortality rate for men.


·         Getting four to six hours of sun exposure from a round of golf
·         Not wearing or reapplying sunscreen
·         Teeing off mid-morning when the sun’s rays are at their strongest
·         Having little or no shade if you stay on the fairways


·         Fred Couples, a former golf world number one and US Masters winner, has had numerous cancerous lesions removed from his hands
·         Texan PGA player, Tom Kite
·         US Open winner, Andy North
·         English golfer, Brian Davis
Other famous people who have had a brush with skin cancer include Senator John McCain, former President Ronald Reagan, Ewan McGregor and Bob Marley.

To help prevent skin cancer, performance golf clothing is not enough! Doctors recommend applying a generous amount of water-resistant, broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to all exposed areas thirty minutes before heading outside to play any sport. Look for a sports sunscreen formula that is designed to stay put if you sweat and won’t run into the eyes and sting, like the SkinCeuticals. No, I have not tried this particular sunscreen so I cannot recommend it personally. If my readers have tried it, I would appreciate your comments below.

SkinCeuticals Sport UV Defense SPF 50

Bottom line is to protect yourself.  Have a safe, healthy and happy Memorial Day weekend.

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Performance Golf Clothing that Keeps You Dry and Concentrating on Your Game!

2013-05-20 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Spring weather can be very fickle for golfers who play in the rain; hence golf clothing must be functional and, yes, fashionable. Designed by golfers for golfers, Galvin Green waterproofs found at Function18.com can take care of the elements allowing you to concentrate on your game.

Players are always looking for that extra performance tech "edge", whether it's in the golf clubs or training equipment, so why not utilize clothing to your advantage?

Golf clothing now has to be functional, "providing exceptional comfort, freedom of movement and protection from the elements." GORE-TEX highly breathable and waterproof Tech Fabric with stretch, tabs with easy touch and close fasteners, front and chest pockets with water-repellant zippers and even extra-abrasion resistant material if you carry your golf bag helps to turn golf clothing into necessary equipment during your round.

Every year I have the opportunity to play Bethpage Black Golf Course and every year, like clockwork, it pours for the entire 18 holes...and I am unprepared. This year, according to the weather forecast, is no exception.

I wish I would have seen the numerous accolades given to the Galvin Green line of golf clothing before I opted out this year. Today's Golfer, in their January 2012 edition, said Galvin Green was the “Best Waterproof Brand and Best Apparel Brand of the Year" with National Club Golfer (NCG) giving Galvin Green two thumbs up as "The Ultimate All-Purpose Suit."

The "Alice" (above) in the Ladies Collection is waterproof and highly breathable and the "Beyonce" shell layer is a lightweight, windproof outer garment with temperature regulation. Warm, cool and base layers will keep your body comfortable during that all-important golf tournament.

Here are a few pieces I picked out from the men's line:

Mens Galvin Green Acton GORE-TEX® Golf Jacket. A waterproof, full zip golf jacket in GORE-TEX® Paclite® stretch fabric. Extremely hard wearing and long lasting, easy to wash and maintain.

Mens Galvin Green August GORE-TEX® Paclite® Waterproof Golf Trousers. Waterproof golf trousers constructed from GORE-TEX® Paclite® Technology fabric, an ultralight fabric allows maximum breathability by releasing excess heat and moisture, whilst keeping external elements at bay. 

Check out the entire Galvin Green Golf Collection at Function18.com as well as the Masters Collection.

How do you purchase golf clothing ...with function in mind?  Voice your opinion on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and on Facebook.

Disclosure: This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Follow @Golf4Beginners on Twitter and friend us on Facebook! …


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Golf World Tour - The Craziest Courses in the World!

2013-05-17 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

No two golf courses are alike, which is the subject of this guest post from Stewart Probert. Different ways of achieving par, complex settings offering architectural and geographical choices and the types of challenges faced along the way leave a myriad of options for golf beginners through to players who want a considerable competitive edge. Enjoy this article and feel free to leave your comments below.
About the Author: Stewart Probert from Sweetwoods Golf Club in East Sussex, is a keen golfer, traveller and writer. When not taking chunks out of his local course and/or throwing clubs into the trees, he can usually be found reading and writing about sports, anywhere that anyone will let him!

One of the things that makes golf unique amongst most sports is the fact that no two courses are ever the same, making every round of golf a potentially new experience. But with thousands of golf courses around the world, it takes something that little bit special to stand out from the crowd and entice players from all around the world. These are a few of those courses who have gone above (way above - literally in some cases!) and beyond to provide anyone gracing their greens with a truly unforgettable experience.

Legend Golf and Safari Resort  Legend Golf & Safari Resort, South Africa
The Legend Golf & Safari Resort it most famously known for the “Extreme 19th’ - a par 3 hole that begins 400m above the Africa-shaped green on Hanglip Mountain, and requires a helicopter just to reach it! Numerous notable figures have come to play the Extreme 19th, including celebrities and well known professional golfers, although it’s notorious difficulty means that making par is something of a feat. The Legend Resort even keeps a “Leaderboard” of lowest scores for the hole on their website, peppered with a few names you’ll recognize.

There is much more to the resort than its 19th hole however: the 18 holes that make up the ‘Signature Course’ have been designed by 18 of the world’s top golfers including Colin Montgomerie and Sergio Garcia. Meanwhile there is also the tribute course - a 10 hole stroll through golfing history that features the best par 3 holes from courses around the world including Pine Valley, Augusta and the Old Course at St Andrews. It’s like a whistle-stop golf world tour!

La Paz Golf Club, Bolivia

Elevation is a vital ingredient when it comes to a good golf course, but when that course is already 3,318 metres above sea level, perhaps it isn’t that important. The La Paz Golf Club is the world’s highest golf course, and as a result you’ll notice that those balls travel that little bit farther - or maybe you just perform better when thousands of metres above the sea?

Coeur d’Elene Resort The Coeur d’Elene Resort, Idaho

Many golf courses are known for their treacherous water hazards, but the 14th hole at the Coeur d’Elene Resort is unlike anything you’ll have had to negotiate, as this hole has a floating green in the middle of 
Lake Coeur d’Elene.

The moveable floating island green is currently the only one of its kind in the world.
While getting on to the green may be difficult, at least you won’t be faced with a dilemma about whether you should take the easy or difficult route. Although landing your ball on the green might be tricky, you can get there yourself quite simply at least with a short boat ride. 

Le Touessrok, Mauritius

Imagine playing golf in the lush surroundings of a tropical island and you’ll begin to imagine what Le Touessrok is like. Just a couple of hundred metres out from Mauritius, the course is surrounded by crystal clear blue waters and an abundance of plant life. If there’s any course on earth where you’re going to be coaxed into enough of a tranquil, content state of happiness by your surrounding scenery that you’ll forgive yourself for missing a 2 foot-putt that ordinarily would send you into a club-throwing tantrum,  this would definitely have to be it.

 Tornio Golf Club, Finland/Sweden Tornio Golf Club Finland
Have you ever hit a ball so hard and so far that it raced into another time zone? Play a round at the Tornio Golf Club (which is officially in Finland) and you’ll be able to say you have. The course straddles the border of Finland and neighbouring Sweden allowing players to blast their ball back and forwards across time zones and national borders until they feel like Marty McFly himself. Now if you’re late getting back from the clubhouse, saying that you didn’t know what time it was will be a perfectly valid excuse.

 Uummannaq, Greenland
The World Ice Golf Championships have been held annually in Greenland since 1997, but only as long as conditions have 
been acceptable. After all, playing golf on this extreme landscape of Uummannaq is dangerous enough as it is. If you thought trying to contend with bunkers was difficult, perhaps you should consider how you’d cope with wind chill, or just how you’re supposed to land your ball on a green that is actually white.

Golfers that have been lucky enough to play a round on this unique course have claimed that the stunning scenery is more than enough to distract you from the freezing temperatures. 

Hans Merensky, South Africa

We end our world tour where we began in South Africa, at a course that borders Kruger National Park. While fantastic scenery is guaranteed you never know what wildlife you might see, so keep your eyes peeled for giraffes, hippos and rooibokkies. 

Where to next?

So there it is, the world tour with a difference. While golf has long been thought of as a traditional and conservative game, as it becomes more mainstream and more golfers look for unique experiences, it’s likely that the number of courses offering something novel will increase. One course attempting to push the boundaries to a new, debatably insane level is the incredibly bizarre new course under construction at Mission Hills in China.

Most simply described as a giant crazy golf experience, the course aims to bring the novel charm of crazy golf with its colourful, zany obstacles to life in the form of a full 18 hole course. With proposed hole themes including a floating green in a giant bowl of soup (complete with huge noodles and chopsticks!), one hole utilising the Great Wall of China as a hazard and one with a fairway straight through some Mayan Ruins, the Mission Hills course certainly sounds like one to keep an eye on!

Mission Hills Golf "Noodles" Hole

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Big Break Mexico Golf Channel Premiere...Arriba!

2013-05-13 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

For golf fans who simply cannot live without watching a season of Big Break, the wait is finally over. The new season of BB hails from IBEROSTAR Playa Paraiso Golf and Spa Resort in Riviera Maya, Mexico with a GQ factor of 10-plus. Will a budding Tiger Woods or Annika Sorenstam emerge from this group?

All of the personalities on Big Break this season are "lookers" with game-faces in position and resumes which almost rival rookie tour players. Early on in this show's history, Big Break offered a chance to golfers who were good amateurs with a strong game who wanted to go pro but, as I went over the bios of these young stars, many have already "been-there, done-that"...

...and BB is here to offer up a slew of prizes as well as to advance them to that next rung on the ladder of success, namely, a gig to play a pro tour event. A female winner gets invited to the 2013 Lorena Ochoa Invitational Presented by Banamex and Jalisco and, if a male wins Big Break, expect to see him competing at the Mayakoba Classic.

Many of the competitiors come with tournament experience:

Stefanie Kenoyer who, at twenty-four year old, is a full-time competitor on the Symetra Tour. McKenzie Jackson had four top-tens on the 2012 Cactus Tour.

Liebelei Lawrence who was a two-year member of the Ladies European Tour and who tied for 27th position at the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters Tournament.

Each of these golfers has an "impressive golf resume" as opposed to season 2003 Big Break participants who were chosen by open audition with prerequisities of a "scratch" handicap and demonstrative proficiency with various types of shots.

Personality, of course, also had to be "engaging" to the viewer as Jay Kossoff, 2003 Senior Producer of Golf Channel, once said, "positively or negatively"... which still applies for all television shows. And yes, a good story still sells; Jason Seymour's story should bring a tear to your eye.

That being said, take a gander at the cast of Golf Channel's Big Break Mexico and make sure you tweet your thoughts during the season using the hashtag #BigBreak to @Golf4Beginners.

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How I Got My Kids to Love Golf

2013-05-07 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Is it really that difficult to get your kids to try...and love...golf? In a Golf Digest article, Johnny Miller  said that the most important thing you can do to get your kids involved, and remaining in the sport, is "unadulterated praise. When your 7-year-old hits a good shot, say "Great shot!" When he hits a bad shot, exclaim, "Great swing!"

Bob Rotella mentioned that you shouldn't necessarily teach the child but instead, let the kid teach you! Most importantly, Mr. Rotella explained that, "the best thing you can do is show your kids what a great time you're having. If they see you having a wonderful time, then chances are they'll have a good time, too."

Make golf fun for kids and in turn, they will want to see what all of the excitement is all about!

David Bryce, a contributing writer to Golf for Beginners, has decided upon five points he believes necessary to engage and encourage children in the sport so that they find it a positive experience.



David Bryce is an online publisher for Thousand Hills Golf Resort in Branson, MO. He blogs on the topics of golf, travel, and vacations.

It wasn’t as hard to do as one might think.  In fact, it wasn’t difficult at all.  I’ll tell you the secret right now.  It was all about the environment.  In short, it was positive and fun.  I let the kids like it on their own terms and not mine.  While each experience with undoubtedly by different and unique, there are things that can be done to help foster a love of the game.
Start young.  I hear this regularly from many other parents and pros.  Starting young will help them develop skills as a young mind is a sponge ready to soak up information.  Granted, introducing a young child to golf takes patience, it can prove to be well worth it.  With a young child, say three, four, or five years old, the best thing you can do is give them a golf club (preferably one more their size) and a ball to hit around the backyard. 

