OK, I'll let you in on a little secret. Even though we announced #DownToScratch last Monday I've actually been on the case for about a month now.
I want to find cheat ways of knocking big chunks off my handicap as well as creating something that is entertaining and a little bit different but there was only ever one thing I was going to do first off... get a lesson with a PGA Pro.
(If you haven't watched the intro video check it out below!)
I got down to six as a teenager teaching myself the game. Me and my mates would go down the local pitch and putt and just learnt the game that way and to be honest we probably picked up bad habits... well I definitely did!
That's the reason when I see my swing on video I feel a bit sick and also the reason why I am to ball striking what Adam Johnson is to babysitting.
Living and working in London and not being a member of a local club it isn't easy to just pop down and speak to the pro but luckily for me I got an email from the guys at Pitch London.
They've just built a state of the are studio by Liverpool Street station teaching people on their lunch breaks or basically all throughout the day and evening when people nip out of work.
So I went down to their underground golf lair and met Chris who agreed to become my much needed guru.
With all the tech they are big on teaching on numbers but giving a proper simple message which is perfect for me. I do like numbers but I certainly couldn't be bothered with all the confusing jargon... I just want to get better... and quick!
Going in I knew I hit a dirty low steep slice thing that I could control when I was playing well but still pissed me off. I just never really knew or bothered to find out how to get rid of it.
You can watch all the online instruction or listen to your hacker mates but there really is no substitute for simple one on one tuition right?
Here's my super simple first lesson in a two min video that I got sent. Like I said any more complicated than this and I'd just switch off I reckon!
You get the feedback on the screen and just practise turning the hips and hey presto you stop hitting that rank slice!
So I went back a couple of weeks later thinking now I've got the perfect golf swing but lo and behold there is more to do. This time about getting on plane and not digging for Australia everytime I take a divot.
This is probably boring as fuck to watch for you and that's because it's not about you. I guess that's why it's a bit weird learning general stuff from a book, magazine or online?
You can learn French with Rosetta Stone but there is no substitute to going to France and speaking to a French person!
Anyway I went for a round of golf after these two lessons at Hampton Court Palace and after my first three rounds of +11, +12 and +14 that left me with a 12.3 handicap I shot a half respectable +10.
I struck the ball waaaaaaaaaay better and didn't hole a thing all day. Basically left a load out there which was good. Nice bit of improvement and could have gone way lower.
For the first time in years I'm confident that with regular lessons I can improve. I don't think I'm past it and I actually have some belief.
I can't believe it's taken me this long to get help!
OLD HANDICAP - 12.3
NEW HANDICAP - 11.9
17 MONTHS, 0 WEEKS TO GET #DOWNTOSCRATCH
Check out Pitch London here. They're good lads and know their stuff. If they can help me they can help anyone!
I'm the Managing Editor at The Club. I like putting and Rioja. I dislike my low slice.