Seasons In The Sun
Amen. To those still swinging - and swinging well - at any age.
And: to bringing to your awareness (like something happening in your golf swing, with body, mind or club) just how our 'seasons in the sun' are now full of unprecedented blazing heat, drought and general radical weather.
Oh, you don't want to hear anything more re climate change and how us humanoids are affecting it? Old, boring and unsexy (like the importance of your set-up/address position?) news? I understand. But your grand-kids might be interested - so forward this missive to them if you dare... Or, perhaps share some quality time (is that how you are practicing this ball and stick game?) with loved ones, and read on.
Looking for some magical 'swing tip?' Rather than being seduced by those instructors with the most likes & posts on SM, take a glance above: Tom Watson. 5-time Open Champion, 3-time Sr. Open Champion. He shot his age - 68 - last Friday at the Old Course, did you see? Or were you too busy blasting reconditioned air (AC) into your lungs? Consider:
- Turning, pivoting, rotating - whatever you want to call it - MOVING more in your golf swing. "Restrict this" and "tighten up" that? Haha. Most of us in the over-25 years of age club need to move more, not less. Pelvis & torso primarily.
- You don't have to flight the ball in windy conditions... Struggle keeping the ball down, out of the wind? So do I. So, why not make peace with the zephyrs? Take a little more or less club (down, and into the fan), aim a bit more to the right or left (in crosswinds).
- You can always believe. In yourself, your abilities, and your skill - at any age. You give up already? "Can't teach an old dog new tricks (neuroscience would heartily disagree with you)?" Take a good look into Watson's eyes and face and tell me he doesn't still believe in himself - despite all he's endured.
In need of a little 'booster shot' in that mental arena? Come spend some time with Dr. Debbie Crews in a few short week at Eugene Country Club (details further down).
The irrepressible Joanne "Big Mama" Carner shot 79 a few days back at the inaugural U.S. Senior Women's Open. Big deal, you say - heck - you've shot a similar score (and perhaps lower) on mucho occasions, right? But when this World Golf Hall of Famer, elected 36 years ago, fired her 1-under 80 tally (and making birdie on 18 to do so...), she equaled her age.
Hadn't walked a golf course since 2004. When asked if she had hit the gym to prepare: “Do I look like I hit the gym?” On the first tee, Carner proceeded to take a long, deep drag on her cigarette before ripping one 225 yards into the fairway.
Think shooting lower scores is about making 'perfect' golfs swing or looking physically like Adonis (boys) and Venus (girls)? Big Mama gonna rock your world... Click on this living legend above and listen to what some of her contemporaries have to say about her.
- Big Mama Lesson # 1: "Look up 'competitor in the dictionary, and there's a BIG picture of Joanne Carner." You? Able to accept, adjust and adapt when things get a little wild & wacky on the links? If not, maybe you need give your practice regime a jolt of nicotine - or better yet - reality. Men's Open Champion certainly has, taking a page right out of the Train2Trust notebook, courtesy of a savvy guide/coach.
Enlighten and educate yourself clicking on "Kiko," below.
Sandwiched in between myself and St. Andrew's own legend, Dr. Martin Farrally, a few seasons in the sun ago, these two brilliant individuals. More on Dr. Crews, and her visit, below; a 'not to miss' occasion, fellow roamers of the links.
- Big Mama Lessons #2: Live life to the fullest. Watcha waiting for? Watcha afraid of? The unknown? The new? The discomfort that comes with growth (as a golfer, and person)?
Big Mama Lesson #3: Bomb it! You think hitting it short and straight is the ticket? Think again - or better yet - ask Big Mama, and other who are dominating the game. Unable to increase clubhead, or ball speed? I understand. Launch it higher, people, and the nugget will go farther.
Oh, and that 'speed' thing: most of it comes from how fast your arms swing, not some pelvic/thorax über rotation... did you not notice that the handle of the club is attached to your hands (not your belly button or sternum), and your hands are connected to your arms?