Avoid the TV.  At first, anyway.  I mean this twofold.  This is a point a few of my friends like to argue with me on.  While I’m sure there are a few kids really enjoy to watch golf, it’s generally after they have a grasp of what’s going on.  The best way to get that grasp and understand of the game is to play it firsthand.    My second point is video gaming.  There are a few golf games out there and even fewer that are genuinely good.  You can’t learn to play with a controller, even if it is motion sensitive.  In my experience, due to the simplicity of the gameplay, the games can give a false impression of the game both in terms of physical environment and personal ability, especially when you’re trying to learn the game in the real world.  These games lack weight, gravity, and in many cases, a sense of reality.
Once a child has a grasp of the game, then yes, it’s a good idea to watch professional matches on TV (and in person, if possible).  They can see how these players interact with the course, how they hit the ball and how they concentrate, plus they’ll probably land on a player who they’ll idolize and want to emulate, and emulation is an excellent learning tool.
Get out and play.  Go to a practice green or a driving range, or both.  When you’re there, focus on showing and not telling.  Let them observe you and others, then let them have at it, in fact, the soon they’re swinging the golf club, the better, since watching someone else enjoy something is exceptionally boring.  They’re not going to be perfect on the first, second, or twenty-fifth swing, but they’ll gradually improve.  Your goal is to let them discover the love of the game for themselves, so take a step back (which, when they’re swinging, you and everyone else should be a few steps back).  Nothing is more satisfying than the feeling of the head of the club comes into contact with the ball and that ball is sent soaring.  Kids learn that one fast.

Work on form.  Once kids have a feel for absolute basics, you’ll likely have to intervene a bit to work on their form.  Yes, you can get a golf pro or register them for classes, but it’s good to start off with a familiar.  However, this is where observing pros play can be beneficial.  Emulation is great for working on form.  Kids will likely need assistance getting into various forms, but don’t let yourself become a rusty pair of training wheels.  Again, focus on fun. 
Hit the golf course.  Take them to a municipal or similar course where their talents won’t be judged and the patrons are more likely to have more patience.  Let them play golf on their own terms, but encourage them to use the skills they have picked along the way.  They’ll quickly discover the more they use those skills and the better their form is, the better their performance will be.  Have a fun time, cheer them on and shower them with praise when hit a good shot. 
Want to read more by David Bryce? Read: Should Golfers Have to Pass an Etiquette Test?
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photo credit: GolfDigest.com, Clearly Sports

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How to Get the Most Out of Summer Golf Camps for Kids

2013-04-29 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

The following guest golf blog was submitted by Danie Steyn about how kids can get the most out of summer golf camps. These summer camps, in my opinion, can provide positive reinforcement, improve upon the basics and, perhaps, even offer friendships that last a lifetime to all skill levels from golf beginners to amateur players.

Have you sent your kids to summer camp? Feel free to comment below and thanks to Danie for this informative article!

Written By Danie Steyn

When choosing a summer sports camp, it's always best to know how to prepare yourself for the activities ahead. I’m Danie Steyn, a golf pro at JKCP’s Julian Krinsky Camps; Programs Golf Camp, and I have some golf tips to help you plan for camp.

We have both beginner level students and those who consider themselves serious and dedicated golfers. For beginners, we'd encourage you to prepare by reading as much as you can about the game of golf and its etiquette. Also watch some golf on TV to visually enhance your approach before you spend your summer playing on the course with pros at a golf camp.
To fully maximize your time at any youth golf camp, especially if you only come for one week, one simple idea every golfer can use is to bring a notebook. 
There will be a ton of learning of drills and practices that you can write down to practice over and over on your own.
If you have a smartphone, being able to record video of correct form, and audio recordings of drills and practices would put you well ahead of your peers. 
Gathering notes, visuals and audio for later use is the best way to learn, especially if you continue to practice what you've learned at camp. 

Keep in mind you'll be learning the basic fundamentals of golf: golf swing instruction (backswing, downswing, follow through), putting, chipping, driving and all the necessary skills to make you proficient on the green. 
More advanced golfers will be refining those techniques. Beyond the skills on the green, you’ll be learning the rules and regulations including golf etiquette of how to play on the green, around the bunkers and more. At many camps like JKCP, golfers are paired with others at their same skill level.

We always get questions about the specific golf gear and equipment needed. The golf courses at JKCP require certain attire that includes: collared shirt and knee high shorts with trainers or golf shoes. 
We highly suggest bringing sunscreen, a hat, golf tees, an umbrella, at least one golf glove and definitely bring golf balls. JKCP Golf can provide you some golf clubs, but if you have your own that's a huge plus! You will not need too many clubs as long as you have your Driver, Fairway Wood, Long Iron, Mid Iron, Short Iron or Wedge and Putter, you'll be fine.
Our camp has weekly tournaments on Fridays that help you to gain tournament skills. You'll have fun playing the course and meeting golfers from all around the world that lead to friendships that will last beyond the green. That sums up the fun and excitement of what you can expect by attending JKCP's Golf Camp.
This Summer you can learn the basics of Golf with JKCP's Golf Programs. You'll be able to play on several courses in the Philadelphia, PA area, which is home of the 2013 U.S. Open. You'll leave JKCP with a more well rounded approach to golf.
Bio: Danie Steyn
Danie Steyn has competed in golf tournaments all over the world and also teaches Golf as a Pro with JKCP. Danie Steyn is a South African born, professional golfer. Playing on the Alp and Pepsi tour. Captain of the Southern Free State provincial team. Seven holes-in-one.
Here is Danie Steyn recording a very difficult "backwards" golf shot. Enjoy!

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Is Golf The New Bad Boy Sport?

2013-04-26 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Remember when bad-boy behavior was unacceptable in golf and high moral standards separated golf from the rest of the sports world? Throwing a golf club, obscene language or spitting into the cup (Sergio) just wasn't tolerated.

Support for Tiger Woods seems to be back on the "Pro" side now that he has a few golf tournament wins under his belt but does "Winning (Really) Take Care of Everything"? Does Nike hope that revealing a bit of "naughty" along with his wins in their marketing strategy will get Woods' problems out into the open and actually expel them from his life?

By now you've seen Tiger Woods sassing it up with Rory McIlory, rumbling with Arnold Palmer and you've most likely read about the new found happiness shared with Lindsey Vonn but is the new Tiger Woods image brand-build working...are you liking Tiger Woods again?

In the case of Tiger Woods, and with other athletes who have suffered problematic situations (think Kobe Bryant), advertisers take a few steps back, wait for a rebound, an apology to fans perhaps and watch for the sports celebrity's new lease on life...and all is forgiven in the advertising and branding space.

In a recent TMZ.com poll, almost 75,000 fans were asked if "Winning Cures All" and fifty-five percent said "YES!"

Lewis Blackwell "begs to differ", stating that "winning is never enough" and "it needs to be dirtied up a bit."

"You have to win brilliantly, or win dirty, or win tragically, win sexily," claims Blackwell, "or lose with style and a sob story. For heaven's sake, don't win normally and expect acclaim."

Fans now adore Woods cheering him on three-deep at golf events, a new lease on life is on the horizon, the great Arnold Palmer is sharing laughs and co-starring with TW in videos and Jack Nicklaus is defending Tiger's Masters decision and opening up once again about Woods ...not like before, when Tiger was, well...toxic,

"I've said it, and I continue to say it, that I still expect him to break my record." said Jack Nicklaus recently. "I think he's just too talented, too driven, and too focused on that."

Tiger Woods and Arnold Palmer share a laugh
Tiger Woods is just now beginning to rebuild his commercial life but does winning really cure all?

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Sharpen Your Game with 365 Easy Golf Tips from the Pros

2013-04-19 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Have you noticed that, after taking a golf lesson with your instructor, your game shows a marked improvement? Shortly after however, and without continued guidance, your game slowly reverts back to its original state. Most golfers don't have an instructor on the range or course during the entire season but now you can have great golf tips at your fingertips 365 days a year.

Illustrations and one-page tips from putting to sand play offered in the golf book "365 Golf Tips and Tricks From The Pros" by Jay Morelli are designed to simplify every area of your game with a suggestion per day ...playing without fear is my favorite.
This golf book rightfully opens with tips on the rules, segues into Golf Etiquette, takes you through course management, drills, the mental game and even offers help on purchasing the right type of equipment for your game.
Below are three golf tips I selected from the book (one tip each for beginner, intermediate and advanced golfer). For a read into the other 362 tips, click on the link at the end of this golf blog.

Dick Capasso, PGA Teaching Pro, Augusta Georgia
Many players get confused about where to play the ball in their stance for shots off the turf.

We have all heard conflicting advice on this subject. Each shot is a new experience and should be treated as such. The best place to place your ball is in the way of your swing. Try taking a few practice swings and pay attention to where the club nips the turf. That spot is where the ball should be played for that particular stroke.

Tip 179: PLAY WITHOUT FEAR, by Jay Morelli, Director of the Original Golf School, Mount Snow, Vermont Golfers are so often afraid of bad shots that they sometimes play timidly, making timid golf swings. You are much better off going ahead and making a committed and strong swing. Commit to the shot and don't even think about what not to do. A non-swing will never produce a good result.

Tip 269: COIL UP FOR POWER, by Sandra Jaskol, LPGA Teaching Pro, Old Westbury Golf & Country Club, Old Westbury, New York To get more power and distance, practice with a medium-sized rubber ball between your legs to feel the rotation of your upper body uncoiling above a stable, planted lower body. This springlike effect will keep you more centered over the ball while maximizing your coil with explosive power and speed.

If you expect your golf game to improve, you need a teaching pro. That being said, when your instructor isn't around and you require a brush up (even on the golf course), pull out your "365 Golf Tips and Tricks from the Pros" pocket-sized guide, thumb through it and you'll most likely find the answer to your questions.

About the Author: Jay Morelli is Director of The Original Golf School at Mount Snow, Vermont and Plantation Golf Resort in Florida. He has been teaching and improving golfers at all skill levels for more than 40 years. He founded the Original Golf School and the Accelerated Teaching Method in June 1978. Golf Digest voted him the top teaching pro in Vermont, and he has been named New England PGA Teacher of the Year. He has produced four major DVDs and written four books on golf.

Bruce Curtis has been at the forefront of photography for more than four decades. As a photographer for Time, Life, and Sports Illustrated, he has been on the frontlines as a photographer of many conflicts around the world. He has won more than 25 awards and provided photography for more than 40 books.

Learn more about 365 Golf Tips and Tricks from The Pros Photo credit courtesy of 365 Golf Tips and Tricks From The Pros
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Tiger Woods To Win The Masters? You Can Bet On It!

2013-04-05 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

There is no doubt that the latest US Masters odds has Tiger Woods as the heavy favorite to win but golf blogger skeptics don't necessarily agree.

Although an oddsmaker takes into consideration as many statistics as possible to create a point spread with an equal number of people poised to bet on either side of the line, there are still variables to take into consideration when it comes to betting on any contestant. 

In the case of Tiger Woods, for example, he comes in ready and eager to win The Masters with three victories under his belt so far this year. 

Woods is also very comfortable playing at Augusta, having won four green jackets at the same venue over the course of his career. 

Woods has won several tournaments over-and-over again because he was comfortable on that particular golf course.

Tiger Woods, Winner at The 2013 Masters? His 2013 statistics are impeccable: Woods is the FedEx Cup points lead, number-one in the World Golf Rankings and the overall event money winner. In my opinion, where Tiger Woods stats should be weighed and measured is in his putting prowess; Woods is number-one in strokes gained putting and, as most people know, solid putting is the key to winning in golf. Drive for show? Woods ranks 145th in driving accuracy but is it more important to drive for show or putt for dough?

On the flip side, Woods has not won a major in nearly five years with his last Masters win in 2005. Younger players are no longer daunted by his prowess on the fairways. He has showed chinks in his armor and is getting older to boot. Tiger's outbursts of anger don't help his game and, in my opinion, he could use an adjustment to his old laser focus.

Woods is not the only golfer to participate in the first major golf event of the year but, judging by the hype throughout the internet, you would think The Masters is a one-man show!

What are McIlroy and Mickelson's Masters chances? Rory McIlroy and Phil Mickelson are tied for second place by most oddsmakers, in the case of Paddy Power, outright odds for both stand at 11/1. 

Although Rory was a betting favorite in the 2013 Shell Houston Open, he cited a lack of events played as his reason for his inconsistency. "I need competitive golf and I need committing to targets." 

That being said, McIlroy has stumbled in his opening round at the Texas Valero Open, the primer to The Masters. If Rory does win this week,  the odds are still against him. 

Only two players have won the week before the Masters and then gone on to win at Augusta: Sandy Lyle in the Greater Greensboro Open in 1988 and Phil Mickelson in the BellSouth Classic in 2006.

