Monday, April 22, 2013

How to prepare for a City Championship in golf

It is the last day of my 3 day off stretch and I feel great. My muscles are more relaxed then in months, I sleep well and my mind is in total balance for my task. There is so many things which need to be thought of and which need to be taken care of. I have a clear vision of how our lives will look like until the end of the year and thereafter. But one step at a time. My task beginning today is to prepare for the Sarasota City Championship. Maybe not the greatest of this kind and maybe not on the best golf course, but sure a great opportunity to earn some reputation as a player. That is a big part of finding more support and accomplishing certain goals for our future. As there is no opportunity to practice today and it was actually not planned to do so. The question some of the readers ask is , What can you do?. There is plenty of things. My first step today is to go through my equipment and make sure I have what I need. In this case not talking about clubs. I have my set and all clubs seem to be in order for now. My driver shaft makes some strange noise yet again , but since I have to buy them myself , I will work with it for now as it is. It works and that is the key. I will not do any changes otherwise before this tournament. For that I set aside a time frame after May 6th. Despite the fact, that you should be able to hit any club, there is also the fact, that once you get new tools, you have to get used to them, learn them and grow with them. But in between those tournament days that would not be good. My putter is a different story. Always looking and open to a new gun for the green. I still do not have the bag I need and I will work on finding one beginning today. Not that I can not play with the bags I have, but , I would rather use a lighter bag with my logo on it. Thing is, this will have no impact on this tournament weekend. Next you check for accessories. I am good with tees, ball markers and divot repair tools. As a matter of fact, I get rid of some so I have more room to breath in my golfing area at home. Last I look at balls. I switched to Wilson Duo Staff and I have a few left. As a back up I have some Srixons. ( remember, that we do not play under the one ball rule ! So I am good). Shoes are good as well and my cart works great. Just need to put some air in and give some oil. There we go. First step is done. Next I usually take a yardage guide and develop a playing plan. This includes a list of clubs I plan to play , locations I am using as targets as well as taking a good look at the greens. Since there is no yardage guide for this course, I will spend an hour or 2 on Google Earth today and write myself a nice play book. Most important will be the pin placement. There is a few holes where I really need to pay attention to it, so I can preferably get uphill putts. Luckily the greens are not as difficult as some of the other prep courses I played, so I am sure I will be fine. Once I developed the plan , I will play the course one or two times in my head. Every shot envisioning myself hitting the ball and plaything the hole all the way into the cup. Last , there is some mental exercises I am working on to get better focus. That will be it for the day today and it will be a big step forward. I played this course many times. This will help to navigate the track and play it to the best ability as I can. This would be day one. Tomorrow I have rhythm practice at home. the focus being to hit wedge shots half swing shots with all kinds of irons. I am hitting into a net and the ball flight will be secondary. Primarily I am looking at making solid contact and good rhythm at that point. It will be about 400 balls beginning with my LW and going up to my 6 iron. Once through I switch for 1 hour putting and then hit another 200 or so backwards or mixed. this is about 4 hours I give to that session. All about feel , rhythm and head movement. Day three is Wednesday. first 6 hour practice day. This will be an interesting day. I will start out with fitness in the morning. Get about 30 minutes of stretching in. Different exercises. Followed by breakfast and then off to the range. 2 1/2 hours short game. Chipping, chipping and chipping. Second part pitching, pitching and pitching and last half hour , bunker shots. Short distance and middle of green. Back home for a short break including lunch and time with family. The afternoon I will be on the range for 2 1/2 hours. First a short warm up. Focus 1 6 iron. Various shots, full swing, half swing, left to right, right to left. Focus 2: 3 hybrid. Full shot, left to right, right to left and punch. Last half an hour is reserved for the driver. Still am not consistent. To relax my muscles I will go putting. 6 foot putts. As many as I can, Including routine. Sink them and sink them. After the last two rounds I need to get more confidence. The Founders Club easily had a chance for 78 or lower and Bobby Jones a couple weeks ago even more so. So I need to make more putts from this short distance. Thursday. Short game. Pitching and chipping from all kinds of distances. Then lob shots from behind the bunker to different pin locations. Followed by side hill wedges, down hill wedges and behind the tree wedges. That will keep me busy for 3 hours. Following up with about 80 range balls. Tournament warm up. Wedges, irons , hybrid and the driver ( I might play the course on the range one full round. Friday. Warm up in the morning. Just play wedge shots , some 6 irons and hybrids. Then off to skins game at Bobby Jones. Play blue tee boxes to make sure I get adjusted to the distance. At Bobby Jones there is only 3 holes which are significantly different from those tees. Number 4, number 12 and number 13. 4 is a par three of the water from that box. Not long, but plays with your mind. Number 12 is a long par three ( 212 or 215 I think ), number 13 plays as a true par 5 from the blue box although from the front white tees I play it as a par 4 at about 460. I think that will cover it. thing is , if you play forward tees, some of the par 5s are reachable in 2, which I did on a regular base. But if played as a par fife, even if you a little short , you are still in front of the green. Saturday: Tournament day! Get up, have breakfast, pack your clean and shiny clubs, sign in, warm up for 30 minutes on the range, 10 minutes on the putting green and off we go. This is the most exciting part. I love to practice for hours, but in the end. Tournament rounds are the most fun and important. So that is kind of my preparation for the week. You might think , there is not much time left for other things. You are right. Besides spending time with family, doing emails and some other things it is best to be in focus and keep your mind clear. Just as I like it. ( Of course I need time to write this blog, so you call can follow and be excited with me :) )

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