How to Golf in the Rain

How to Golf in the Rain

Let’s face it, no one can predict the weather and as much as we all dislike playing golf in the rain, there are times that it’s unavoidable.  We all know rain on the golf course can come any time.  Whether you’re on the furthest hole from the clubhouse and you want to finish the last half of the back nine or you have a tee time on a prestigious golf course and you know you’re playing rain or shine, you have to be prepared for the elements.  So you’re about to learn how to golf in the rain, from preparing with the correct equipment and accessories to some more tips on hitting actual shots in the rain to lower your scores as much as possible.

How to Golf in the Rain

Let’s start with the right rain gear for golf.  If you don’t have the right golf gear to play in the rain then you’re already doomed from the start.  The first and most obvious issue is having the club slip out of your hands during your swing so let’s talk about how we can remedy this situation.

Golf rain gloves can be your saving grace if the heavens open up on the course.  With rain gloves you should make sure they are actually soaking wet.  The wetter they are the better they will grip to the club.  These are almost always sold as a left and right glove in a pair so unlike a typical glove that you only wear on one hand, you’ll wear your rain gloves on both hands for ultimate grip to the club.

Golf Rain Gloves

When making sure the club doesn’t slip out of your hands the next step is your grips.  Whether you have rain gloves or not, if your golf grips are extra slick and hard instead of tacky then it’s time to replace them.  This is an important factor not only during rainy weather but in any conditions.

Always keep an extra towel in your bag, once again your everyday towel will eventually get wet so keep a back-up towel in your bag for the back nine.  You will definitely need it to keep your grips dry as well as your clubs and your golf balls. Another tip is you can hang your golf towel underneath your umbrella to keep it dry.

Golf Towels

This one is pretty obvious but not only do you need an umbrella, you need a good one.  Umbrellas have come a far way so get one with a double-canopy so you don’t have to worry about it flipping inside out by a gust of wind.  You’ll also want one that is specific to golf usually 62” to 68” inches.  This is extremely important if you’re walking so you’re not only keeping yourself dry but your entire golf bag and clubs as well.

Golf Umbrellas

This next important tip can be one of the most important of all, especially if you want to be comfortable during your round.  Get a good rain suit!  Don’t go cheap on this one, yes they can be as expensive as a driver but with all honesty keeping your body and clothes dry will keep your spirits high and when you’re comfortable you’re much more likely to play better golf.  There are many good brands out there, FootJoy rain suits have been a long-time leader and are highly recommended.

Golf Rain Suits

What about your feet?  Well these days the majority of mid-high priced golf shoes come with a 1 or 2 year waterproof warranty.  Make sure you have waterproof golf shoes when playing in the rain and preferably spiked golf shoes for added traction and grip when in wet grass.  Whether you’re walking or riding on the golf course, nothing is more uncomfortable than having soaking wet feet and socks.  It’s not only uncomfortable but it’ll add extra weight to your feet, especially if you’re walking.

FootJoy Waterproof Golf Shoes

The last couple tips are regarding your golf bag.  If you’re on a riding cart, a rain hood for your bag is definitely an added plus.  It’ll help keep your clubs dry as well as some of your other rain gear in your bag pockets.  If you play in a lot of you rain you can also invest in a waterproof golf bag.  This is great to keep all of your gear nice and dry, although these waterproof golf bags can be a bit pricey so you’ll have to weigh the cost versus how often you think you might play in the rain.

Waterproof Golf Bags

Now once you have the right golf rain gear let’s talk about several tips you should be aware of regarding your actual golf game while playing in the rain.  All of these tips are things you should be aware of that can easily knock a few strokes off your round.

The first and one of the most important tips is to remember to keep a good attitude and have fun.  Accept the fact that your eventual score won’t be as good as it might be when it’s 75 degrees and sunny.  Rain can be difficult to play golf in for everyone so just remember that it’ll usually be an even playing field as everyone else on the course is playing in the rain as well.  This is when patience is a virtue and make sure you don’t get frustrated because of the difficult weather elements.

You should also take into account the soft greens and fairways.  The ball will not be rolling out as it usually does so take into account that fact when laying up off the tee.  You can be more aggressive knowing that you can hit it a bit further off the tee to get as close to a particular hazard or the corner of a dogleg.  It’s also worth noting that the ball will not roll out as much, meaning that if you hit the very edge of the fairway you won’t have to worry about the ball taking another 30+ yards or so of roll into the high rough.  Instead it’ll stick in the fairway so on some holes you can be more aggressive with your driver as opposed to a hybrid or fairway wood off the tee.

How to Golf in the Rain

This is also the case when hitting into the green.  Soft greens enable you to go after tucked pins a bit more aggressively since you know the ball will stick exactly where you land it.  Just remember to use your judgment here; if you do miss the green the wet high rough or wet sand won’t be very forgiving.

If you do hit a tee shot into the rough and it’s apparent that the grass is wet you should probably take a half to full club more into your green.  A higher wet rough will make the club slow down through impact.  When possible in wet conditions it’s best to make sure you try to make as crisp as contact with the golf ball.  If you hit it fat or a bit behind the ball the negative results of your shot will be even worse in wet conditions and you’ll likely fall way short of your target distance.

When you’re on the green watch out for standing water.  You can often get a free drop so that you don’t have to putt through puddles.  It’s also worth noting that water and soft greens will often slow down the speed of the greens so make sure you take this into account when putting, especially for correctly judging the distance of lag putts.  There is nothing worse than working very hard to get a 6-foot birdie putt in the rain, only to leave it a few inches short in the center of the cup.  As usual, try to take every putt and learn from it as the conditions change so that you can make adjustments as the weather and elements change from hole to hole on the golf course.

How to Golf in the Rain

Hopefully you can avoid even needing this last tip but if you do happen to get into a bunker or sand trap where the sand is very wet as opposed to dry and fluffy you need to hit a completely different shot.  You should take less sand than usual and do not open the face up as you typically would.  You will want to make sure your wedge doesn’t have a lot of bounce.  You could use a lob wedge instead if you have experience with that shot or use your sand wedge but just remember not to open the face up since that will create more bounce and it will cause you to blade the ball over the green.

So now that you have all the knowledge needed to get the right equipment and golf rain gear you should know how to golf in the rain just in case the weather doesn’t cooperate with you.  And once you have the right gear use our golf tips for playing golf in the rain to improve and lower your scores.

How to Make More Birdie Putts

How to Make More Birdie Putts

This will be one of the most important golf articles you can read to improve your putting to make more birdie putts.  The biggest difference between most amateur golfers and PGA Tour Professionals is that they make more 10 to 20 footers for birdie.  So how and why is this the case?  We’ll talk about this more and use some insight from Jordan Spieth and how his thought process works when he’s putting.

How to Make More Birdie Putts Jordan Spieth

If you regularly watch the PGA Tour golf tournaments you’ll notice that the players at the top of the leaderboard are making 20 footers left and right for birdie.  It’s important to take advantage of the 10 to 20 foot birdie putts when you can and make as many as putts as possible.  We all make bogies, including the best golfers in the world, but the difference is that when they have birdie opportunities they take advantage of them.

The first tip is to not leave it short.  With this distance you should strive to putt the golf ball 18 inches past the hole.  Distance control is very important and if you always train your mind to think about the correct distance after setting up to the ball you should be able to easily master this technique.  There is nothing worse than hitting a birdie putt and leaving it an inch or two short of the hole and on the perfect line.