Mickelson Odds are good but he's uncomfortable Is Phil Mickelson popularity still carrying him? With a single win under his belt and only one top-ten finish, Mickelson's 2013 record doesn't offer promise to any fan willing to take a gamble on Lefty. 

He's still a fan favorite, a three-time winner at Augusta and, with a new golf driver and his new claw grip on his putter, Mickelson is seeing a resurgence in his short game... but Phil is concerned about the week off prior to the Masters. "I'm not used to taking a week off before a major," Mickelson commented. "It's not my preference."

What about the rest of the Masters field? With an abundance of exceptional talent entered into this year's Masters Tournament, a bettor would be hard-pressed to easily determine the winner at Augusta. 

While power rankings suggest that the victor might come from the top three picks of Rory, Tiger or Phil, there are a number of "dark horses"  to consider; golfers who have made rumblings during the events they played in to be recognizable and favored. 

Last year's winner, Bubba Watson, is mostly visible due to his hovercraft golf cart, Keegan Bradley has a hot  belly putter and Justin Rose would certainly be solid choices for those fans who didn't want to go with the status quo. 

Stewart Cink, who currently ranks at 125/1, shared the lead at the Shell Houston Open and previous Masters winners, Vijay Singh (175/1) and Mike Weir (500/1) are also interesting selections for those who are considering picking their winner from long shots who have Masters wins under their belts.

Who is your pick to win The Masters? 
Voice your opinion on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and on our Facebook page.

photo credits: golfweekrankings.com, sbnation.com, golf for beginners

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Which Golf Drivers Are Best For Beginners?

2013-04-04 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

After trying some of the hottest drivers from the new Nike VR_S Covert to the latest Titleist 913D3 at the Westchester County Golf Show, it is apparent that these golf clubs were not necessarily created for golf beginners but for players who have had a bit of experience connecting with the ball (think Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy).

That being said, Golf for Beginners compiled a short list of drivers and golf clubs that are easier for beginners to feel confident about using on the golf course.

Although golf equipment guides throughout the internet rate the overall best golf drivers for 2013, which golf clubs should make its way into a beginners bag? Here are several choices newbies should consider before making this all-important purchase.

1. Although not a driver, the Callaway X Hot 3Deep Fairway Wood is a great alternative for golf beginners who are not quite ready for a driver but want the distance associated with it. Phil Mickelson wanted a club that was playable off the ground and easy to hit in lieu of a driver, hence the #3Deep was born. Watch for the Callaway X Hot 3Deep at The Masters inside Phil's bag.

2. The Ping G20 Driver is stable, has a low center of gravity and, as Golf Digest mentioned in a Hotlist review, "It exudes compassion...In a word, they’ve designed confidence." Confidence is just what a beginner needs!

The Ping G25 Driver, like it's G20 predecessor, is the new Ping entrant tested by Golf Magazine and is considered very forgiving and hits very straight.I tried it and liked the light weight. Some golfers (me included) noted that the head might be a little too large...and, with it's three-way adjustability feature, the G25 just might confuse beginners.

3. Cobra AMP Cell Drivers were rated easy-to-play on the golf course, super-accurate with impressive yardage. Some guys who tested it for Golf.com even thought that the color "encouraged proper alignment at address". Beginners... always remember to G.A.S.P. before hitting any shot...one of my beginner lessons.

This is, by no means, the definite beginners guide to the best golf drivers currently on the market, just suggestions meant to encourage newbies in a burgeoning market filled with golf clubs of all shapes, sizes and adjustments.

When searching for a driver, beginners should consider "game-improvement" drivers, the loft of the golf club giving thought to head size, grip, shaft length and flex. As a beginner, I would stay away from adjustable heads or any other adjustments (neutral, open face, etc), until you are more comfortable hitting the club and forge a better understanding of your game.

And yes, these clubs DO come in left-handed models!

Which golf drivers do you depend on? Voice your opinion on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and on our Facebook page.

Check out Which Golf Irons Are Best for Beginners?

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Is Tiger Woods Rory McIlroy's Pressure Relief Valve? #golf

2013-03-26 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

With a Monday weather-related finale at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Tiger Woods has once again become the number-one golfer in the world. Fans are joyful but players...not so much unless, of course, you're Rory McIlroy.

NBC Final Round notes from Bay Hill included a compelling quote from the cantankerous Johnny Miller about a possible improvement in Rory McIlroy's game after Woods' victory, "Maybe that will actually help Rory McIlroy by taking the heat off him being number one and set him free again."

So, although Tiger Woods may now be scaring the field once again, he might actually be putting McIlroy's mind at ease, allowing young Rory to sharpen his game and his new Nike VR golf clubs, from VR-S Covert driver to VR Pro Blade Irons.

McIlroy skipped Bay Hill this week, choosing a casual round at a local muni to butting heads with Woods. Perhaps Rory prefers building his confidence instead by playing the "lesser of two evils", Phil Mickelson, at the Shell Houston Open this week?

Although a fifth Masters is not assured for Tiger, Joe LaCava, Woods' caddie, says there is definitely "more confidence" in his short game and putting. Graeme McDowell seems to have put the entire Woods-McIlroy battle in perspective. â€œRory’s been No 1 for a while and having this kind of challenge will definitely gear him up. When you’ve achieved many of your goals, your motivations disappear and this will help him refocus.”

Voice your opinion on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and friend on Facebook.

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Golf Galaxy Brings You the Nike Covert Distance Challenge

2013-03-19 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Golf Galaxy has teamed up with Nike to bring golfers across the country the Nike Covert Distance Challenge. 
Every weekend (Friday through Sunday) in March, Nike gurus will be in-store to deliver club fittings. Golfers of all levels are invited to bring in their existing driver to test against the new Nike VR_S Covert Tour. 

Just by participating in a fitting, the golfer will be given a free sleeve of Nike 20XI golf balls. If the golfers make a Nike VR_S Covert purchase, they’ll receive a demo trial pack of 20XI, 20XI-X balls and RZN X balls (1 dozen total).
As I am not located near a Golf Galaxy, I, unfortunately, cannot take advantage of the Nike Covert Distance Challenge but I would love for you to post your thoughts and experiences about the new Covert and about Nike in general in our comments section below.
If you haven’t already tried the VR_S Covert, now is the best chance to try a driver that offers FlexLoft adjustability and unique high-speed cavity back technology—all backed by the one-on-one support of a Nike fitting guru.
Here is your chance to test the Covert at any Golf Galaxy location and take advantage of the expertise and, of course, the freebies. I’m not sure if you’re located close enough to a Golf Galaxy to participate in the challenge so here’s a list of all Golf Galaxy locations across the USA http://www.golfgalaxy.com/store_locator.aspx.

Voice your opinion on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and friend on Facebook.
With the Nike Covert Driver in your golf bag, you may be saying "Sorry" a lot more on the Course:

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What to Wear If You Are Playing in The Masters #golf

2013-03-15 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

With The Masters on the radar of sports and fashion enthusiasts worldwide, I received a note filled with "fashion picks" from Function 18, a UK-based golf apparel website which promises the same cutting edge look and performance as the professionals on Tour. That being said, here are Function 18's selection of who will be the most chic Masters golf apparel trendsetters.

With excitement now building for April’s Masters Tournament, we are taking a look at some of the most stylish players taking part in this year’s event with golf fashion experts “Function 18”. We’ve weighed up their golf swings and statistics, but which of this year’s players will win in the Masters Style stakes?

Ryo Ishikawa
Watch out for Japan’s Ryo Ishikawa at this year’s event, known for his bold and stylish outfit choices whilst gracing the greens. Although his style may not be everyone’s cup of tea, it’s a breath of fresh air to see this young player experimenting with colours and prints - we’re big fans of his signature red and white ensemble.

Bubba Watson
We are keen followers of Bubba Watson's exciting and aggressive style of play! At this year's Masters, having signed a new clothing contract with Oakley, we will see him with a variety of new looks to suit his playing style.
Function 18 stocks a wide range of Oakley clothing, including a range of items Bubba himself has been spotted in, including this great Oakley Fade Polo shirt from only £32.99.

Jason Day
The stylish young Australian is definitely a key player to watch in this year’s tournament; in fact it will be pretty hard to miss Jason Day on the Augusta fairways. Contracted to wear the bold and bright
Adidas Fashion Performance collection, we’re looking forward to seeing him wear some of the key pieces from the brand’s new spring / summer collection. 

Ian Poulter
Ian Poulter’s attitude to fashion is always fun and playful. He continues to wear his own IJP Design collection which focuses heavily on the tartan trousers, but his recent Puma shoe and belt deal has seen him showcase some of Puma’s bright, eye catching products. Past style choices have seen him team bright yellow puma golf shoes with green check trousers; we certainly have to commend him on his confidence! Function 18 has a great range of Puma and IJP Design products available if you want to try and re-create Ian Poulter’s eye catching look. And, be sure to check out his limited edition Masters Putter Cover.
Tiger Woods
Never one to disappoint in the Majors, Woods' look is always clean cut, fresh and modern. With young Rory McIlroy snapping at his heels, Tiger still remains a great style ambassador for Nike and his signature plain polo shirts and traditional neutral golf pants are an easy look for spectators to try themselves. Look out for red on the last day!

Rory McIlroy
Originally not one to stand out for his golf fashion, it will be interesting to see if McIlroy's new £120 million Nike sponsorship deal will give him a boost in the golfing style stakes. The Nike clubs don’t seem to be helping his game much but we have already seen him in some exciting brown/green colour combinations and we can’t wait to see more. (editor's note...with Rory McIlroy's game being compared to Tiger's at every tournament, now we can compare clothing too!)

The team at Function 18 are looking forward to the Big Masters Event in April and will be spotting the latest golf fashion trends to hit the greens in 2013. View all the latest spring / summer golf clothing for 2013 now online at

About Function 18 Function 18 are a specialist golf apparel website offering affordable, niche garments that will set you apart from the rest, both on and off the golf course.
Function 18 has over 10 years of experience buying designer golf clothing for our UK wide network of golfers. We are able to bring to you a collection of both golf and high street brands and promise you the cutting edge look and performance that the fashion conscious player demands.
Website: www.function18.co.uk      Email: info@function18.com Telephone: +44 (0) 1254 915664 Picture Credit: Function18.com has supplied the pictures for this golf blog.
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How The Donald Trumps Golf This Week

2013-03-07 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

This week both the WGC Cadillac Championships and The Puerto Rico Open are being hosted by the one and only resilient Donald Trump at two of his incredible golf courses: “The Blue Monster” at Doral and Trump International.

It is truly difficult, it seems, not to watch news of Donald Trump everywhere you look nowadays...

A Google Search finds him as popular a sight in the WWE (where he will be inducted into the Hall of Fame) to his recurring (and prolonged repetitive) show, The Apprentice.

This week, Trump does double-duty at two golf extravaganzas and, with it, invites almost all golfers with a tour card to “be his guest.” Okay, neither Doral nor Trump International are Disney-land but, to fans, they might as well be!

Two full field events with the top golfers in the world providing ample opportunities for birdies and bogeys,but (in my opinion) with the WGC Cadillac Championship getting the viewing edge as Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy go head-to-head once again.

Also, with news of The Donald’s plans to “blow-up” The Blue Monster in order to make it a “much more magnificent course” as Mr.Trump stated, will fans want to get in one last look for comparison’s sake?

Tale of the Tape: Trump International vs Doral Golf Resort’s Blue Monster via Twitter:
Current Posts about this week’s events at both Trump International Tweets and Doral Golf Resort’s Blue Monster show many more conversations about WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral than Tweets about Puerto Rico Open. Here is a sample:

Played the Blue Monster @doralresort ? Here’s a photo guide of what Tiger, Rory & co will be facing this week – on.fb.me/WWmJyK — Your Golf Travel (@yourgolftravel) March 7, 2013  

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How Match Play Golf Gives Old Man Par a Stroke

2013-03-01 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Is the art of Match Play lost on golfers in the U.S. or do we simply prefer every stroke to count?

In a recent GolfWeek article, Brits such as Ian Poulter prefer "the oldest form of golf" to stroke play because it boils down to "just me against the other guy rather than the rest of the field." Bubba Watson, on the other hand, believes that "it should be everybody gets up there and tries to shoot a score."

Even Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, after their first round departure from the WGC Accenture Match Play Championships, decided to "settle the score" in a match play format although the two games ended all square.

Amateurs should probably take a tip from Poulter, McIlroy and other golfers from across the pond and rotate a game of match play into their weekly foursomes. Where it is probable, at the end of a four-day professional tournament, that stroke play will ulitmately lead to the "best" player and score, the game is not necessarily all about score for amateurs. As Henrik Stenson said about match-play format, "It's very clear what you need to do...You just have to play better than your opponent."