Big Mama Lesson #4: "Never one to take herself too seriously." Amen. You? All serious, all the time? 'Cause you think you have control over the situation, life, the way your ball bounces? Think again.
"How Did the End of the World Become Old News?"
Damn good question - n'est-ce pas? You want serious? Click on the flames above. Or, go ahead - just ignore it. Like the unhealthy, dysfunctional and egocentric patterns you've built into your life, and golf game. Like thinking it's someone else's problem. Like believing it's cyclical, and this too shall pass.
Drs. Alastair Cochran & Debbie Crews
Alastair Cochran? Oh, he wrote a little book some time ago - a golf instructional classic, actually. Check it out...
Old news, you say? Well, here's some fresh, non-fake, inspirational news!
* The physics of the golf swing haven't changed. Clubhead collides with golf ball, determining how said golf ball flies. How people choose to present the information - mostly for self profit - has. And created incredible confusion.
* Dr. Cochran is currently 87-years young. He plays golf three times per week, whilst carrying his own bag.
Ponder that while listening to Terry Jacks' single hit from 1973 (clicky click below), as well as how fortunate we all are to play this game, and how all of our seasons in the sun (Mother Earth, included) are in fact, impermanent.
Dr. Debbie Crews at Eugene Country Club
"We had joy, we had fun
We had seasons in the sun"
You on the links? Fun? Joy? Or frustration, anger or despair? How's that working for you?
"But the wine and the song
Like the seasons, have all gone"
Whaaaa? You thought your golf swing, mental state and course conditions were just going to stay the same? Nope, all gone... Perhaps you do need a sip more of wine - or learn the song of change, modification and alteration, that is so critical to playing better golf.
Dr. Crews can help in all domains, and she'll soon be in my hood at Eugene Country Club. More on her just below, and her products and company by clicking on her image above.
Spots are extremely limited for individual sessions - shoot me a note to reserve a time.
Dr. Debbie Crews:
Dr. Crews is an Adjunct Faculty in the School of Biological and Health Systems Engineering, and sport psychology consultant at Arizona State University where she has worked with the Men’s and Women’s golf teams since 1979. She has conducted over 35 years of research on attention in sport, primarily golf (in addition to working with dozens of LPGA/PGA and Champions Tour players), and is the Chair of the World Scientific Congress of Golf.
Dr. Crews was the founding Editor of the International Journal of Golf Science. Her research has been published in scientific journals as well as being featured on Scientific America Frontier and NBC Dateline. She is a Master LPGA instructor, an Ellen Griffith Teaching Award Winner, and serves on the LPGA Education and Research Advisory Board. Dr. Crews was ranked in the Golf Digest Top 50 Women Golf Instructors, and the recipient of the Golf Digest Best Science in Golf Award in 2001. Currently, she is the CEO and Founder of Opti International, a feedback company for performance optimization.
Thursday, August 16, 9 AM - 12 noon.
"Mental Training & Toughness + Yips Management" Seminar
Eugene Country Club Clubhouse
Cost: $75 members; $85 non-members; $50 juniors
Thursday, August 16, 2 PM - 6 PM
Friday, August 17, 9 AM - 2 PM
Individual one-hour sessions with Dr. Crews
Eugene Country Club Teaching Center
Cost: $125 for members; $140 for non-members; $100 for juniors
RSVP required, space is extremely limited.
Non ECC members welcome. RSVP requested, as space is limited.
What's it all about? It's about my two decades of insight gleaned from top neuroscientists, motor learning experts and human performance specialists (as well as my own trial-and-errors!) on what, and how, to practice smarter, more efficiently, and more effectively. À la Champion Golfer of the Year, Francesco Molinari.
Additional info by clicking on logo above. Open to players of all levels.
- Saturday, August 4. Train2Trust Supervised Practice
*** NEW TIME: 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM. Place: ECC Teaching Center. Cost: $40 for members/$50 non.
- Saturday, August 11. Train2Trust Supervised Practice
Time: 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM. Place: ECC Teaching Center. Cost: $40 for members/$50 non.
"We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance."
-- Japanese proverb
~ CS ~