Today was my first playing lesson with Patrick. I played 9 holes at Knight’s Play and we focused on a full shoulder turn. I played two balls off each tee. Here is how it went:
Hole #1 – 145 yards – 9 iron – I hit both of them short as I got really quick with my turn which made me lose a lot of the ability to get through the ball. Greens were terribly slow which caused a three putt. Bogey.
Hole #2 – 155 yards – 9 iron – This is where Patrick and I figured out the yardages were not even close to what the ground markers said. I hit the first one really short and almost shanked the second one. Patrick told me my shoulder turn was extremely short as I was reverting back to the old way I used to play golf. Chipped on the green and two putted. Bogey.
Hole #3 – 145 yards – 8 iron – The shot played uphill and into the wind and I put two really good shoulder turns on it. The first one was right of the green but past the pin and the second one was right over the flagstick. It was my first really good shot with Patrick watching. I had about an 8 footer downhill for birdie that I left short. Par.
Hole #4 – 110 yards – Approach Wedge – Now was the time to continue the full shoulder turn. To me, it was a timing thing. I had to wait an extra second to allow my shoulders to actually turn. I hit two really good shots on this hole. One was about a 10 footer for birdie. I drained the birdie putt. Birdie.
Hole #5 – 115 yards – Approach Wedge – I had two pretty good backswings but not as deep as we would like. Once again, it is still about timing. I need to give myself another half second to get all the way to the top of my backswing. One was on the green and left about a 25 footer. Two putted. Par.
Hole #6 – 110 yards – Approach Wedge – I hit my first one about 20 yards right and 20 yards long. While I had a good shoulder turn, my transition was very quick. I was starting to figure out that my pull 10-20 yards left is a quick transition because I don’t finish the turn. The second swing was better and left a 20 footer for par. Two putts. Par.
Hole #7 – 145 yards – 8 iron – Once again, the yardage marked on the plates wasn’t even close. It said 135 and I smoked an 8 iron that landed pin high. Patrick walked it off and it was 140 yards just to the front of the green. My first swing was short on the backswing and my second was pretty good. Chipped, Two putts. Bogey.
Hole #8 – 115 yards – Pitching Wedge – My first swing was really good but I had a lineup issue. I was aimed 10 yards right of the target. This is where Patrick told me I need to walk into the shot from straight behind where I am. I did this on the second shot, duffed it a bit and it almost went in the hole. I had a four footer for birdie. Brushed it in. Birdie.
Hole #9 – 155 yards – 9 iron – The plate said 135 so I thought it was playing 145. Patrick walked it off and it was actually 155. Fun times with these yardages. Anyway, I ended up hitting a great shot. It was right where I aimed and I hit it well. A 155 yard 9 iron is crunched for me. I two putted. Par.
Overall, I played very good after the first two holes. I had two birdies, four pars and three bogeys. I am going to keep up with my play in a spreadsheet to document my progress.
UPDATE: It is now February 2021 and I have played Knight’s Play about 10 times. I play it from 130 yards and in during the winter as I am still working on not creating power with my right leg or ripping across with my right shoulder. I often have a handful of birdies but I am still not ready for prime time. I will likely have another playing lesson with Patrick before he releases me to play 18 holes of country club golf sometime in May 2021.