Here are a few reasons to opt for a game of match-play golf instead of stroke play the next time you are out with your golf buddies:

1. There is a different psychological approach to Match-Play: 

* Less stressful throughout the game (until the end if you're dormie, for example).

* Seeing your score on the card in stroke format may cause you to count strokes instead of focusing on your shot.

2. Easier to score without having a scorecard.

3. Head-to-head competition versus playing for par.

4. A playing opponent can legitimately concede your putt.

5. Focuses your attention to the adventure of a single hole when standing on the tee box. Each hole becomes its own mini-game.

6. You can make match play more fun by adding a wager per hole (skins game).

Try Match-Play the next time you go out with your friends and leave Old Man Par in the Clubhouse!

As a postscript, in my opinion it is a shame that as of this article, the Sybase Match Play Championship will no longer be an event on the LPGA Tour.

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Should Golfers Have to Pass an Etiquette Test?

2013-02-22 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

A story found while searching Google News stated that nine out of ten greenskeepers believed that players should pass an etiquette test before playing golf. Ninety-one percent of players, as reported by Today's Golfer, leave a golf course in an "inappropriate state", from not repairing divots and ball marks to a basic lack of course management practices.

This lack of golf course etiquette translates even further to a lack of courtesy within the social structure of the group affecting both the spirit and integrity of the game.

This timely article sent to me (below) struck a nerve at the heart of golf courses and players worldwide. It is with pleasure that I use it as a Spring reminder as a new season of golf is in the air. Enjoy!

David Bryce is an online publisher for Golf in Branson, MO at Thousand Hills. He blogs on the topics of golf, travel, and vacations and enjoys staying at Thousand Hills cabins in Branson. Thanks to David for submitting this fundamental guide to golf etiquette.
Picture a football game, a soccer match, a tennis match up or even basketball tournament.  What do all of these sports have in common besides extremely impassioned fans? All of these sports make use of some kind of referee.  Golf, while still just as much of a sport as the previously mentioned entries, has long gone without the direct oversight of a referee.  This is because the game of golf lends itself heavily from the idea of the individual holding themselves accountable for their actions, adherence to the rules and yes, how they treat others before, during and after the game.

Vigilant of Others

Before you tee-off, golf better practices would be to take a moment to look around to make sure that you won’t be obstructing anyone else’s game.  Look ahead to make sure no one is in front of you and in the same manner of thinking, be aware of the golfers behind you.  Tee times are often flexible on courses, but spending too much time on one hole can disrupt a whole day of careful planning.

Mind the Noise

I always like to equate the golf green to the inside of a library.  It has become common courtesy over the years to be as quiet as possible while playing your round.  At approach, golfer’s require an immense amount of concentration and focus before they take their shot.  Being distracted by loud talking, yelling or laughing can throw off someone’s swing and perhaps lead to a stern talking to from course managers. Also (from GFB), either set your cellphone to vibrate or just plain turn it off!

Smooth the Sand

Launching your golf ball into a sand trap is just a natural part of the game;  frustrating indeed, but that is what they are there for.  After you take your chip shot, make use of those tiny rakes that are situated around the bunker and smooth out the irregularities you’ve made with your swing and steps as your approached it.  It’s common courtesy to leave the sand in the same condition that you found it.

Fill Your Divots

Repairing your divots after a shot is synonymous with good golf etiquette.  No golfer wants to be playing a hole only to find themselves tripping and stumbling over someone else’s mess they failed to clean up.
After you take your shot, take the few moments necessary to find your divot and then, replace it.  A lot of work goes into the design and maintenance of a golf course.  Do you part to keep the course you play on looking great for your future games and the future games of others.

The Player’s Line

The player line is a golf term that signifies the imaginary line between the player’s ball and the hole.  If you are on the green and notice that your ball might be in the way of another player’s ball, take a moment to switch it out with a coin or a ball marker as not to get in the way of their game.  When the way looks clear, go ahead and replace the marker with your ball and proceed with your game.  The rule holds true for shots taken on the putting green and on the rest of the course.  Be courteous to and vigilant of those around you!

One final note from Golf for Beginners: Be sure to yell FORE if your golf ball is heading towards another group of golfers!  Read more golf tips: USGA: Golf Etiquette 101

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Photo Credit: The Girl Next Door Drinks and Swears: FORE!,  Bleacher Report
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Would You Sport This Putter Cover on the Golf Course?

2013-02-19 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

When golf fans deliberate about The Masters, it's usually with an eye on statistics but how many times is the term "fashion statement" used?

From Tiger Woods' golf clothes to Esquire's Best and Worst Dressed at The Masters list, style has become almost as important as the game. Yes, The Masters Green Jacket is safe from both remodel and extinction but designers have decided that, since the jacket remains green, maybe an azalea pattern is needed to go with it?

Rickie Fowler sports neon, Phil Mickelson looks groovy his now regular pinstripe attire, Tiger Woods' red shirts make a statement on Sunday and the ever vivacious Ian Poulter with his brightly striped plaid pants...is, well, always a fashion statement...with an exclamation point! Golf course fashion is becoming de rigueur and accessories from belts to shoes are now par for the course.

Poulter's company, IJP Designs, has decided that, in addition to his clothes looking ever so fashionable, so should the accessories, hence his newly created Azalea Jacket Limited Edition Putter Cover (see below). Blade and mallet styles will be available in limited supplies.

IJP Designs has created three additional putter covers to mark all four major tournaments. Wonder what we'll see for the U.S. Open?

What do you think? Is this putter cover something you would sport on the golf course?

Voice your opinion on Twitter @Golf4Beginners and on Facebook.

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IBM Gets Social. Join In! #MySmarterCommerce

2013-02-14 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

My readers may already be familiar with my personal and professional progression as it relates to golf and the internet; how my blog and Golf for Beginners brand has evolved over ten years through the use of social media and collaboration.


It is because of my social media presence that I have been asked by IBM to partner with them on their new Smarter Commerce Campaign, becoming one of the "faces" of this new technology platform and helping them to define what smarter commerce means to me and you.





This month I have been requested to share my consumer-centric story with you, my audience, through social media channels like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and through this blog using the hashtag #MYSMARTERCOMMERCE.


This means, if I tag a post, blog or picture with the hashtag #MySmarterCommerce, it is so that I can share how my life has been impacted by technology, society or maybe it's just something that I happened upon in my daily grind. I hope that, when you see me using this hashtag, you will consider continuing the conversation with me and let me know how something you saw or did during your day has changed the way you do business!


Throughout February, IBM will have a running feed highlighting all tweets with the hashtag #MySmarterCommerce and, at the end of the month, all content created will be compiled into one social story.


Here are a few of the social channels I'll be utilizing:

Twitter: Golf4Beginners

Facebook: Stacy Solomon

Pinterest: Ask to join the board I created and post freely - #MySmarterCommerce


How does technology play a role in our lives?

How do we network and grow both personally and as connected consumers?

Do we know what other businesses think about our brand?

To tell you the truth, even I don't know where this is going yet but...I'm sure to enjoy the ride!


I hope that, as I help IBM define what smarter commerce means to me, in turn, I'll learn more about your personal stories of brand building and how social media, digital and mobile technology has helped you grow both personally and on a professional level.


I will be sharing a 'day in my life' with you to create a "think-tank" of sorts and I invite you today to take this journey with me.


An Introduction to IBM Smarter Commerce:



#spon: I have been invited by IBM to share my honest thoughts and experiences around Smarter Commerce, and as part of this collaboration, IBM may provide me with product, access, content or other forms of remuneration. All opinions are expressly my own.

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Is Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson or Vijay Singh Biggest Story to Kickstart Golf Season?

2013-02-07 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Although the 2013 golf season has just begun, several stories are already making headlines, from Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson wins to Vijay Singh's steroid use. Which story do golf fans really want to hear about?

Unable to dial into the Golf Channel Media Conference Call yesterday, I was sent the transcript which started off with a very interesting question, namely, "what has been the most significant thing to kickstart the golf season and why?" Three experts that appear on Morning Drive were at hand to answer questions.

Unfortunately for golf...and for Vijay Singh, the World Golf Hall of Famer was on the tip of the tongues of all three respondents;  Gary Williams, John Cook and Brandel Chamblee, but it was Williams who mentioned that, with Singh's admission, that this is now a PGA Tour issue which means this could lead to suspension...not very good for Vijay who turns fifty this year.

As for recent victories by Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, yes they are significant but, with the season just beginning, there's plenty of golf left to be played with fresh faces like Bill Haas and Nick Watney popping up each week near the top of the leaderboard or in the winners circle.

"The fact that we've got them both (Woods, Mickelson) winning in the first five weeks of the year makes really the next several weeks leading into Match Play and beyond very exciting for all of us," mentioned Williams.

John Cook stated that, in addition to the stories of the tried and true golfers, younger U.S. players winning early in the golf season is reason to rejoice but Chamblee was quick to disagree commenting that "as long as Tiger Woods is playing golf, he'll hold our interest far above anything else."
Do you agree that, as long as Tiger Woods is in the field and once again a winner that he will be the most talked about news item this year on the PGA Tour? Will fans stay tuned to golf if Woods falters and his season becomes a non-event?
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Top Five Environmentally Friendly Golf Course Repurposes

2013-02-01 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

In honor of the PGA Tour Waste Management Phoenix Open tournament, Golf for Beginners has found this offbeat, environmentally friendly list of Golf Course Repurposes from RepurposedMaterialsInc.com, a company that re-uses industry waste and byproducts to be used in a completely different industry.  Enjoy!


Top Five Golf Course Repurposes:


1.      Advertising Billboards repurposed as Tarps for Equipment, Pond Liners, etc.

2.      Beverage Filter Cloths repurposed as Lawn Tarps for Pruning Waste

3.      Swimming Pool Covers repurposed as Sun Shade Screens

4.      Street Sweeper Brushes repurposed as Turf Rollers

5.      Conveyor Belting repurposed as Golf Cart Path  



See many more fun economically and environmentally-friendly ideas and materials for golf course and more at www.repurposedmaterialsinc.com.


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Tiger Woods Shows Fashion Forward Golf Style from Torrey Pines to the Masters

2013-01-29 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Did you happen to notice that Tiger Woods was not wearing red when he began his fourth round at Torrey Pines? If so, you are not alone. Golf Channel, fans and even Tiger commented on the fact that his signature red golf shirt would be worn during the last day of the event.

Why is Tiger Woods' golf clothing so important? Who would have ever thought that golf clothing could be fashion forward? A few years ago, golf clothing consisted of plaid pants and mismatched shirts. With Tiger Woods and the young guns entering the sport, all this has changed.

Aside from the red, Tiger Woods has become a fashion statement in the world of golf and fans are intrigued by everything Woods; his golf equipment, clothing style, shoes and accessories make Tiger Woods a walking GQ model for golf and for the fashion industry.

To be sure, Tiger Woods' win number seventy-five at Torrey Pines is significant; he is second in overall wins to only the great Sam Snead and this win this could very well be the return of a 'raring-to-go' Tiger 2.0, ready to break records again and renew the faith of his fans.

With the 2013 Masters Tournament comes much speculation as to who will win at Augusta (yes, it's starting now!) and, even though we don't have odds (Tiger as favorite?), at least we will have the inside scoop as to what Tiger Woods will be wearing each day of the event.

Owner of OnlyGolfApparel.com, Doug Janchik, gave Golf for Beginners the 'heads-up' on Tiger Woods' Masters Collection and yes, you too can look GQ like Woods!


Thanks to Guest Golf Blogger, Doug Janchik:

Feast your eyes on what Tiger Woods will certainly be wearing for the “The Masters” in 2013.
Our team provides you with the most current products from the PGA Tour prior to it’s launch to the general public.  Tiger Woods, winner of five Masters Tournaments, will be decorated with his own label from Nike Golf Apparel through the second week of April. Let’s take a look at this striking, unique collection.