The next tip is to do your best to read the putt correctly and line up perfectly to give yourself the best chance to make the putt.  There are many different routines to read a putt but it’s highly suggested to create your own personal routine so that you read these putts the same way each time.  Take a look at the putt from behind the ball, behind the cup, and even setup halfway between the hole and golf ball to see how the putt may break from the halfway point to the hole.

When you step up to the ball you should feel comfortable with your setup and alignment.  If you don’t feel comfortable and feel like you’re aligned perfectly then step back from the ball and start your routine over again.  You need to have confidence over the golf ball that your alignment is correct otherwise you may subconsciously adjust your putting stroke to compensate for your incorrect alignment.  One easy tip is to line the ball up to your target with a line on the golf ball.  Step behind it and make sure it’s correctly lined up and then you can take your stance and only focus on the speed of the putt.

How to Make More Birdie Putts

Jordan Spieth has made mention of the fact that once he steps up to the putt he is in “blackout” mode.  This means once he steps up to his putt he has zero thoughts at all and he lets his body take over and just makes the putting stroke.  He is mentally visualizing the putt and how it rolls off his putter and into the hole.  He just reacts to create the perfect putt and more often than not, he ends up hitting his own perfect putt whether it goes in or not.

This technique takes a lot of practice.  It is even a great tip to use for your full swing but that’s an entire new subject.  If you try this technique and it doesn’t work, the best thing for you to do is create the perfect setup and alignment.  These are the things you can control and take your time doing before you step up to a putt.  Then after that once you step up to the putt the only thing you have to focus on is the speed of the putt.  You can use Jordan Spieth’s advice to an extent with this approach.  You’ll now step over the ball feeling confident in your setup and alignment.  From there all you need to focus on is hitting the putt with the correct speed and if you read the putt correctly you’ll be able to hear the golf ball hit the bottom of the cup.

How to Make More Birdie Putts

As mentioned before it’s crucial to have the correct mindset, alignment, and mentally visualize the speed and the break of the putt before you step up to the ball to take your putting stroke.  If you’re not 100% confident when you take your stroke this can cause a lot of issues and missed putts.  Practice your pre-shot routine for your putts the same way you would for your full swing.  This helps to calm your mind so that you’re only focused on each step of your routine and not the end result.  Take these steps and make sure you not only use them on the course but every time you are on the practice putting green.  If you can use this advice and apply them correctly you’ll soon notice that you’re making a lot more birdie putts than you used to, thus creating more birdies, more fun, and lower scores.  Who doesn’t love to make more birdies!

How to Practice Lag Putting

How to Practice Lag Putting

Most amateur golfers don’t realize the importance of practicing their lag putting.  If you want to eliminate the amount of 3-putts in your round continue reading and you can easily knock a few strokes off your score with a bit of practice.  Did you know that outside of 30 feet, you’re 6 times more likely to 3-putt than a PGA Tour pro.  Amateur and weekend warrior golfers are about 18% more likely to 3-putt, as opposed to a measly 3% among PGA Tour professionals.  Dave Pelz came up with this stat according to PGA Tour ShotLink data.  That can easily equate to 2-3 strokes you’re giving up each time you step onto the golf course.  With about 10 to 15 minutes of practicing your lag putting you can drastically improve your scores so every time you are near a practice putting green you should use that time to work on some lag putts.

We all get frustrated by 3-putts, especially within 30 feet, but we’re going to focus more on putts from 30 to 60 feet away.  Most amateurs and mid-handicappers will have anywhere from 10-14 putts a round from this distance.  So let’s take a look at some practice techniques to help improve that aspect of your putting game.

How To Practice Lag Putting

Our first tip is do not try to hole-out putts from over 30 feet.  When you’re 30 to 60 feet away from the hole you should be focusing on finding a way to 2-putt.  If you do this you’ll find that you drastically reduce your 3-putts.  The best way to do this is imagine a circle around the hole.  For a 30 foot putt you may imagine a 4 to 5 foot circle in diameter around the hole with the cup in the center of that circle.  The further out you get, say 60 feet, you can imagine a 6 foot diameter circle.  Always try to get your lag putts in that 6 foot diameter circle so you’re leaving yourself with a 3-footer for a 2-putt or less.  You don’t want to put added pressure on yourself to hole out these long putts and this technique will take that pressure off.

The next tip is stand a bit taller and closer to the ball.  This will help you create more feel and take a longer putting stroke needed to get the ball in your desired circle you’re already visualizing around the hole based on our first tip.  When standing a bit taller over the ball you’re able to swing your arms a lot easier.  If you’re bending over the ball too much it’s much harder to create the correct putting stroke needed to hit a 30 to 60+ foot putt.

How To Practice Lag Putting

The third tip applies to not only when you’re practicing but on every lag putt you hit on the golf course as well.  When hitting a lag putt make sure you literally watch the ball from your stance until it comes to a complete stop.  This will help your mind quickly learn how far you’re putt rolled based on your last putting stroke, meaning the length of your backstroke and how hard your forward putting stroke was.  Some golfers will hit a lag putt and immediately just start walking to the hole.  This doesn’t do you any good because if you’re already walking towards the hole you’re not learning from your last lag putt.  This makes it much more difficult to learn how hard to hit your putts the next time you step up to another 30 to 60 foot putt.  Not only is this great for lag putting but it will also teach you to keep your head down throughout your putting stroke so you’ll hit your putts in the center of the putter’s clubface which also creates more accurate distance control.

As mentioned briefly above our next tip is to create a game for yourself while practicing your lag putting.  If you can spend 20 minutes on the practice green, just once or twice a week this will easily lower your scores.  Find a pretty flat putt and then estimate your first putt about 30 feet away from the hole and put a tee down.  Then repeat these steps again at the distances of 40, 50, and 60 feet away.  Set a goal for each distance based on your skill level and the difficulty of the putt.  For example, let’s say you set a goal that you want to be left with a 3-footer after your lag putt.  Then take five golf balls, starting at the 30 foot length and see how many you can get within that 3 foot distance.  Keep track of how many you get within that 3 foot radius.  Then again just repeat this from the 40, 50, and 60 foot lengths.  Remember to take your time and literally watch each putt until it comes to a stop.  You can then keep notes of you’re progress and always try to beat your personal best.  You can experiment with different length putts and how close you’d expect your lag putts to get to the hole.  Higher-handicappers may start with a 4 or 5 foot radius and lower-handicap golfers may even set a goal for a 2 foot radius for their 30 and 40 foot putts.

How To Practice Lag Putting

The last tip can be a fun way to end your practice session on the putting green.  It’ll be especially fun if you’re lucky enough to hole one out.  Find the longest and hardest putt your current practice green can afford.  A putt that is extremely downhill, uphill, or with a lot of breaks makes it that much better.  Now put 5 more balls down and see how close you can get the golf ball to the hole.  To reiterate, it’s very important to take note of each putt and whether it was long, short, left, or right of the hole and watch it until it stops completely.  While doing this remember the feel and length of your putting stroke so that each putt you hit gets better than the last.

Use these five tips and drills as often as you can, even if you only have 5 minutes on the practice putting green before teeing off.  You will surely be amazed at how much improvement you’ll see in your lag putting if you follow these steps and ritually practice them every opportunity you get.  Think about it, if you play twice a week and can find 10 minutes on the practice green hitting lag putts you can lower your handicap by 2-3 strokes by eliminating those dreaded 3-putts.  Hopefully these tips will help you to use your time more wisely before your weekly league or each time you step foot on the golf course.

