Twenty-year-old Jennifer Song is not only a competitor on the Duramed Futures Tour, but is an inspiration to us all. Jennifer has committed to donate 30% of her winnings to charities in Korea- as if competing for a paycheck isn’t tough enough on the tour! Jennifer is certainly a class-act golfer with a big heart; we wish her the best of luck!
Can’t seem to make solid contact when faced with a downhill lie? If you don’t adjust your setup you will likely hit behind the ball. Make sure you remember these tips when hitting from a downhill lie:
1. Shots from a downhill lie tend to have a lower tragectory. Use a club with higher loft to get the ball in the air.
2. Take your normal stance and then tilt your shoulders so they are parallel to the slope you are hitting off of. For right-handed players, your left shoulder should be lower than your right for a downhill lie (opposite for uphill lies). Tilting your shoulders downwards creates a steeper swing which will prevent your clubface from hitting behind the ball.
3. Swing with the slope.
4. Depending on the severity of the slope, it may help to widen your stance to help maintain your balance.
Last week we chatted with Debbie O’Connell and her team on the Ladies Links Fore Golf Radio Show. This was our first live radio show interview- it was definitely different than being interviewed on camera! We had a blast! Wear to Win is about 20 minutes into the show, enjoy!
I had a nice little break; I spent a week at home with friends and family, and of course spent more time working on my game with my instructor Earl. The next trip was going to be very long, 5 weeks and I was driving the whole way, so I stopped in Maryland on the way to my first tournament in Connecticut. My friend Hailey from Wake Forest lives in Annapolis, so I was able to spend some time with her. Due to my status on Futures Tour, I am not guaranteed to be in the field of every tournament. I start out on the alternate list of many of the tournaments I enter. But conveniently the tournaments for the rest of the year are in the northeast. If I were not to make the field of any of the tournaments, my plan is to stay with Hailey’s family that week to remain in the region. I’ve learned the small ways to save money, such as cutting the cost of hotels, really help out.
I planned to arrive in Connecticut Tuesday and hoped to give myself enough time to go to the course and get a little practice in before dark. Unfortunately, traffic was horrendous and what was supposed to be 4-5 hour drive turned into 7 hours (welcome to the northeast!). I decided it would be better to just find some dinner and go straight to the host house instead. This would be my first experience with host housing. The couple was very nice and allowed me and three other girls to stay with them. One of the girls was Jackie who I’ve mentioned before, so it was nice to be with someone I already knew.
Since I wasn’t able to get a practice round in Tuesday I would have to adapt from my normal routine of two practice rounds and one day of practice. Wednesday I played most of the course (we couldn’t get the full 18 in due to the pro-am) and got some practice in afterwards. Adaptation seemed to be the theme of the week. The range at the course had grass higher than the rough and possibly thicker. So the rest of the week I found a local range to hit at instead. I was concerned that hitting out of the thick rough would get me in bad habits so my host family directed me and the other girls at our house to their local club.
Thursday was another practice round day, I decided not to play the full 18 again to keep up my energy for the week. But I made sure I had a game plan for every hole and took a cart out to take notes. Thursday was Jackie’s birthday so our host family took all of us out to dinner at a local Japanese restaurant. We had a great time.
Friday was the first round and I teed off in the morning wave. I shot a 73, I wasn’t pleased nor was I too disappointed, I played consistently like I have all year but felt like I didn’t take advantage of some really good birdie opportunities. After the first day it didn’t look too good. I was well over the cut line; I knew I needed to play well Saturday. So after my round I got a good practice in at my host families course then Jackie and I went to the movies for a relaxing evening (the tour gave us a free movie pass in a player packet this week). That night I went to bed feeling ill, Saturday morning I felt worse (here we go with the adaptation again). However, my pairing Saturday couldn’t get much better. I had a threesome of Demon Deacons. In addition to me, there was Natalie Sheary who is getting ready to start her senior year at Wake (playing as an amateur), we were roommates my junior year, and Nannette Hill, who graduated in 2009. It was an enjoyable day despite my health. It was nice to be around some familiar faces all day. We all have similar games and competitive attitudes. I actually think it might have helped me play better, I finished the day with a 70, good enough to make the cut. I woke up for the final round feeling back to normal again. I played another solid round to shoot a 69 and finish in a tie for 33rd. I had a week to be proud of, after my first round I had to battle hard to reach my goal of making the cut, and I improved every day. Next I’m on to New Hampshire. It’s not too far of a trip so Jackie, Heather and I are going to make a stop in Boston for fun.
When heading out to play or practice, many of us take a few practice swings and start hitting balls. This is can turn out to be a big mistake! Golfers are athletes. Warming up your body is just as important as stretching before a soccer or basketball game. While golf may seem fairly relaxed, the golf swing is very complex and involves the entire body.
Here are a few stretches I like to do before a few practice swings:
- Hamstring stretch: You can do this by propping your foot up on a bench or the golf cart and reach for your toes, or just simply grab your club and reach down towards your toes (this is just a simple toe touch). Hold these stretches for 10-15 seconds.
- Stretch the hips: Simply cross your leg on top of the other and push your knee down until you feel a good stretch (make sure to keep your back upright and your ankle on top of your knee).
-Don’t forget the forearms: This is the easiest of them all. Just hold your hand out in front of you and pull your palm toward you, one hand at a time. Hold this stretch for 10-15 seconds. Next, do the same stretches downward; just push the top of your hand downward.
These are some simple, but important, stretches that take very little time. Next time you go out to the course try these stretches and see what happens!