·        Thursday –TW Jacquard Polo has a self fabric collar, three button placket and weighs in at a remarkably light 7.oz. It is made from 91% Polyester and 9% SpandexThe hue is known as “Night Stadium.”  The TW pant is Ultralight at 5.5oz. 95% polyester and 5% spandex with a v-notch hemAnd let’s not forget the latest TW 13 shoes this season. Tiger himself was key when developing this unique footwearHe requested a shoe that he could actually wear on as well as off the golf course. This was the crossover of Nike FREE technology into golf shoes.
·         Friday – TW Modern color block polo has a self fabric collar, two button placket and a pique body.  It is made out of 87% polyester and 13% spandex.  The hue is white with a dandelion color block that graces the collar and side of the polo.  Tiger Woods' pants for this day are still TW Ultralight’s but in a squadron blue color.  He will also sport his high performance shoe but in white.
·         Saturday – Friday – TW Modern color block polo has a self fabric collar, two button placket and a pique bodyIt is made out of 87% polyester and 13% spandexThe hue is white with a dandelion color block that graces the collar and side of the poloTiger's pants for this day are still TW Ultralight’s however in a squadron blue colorHe will additionally sport his high performance shoe but in white. 
·         Sunday – Sunday – On Sunday Tiger Woods will pounce with his unique TW Trajectory Polo (optimistically in the last group) in his renowned “red” color. This golf shirt has a self fabric collar, plain slit packet and is 88% polyester and 12% Spandex. This is the wardrobe which has won him fourteen Major Championships.
 The Tiger Woods golf collection can be found at onlygolfapparel.com.

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@ATT Nokia Lumia 920 Opens Windows to the World of Golf #GiftMoneyCantBuy #SPON

2013-01-24 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

A few weeks ago I wrote about an ATT promotion, "A Gift That Money Can't Buy", which is a website where teens can give something to their parents that they might want, and, in turn, hint at something cool for themselves...namely the new Nokia Lumia 920 smartphone running Windows 8 platform.



I am now the proud possessor of my very own Nokia Lumia 920 and have been using it for a couple of weeks. Here is why I like the new Lumia 920 and some of the cool things I can do with it...so far!


When ATT first introduced the Nokia Lumia 920 Smartphone, I must admit, I was one of the first people to run to the Windows store in the Westchester Mall in order to catch a glimpse of it. I'm a techie (the Bronx Science in me still remains) and the Lumia doesn't disappoint, from the slim fit in my pocket (just the right weight, yet not heavy) right down to the large 4.5 inch screen.


In my last post I mentioned how smooth and quick the Nokia Lumia 920 flies through the tasks I assign it but now, I can add that it loads apps and opens them lickety-split.


Since I am a golf fanatic, the first thing I did was load up a few apps. I use Mobitee, for example, as my GPS Golf Rangefinder: it loaded effortlessly. Gaming features like the X-Box Live Hub work great (if you are an X-Box fan like I am). The Nokia City Lens is a very interesting concept as well, helping to find local establishments using the phone's camera display.


Nokia City Lens on Windows 8


The Nokia Lumia 920 also gives you a few free business downloads like Skydrive storage for documents and Microsoft Office, a must for smartphones nowadays!


All-in-all, I am very satisfied with the Nokia Lumia 920. I just sent my husband his top-secret golf tip from Keegan Bradley who mentions that his golf ball is the "coolest guy in town"  What did he mean by that? Go to the A Gift Money Cant Buy website and send Bradley's golf tip to your special someone today!



Disclosure statement: M80 has contacted Golf for Beginners to write a blog post on behalf of AT&T.  Golf for Beginners is receiving free products as compensation in exchange for participation and is being compensated per FTC guidelines. http://ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedend  #SPON



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Golf Tips To Help With Your Long Putts

2013-01-22 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Guest columnist and Director of Golf Instruction at the beautifully elegant Club at Mediterra, Adam Bazalgette, shares with readers of the Golf for Beginners blog why lag putting is the secret to a low handicap.

Long putting, or lag putting as it is often called, is a key to good scoring in golf.
 On the PGA Tour, the players make an average of just fifty percent of their putts from eight feet, which means that the everyday golfer will do well to make fifty percent of their six-foot putts! The current strokes-gained putting leader? Bryce Molder! These may seem like low averages, but there is a lot that can go wrong on a short putt; spike marks and other imperfections on the green, a slight misread, a lip out, etc.

When putting from, say, more than twenty-five feet, you will find it is very easy to misjudge the distance by six feet or more, whereas it is unlikely that you will miss left or right by more than a couple of feet. This is why distance control is so important.

 The two biggest components in good distance control are good visualization, or green reading, and proper rhythm in the stroke. Both require practice to become reliable.

Simply watching a lot of putts roll (practice) will help you read greens and become a good visualizer of putts. A test of your visualization skills is that once a long putt is a third of the way to the hole you should be able to estimate pretty accurately whether it is going long, short, or about the right distance.
Only when a golfer can fairly accurately see the ball rolling in their mind at the correct speed across the green BEFORE they step over the putt can they expect to be able to feel the desired stroke.

Regarding rhythm, there are a few objectives to understand:
In a pendulum, the length of the backstroke and through stroke are the same; this is due to gravity. It is also true that in a pendulum maximum speed is reached at the very bottom of the arc. However, most people don't realize that at the bottom of the arc there is NO acceleration, it has reached maximum speed.
The middle of the arc is, therefore, right where we want to make contact with the golf ball in our stroke, the point with the most speed and the least "Hit" or acceleration. I strongly recommend that you practice this at times without aiming at a hole, just focusing on your motion.

A great drill is to place two tees in the green, say three feet apart (vary this drill), and hit some putts placing the ball right in between the tees, and slightly to the side of them in order to allow you to hit a putt. Don't over-control the putter with your hands, but feel the pendulum rhythm of your stroke until the putter head goes evenly from tee to tee and you can roll several balls the same distance. Once this becomes natural you are on your way to better putting!
One final point, the time each stroke takes (think of a metronome) should always be the same. This means that the putter will have to be swung faster throughout the motion (not just in the forward swing) on longer putts than shorter putts. The rhythm, such as tick-tock, will then always be a constant.
Best of luck with this...now go practice!

 About the Author: 

Adam Bazalgette grew up in London, England, where he took up golf. He has been teaching golf full-time since 1992.  
Adam worked for David Leadbetter in Orlando and in 1994 was promoted to the Academy Director at the Leadbetter’s Naples facility.  

Adam currently is the director of golf instruction at The Club at Mediterra in Naples Florida and has held this position for the last six years.  Make sure to visit his site at http://adambgolf.com for private lessons if your going to be in the Naples Florida area!

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Office on the Green - Why Businessmen Love Golf

2013-01-18 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Guest golf blogger Colin Knight is an avid golfer and traveller.  Having played all over the world, he now enjoys a quieter life working with Belmont Lodge in Herefordshire, England. 
Here is Colin's take on why businessmen love golf and unwritten rules which can broker business deals.
Golf has a strange audience compared with other sports like cricket, for example. Unless you're an avid golfer, then you would likely find it hard to understand what the attraction is and why so many business deals are signed and sealed on the golf course. 
Two businessmen playing racket-sports, knocking a tennis ball back and forth to each other, may seal a deal afterwards but, with golf, deals are completed and finalized during the game.
A round of golf can take approximately four hours, which we all know is much longer than would be normal if there weren’t other goings on.  The majority of a golf game is walking, planning and yes, talking. Golfers like to show their prowess on the course and for some reason, it can broker business deals.

It is almost an unwritten rule, that a good player (with a solid golf swing) will have an astute and charismatic business mind. Perhaps the rules of golf, which are so law-abiding and strict, has something to do with this idea. Golf is a game of precision and integrity. It has finesse and flair from the clothing to the game itself, and it also has an element of mutual honesty: being a great golf opponent means having to trust and be honest with your most bitter of rivals. 
The golf "fraternity" appear on many boards of global corporations. Golf requires a certain coolness and stridency under extreme pressure. To an unskilled eye, golf looks terribly boring. Hitting a ball, walking to it, hitting it again and then more walking, it must, let's face it, look a bit daft and a waste of time. 

However, to the golfer and their colleagues, it is a huge affair with many Friday afternoons spent finalizing the week on a course. Some companies offer golf membership as part of a remuneration package and it’s almost compulsory to play the game at higher levels. Interviews have been completed on golf courses, although beating the CEO of a company you are trying to impress may not be one of your finest moments. That said, you would be admired. 

Perspective clients are tempted out onto the golf course to put together a plan of action. Sales and marketing managers, who have to be connected to the world in their fast-paced jobs, may balk at the idea of being disconnected from the world for hours, but a game of golf and the bonding that seems to follow is surely a more direct way of interaction than an impersonal tweet or email.

While a group of builders may not understand golfers completing deals on the course and make fun of 'girly golfers in colored trousers’ and ‘pen-pushers should get a real job' they will never have what two opponents and friends in business have on a golf course. It truly is all hearts and flowers bonding and there are few finer ways of securing a deal than on a golf course.

Thanks again to Colin Knight from Belmont Lodge in Herefordshire, England! Learn more about Belmont Lodge on Twitter and Facebook.
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Which Golf Irons are Best for Beginners?

2013-01-15 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Outside of participants who enjoy the sport, many simply don't understand the inherent pleasure in playing golf with friends, enjoying a serene nature-filled atmosphere and the feelings conjured up when you hit a 'perfect' shot. This week, guest writer Angela Halpert offers Golf for Beginners readers a look into her ongoing quest to find the perfect golf irons to improve a beginners' golf game.


GFB wishes to remind golfers that it's the Indian, not the arrow, that makes for a good golf game, but... the right set of clubs and proper instruction work wonders!



Beginners might ask the question, “Well even if I wanted to start, how would I do that?” We all know how confusing it is when, at first, we looked at people playing golf and wondered why they needed so many clubs and deliberated on the differences between them, right? 


Here are a few golf irons which I tried out: will a new set will find a place in my bag? Whether it be a new set of Adams Golf, Callaway or just sticking to what is already in my bag, I'm personally looking forward to a new season playing with my golf buddies!


The Adams Idea CMB Irons

"...the most playable player's irons?"


A fine-tuned instrument of golf, these irons were quite impressive to me when I saw them and had a chance to try them out. One can see that Adams lovingly crafted them with the intention of perfecting already existing designs through the implementation of materials meant for fine-tuning golf club performance.


When it comes to looks CMB Irons will definitely impress you with their sleek look and chrome hues. Looks, however, tell only half of the story since the real magic begins inside the construction of the iron itself.


The fine CMB body is forged from carbon steel with a very nice strategically placed tungsten inserts which balance the center of gravity in such a way that it allows exceptional precision. I'm usually not one to praise products much but these irons felt very nice and helped prevent twisting just like it was designed to do.


I have to admit that, after trying these Adams irons, my accuracy was much better with the shorter clubs but that is to be expected since everyone has minor differences in how they handle hitting. My overall opinion is that the CMB's are a great set of irons which offer exactly what the company intended them to be. I've been using the CB3 for a while now, once again an Adams design, and I pretty happy with mine so far.


Callaway Golf Diablo Forged Irons



Much like the CMB irons, these Callaway Diablos are also forged and a few of my friends are using them which sparked my curiosity. Jokingly, a coworker of mine decided to swap our sets for a game!


The difference for me was that the Diablo hit even lower when I handled them and, to me, that was a bit strange. I have to admit, though, that if I would choose another set, these would be a very nice choice ... if you can get past the uniflex shaft that never felt right to me, but that could be just a personal preference since I've always loved to swing fast.


Diablos are easy to use and pretty durable which was nice. One thing to keep in mind is that they are currently cheaper than the CMB and they make an excellent tool even for golof beginners because of their flexibility.


My overall opinion of the Callaway and Adams Golf irons sets are that both impressed me. I have to admit I have been a fan of the products offered by Adams for a long time now but that shouldn't be taken as if I am marketing them.


Everyone has personal preferences since we all have our own quirks when we play, different stances and varying levels of skill. These clubs are just the types I liked out of what I've tried so far in my life as a casual golfer. There are plenty of companies out there offering good equivalents to those such as Ben Hogan, Cobra, Dunlop, Hippo and so on. Just take your pick and remember to enjoy yourself out there.


Which irons do you play and what makes them special for you?


Guest post by A. Harpert - a passionate traveler, golfer and adventurer by hobby. She's a real expert at finding the most appropriate holiday rental condos for your long anticipated vacation.


photo credit: frgolfonline.com


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How @ATT (and your teen) Can Give You A #GiftMoneyCantBuy Golf Tip from Keegan Bradley!

2013-01-10 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

To start the New Year off right, AT&T is running  the “A Gift That Money Can't Buy" website, a site that allows teens to give their parent a one-of-a-kind digital gift. The site also nudges the recipient in the right direction of what to get for their kids, which is …hint hint, the latest and greatest AT&T smartphone – specifically a Nokia Lumia 920.


So parents get a cool gift and so do their kids!