How To Hit A High Draw

How To Hit A High Draw

Let’s face it, hitting a beautiful high draw off the tee with your driver is something many of us dream of.  Not only will you pick up distance, but it’s also a helpful shot to have in your bag for those dogleg lefts where you can significantly cut off distance to the pin by cutting the corner.  Practicing this type of shot will also help your entire swing since it requires the crucial inside-to-out swing path.  This is not an easy shot to master but we’re going to give you the tips and drills you need to add this spectacular shot to your golf game.  With some practice on the driving range and determination you should be able to eventually master this shot and hit it with ease when needed.

So the first step to hit a high draw starts before you even swing.  Your setup is very crucial to hit a high draw off the tee.  All of these tips will take some guess, testing, and revising on the range.  Let’s start with the simplest tip.  Tee the ball higher than usual.  By teeing the ball higher you’ll be able to hit your drive on the upswing, increasing your launch angle to get the high trajectory you’re looking for.  On a side note, you should always try to hit your driver on the upswing to create a high launching drive with low spin to create optimal distance.  In the case of hitting a high draw this is even more crucial.  Experiment on the driving range with different tee heights to find your perfect trajectory.

How To Hit A High Draw

To go along with your setup the next step is how you position yourself to the ball.  To hit a high draw you should play the ball further up in your stance.  Test this on the range by starting with lining the ball up with the inside of your left foot (for right-handed golfers), then hit about a dozen balls.  The repeat this lined up perfectly with your left foot, then again on the outside of your left foot.  All should produce slightly different results but by testing this on the range you’ll learn the best ball position.  By place the ball further up in your stance than usual this allows you to rotate your hands and arms more through impact to create the draw you need.  Again make sure you experiment with this, we’re looking for a high draw that only draws 5 yards to 15 yards tops.  We want to avoid hooks, snap hooks, or dead out pulls left off the tee.

How To Hit A High Draw

Another great tip is to stand a bit further away from the ball at setup.  This will allow you to create an inside out swing path which is one of the most crucial parts to hit your gorgeous high draw.  This is once again something you’ll just have to test on driving range to figure out what distance away from the ball is comfortable and produces the best results.

So while on the subject of an inside-to-out swing path, let’s dig into that further.  If you’re unsure of what exactly that means we’ll explain it a bit further.  During your downswing you want the club head to feel like it’s going to the part of the golf ball that is closest to you.  An outside-to-inside swing path creates the opposite golf shot, a slice or fade.  Having an inside-to-out swing path will help your golf game in all aspects.  If you’re looking for more tips on that check out our Top 5 Golf Swing Thoughts.

How To Hit A High Draw

The last tip has to do with the grip.  You may or may not need to do this but if you’re still struggling to hit your high draw off the tee after trying the above techniques give this last tip a shot for an added edge.  Strengthen your grip at set up.  This will help your hands and release and rotate through impact closing the face just enough to hit your perfect high draw.  When we say strong grip or strengthening your grip, that just means that your right hand goes under the grip more showing more palm up and your left hand will show more of the top of your hand.  An easy tip to measure this is when you look down at your normal grip, count how many knuckles you see on your left-hand.  Most will see 2-3 knuckles.  Now strengthen your grip so you see one more knuckle.  Hit a dozen balls and see what happens.  Then try it even more so you see all 4 knuckles of your left hand.

How To Hit A High Draw

With this last tip, it’s very important to keep a loose grip during your golf swing.  This will help your hands rotate through impact to create the draw you’re looking to hit.  If you grip the golf club too tightly your hand won’t rotate naturally through impact and will most likely create a push to the right.

This shot isn’t something you’ll master overnight or during one range session, but it’s a great shot to have in your repertoire and it’s definitely worth taking the time during each practice session at the driving range to at least spend a quarter of the drives practicing these tips and this shot.  It will definitely increase your distance off the tee and improve your overall golf swing.   We hope this helps you lower your scores and wow everyone in your foursome!

FootJoy Tour S Golf Shoes Review

FootJoy Tour S Golf Shoes Review

New for 2018, is FJ’s latest and greatest high-end tour level golf shoe, the FootJoy Tour S.  It’s not cheap and it may not be for everyone, however there are many benefits that make it worth it, especially if it fits your golf game.  It’s tour-proven performance is hard to pass up.

The biggest thing we have noticed is the amazing stability this shoe provides.  It brings back memories of the older XPS-1 that was also a very stable shoe.  The new Tour S golf shoes will allow you to go after the ball without ever losing your balance.  You can seriously rip into every drive and have that picture perfect finish each and every time. One of the first things you’ll notice about the sole of the FootJoy Tour S Golf Shoes is the nine FJ Launch Pods which help make the sole feel wider in the heel and the forefoot to create this amazing stability throughout your golf swing.  You can barely see these launch pods if looking down at your shoes but FootJoy has done a great job making them transparent as possible, while maintaining that wide sole and stability.

Now if you like a more mobile shoe, then the Tour S probably isn’t for you.  This is a stable and structured shoe so you won’t feel as connected and close to the ground as some of other FJ models in the past.  This isn’t a bad thing, just a personal preference based on each players individual needs based on their type of golf swing.

FootJoy Tour S Golf Shoes Review

From an aesthetics standpoint, the FootJoy Tour S is somewhere in between the classic traditional look to a more modern look.  They’re not quite as flashy as the FJ Freestyle, but more modern than the traditional FJ DryJoys. There are currently four styles, three of which are laced, along with one BOA model.  FJ brought out a white, black, white/blue, and a white/grey BOA with some orange accents.  The overall look of these shoes are quite appealing to the masses and it seems that FJ decided not to go crazy with aesthetics and focus more on the performance of this shoe.

FootJoy went to many PGA Tour pros to gain insight on how to create one of the best performing golf shoes in the industry at the tour level.  More features include the lightweight PowerPlate outsole that coupled along with the FJ Launch Pods you’ll find that this allows more efficient power transfer throughout your golf swing.  The PowerStrap design also adds upper support while the PU Fit-Bed gives you comfort in the underfoot.  Because these are top-of-the-line FootJoy shoes they make take a round or two to break in but rest assured they will be very durable and last you for many rounds and/or years to come.  Although it’s typically a given you’ll also get the typical FootJoy 2-year waterproof warranty so you don’t have to worry about what type of weather conditions you’re playing in.  The SecureCollar and ComforToungue technologies also offer a secure and precise fit so not only are you getting a tour performance golf shoe, but one that is also extremely comfortable.

FootJoy Tour S Golf Shoes Review

In conclusion, we feel that FootJoy really outdid themselves with the new FootJoy Tour S Golf Shoes.  They may not be for all golfers, but for any golfer that truly wants the best of the best for tour-level performance the FJ Tour S golf shoes are simply the best on the market.

Golf Is A Mental Game: Stay In The Moment

Golf Is A Mental Game: Stay In The Moment

We’re going to look into one of the most important things you can do to help your mental game on the golf course.  Often in golf, as in all aspects of life, we’re often too focused on the past and future instead of staying in the moment.  You may have heard this phrase before, sometimes used as stay in the present or stay in the zone.  This tip is crucial to golf for many reasons which we’ll dive into in more detail.

How many times have you seen another player or even a tour pro have a complete melt down on the course?  We’ve seen PGA Tour pros miss a three foot putt, then out of anger and emotion, rush the next putt or two, missing again and again.  It happens all the time, we’re human.  If you want to stay in the moment you have to train your mind to stay in the moment and only think about the correct steps needed to hit your next shot as best as you can.  This mindset is achievable through practice and training your brain to block every other thought out of your mind.  Once achieved, you can apply this concept to other aspects of your life, as well as other sports.  In basketball, if you are shooting two free throws to tie the game and go into overtime, you shouldn’t be thinking about whether or not you’ll make the second free throw until you make the first free throw.  One shot at a time, you can’t be thinking about the past or future, you have to only think about the exact steps needed to correctly hit your very next shot and nothing else.

