Director of Instruction
Fisher Bryan Golf Academy at Longbow Golf Club
I spend a lot of time watching and reading about golf, as I am sure most of you who are reading this article do as well. Recently, two stories of play on the PGA Tour have stood out to me that I think can teach great lessons to players of all levels.
First of all, Bubba Watson won the Masters! Everyone who even remotely follows golf knows that. And almost as soon as he put on the green jacket, the articles about, “Get Bubba Long!”, started. But it was not a gargantuan drive that won the tournament for Bubba. It was a wedge shot that he curved some 40 yards from a bed of Georgia pine straw onto a green that did the trick. And, his ability to do things like that is what the rest of us can learn from him. Very few of us can “Get Bubba Long” but everyone who plays golf can learn to use their clubface to curve the golf ball. In fact, it should be one of the first things you learn!
Learning to use the rotation of your forearms to control your clubface can help you in every facet of the game, from driving the ball to iron play and short game. It can help you turn that slice into a powerful draw and use the same simple sand wedge to hit both a low running chip and a high soft lob. Trying to hit it 400 yards is not the lesson of Bubba and the Masters, learning to control your clubface is!
Next is the story of PGA Tour rookie John Huh. His story of even getting to the PGA Tour has been about perseverance and overcoming adversity, but his play at the Valero Texas Open brought that ability into light on the course. Huh played his first 8 holes of the tournament in 9 over par! Yet he made the turn to the back nine on Sunday with a chance to win. He played his final 64 holes in 16 under par with 17 birdies and only one bogey. His bid to win fell short, but how many of us would have packed it in after a start like that? How many Tours players would have packed it in for that matter?
The lesson here is that every hole is a new opportunity and a new chance to get better. There is nothing you can do about the hole you just played but you are still in control of the hole in front of you. The professional tours have a lot of lessons to teach us, you just have to make sure you choose the right ones!
Jeff Fisher is the Director of Instruction at the OB Sports Golf Academy at Longbow Golf Club in Mesa, Arizona. Jeff can be reached at 480.414.9330 or firstname.lastname@example.org.