 Check out these great gifts available on the GiftMoneyCantBuy Website:

- A top secret golf tip from Keegan Bradley

- A holiday feast prepared by celebrity chef Michael Voltaggio

- A Very, Very, Very Personal Greeting from Luke Perry

- A Guitar Solo from Richie Sambora []

- A joke handed down from comedian Richard Lewis

- A cameo in this month's "The Onion"


I just received the Nokia Lumia 920 for AT&T's A Gift That Money Can't Buy campaign and can't wait to try it out!  The Nokia Lumia 920 is very user friendly right out of the box, with a big 4.5-inch HD Capacitive Multipoint-Touch screen (so no squinting necessary) and a Snapdragon™ S4 Processor which flies through tasks with it’s powerfully fast CPU…I think I’m going to love this phone!


Follow @ATT on Twitter - #giftmoneycantbuy


photo credit: conversations.nokia.com

Disclosure statement: M80 has contacted Golf for Beginners to write a blog post on behalf of AT&T.  Golf for Beginners is receiving free products as compensation in exchange for participation and is being compensated per FTC guidelines. http://ftc.gov/os/2009/10/091005revisedend  #SPON

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Without Tiger Woods Golf Industry Explodes

2013-01-08 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Golf's billion-dollar economic impact is not dependent on Tiger Woods.



The World Golf Foundation released a report on the economic impact of the sport and found that the industry is significantly "bigger" than the motion picture and recording industry combined!


Charities have also benefitted from the game, to the tune of almost four billion dollars, more than any other sporting activity. Golfers are generous!


A press release in my email about the study, entitled "Golf 20/20", provided confirmation that golf has grown from sixty-two billion dollars in 2002 into a seventy-six billion dollar business, creating almost two million jobs in its development.


So, for all of the worriers (including Jack Nicklaus) who believe that the game of golf is dying, think again. Whether or not Tiger Woods ever plays again, or if cities like Tucson need to reassess the number of municipal golf courses it operates, the future is looking bright and game will go on.


Golf will have to change with the times, perhaps incorporating social media strategies and improving the value for the masses, but it is vibrant and more than just an enjoyable pastime, for many fans, players and businesses, it's a way of life!


Your thoughts?


Golf 20/20 Mission Statement: to galvanize the industry around strategic initiatives and grass roots activation to ensure the future vitality of the game of golf.


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Golf Horoscope for 2013

2013-01-02 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Even though the foremost astrologers utilize the aspects of the planets and stars at a given moment, the future still remains unpredictable. Utilizing the past as a barometer, Golf for Beginners makes several predictions on the future of the game and some of its players in 2013.


1. Tiger Woods will win two golf tournaments this year and one major event. Based upon his past performance in the majors, the current number-two money leader in the world will win the PGA Championship...it's about time to collect another Wanamaker Trophy, isn't it? On his golf blog Woods said, "Looking ahead to next year, I'm just trying to win those big four tournaments."


picture credit: TigerWoods.com/GettyImages


2.The Rory McIlroy-Tiger Woods competition will continue to heat up and fans will see several final round close calls this season. McIlroy will easily win the Masters after remembering what he said after squandering a four-stroke lead at Augusta in 2012. "I'll get over it," said Rory, "it was a character-building day, put it that way. I'll come out stronger for it," and so he has with his major victory in 2012 at the PGA Championship.


3. The 2016 Anchoring Ban (belly putter) will force advocates such as Webb Simpson to change their putters and revise their putting strokes. Watch for new and unpredictable grips for belly-putter golfers and for new equipment on the golf course. Will we see Keegan Bradley trying out a new claw grip this season?


Keegan Bradley at the WGC photo credit Golf for Beginners


4. The LPGA future will further take root in Asia. American LPGA golfers will be asked to learn Korean and Mandarin to keep up with the further globalization of the Tour. Instead of "foreign" Tour players being penalized for not speaking English, ladies such as Cristie Kerr on the LPGA will brush up on Korean to follow the sponsors, "follow the money".


Could it be that, down the road, American LPGA golfers will be penalized for not speaking Korean?


Photo credit: usatoday.net


5. Two female members will be allowed to join Muirfield's "Honorable Company of Edinburgh Golfers" (so one can play golf with the other without disturbing the men) with the Royal & Ancient Golf Club following suit after much ballyhoo.


Stay tuned for mystical Tarot predictions by Stacy Solomon thoughout the 2013 golf season!


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A Hole-in-One Christmas for Mobitee Mobile Golf App purchasers

2012-12-25 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

In the spirit of giving, Mobitee Mobile Golf Assistant has announced that it will be offering a thirty percent discount on its GPS golf app to iphone, Android and Windows phone users throughout the end of the year.

The innovative virtual golf coach says gift-giving should be easy and should keep on giving.  Instead of the usual stocking stuffer, Mobitee’s user-friendly rangefinder, shot tracker, flyover video, club recommender and scorecard will allow both the beginner and advanced golfer in your life the ability to improve his or her game. Thirty-five thousand golf courses allow you to take...and use... Mobitee anywhere in the world.   And, as Mobitee says, “it’s so easy even an adult can use it!”

“Mobitee is not a simple gadget application or a very complicated software,” says Stan Chapus, CEO of Mobitee. “It is a real tool to help every golfer.  It is a virtual caddie, a reliable golf companion.”   


The thirty percent discount has been applied directly at the point of sale so neither codes nor special coupons are needed!

Here are the links to download Mobitee on iTunes for iPhone and iPad users, on Google Play for Android phones (like my Samsung Galaxy S3 (which I LOVE) and through Facebook.

You can communicate directly with Mobitee either through email: info@Mobitee.com, via Facebook and through Twitter.

Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa and the best of wishes to everyone this festive season. May you get what you want and may joy act as your umbrella.

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Golf Swing Made Easy With This Infographic

2012-12-19 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

What muscles do you use in the golf swing? How flexible do you really need to be when taking a swing? These questions and more have been put into an Infographic by Matt Baird, PGA Instructor. Read this explanatory analysis of how your golf swing works and what you can do to improve during the off-season.

Thank you to Matt Baird for providing Golf for Beginners with this Infographic.

Matt Baird Bio
As a full time instructor,  Matt Baird has taught thousands of Golf Lessons with a way of teaching that people can relate to and understand.  He has real professional experience in teaching and playing the game and can instantly diagnose and fix the swing of amateur golfers. 

The key to Matt's knowledge is that he understands all aspects of the game from a pro golfers perspective. He has recently been on pro tours, he has played with the pros, he has lived with them, he knows how the pros practice, what they work on, and how the they get better. He knows and teaches the swing path of the current best pro golfers in the world. He not only teaches the game but he plays it well. He is good at golf and teaching golf because he loves the game and loves to help others improve their game. His current project is working on GolfGator, a golf Training Aids company. Be sure to visit him there.

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Who is it --- #Tiger Woods or Rory #McIlroy?

2012-12-12 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Thank you to Author James Ross for this submission to Golf for Beginners blog.

The golf season was around the corner and the grinding professional Tour was about to begin. The weather outside was gloomy. It was way too cloudy and windy to even think about playing. Of course flurries of snow were predicted in the forecast. That was also a discouraging factor.
What’s a fellow to do? If you’re a golfer the local pro shop and clubhouse is the perfect meeting place. It was no different at Prairie Winds Golf Course high atop the Mississippi river bluffs just east of St. Louis. Fred, the portly one with a baker’s dozen of doughnuts, was the first to arrive. His rotund backside had left an impression in the booth nearest the far corner.
J Dub, the nice looking, lanky head pro had a pot of coffee brewing before the night maintenance foreman at the local auto plant had come through the front door. Julie, his chic assistant, was filling the cash register with petty cash. They expected a slow day of golf but plenty of banter from the regulars who considered the clubhouse their home away from home.
Captain Jer, the functional alcoholic, arrived early. He had travelled to the course with two sidekicks. Doc, the elderly veterinarian, and Trot, an old vaudeville comedian, entered behind him. As news of the upcoming golf season flashed across the TV screen the conversation switched to controversy.
“That kid from Ireland can play,” Fred shouted.
“Rory?” Doc questioned.
“Yeah, McIlroy.” Fred wiped the back of his oversized hand across his mouth in an attempt to clean the excess cream filling from the doughnut off the side of his mouth.

 â€œLots of talent there,” Captain Jer agreed, “but I still think that Tiger is the guy to beat.” The retired airplane pilot motioned for Julie to bring a cold beer to his table. “When they tee the ball up I guarantee you the rest of the guys in the field are looking out the corner of their eye to see where Tiger is.”
“Maybe so,” the head pro said as he threw his opinion out, “but Tiger doesn’t put the fear in them like he used too. There are a lot of new guys out there that can flat play the game.”
“Guys you’ve never heard of,” Trot added. “There are hoards of young kids that rip the ball.”
“But that McIlroy kid is the best of the young bunch,” Fred argued.
“No question,” Doc said, “but you know the way sports are. On any given day…”
“Yeah, yeah, yeah,” Captain Jer shot back. “Give me Tiger Woods anytime. He has that uncanny ability to will the ball in the hole. When he’s got his putting stroke going there is nobody that can stay with him.”
“Granted, but the others know that if he’s in the hunt it just might be his tournament to lose.”
“I’ll still take the new kid on the block.”
“He can roll the ball in the hole with the best of them.”
“And his ball striking is as good as Tiger’s was in his prime.”
“Why don’t you guys take a break for a while?” Julie butted in. She was no novice when it came to the gentleman’s game. “Nobody is going to win this discussion. Was it Jack or Arnie? Or how about Ben Hogan or Sammy Snead? Each era has its own hotshot --- and the opinions will always vary.”
The others exchanged glances. They wondered how the lady in the group could be such a golf historian.
“That’s why golf is the truest sport out there. The guy that plays the best for four days will win the tournament.” Julie placed another beer in front of Captain Jer, delivered a screwdriver to Trot and filled up Fred’s coffee mug. “That’s the one that deserves the moment. Be glad that we have the opportunity to disagree.”
“Yeah, it makes for great viewing on Sunday afternoon!”
“And everybody has their favorite.”
James Ross has written five novels from the Prairie Winds Golf Course setting. Visit Amazon online on Wednesday #12_12_12 for a book promo on his latest, Pabby’s Score. The story delivers innocence, greed, corruption and Internet dating as well as mysterious intrigue from the cast of recurring characters --- and two newcomers with special needs, Pabby and Shae.

Join James Ross on Twitter as @golfnovels and @JamesRossBooks or on Facebook.

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Did You Win YOUR Bet That Mandela Would Make it to the European Tour?

2012-12-11 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

The European Tour is the second largest tour in the world of golf coming in second only to the PGA Tour. The increase in popularity of the European Tour can be attributed to its broad inclusion in other parts of the world featuring venues held not only in Europe but also in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Smaller tours, such as the Sunshine Tour, are part of a global constinuency which makes up the International Federation of PGA Tours, co-sanctioning four events with the European Tour.

That being said, the most recent event played this past weekend on the Sunshine Tour was the inaugural Nelson Mandela Championship. A possibly more well-known tourney taking place this week on the Sunshine Tour is the Alfred Dunhill Championship. Both events count toward the Race to Dubai, a year-long global affair with a prize in excess of $1 million dollars.

Although few Sunshine Tour events attract top names in golf, this week, Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel are both competing: adding the name Mandela to any event also elevates it don't you think? These golf tournaments also give rise to fresh faces who might one day move toward a permanent spot on the Euro Tour.

Since gambling is an inherent part of golf, with these events comes the opportunity for sports betting.  As I have come to learn (no, I don't gamble but I read a lot), in the past, these sorts of transactions were done with a bookie, however, with the rise of the internet over the past few years many forms of gambling have taken full advantage of the online culture of this medium. Now bookmakers and casinos can be found online and everything that goes with them. People who fancy a quick go on the slots on their computer, or even their smartphone, can now do this at sites such as LuckyNuggetCasino.com online casino, along with card games such as Poker or Blackjack which are usually found to be more popular among sports fans. Betting on golf can now be done before or even during the game wherever they are; this new face of gambling also has expanded the types of sporting events on which bets can be placed.

The Nelson Mandela Championship, for example, showed me that a bettor would be able to predict finishing positions. This type of sports bet is where you make a prediction on where a golfer will finish at the conclusion of the tournament. This is a bit different than other bets as you can bet high which means you expect your selected golfer to do poorly in the tournament. On the other hand, you can decide to go low which means you expect him to do rather well. To know specifically what this looks like depends on the quote associated with a specific golfer. For instance, he may be quoted to be 5-8. This means that the sportsbooks have him predicted to finish either 6th or 7th. If you want to bet low, meaning he will do well, you would sell the finishing position at 5. If you expect this golfer may not place as well as expected, you would sell the finishing position at 8.