As mentioned above, we’re human, we’ve all been in a position where you’re either thinking about the last time you played a hole and hit it the lake or out of bounds.  Or the last time I was in a sand trap it took me 3 shots to get out.  Or maybe you just missed a 5 foot birdie putt and you go to the next tee and you’re still thinking about how you can’t believe you blew that putt?  That is looking into the past and only distracts your brain from focusing on the shot at hand.

The same goes for looking into the future.  If you’re playing competitive golf you may know that you need to birdie 2 of the next 3 holes to have a chance to win.  That just adds unneeded pressure and takes away your focus from making a good swing on your next shot.  Another issue we all have is when you hit a bad shot and while walking up to your ball, all you can think about is how hard you’re next shot will be and the consequences if you don’t hit that shot as expected.  These negative thoughts need to be blocked out completely.

Golf Mental Game Stay In The Moment

None of this is easy and takes practice to train your brain to think correctly and stay in the moment.  Have you ever heard about how some of the best players ever will finish a round 6 or 7 under par, maybe throwing in 5 birdies in the last 6 holes and when they finally putt out on the 18th hole they have no idea what they actually just shot?  This is true for many of the best golfers in the world.  You may be wondering how in the world they couldn’t know they were in the midst of shooting the best round of their life or about to break the course record, well it’s because they’ve gotten so good at staying in the moment that they could care less about their score or any other distractions.  All they are focusing on is the very next shot at hand.  If that’s all you’re focusing on it’s very easy to lose track of the fact that you literally just made 3 birdies in a row and on your way to your best round ever.  Whereas, we’ve also seen the opposite where a golfer knows he only needs to par the last two holes to break their personal best but then that’s all they can think about and end up bogeying the last two holes instead.

So outside of just truly trying to reset your mindset on the golf course, there is one other thing that all great golfers do and practice it until they’re extremely good at it.  It’s called a pre-shot routine.  You can read more about the pre-shot routine in detail in another article, but we’ll briefly describe how it can help.  Your pre-shot routine is a series of steps you take systematically before every drive, iron, sand shot, chip, or putt.  It’s very mechanical and that’s on purpose.  You take each step of your pre-shot routine one at a time until you’re ready to hit your shot.  This is crucial because it keeps your mind and brain focused on one small task at a time and helps to avoid those negative thoughts that can creep into your brain.  You will be pleasantly surprised at how much difference a pre-shot routine makes in your game.  Even if you don’t play competitively but just play once a week in your golf league, you’ll find that the pre-shot routine also helps block out some of the other players in your foursome that may be talking or laughing, etc. once again putting you back in your zone and only focusing on the next step of your pre-shot routine until you’re ready to step up to ball and take your swing.

golf-mental-stay-in-the-moment-pre-shot-routine-2

What else can you do other than your pre-shot routine?  Well you should look at each round of golf as a new lesson, then take it a couple steps further and learn from not only each round but every hole, and every shot as a new lesson.  Look back at your round and try to remember your mindset during not only your worst shots, but your best shots as well and think about what your mindset was like during the best and the worst.  If you hit your drive on the 17th hole out of bounds on the right side, reflect and think about what you were thinking when you stepped up to the ball.  Were you thinking about how you went out of bounds the last time you played that hole?  Or were you thinking about how you didn’t want to hit your drive left into the woods and overcompensated and went right instead off the tee?  These are all the things that you need to train your brain to realize are not helping your golf game, so the next time you’re in that position you can tell yourself, forget about the past and only focus on the task at hand and staying in the moment.

golf-mental-stay-in-the-moment-pre-shot-routine

This type of mindset will not only help you on the course but off the course in life as well.  Ryan Reynolds once said in one of his comedy movies, “Worrying is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do but doesn’t get you anywhere.”  It’s funny, but true at the same time, it reinforces the fact that when you’re standing over the ball ready to hit your next shot and all you are saying to yourself, don’t hit it into the lake on right.  Then what do you know, you either snap hook it left or end up going right into the lake.  Train your brain to block out all lakes, sand traps, out of bounds stakes, etc.  Use your pre-shot routine to focus ONLY on your target and block out everything else, almost like racing horses that wear blinders to stare straight ahead and only straight ahead.  Train yourself to put blinders on so you can focus solely on your target, goal, and task at hand.  You should treat every single golf shot exactly the same, regardless of the end result.  If your shot didn’t turn out the way you expected, let it go, stop thinking about it, stay in the moment and focus solely on your next shot and keep on keeping on with your round.

It’s alright to make mental notes in your head while you play, based on previous shots, however you can’t let them completely take over all of your thoughts and let emotion come into play.  You have to always remain calm and if you do think about any past shots, do so without placing judgment on yourself or your golf game.  If you do think about a putt or a drive from a previous hole, it should be a positive thought that you’re just trying to learn from by being a student of the game.  If it’s a negative thought, then you’re not ready for this step yet and you’re better off not thinking about it at all.  All of these things take time and a lot of mental practice to train your brain to think the right way while on the course.

golf-mental-stay-in-the-moment-happy

So hopefully this will help everyone not only in golf, but in life as well.  As humans, we all know how to worry, but that just takes up valuable thoughts in our brain that we could be using in better ways to focus on the task at hand and stay in the moment.  Don’t think about the next hole or the last hole and how you may have failed.  Take it one day at a time, one hour at a time, and one moment at time by truly staying in the moment.  Stay in the moment, don’t judge the moment.  You’ll be surprised how you can apply this concept to golf and many other aspects of your life and if you can master it, you’ll not only be a happier person on the golf course but a happier person in life in general.

Golf Etiquette For Hackers

Golf Etiquette For Hackers

This title may be misleading and you may think it doesn’t apply to you but anyone who plays in casual foursomes where betting isn’t a factor or handicap postings are not a factor, have probably encountered one, some, or all of these situations.

There are many golfers who just play for the fun of it and for some their fun can be aggravating to others in the group, but because of friendships you just bite the bullet and go on. Unfortunately, a potential good score can be affected by some of these antics.

Some golfers have what may be called a “football mentality”. It really applies to a sport where hollering or screaming are part of the event. In fact, most team sports fall into this category.

Many of the golfing population fall into one or more of these sports before they ever took up the game of golf and since they are playing with friends they don’t feel committed to any different type of behavior.  Afer all, if you ask them they will tell you that all that good behavior is only for the pros and obviously they don’t consider themselves or anyone playing with them a pro.

We all understand the proper etiquette in golf especially if we ever played in local tournaments with strangers in our group or local leagues with serious consequences for the winners but many of our friends have not and have never considered that type of behavior used in those situations.

These are the guys who no matter how many strokes they take on a hole, when asked on the next tee what they had their response usually starts with these two words,”Gimmie a” and then a number that usually equates to a bogey or double bogey. Their attitude toward a lost ball would be “It’s bad enough that I just lost a ‘new’ ball, now you want me to take a penalty for it.” These are not arguments you want to have with people who you barbeque with, go the your kids games with, and share other friendship activities with.