Where I do not condone gambling, I found the process quite interesting and wanted to share it with the audience. There are many people who go in ready to place a bet but not understanding the modus operandi in order to give themselves a chance at success.

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Are These the Best Golf Courses to Play in the USA for Beginners?

2012-12-07 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Golf blogger Angela Harper has compiled a short list of a few of the best golf courses in the United States and has shared it with Golf for Beginners blog. In the opinion of GFB, these courses are not meant for beginners nor for the faint of heart. Do you agree? 

Golf can be a wonderful game, ripe with precision and either tension or relaxation... depending on who you're playing with and the course you've decided to play. For the most part, even if you're a beginner, you should still start on a regular field where you'll be able to practice real swings instead of a typical mini golf course. You may believe a smaller course will be easier to master, however if you want to be really good as gold you will need to practice your swings at full force and in the exact conditions you were meant to play. Although the golf courses listed below are a few of the best courses to play in the USA, I recommend you play courses which are more forgiving, or from more forward tees allowing you to get the most out of your game.

1.      Pacific Dunes in Bandon, Oregon
This 18 hole has a par 71 and it opened back in 2001 by design of Tom Doak. There is a great variety of terrain here ranging from nice green grass to sand dunes and you'll have a wonderful chance to enjoy golfing here at its best. You can even attend the training facility available on the grounds as well as the driving range. You can find it on the following address: 57744 Round Lake Drive, Bandon, OR 97411

2.      Tournament Players Club at Sawgrass
Located in Jacksonville in sunny Florida, TPC Sawgrass was built in 1980 and has served as the location of The Players Championship for many years now. The area is specifically built to accommodate spectators so if you're feeling brave you can invite your friends to behold your incredible skills. The island green on the 17th hole is a great place to go diving for golf balls! It is an 18 hole, par 72 golf course and you can have some quality time there on this address: 110 Championship Way, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082
TPC Sawgrass 17th hole

3.      Pebble Beach Golf Links
A rather more difficult 10-hole, par 72 golf course located in Pebble Beach, California. You can enjoy a better challenge here and their driving range and training course as well. The place was founded in 1919 and it carries quite the history with it. The prices for the green might be a little steep though they are definitely worth it because of its gorgeous destination right by the ocean. You can find it here: 1700 17 Mile Drive, Pebble Beach, CA 93953
Pebble Beach Golf Links

4.      Spyglass Hill, California
Once again located in Pebble Beach, this particular course was created in 1966 by the famous golf arhitect Robert Trent Jones Sr. who created an incredible amount of those around the 50 states. It is said that the first few holes of this course are the most difficult in the world, so you might want to skip it if you're not feeling up to the challenge. You'll be able to find it on here: Spyglass Hill Rd & Stevenson Drive, Pebble Beach, CA 93953

5.      Whistling Straits, Wisconsin
Created by Pete Dye and designed on par with the instructions of the founder Her Kohler, this is a nice 18-hole, 72 par golf course right on the shores of Lake Michigan. Whistling Straits been the host of the PGA Championship in 2004 and 2007 US Senior Open as well as being a wonderful place to play links-style golf. You can visit and play on the following address: N 8501 County LS, Sheboygan, WI 53083
Whistling Straits

Guest post by A. Harpert- a passionate traveler and adventurer by hobby and calling. She's a real expert in finding the most amazing holiday rentals for your vacation.

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Woods and McIlroy Agree, Stress Kills Your Golf Game. Five Easy Fixes.

2012-11-28 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Why is it, on occasion, pros like Rory McIlroy begin by playing one of the greatest rounds of golf and end up with one of the ugliest scorecards at the end of eighteen holes? What happens when that mental breakdown occurs and what can be done to stop it?


I received an email today which prefaced these questions with a reminder of McIlroy's falling out at the 2011 Masters: from erratic drives to some of his worst putting and chipping, Rory's golf game completely unravelled. Why? Jon Wortmann, University of Connecticut golf coach and leading stress-relief expert Dr. Julian Ford believe that McIlroy ignored his stress instead of 'acknowledging it, labeling it and embracing it.'


Since that fateful Masters, McIlroy has considerably upped his game. Instead of stressing that he was trailing in the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, Rory kicked it up a notch when he needed it most and birdied the final five holes to win. European Tour Golfer Paul McGinley called Rory "Tiger-esque" as Woods "laid down the platform over the last decade as to how to go into overdrive in a tournament."

Rory McIlroy stepped up his game, acknowledged his position, embraced it and moved forward with momentum: Tiger Woods although once the teacher of stress management, has done much damage to himself and to his golf game through "suffering and self-sabotage" and, due to this ongoing trauma, may never return to his former greatness.


Although the average golfer may never achieve the focus that either McIlroy or Woods can actualize during a round of golf, the combined efforts of Wortmann and Ford have written, "Hijacked By Your Brain: How to Free Yourself When Stress Takes Over" offering easy, do-it-yourself strategies you need to know to make stress work for you, not against you.



Here are a few golf tips written by Wortmann to help improve your confidence and limit stress on the course:


1. "We try to hit the ball harder." The moment we think about hitting the ball further than we usually do, it triggers an alarm (the amygdala) in our brain. Our brain knows our driver usually goes a certain distance. It knows what our go-to or stock swing feels like. The moment we try to get a little more out of it, our brain knows it's not possible, it wants to prevent us from making a mistake, and the ensuing tightness from the stress response causes a tight swing. Tight swings produce over the top snap hooks or blocks when we don't release the club.


2. "We try to make putts." When we try to make a putt, we focus on the result rather than the process of making a great stroke. The only things we can control when putting is the direction we start the ball and how hard we hit it. Just like trying to hit the ball too far, our alarm wants us to stay focused on making a good stroke. The thinking center in the brain can only focus on one thing at a time. Thinking about making the putt (the future) makes it impossible to focus our mind and body on what we need to do in the present to make a firm, confident stroke. 


3. "We think we can play our best without warming up." Our memories centers in our brains are filled with the great shots of our lives. The problem is some days we've got our "A" game; other days, we can't hit a fairway even if it's 200 yards wide. Warm up is the time where you let the brain see what the body is doing that day so it can help us focus on the shots we know we can execute.


4. "We think there is something wrong with us when we can't take the shots we hit easily on the range to the course." The pressure of playing, whether with buddies or in a tournament, is a totally different environment than the range. The brain doesn't care if you miss a shot on the range. Your alarm cares deeply if you're playing for a score. It doesn't want you to miss, so it sends a stress signal (that's the tight feeling, nervousness, or breathing quickly) to make sure you pay attention to what you're doing. The good news is that the answer to playing better on course is a fun one for every golfer: you simply have to play more on course or in competition and your brain will get used to the pressure (as long as you work on focusing on consistent swings, not hitting it harder or thinking too much about results).


5. "We think one good round means we've figured the game out." Golf is different every shot and every round. That's what makes it challenging. Our brains love a challenge; that's why even playing bad golf can be rewarding. The road to better golf is lumpy, often with more terrible and mediocre rounds than great ones. We have to celebrate the days when we have the energy, time, and serendipity to play well, and realize that the bad rounds are a chance to learn what we need to practice, both the mental and physical skills of the game we love. Celebrating the great rounds as rare and precious is how we value the memory. The stronger our emotional attachments to memories, the more easily we can repeat what we've done well before.


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Unusual Golf Courses from the Earth to the Moon!

2012-11-21 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

When it comes to playing golf, there are many places to execute your best shots from local courses to some great destinations around the world. Traveling globally let's you experience unique and even strange golf courses during your travels. Golf writer Angela Harper shares her favorite adventures and unusual destinations with Golf for Beginners blog.

The beautiful thing about golf is that you can either play it as a relaxing game or as a competitive sport depending on who you play it with...however there is one thing we all agree on – there is nothing better than a gratifying golf course! There are a number of strange and unusual golf courses we have heard about that we wish to share with you. Here goes:

 1.      Lunar golf course?
We know this is still in fiction, however American astronaut Alan Shepard was the first man to ever hit a golf ball on the Moon. Ever since then the Japanese company Shimizu Construction has a plan for a golf course on the moon complete with blueprints for eventual future development when and if the opportunity arises. Very optimistic and daring...right?

 2.      Nullarbor Links Golf Course
By far the longest golf course in the world, this Australian wonder spans a whopping 1365 km. The average distance between two holes is 66 km so you better hope your golf cart is capable of running for miles upon miles. Take plenty of water and a great deal of  patience as the course may take up to almost a week to complete.

Coober Pedy Golf Course 3.      Coober Pedy, Australia
And of course, once again here we are in Australia: this particular course is a very strange experience since the area is so dry and arid there is simply no vegetation. You can also play at night using phosphorescent golf balls which make it unforgettable. It makes us wonder whether you need night vision goggles to play or do they use powerful flashlights to illuminate the area? Night golf, however, requires an appointment and a minimum of four people to stage so choose your friends (or enemies) wisely before embarking on this adventure.

4.      Uummannaq, Greenland
By far the world's coldest golf course where everything is played at sub-zero temperatures at otherwise the same rules. You are using a high-contrast orange ball since the surface you're playing on is completely white and with slightly larger holes and shorter distances between them. Dress warm and enjoy a golfing experience like no other.

The Lost City Golf Course 5.      The Lost City Golf Course
Located in Sun City, South Africa this course is a beautiful experience with gorgeous greenery in an otherwise more arid climate. It is mostly known for its aptly-numbered hole number 13 which has real living crocodiles living near it so the place usually serves as a graveyard for golf balls that ventured too far into croc territory. Prepare to lose a few golf balls playing unless you're willing to tackle the crocodiles in search for your missing ball.

 6.     Bonus: Camp Bonifas UN Base
If you are feeling very adventurous and you don't mind the friendly North Korean military base not far away from the golf course, their watchful eyes and the nice fairway surrounded by landmines you might have a great time. Then again its only one hole and the only chance you'll have to experience that would be if you are working with the UN so its hardly a working golf course, however it is worth the mention because of its interesting location.

Guest post by A. Harpert- a passionate traveler and adventurer by hobby and calling. She's a real expert in finding the most appropriate rental and vacation homes for your perfect trip.

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photo credits: A View from the Meadow.  Coober Pedy, SouthAftrica-travel.net
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Improving One’s Golf Game While Building Snowmen

2012-11-16 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Life IS Good! The snow will soon be blowing in and it will be time to go sledding, build snowmen and drink hot chocolate. Put another way, the cold is here so now it is time to bundle up and try to stay warm because it is too cold to go outside and play golf. 

Mike Baird tells us how we can keep our game fresh through the cold and silly season.

With the cold weather, there is no way to play golf, improve your swing or your overall game...or is there?

Believe it or not you can improve your game even while it is cold out and while there is snow on the ground. Here are some things to do during the winter months to help you improve your golf game:

Work out
Winter time also brings the Holiday season, which makes it extremely difficult to do anything but eat turkey, cookies, cakes and pies. But working on keeping your cardio up and strengthening your arms and legs can really help you to improve your overall game once the warm weather returns.     Putt in the family room
Putting is an essential part of any golf game. Practicing your putting on the family room carpet will help you to practice and feel more confident in your putting skills for when it counts later on. The carpet is similar to how it feels out on a green and it is convenient because you can find a spot to practice in your house. Use cups as holes and the furniture in the room as obstacles.
Drilling and or putting your strokes in the garage or a gym will help with your swings. Other golf experts have recommended a putting drill in which you place only one hand on your putter then practice five foot strokes for ten minutes. Research other drills and training aids that will help your swings and your game then practice them over and over again. Practicing those drills and repeating those drills will help with your consistency.
Do some homework
If you want to play like the golf pros you have to watch the pros and learn to do what they do. Do your golf homework by watching the Golf Channel. This will probably be the easiest thing to do this winter. Watch the pros and TV shows like The Golf Fix in order to see others learning and working out problems in their golf game. 

Mike Baird is founder of GolfGator.com and a PGA Pro who teaches golf lessons full time and also likes to write about
putting aids.

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photo credit: LifeisGood.com
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Why Magnolia is Hardly a Mickey Mouse Golf Course

2012-11-07 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

As Mickey Mouse stands guard at the par-3 sixth hole of Magnolia Golf Course, some PGA Tour players this week might be lulled into a false sense of security believing that Mickey is their friend. Think again for the trap has quite a snap to it!


Magnolia Golf Course 6th Hole


The unique Mouse Trap carved of sand with the assistance of ninety-six additional bunkers helps to make Magnolia Golf Course the second most difficult within Walt Disney World. Course length (7,516 from the tips), undulating greens and water introduced into eleven of the holes had Payne Stewart claim the course record of sixty-one one day and a seventy-six the following day. Stewart's take on Mickey? "Avoid Mickey and two side sand bunkers for best result."


Five of the golf holes on Magnolia extend to over five hundred yards and even though the fifth hole, a par-4, 492-yard monster, is considered to be Magnolia's toughest hole, Lanny Wadkins claimed the 17th, a 485-yard par-4, as "the most dangerous hole on the course...give me a 4 here and I'll run to 18!"


Magnolia was a 2010 Kodak Challenge golf course; natural wetlands, alligators and eagles seemlessly combine with the ability to salvage drives off of wide fairways and plan putts through exceptionally well-maintained greens. As long as you are a solid bunker player, avoid the water and know your distances (Disney says it has the latest GPS technology on their golf carts), playing it safe should yield positive results.


Take a virtual tour of Magnolia Golf Course.


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Photo credit: Intercot



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Balancing Competitive and Social on the Golf Course

2012-10-24 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Many women face a dilemma on the golf course. By its very nature, golf is a social game. You are on the course for up to five hours yet are actually swinging the club only a few minutes of that time. There are a lot of opportunities to chat whether it is in the cart or waiting on the tee. That social aspect is great, but what if you want to be competitive as well? A balance of both is ideal, and the following three tips from golf writer Beth Myers will help achieve a perfect middle ground.


Learn from the Pros


Golf Phoenix 2009 LPGA event with Michelle Wie


If you watch golf on TV, you likely don’t see a lot of chit chat between the players. That is because when the camera is on, they are getting ready for their next shot. If you were to go to an event in person, you would find the players actually talk quite a bit during the round. The key is to separate your time and not let one get in the way of the other. When you get to your ball, you need to switch into ‘golf mode’ and cut out the chatting. Focus on your shot, pay attention to details and do your best. The times when you are walking in the fairway or riding in the cart are best for being social. There is nothing wrong with doing both, just keep them apart.


Plan Post Round Activity

Not wanting to be rude, sometimes women feel required to be as social as possible on the golf course. If you have something like dinner or drinks planned for after the round, you won’t feel as pressured because you know there will be time enough to catch up later. That doesn’t mean you don’t talk at all on the course, but it will help keep you focused on the golf.


It’s Okay to Win

To our credit, we women are generally more considerate than men. That translates to the golf course when some women have a hard time really wanting to win. They want to golf well but don’t necessarily want to take attention away from others by winning the trophy at the end of the day. My advice is to let that instinct go and try your hardest to play your absolute best each time. Golf is a hard game and it’s a great feeling to have won something – anything – on the golf course.


Don’t sell yourself short. You have practiced a lot, improved over your years of playing, and you should be rewarded with a little recognition.


One of the best parts of golf is the social aspect. To be sure, that is a major reason that it is such a hugely popular recreation activity. You can entertain clients on the course or just have a great time with friends. There is no reason to take that out of the game. At the same time, you can still play your hardest and compete with yourself and with others. The next time you play, focus on finding a comfortable balance between socializing and playing golf. It is different for everyone but, when you find the right mix for you, your best golf is soon to follow.



Beth Myers is a passionate golfer, mother & wife…not in that order .  She writes for East Coast Golf Sales on all things women’s golf - you could say she is a little obsessed.  Be sure to follow her on twitter @GolfBeth



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Can Beginners Benefit from a Golf Rangefinder?

2012-10-19 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

If you are a golf beginner, you may be thinking “no way do I need a golf rangefinder. All I’m trying to do is get it off the ground and then hope it stays on the golf course! Maybe next year I’ll be ready for one.”  In this article, Val Brennan discusses the use of golf rangefinders for the beginner as well as for players of all levels.
In my opinion, if you’ve ever hit a shot that felt good and made you smile (at least on the inside), then you’re ready for a golf GPS rangefinder.  A GPS device or golf app can help you improve more quickly by making your good shots count. It will help you become more decisive on the golf course and maybe even make you a faster player. It might even have the added benefit of keeping you motivated by helping you see gradual improvements.
Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be painful like changing your grip or trying to keep your left arm straight!
Your golf GPS device or app needs to have the capability to measure your shots and record the club you used to hit the shot.  You should also be able to look up your average distances for each club.  The Garmin Approach G6 does this very well, and if you’re looking for a low cost option and have an iPhone or Android phone, GolfShot will also serve you very well. 
By using shot measuring features, you’ll get a sense, fairly quickly, of how far you hit each club.  Be sure to only use the shot measuring feature on shots where there is not much elevation change and when there is not much wind. Those factors can really affect the distance of the shot. Most importantly, only use the feature on your good shots. Your goal is to discover how far you’re likely to hit the golf ball when you hit it well. Always input the club you used.

You can start applying what you learn about how far you’re hitting it almost immediately, but after a half a dozen rounds or so, you should have a pretty good representation of how far you hit each club. You can now comfortably look at that distance to the center of the green on your golf GPS and choose a club accordingly. You’ll also start to understand how wind and elevation affect your distances.

Once a month or so, write down your distances for each club and reset the GPS so you can begin collecting new averages. As a beginner, you’re fairly likely to increase your distances the more you practice and play. By comparing your monthly averages, you might surprise yourself with your improvements. If you’re not getting any longer and think you should be, you may want to talk with your instructor or even find a new one.
Let’s face it, beginner golfers don’t hit a high percentage of solid shots which makes the good ones all the more critical. What could be worse than hitting your best golf shot of the day and having it fly right over the green and land in a deep bunker?
If you want to play better golf, it’s time to start treating yourself like the player you hope to be one day. You deserve to know how far you are from your target and you deserve to know how far you hit your clubs… even if only an occasional shot really measures up. When you do connect with your best shot of the day, you should be rewarded for it!  
----------------- Val Brennan writes GPS and laser rangefinder reviews for GolfRangefinderShop.com. She is a former caddie, player and media coordinator on the Symetra (Futures) Tour and is passionate about the game of golf.

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photo credit: Mobitee
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Why Tiger Woods Would Not Make a Good Ryder Cup Captain

2012-10-12 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Coming off of a disappointing loss for Team USA at the 2012 Ryder Cup, Tiger Woods commented that he would, some day, like to Captain the Team.  Although this move would make the Ryder Cup one of the most watched events in all of golf with television viewership reaching record numbers, would this be a good move for the Americans?


Here are a few reasons why Tiger Woods should probably leave the honor to someone else.


1.       LACK OF FOCUS: Tiger Woods has become vulnerable to distractions, whether it is from outside distractions or within his own game. Tiger would need to focus his attention on the entire team and how they work best together. For that, Woods needs to regain focus on his own game, from putting to the mental game, without losing his cool. Can he do it?


2.       LACK OF CARING: Woods asked all of the rookies to a personal apology session after the Ryder Cup to say “sorry” for not doing more to win. The decision to give up the final ½ point during his final match because he didn’t think it mattered spoke volumes to the Team and to his fans.


3.       LACK OF PRIDE: (See above) Tiger Woods was known never to give up; he always fought back, whether it was from a bad drive or to make the last putt on eighteen regardless of his position.


4.       NOT A TEAM PLAYER: Tiger Woods is best known as a singles player, but not much of a team player. His focus is predominantly on his own game, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing but would he truly understand the intricacies of putting together teammates who work well together? For example, would Tiger have paired Keegan Bradley with Phil Mickelson?


5.       If Tiger Woods can’t figure out how to personally win at the Ryder Cup where a Cup and pride is at stake, how is he going to figure out how to lead a team to victory? Is Woods a better player only where money is the motivator?


Tiger Woods has a great understanding of the game of golf, of this there is no doubt, but his willingness to accept defeat is also becoming a lot easier. This might come from his own personal experiences but it certainly is not a good trait for a team captain.


Woods' intense determination to win, his ability to go out believing he was going to win every tournament before it started when he was a younger golfer has been tempered by doubts creeping into his self conscious. Accepting defeat has gotten a lot easier.


Maybe Tiger Woods should leave the Captaincy to someone else...Phil Mickelson perhaps?


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Ryder Cup anchors Woods, Stricker, Furyk sink ship for Team USA

2012-10-02 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Team USA fell to pieces on Ryder Cup Sunday as its three anchors, Jim Furyk, Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker, lost their putting skills on the final two holes at Medinah, handing over the cup to a jubilant Team Europe.



Jim Furyk, devastated by his loss to Sergio Garcia was in obvious denial commenting, “I’m pretty sure Sergio would tell you that I outplayed him today”.  


My thoughts?  Jim Furyk, although a great golfer, probably should never have been chosen by Captain Davis Love III in the first place, with Furyk known this season by the way he fizzles down the stretch in the finale.


Steve Stricker and Tiger Woods were placed in the clean-up position by Love, in spite of the fact that they lost every team match. Captain Love made mention that he wanted experienced talent just in case it was needed to win the cup but did Love take into consideration both Woods’ and Stricker’s season strokes gained putting average before making his final decision?Did Love forget the beating Stricker and Woods took by Adam Scott and KJ Choi at the Presidents Cup?


Poor putting under pressure ultimately lost the Ryder Cup for Team USA.


With all of the pressure falling squarely on Stricker, who is 65th in strokes gained putting average on the PGA Tour this season,  the eighteenth hole was hardly the time for a “mis-read”.  And, Tiger Woods should never have missed a 3 1/2 foot putt…never.


To further show that Tiger has lost pride in his performance, here is Woods quote after his Ryder Cup tie with Molinari, “You come here as a team and you win or lose as a team, and it's pointless to even finish. So 18 was just, hey, get this over with."  Pointless? Tiger Woods, for certain, has gone soft.


I think Tiger should have sat out on Sunday and contemplated Furyk’s Ryder Cup statement, “It’s the lowest point of my year.”


Congratulations to Team Europe. They deserve the accolades!


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#Golf on Twitter Reveals #FedExCup Speculations about Tiger Woods win

2012-09-21 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

When @NikeGolf asked Tiger Woods about his approach to the #FedExCup final he said: "Same as always. I feel prepared to win.”  Woods' opinion, coupled with @PGATour's acknowledgment of Tiger's "pole position" start  in Round One of the Tour Championship, bring a heavy-hitting start to the final leg of a race for trophy created by Tiffany and Co. and a $10 million dollar reward.


Tiger Woods-2009 FedEx Cup



Not only are Nike and the PGA Tour gearing up for a possible Tiger Woods end of season victory; stories on Twitter reveal cautiously optimistic viewpoints about Woods while interjecting the legitimate and very real Rory McIlroy threat into the equation as did @washingtonpost, "Tiger Woods tops "The Intimidator" - Rory McIlroy - for one day http://wapo.st/Q1CDlU"


Is Woods somewhat intimidated by McIlroy as Greg Norman recently conjectured and, if so, could this slight anxiety cause a blip in Tiger's game?


The bottom line is that McIlroy is a strong possibility to win the FedEx Cup in spite of the fact that Woods is considered a bettors favorite but, no matter who wins the Tour Championship or the trophy this weekend, the fans want to see mutual respect between the players and a solid four rounds of golf.


That being said, below are listed a few of the more interesting tweets on Twitter adding fuel for thought about the FedEx Cup and Tour Championship finales. Enjoy!


@SkySports Tiger Woods admits he has really enjoyed the opportunity to play alongside Rory McIlroy on a regular basis http://bit.ly/Sbckdt


@GolfChannel @DamonHackGC: Tiger Woods shows he’s not intimidated by Rory McIlroy in Round 1 of TOUR Championship: bit.ly/TaxHyd


@GolfDigestMag Familiarity breeds mutual respect for Tiger and Rory. | http://golfdig.st/Ul6gkL


@SportsCenter Tiger Woods holds a share of lead for 27th time at the TOUR Championship. He's gone on to win 50% of the time. >> http://es.pn/QoRIhd


And, for a non-biased approach... @Golf4Beginners Tour Championship remains wide open: feedzil.la/UlisC3 


Let the fans remember that the field is wide open with many variables remaining during the next few days of golf which can affect the outcome (go Mickelson!) so let the games begin!


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Mickelson a candidate for World Golf Hall of Fame Class of 2012?

2011-05-10 :: golfforbeginners@aol.com (Stacy and Barry Solomon)

Three-time major winner Ernie Els, former President George H. W. Bush, 19-time PGA Tour victor Doug Ford, Japan’s Masashi “Jumbo” Ozaki, the late Frank Chirkinian and the late Jock Hutchison were inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame Class of 2011 in…


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