The problem is that is does affect your game and you have to be clever in trying to fix some of this behavior when possible with other losing a friend or a member of the foursome. I guess the old saying of “change the things you can, accept the things you can’t and know the difference between the two’’ would really be appropriate here.  Obviously any wagering would have to be non-existent or of no consequence in these types or groups.  So now you get the jest of where this article is going.

golf etiquette for hackers-divot

PRACTICE SWINGS AND LOST BALL

One of first areas we encounter is the teeing ground. As your playing companion approaches the first tee you will probably hear “I haven’t touched a club in a week or two weeks and then proceeds to take two or three practice swings with a divot on each one. Some courses will post a sign of no practice swings on the tee which he never sees and if there is a starter the swings are taken so fast he can’t even stop him.  You may want to make a group rule of only one practice swing on every shot including putts. This may work or may not but if the whole group agrees it may bring the culprit to agree.

golf etiquette for hackers

The next issue will be the lost ball.  This level of golfer is always hitting new ones because he loses so many. If he decides to buy an expensive one or some family member buys him a dozen of Titleist Pro V1′s  for a present. You better have a miner’s hat with a light on it because you will be out to dark looking for it. You can imagine the response you will get when you cite the five minute rule looking for a lost ball and as mentioned above a stroke and distance rule.  The rule for this guy will be “drop one where you have a swing and good lie.”

CARTS

Carts are a big challenge to the hackers. If you have a golfer, especially an older one, who walks super slow on the course, you may want to suggest a handicap flag for the cart. If no other reason than you will not get to know the ranger on a first name basis. Most of these golfers think they can drive up to the ball no matter where it is. Heavily wet areas, wooded areas and the fringe of the green. At least with the flag there is some forgiveness. Unfortunately, these golfers usually balk at the idea that they need the flag.  If that is the case and you can’t win the argument the best solution is for you to drive him. If not, then plan on getting a lot of mud on you when pushing him out of a heavily wet area.

SPEEDING UP PLAY WITH A RIDING CART

Several things can be done when riding a cart to speed up play. One of the simplest is the art of cleaning and putting away your club after a shot. After hitting your shot just return to the cart with your club and wait until you arrive at your cart partner’s ball. (If playing alone you can do the same thing as you go to your next shot.) As your cart partner is preparing to hit his shot you can clean your club and put away. This really can save time and still get the cleaning done. The real time killer on a cart is the club cleaner with soapy water that is available on some carts. Our player who is taking divots that you can plant a tomato in really falls in love with this tool. By going to your playing partners shot first they can scrub away without slowing play.

golf etiquette for hackers-riding-cart

The same is true in just returning club to the bag. This can also be done when arriving at the next shot since you are pulling out a new club for next shot anyway. Keeping carts behind the player who is hitting is something that the hackers usually forget to do and it does affect the person playing their shot. It’s amazing the faith your fellow players have in your ball striking the ball although they have seen every ugly shot ever hit from all the players in your group.

PUTTING ETIQUETTE

Bad behavior on the green is really the most obvious.  When pulling the flag do not, I repeat, do not lay the flag down a few feet behind the hole from your putting line. Make sure it is away from all putts. A good rule of thumb is to not let Mr. Hacker even touch the flag.

Another bad move is when they stand about two feet behind your ball when you are putting.  They want to watch it break.  Or they are walking around as you putt to get ready to start their three putt.  Continual talking is always a problem and like the other actions listed above you probably have to work on ignoring it or lose a friend. It is the sudden stopping of the chatter when you’re ready to pull the trigger on your shot that is really troublesome, so just get used to the chatter. If you mention something about these breeches you risk being called a “pro” and have an announcement every time you go to hit that everyone must me quiet.

golf etiquette for hackers

Hitting practice putts after putting out is one of the worst faults of golfers who are oblivious to the world. We all have dragged back a short putt that we miss to hit it again. This only is a problem when a group is waiting to hit their shots to the green. The one that is really bad is the golfer who goes back after everyone has putted out and hits his 30 or 40 foot putt again. Usually you can remind him that there are people waiting to hit and you really don’t want to be rolling on the grass with them because he wants to tick them off with his practice putts.  Did you ever notice how they get their ball out of the hole?  First they will try to get it out with their putter which usually damages the hole on the second, third, or fourth try .If you repair the hole damage as they are picking up their ball the message may be delivered that this technique really isn’t a good idea.

The next problem is how they walk around the hole as they drag their feet . Tapping down the spike marks hopefully gives them the message. Better yet, someone from your foursome that is closest to hole should pick the ball out of whole and toss it to him.

HITTING INTO OTHER GOLFERS

This is really a no-no and should be avoided at all costs. The classic line by the hacker(s) in group is either they won’t hit it that far or you won’t hit them. What is missing from this concept is that hitting a ball that hits the ground within earshot of the group in front of you is just as annoying as hitting close to them or worse yet, over them.

First of all it does nothing to your mind set if the thought of whether you should hit or wait and secondly you bring in the real possibility of a confrontation with the group in front of you.

golf etiquette for hackers-hitting-into-other-golfers

This very easily could ruin and nice round of golf.  Here is a real experience that you should be aware of… Friends of mine went out on Father’s Day, father and two sons.  The group behind them hit in to them  twice and a confrontation took place. A short time later the father and one son had a dislocated shoulder and broken nose. Needless to say that it really put a damper on the barbeque that was scheduled after the round. Usually if you do hit close to a group it is best to apologize as soon as you get within earshot of the group.

If you are playing behind a slow group and most importantly, there is a hole or two open in front of them, use your iPhone to get help.  At least one of your group will have a phone with them, for better or worse, and your scorecard will have the course phone number on it. Call the clubhouse to ask for help. If there is a ranger on the course the clubhouse will call them or if not they will send someone out to move group along.

SCORES

This is really one of the more subtle things that the hacker will do very innocently .  Telling you how good you are playing. We all hear about staying in the moment and not getting ahead of yourself., but this will usually happen as you are playing well and don’t want to get in your own way. You birdie or par three holes in a row (depending on your skill level)  and he announces that if you birdie or par the next hole it will be four in a row. Or you have a 4 or 5 foot putt for birdie and he announces that you will definitely make that putt. It’s bad enough that you just watched him drag a putt from four feet in the hole for a ‘six ‘and then to act like there is no way YOU can miss that easy putt for a birdie.

golf etiquette for hackers-keeping-score

Along the same thought, it is always fun when this golfer will announce that if he makes a six or less on the last hole it will be the first time he will break 50 for nine holes or 100 for eighteen holes.

If you have the deed to your house or your savings account book with you, bet it. You know he will make at least a seven on that hole and won’t be happy for the rest of the day. It is so automatic that you just can’t make it up.

In conclusion, these are just some of experiences you will deal with in that friendly group you play with.

The reason finesse is so important is that you don’t want to ruin an otherwise good friendship or lose a member of group, especially if you have a small group to start with. By using finesse, over time, you can make things better for all. Each person is different, personality wise, so each solution should be handled differently based on the person.

Patience is absolutely a virtue in these situations. However look at the bright side.  When you do venture out to play competitively, you will be so relaxed playing with all the distractions that you have dealt with and adjusted to in your friendly group! Hopefully this will be of some help to a very real situation, but is one that is never discussed.

FootJoy DNA Helix Review

FootJoy DNA Helix Golf Shoes Review

Hot off the press from FootJoy are the brand new FootJoy DNA Helix Golf Shoes.  If you’ve worn the original FJ DNA or the FootJoy DNA 2.0 golf shoes we’re here to give you a FootJoy DNA Helix Golf Shoes Review.  If you’re remotely familiar with the FootJoy brand you’ll definitely have heard about FootJoy DNA (DryJoys Next Advancement).  For a long time the FootJoy DryJoys brand has been huge and is a staple in the FootJoy brand.  So a few years ago FootJoy took the DryJoys brand further with FJ DNA.

FootJoy DNA Helix Review White Silver

FootJoy DNA Helix Review

Thus far there have been two models of the FootJoy DNA line of golf shoes.  The original FootJoy DNA and then in 2016 FootJoy DNA 2.0 golf shoes were released.  The brand new FootJoy DNA Helix are actually the 3rd generation of the FootJoy DNA line and there are significant improvements.  When we say significant we really mean it.  There is a quantum leap between DNA Helix and the previous season styles of FootJoy DNA golf shoes.

FootJoy DNA Helix Review Red White Blue

There were many PGA tour players wearing the original DNA and have moved on to other FootJoy models, whether it’s the FootJoy Pro SL Spikeless Golf Shoes or maybe the FootJoy FreeStyle.  However, with the launch of FJ Helix, we’re going to see a lot of tour players make the change to Helix.  A spikeless Pro SL shoe like Adam Scott is now wearing is great when you’re playing in dry, firm conditions.  But if these tour players have to play in rain or windy conditions we’ll definitely see more DNA Helix out there.  Think about playing in the Open Championship at Royal Birkdale this year, golfers will need a very stable, spiked golf shoe to get the best out of their golf game.

FootJoy DNA Helix Review Black Silver Golf Shoes

Some of you may already have a pair of FJ DNA’s and are thinking to yourself, I love these shoes, how can the new FootJoy DNA Helix be that much better?  Well here we go folks.  The new DNA Helix still have all the great features of the original DNA shoes and DNA 2.0, such as the Chromoskin Leather Uppers, 2 year waterproof warranty, etc.  But here is how they differ considerably.  The new FJ Helix are 17% more stable, 23% lighter, and also have much more cushioning in the sole and the heel collar.  PGA Tour Player, Scott Stallings was quoted saying, “I’ve worn every version of DNA and this is BY FAR THE BEST.  The added stability is exactly what I was looking for.”

FootJoy DNA Helix Review

Once tried one you can definitely tell that they are much lighter.  There would be no problem wearing these to walk all 18 holes.  The biggest improvement we see is the increased stability and wider sole.  Remember how in the original DNA you felt like you were falling off your heels.  This is no longer the case with Helix.  In direct response and feedback from PGA Tour Players, FootJoy has made Helix to give golfers a much more stable base.  When wearing DNA Helix you really feel like you can get after it off the tee while maintaining perfect balance.  You truly feel like you’re rooted to ground when wearing Helix.  The original DNA golf shoes were classified by FootJoy as a more stable shoe, while we feel that the Helix will fall into their more structured category.  Remember the old XPS-1 golf shoes?  The new Helix seem to feel like a mix between the original DNA and XPS-1.  The stable base really is drastically different and a huge improvement to the DNA brand of golf shoes.

FootJoy DNA Helix Shoes Review

FootJoy DNA Helix Review Red White Blue

We also noticed that the new Helix have a lower profile, getting your feet closer to the ground.  FootJoy has a new TourLock cleat system with Tornado Softspikes cleats that help them to get you closer to the ground, which a lot of players prefer.  They are also considerably more comfortable.  You can tell right away once you slip them on, there is no need to break them in.  The ChromoSkin leather is extremely soft, but the real improvements are in the “Xtra-Thick FTF (Fine Tuned Foam) FitBed.  Somehow FootJoy made this even softer and with more cushion.  Not sure how they did it, but they did.  The TourSpec Stretch Tongue is also an added improvement.

FootJoy DNA Helix Shoes Review

FootJoy DNA Helix Review

So obviously the new FJ DNA Helix are much better in terms of performance, but what about the new look?  With first glance you can still tell that the style in still in line with the last two generations of DNA.  They also look like FJ took a bit of style and looks from the Pro SL line as well.  There are currently four models to choose from, black / silver (Style 53318), white / silver (Style 53316, Red / White / Blue (Style 53317), and a BOA model that is white / black (Style 53319).  The hero shoe will be the Red / White / Blue model and that’s the shoe you’ll probably see in FootJoy’s advertisements and commercials.  FootJoy also has some sleek styling on the sole, the DNA Helix BOA model has some subtle lime green accents on the BOA knob and the sole.  FootJoy has also added some subtle Helix branding on the tongue and has “HELIX” written just under the laces.

FootJoy DNA Helix ReviewFootJoy Helix Review

While we’re on the topic of the Helix BOA model, FootJoy has now added a BOA know that not only tightens the laces but you can reverse turn it to loosen the BOA lacing system.  In the past you would have to pull the knob out to completely loosen the lacing system but that is no longer the case with the new DNA Helix BOA.  So if you’re a BOA fan, you’ll definitely love this new added feature.

FootJoy DNA Helix BOA Review Golf ShoesFootJoy DNA Helix Review

Overall we really feel that the styling is fantastic.  In past FJ releases, such as FootJoy Hyperflex or FootJoy FreeStyle, the look has really been bold and flashy, but that isn’t the case with DNA Helix.  The look has sporty and athletic look but it’s much more subtle and fits perfectly with the DNA name and brand.  We easily see players that only wear DryJoys Tour Golf Shoes, that are truly traditional with the saddle shoe look move into DNA Helix without a problem.  They still have that classy look that you can wear to a country club without getting odd looks from other players.  They would look great with golf shorts or with a pair of classy golf pants.  If you had some Puma High-Top golf shoes on, that obviously would not be the case.

FootJoy DNA Helix Golf Shoes Review

Now let’s talk about sizing.  For those of you that own the original FJ DNA’s you may have noticed that they run a bit large.  About a half-size larger than other FootJoy models.  We have heard that FootJoy recognized this and fixed the sizing in DNA Helix.  We tried on FootJoy Pro SL, FootJoy FreeStyle, and FootJoy DryJoys and the new FootJoy Helix fit perfectly in line with these other models.  So you can expect the size to run true with other FootJoy models.

2017 FootJoy DNA Helix Review

FootJoy DNA Helix Black Golf Shoes Review

This is one of FootJoy’s top-of-the-line golf shoes and the price tag does reflect that.  The laced versions are running $209.95 and the BOA Helix model is $239.95.  So yes this is an expensive shoe, but if you’re a golfer that only wears one pair of golf shoes all season, the price tag is easily justified because not only will the Helix last you for years to come but it will truly be the best shoe you’ve ever worn.  We also realize that can find the original DNA for around $80 and the DNA 2.0 for $150, however the extra cost is definitely worth it with Helix.  This is easily now the best shoe in golf that we have reviewed so if you’re looking for a new pair of golf shoes forget about the price and treat yourself and your feet.

FootJoy DNA Helix Review

In conclusion of our FootJoy DNA Helix Review, we highly recommend this shoe for any golfer.  Even if you already have a pair of the original DNA golf shoes or the DNA 2.0 shoes, you have to get yourself a new pair of FJ DNA Helix.  These shoes truly are remarkable in performance, stability, comfort, and are a great looking golf shoe.  For those of you that wear BOA, which once you get your first pair of BOA, we know you never wear laced shoes again, the new Helix BOA is off the charts amazing.  The fit and feel is absolutely incredible.  Also if you like the feel of spikeless golf shoes on the course because of the low profile, you have to get a pair of Helix on your feet.  You get the traction of a spiked golf shoe while at the same time you feel like you’re wearing a spikeless golf shoe in terms of being closer to the ground.  Our DNA Helix review has opened our eyes quite a bit.  We have reviewed a ton of golf shoes over the years, however, the DNA Helix truly is a quantum leap past any other pair of golf shoes we’ve ever put on our feet.  So get to your local shop and try a pair on as soon as possible or if you’ve already made up your mind get online and order a pair of FootJoy DNA Helix Shoes today.  We know that you won’t be disappointed.  FJ DNA Helix is now without a doubt the best shoe in golf.

Myrtle Beach Golf Trip Guide

Myrtle Beach Golf Trip Guide

For decades, Golfers have packed their bags and headed to the welcoming shores of Myrtle Beach. Days are spent catching up with good friends, eating delicious food, having an occasional drink, and of course- countless rounds of golf. So before you throw your favorite pari of FootJoy golf shoes into your bag and buy your plane ticket, let’s consider all that Myrtle Beach has to offer.

What brings golfers back year after year to South Carolina’s Atlantic coast? Perhaps it’s the famous vibrant boardwalk, where you can walk along the beautiful beach taking in the sights and sounds of Myrtle, stopping to indulge with an ice cream cone or just to have dinner outside. Maybe it’s Springmaid Pier, where you can mingle with fisherman and feel like a local. Or maybe it’s the abundant sunshine that allows you to show off that new golf polo you recently purchased. It’s undoubtedly a combination of all of these attractions, as well as their countless top-ranked golf courses that sprinkle the coastline with endless opportunities to perfect your game in beautiful weather.

Myrtle Beach Golf Trip Guide

Myrtle Beach Golf Courses

Nestled a few miles away from the hustle and bustle of the boardwalk, lies TPC Myrtle Beach Golf Course. This 18-hole, 72 par located in Murrell, SC is known for its immaculate greens – as well as boasting a challenging terrain that ensures a test for golfers of every level. The course was designed by Tom Fazio, winner of The Old Tom Morris Award.  TPC Myrtle Beach is open to the public, and has become an absolute favorite of both locals and travelers alike. You can book your tee time online, which makes it even more convenient. For these reasons and more it has found its way for the second year named to Golfweek Magazine’s listing of the “Best You Can Play in South Carolina”.

An additional Myrtle favorite is yet another course to crack  “America’s Top 100 Greatest Public Courses”. Tidewater Golf Club describes, “Marvelous TifEagle grass greens; lush, perfectly manicured fairways; well-maintained bunkers and an exceptional practice facility offer one of the finest playing experiences in Myrtle Beach”. A fact that has become undisputed by golfers everywhere. The course is surrounded by nature, offering a truly breathtaking view. It’s best to book in advance to take advantage of their many offers and incentives.

At the center of all the golf action, you’ll find Barefoot Golf. Offering four different courses, Barefoot is a golfer’s paradise. Dye course is a sure favorite,  offering a beautiful layout, challenging holes (make sure you pack a lot of golf balls), and meticulously maintained greens. Golfer’s flock to the challenge that these courses offer, and boast of the first class treatment received by staff.

Best Places to Eat in Myrtle Beach

After a long day of golfing, the next thought is always where to eat. Part of the experience of going on a golfing trip includes the long awaited meals out with your buddies. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite in a beach town bar where your toes can feel the sand, or prefer to put on your best Callaway Golf Polo and head to a more elegant dinner, Myrtle Beach offers golfers a unique dining experience.

What says golf trip better than ordering up an oyster shooter at the bar? Biminis Oyster Bar & Seafood Cafe in Myrtle Beach offers that authentic seafood vibe that golfer’s crave. Known for their oysters, crab legs, and various other seafood, Bimini’s is a place where the locals go and make you feel like they’ve been waiting for you to walk through the door. This place isn’t known for their looks, but one taste of their seafood chowder and you’ll be adding it to your lists of “musts” for next year as well.

Perhaps, in the spirit of vacation, you want to try something a little more edgy and different than your norm. Art Burger Sushi Bar is the perfect place to expand your palate after perfecting your golf game. This restaurant offers unique and diverse dishes, including gourmet burgers and decadent sushi. Their happy hour is enough to get you through the door, and the view from the patio is enough to make you want to stay round after round. This Japanese-American bar offers Vegetarian and Gluten-Free options as well.

Myrtle Beach Golf Guide - Art Burger Sushi BarIn the case of wanting  to treat your group to an upscale dinner, the place to go is Sole Italian Restaurant. This family-owned restaurant is a favorite among golfers. It may not look like much from the outside, but once inside you can smell all the wonderful Italian dishes being prepared with love. Treat your group to a couple of appetizers such as the calamari and then try their famous pear gnocchi. Servers offer up plenty of recommendations.

Myrtle Beach Golf Guide - Sole Italian RestaurantWondering when you should pack your golf bag and travel to Myrtle Beach for your long awaited trip? Spring golf means pleasant temperatures and typically copious sunshine which makes perfect golfing weather. Summer golf, although sometimes a little hot, provides long days and the option to hit the beach afterward. Fall golf is about as good as is it gets, with temperatures averaging in the 70s.

Myrtle Beach offers something different for every golfer. Myrtle Beach golf vacations are also very affordable and you can often find great packages.  Whether you are seeking new challenging courses, a weekend away with some friends, or just some sunshine – Myrtle Beach is the place that calls back thousands of golfers every year.

2017 U.S. Open: Top 20 Golfers to Watch

2017 U.S. Open at Erin Hills

The 117th 2017 U.S. Open Golf Championship will be held at Erin Hills, in Wisconsin for the first time ever.  The U.S. Open has been played at some of the most iconic golf courses in the country, totaling 51 golf courses.  However, only six public golf courses have held the U.S. Open with Erin Hills being the 6th public course behind Pebble Beach, Bethpage, Torrey Pines, Pinehurst, and Chambers Bay.  You can’t play Erin Hills until May 7th, 2018, due to the 2017 hosting of U.S. Open Championship, however if you do want to play the championship course you can walk 18 holes for $295.  With over 35,000 people expected to attend each day, the 2nd golf major tournament of the year will certainly be as spectacular as it is every year.  The first tee time begins at 6:45am on Thursday, June 15th, 2017 and will conclude Sunday, June 18th, 2017.

2017 U.S. Open

The U.S. Open has historically been known for insanely high roughs as well as playing very long and this year will be no different.  Normally at 7,000 yards, Erin Hills is playing closer to 8,000 for the U.S. Open.  With little protection from trees, if the winds pick up, this course can  be exponentially harder, even for the best players.  It could almost play like a links course, which makes it more similar to the course conditions of the British Open and requires quite a different skill set than playing at Augusta National in the Master’s Tournament or in the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow.  The winner will need to be an extremely good ball striker.  Hitting it long and straight will be extremely important to stay out of the high rough and fescue.  Although the fairways are wider at Erin Hills than previous U.S. Open golf courses, if you do miss the penalizing high rough almost certainly means a bogey or worse.  Whoever emerges as the victor will need to hit fairways and greens…a lot of them.

Who Is Most Likely to Win the 2017 U.S. Open

Below are players to watch during the 2017 U.S. Open.  These 20 golfers are at the top of list of who you’ll want to keep your eyes on.  Although Vegas Odds are usually quite accurate in sports, golf is a different story, as one hole can change the entire tournament.  Take a look at our list and let’s see Sunday night how close these 2017 U.S. Open predictions end up.

1. Dustin Johnson

This one is sort of obvious but for good reason.  He’s the best player in the world right now, not to mention he won the U.S. Open in 2016 and was the runner-up in 2015.  With 3 straight top 5 finishes in the last 3 U.S. Opens, there isn’t another golfer out there that could sit at number one.  After having to withdraw from the Master’s in Augusta, Dustin Johnson is itching to get another major under his belt.

2. Jordan Spieth

In 2015 at Chambers Bay Jordan Spieth beat out Dustin Johnson to win the U.S. Open and recently tied for 13th at the Memorial Tournament and tied for 2nd at the Dean & Deluca Invitational.  He also is one of the few players to play competitively at Erin Hills in the 2011 U.S. Amateur quarterfinals.  Jordan Spieth’s mental game is about as good as gets.  Pair that along with his exceptional all-around golf game and you have a very likely choice for him to take home the championship.

3. Jason Day

Jason has five top 10 finishes at the U.S. Open over the last 6 years.  He is an amazing ball-striker which is not important at any U.S. Open but more so at Erin Hills.  He hits it long and straight which could be the key to success at Erin Hills.  Even though he only has 2 top 10 finishes in 2017, he did just finish 2nd at the AT&T Byron Nelson Tournament  a few weeks ago.  He also has a scary 70.71 career scoring average in the U.S. Open so don’t take Jason Day lightly.

4. Rory McIlroy

Even though Rory has been battling a rib injury, he just got married, went on his honeymoon, has a new bag of TaylorMade golf clubs.  So why is in our top 5?  Well he can flat out play, the wider fairways and wet conditions will play to his advantage.  He steps in up in major tournaments, finishing tied for 7th at the Master’s this year.  We might just see another repeat of his 2011 U.S. Open at Congressional.

5. Jon Rahm

Even though this is Jon Rahm’s first U.S. Open as a professional he did tie for 23rd in last year’s open and was the low amateur.  Since that tie for 23rd at Oakmont last year, Rahm has ten top 10 finishes on the PGA Tour.  He already has a win under his belt at the Farms Insurance open that was held at Torrey Pines.  He has the skills and shot required to go low at Erin Hills and could be a surprising new young golfer to take home the championship.

6. Justin Rose

Justin Rose’s golf game fits this course perfectly.  He is fantastic on approach shots from 225 to 250 yards which will be extremely important this week on an almost 8,000 yard course.  He also finished 2nd in this year’s Master’s Tournament at Augusta as well as 4 top 10′s this year.  As the 11th ranked golfer in the world we could very easily see Justin Rose come home with a win this year.

7. Rickie Fowler

You can’t always look at a player’s past U.S. Open history.  Even though he has missed the last 2 cuts in the U.S. Open, he , he has truly improved his golf game within the last year or two.  He also finished tied for 2nd in the 2014 U.S. Open so we can’t rule him out.  He recently tied for 2nd at the Memorial Tournament, he won the Honda Classic this year in February, and has 5 top 10 finishes this year.

8. Sergio Garcia

Every year golf fans are anxious to see if a golfer will win all four majors within the same year for a grand slam.  Jordan Spieth almost did it in 2015, will Sergio be next?  With his recent Master’s win under his belt and an explosion of confidence Sergio could get it done this year.  He was in top 5 last year at Oakmont in the U.S. Open and has made the cut in the last 5 U.S. Opens.  It will very interesting if he pulls off another major win after getting his first major at Augusta this year.

9. Adam Scott

Adam Scott tied for 4th in the 2015 U.S. Open and has 2 top-10 finishes in the last 3 years.  He has also finished in the top 10 in his last 2 of 3 tournaments leading up to this week.  With 4 top 10 finishes this year and 7 finishes in the top 25 he is still playing great golf.  He also has the 10th best scoring average this year at 69.9.  You can’t just write off the 12th ranked golfer in the world.

10. Hideki Matsuyama

Hideki has 2 wins, 4 top 10 finishes this year and is the 4th ranked golfer in the world.  He can flat out play and he hits a ton of greens in regulation.  Although his game doesn’t fit Erin Hills as well as some of the other golfers on this list you simply can not rule him out.  Once again, the 4th best golfer in the world.

11. Brooks Koepka

With three straight finishes in the top 20 at U.S. Open we have to have Brooks in our top 20 rankings.  He is very long, ranked 5th on the PGA Tour.  This length off the tee will certainly come to his advantage at Erin Hills.  Have you ever played an 8,000 yard course before?  Length off the tee is needed and if Brooks hits greens and putts well he could very easily take home the championship.

12. Henrik Stenson

Henrik Stenson won the British Open last year and Erin Hills could play similar to those conditions if the winds pick up.  Even though he historically hasn’t played well in U.S. Opens, this one may be different.  With wider fairways, this year could be his chance to bring home the championship.  Even though he only has 2 top 10 finishes this year, major tournaments can be a different story.  He is also coming off a tied for 16th finish in his last tournament at The Players Championship.

13. Thomas Pieters

This will be Pieters first U.S. Open, however he did tie for 4th at the Master’s in Augusta this year.  He also has 3 top 10 finishes.  We know he is a gamer and gears up in major tournaments.  We also saw the same at the Ryder Cup at Hazeltine.  No one has ever won the U.S. Open the first time playing in the tournament since Francis Ouimet in 1913.  Thomas might just be the one to break that century old record.

14. Justin Thomas

Justin Thomas is one of the best ball-strikers on the PGA Tour.  He is ranked 11th in driving distance and 12th in greens in regulation.  The perfect recipe for success at Erin Hills.  He has the 4th best scoring average on tour this year at 69.7.  He also has 3 wins and 7 top 10 finishes.  Not to mention he also shot a 59 this year.  What is not to like?

15. Jason Dufner

Coming off a win a couple weeks at the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village you have to like Dufner.  He has three top 10 finishes in the U.S. Open over the last five years, has 2 top 10 finishes this year, and 10 top 25 finishes this year.  If Dufner hits a lot of greens and regulation and his putter gets hot watch out!

16. Billy Horschel

Billy is coming off a tied for 4th finish at last week’s Fedex St. Jude Classic.  He has 4 top 10 finishes and 6 top 25 finishes, including a win this year at the AT&T Byron Nelson tournament.  Billy is another golfer that hits a ton of greens in regulation, currently tied for 9th, so just like Dufner, Billy Horschel could sneak up the leaderboard if he starts draining putts left and right.

17. Branden Grace

Brandon Grace tied for 4th in the 2015 U.S. Open and although he only has 1 top 10 finish this year, he might be quite a sleeper pick.  He strikes the ball well, it will just depend on how hot he can get to take home the championship at Erin Hills this year.

18. Paul Casey

In his last tournament at the Dean & Deluca Invitational he finished tied for 10th.  He also has 4 top 10 finishes and 10 top 25 finishes this year.  Currently ranked 7th in greens hit in regulation, Paul Casey could pull this one off by putting well for 4 straight days.  You can’t rule out the 14th ranked golfer in the world.

19. Shane Lowry

Shane Lowry finished 2nd in last year’s U.S. Open and has 2 top 10 finishes in the last two U.S. Opens he has played in.  The Irishman has 5 finishes this year in the top 25 and the guy knows how to make birdies.  He is currently ranked 13th on the PGA Tour this year for birdies and anyone who can make a lot of birdies can fare well at the U.S. Open which also forces a lot of bogies.  Par golf could make for a win if it’s windy at Erin Hills.

20. Daniel Berger

Daniel Berger is coming straight from a win last week at the Fedex St. Jude Classic.  With a lot of confidence going into the U.S. Open, that make the difference between a win and a missed cut.  He also has 4 top 10 finishes this year.  He’s been playing well and his recent victory could push him on to two in a row.

Source: http://www.pgatour.com/stats.html