Archive for the ‘Golf News’ Category

Seve Ballesteros Passes Away at 54

Saturday, May 7th, 2011

Today I got up and heard the new that Seve Ballesteros at 54 due to brain cancer that has been getting worse for the last two years.

I remember when I was about 14 years old, that’s when I first heard about Seve Ballesteros from my then golf teacher, his golf hero was Seve. Everytime my golf teacher taught me a new short game trick or trouble shot, he would mention Seve. In fact, he mentioned so many little stories about Seve, that might be why Seve’s been one of my golf heroes.

I do remember this one story clearly, I guess Seve’s never been the type to play the golf course with a correct swing. Instead, Seve would play golf with just one club such as a 4-iron. He would drive, hit fairway shots, putt, and even hit sand shots with a 4-iron throughout the whole round. This type of training taught Seve a lot about golf and that is why he became so good at golf. In fact, my golf teacher would force me to take a 4-iron and go play 9-holes of golf every once in awhile. This is a great practice by the way, to play the golf course with one club, it will teach you a whole lot about golf such as duck-hooking your drives so you can make the 4-iron go 50 yards farther or even opening up the clubface for a sand shot.

Anyways, from that I began to really like Seve Ballesteros and yes, he’s probably the master of hitting the hardest trouble shots in golf. I did a swing analysis on his swing couple years back, you can take a look here.

Anyways, this is a sad day for the world of golf and to those who have loved Seve Ballesteros as one of their golf heroes. It would have been nice to see him playing the senior tour but to die at an age so young, that is very sad indeed.

How good was Seve?

He’s probably the icon for many Europeans and Americans for setting a standard in the 80s.

Certainly, Seve will be remembered as one of the best golfers who’s ever lived.

We will all miss him, rest in peace Seve.

Free Golf Handicap Calculator!

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Disclosure: This is a sponsored blog post.

For those of you learning golf and you want to keep a track of your golf handicap, you might want to check out GolfHandicapCalculator.org, a free golf handicap service for golfers who want to keep track of their scores and handicap.

As for myself, I’ve actually stopped using my local NCGA handicap membership, because you have to pay $75 every year to use it. While that’s not a lot of money, I also don’t really need the service because I can use a free/cheaper golf handicap calculators such as this one.  NCGA membership does have benefits like discount on NCGA membership courses but I never play them anyways.

 

GolfHandicapCalculator.org has pretty much every course you can find in the world through its database as you can see in the above screenshot and also auto-fills the par-rating for what tee you played off.  This is neat feature since it’s less work for me.

Also, you can make your own list of your favorite courses like I did here:

(Yup, my friend’s a member at Olympic Club!  It’s good to have friends there.)

For those of you who don’t know what “par rating” is – Every golf course in the world has a “par rating”, which pretty much says how hard the golf course is so you can make the most accurate comparison between playing a really hard course versus the easy one.  Without this, you couldn’t really compare handicaps among golfers, you could have a 3 handcap on an easy course but that could translate to 10 handicap on a much tougher course without handicap.

Above screenshot shows instantly what your handicap is and your average score.   These numbers were just entered randomly by myself by the way just to check out how quickly it would give me my handicap.

Also, the USGA handicap system is a bit more complicated, I remember waiting days to update my handicap after I shot a really low round.  There’s no need to waiting with GolfHandicapCalculator.org.

There’s also a cool graphical stats you can see with a bar graph so you can visualize your golf handicap changes by year or even monthly.

If you are just starting out with golf and you don’t track your golf scores, it’s probably a good idea to start doing so as tracking your scores is one key to improving them.

If you can’t track it, you don’t know where you’ve been and where you are going.

Also, GolfHandicapCalculator.org features REAL handicap, where you can adjust couple strokes on every couple you play, this is ideal because par ratings aren’t always accurate but this REAL handicap feature allows you to adjust your handicap more accurately.  This can come in handy for beginners.

Overall, I highly recommend GolfHandicapCalculator.org as it’s free or only costs $9.99/year for their premium service, and you can get instant feedback on your golf scores.

You can check it out here at GolfHandicapCalculator.org.

 

 

How Hard is Pro Golf?

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

Recently, Jerry Rice gave up after a set of 92-82 and 83-76 at the Nationwide Tour:

Rice had shot 92-82 in the first two rounds of the event. He began his quest for a pro golfing card last month when he shot 83-76 and missed the cut at an event in California.

How hard is golf?

Trust me, Jerry Rice would have to keep playing a lot more competitive rounds to see if he can make it.  I think Jerry Rice can make it, if he tries really hard for another 10 years but I don’t think it’s going to happen over just couple Nationwide events.

A lot of people may not realize how hard professional golf is but trust me, I’ve been in the pro golf gutter most of my life, the stakes are a lot higher than any amateur tournament and even higher, if golf is the only thing you know how to do to make a living.

On the other hand, Babe Zaharias was a women’s olympic star who decided to take similar route as Jerry Rice, except she exceeded everyone’s expectations by winning the U.S. Women’s open eventually.

I guess it all boils down to how determined you are no matter how badly you fall.  Yes, I have shot a ton of 96s in my life at golf tournaments because I simply couldn’t handle the pressure but if you keep playing, you get used to it and start scoring better eventually.

I just got back from my practice today, here’s a couple swing thoughts I was working on:

1. Making sure to cock my hands more “upwards” because I tend to lay off my clubface at the top.

2. Downswing felt automatic once I got the backswing done correctly.

3. Also, don’t forget to “finish” your backswing before your downswing, otherwise it will lead to a mess of events and club manipulation.

By the way, some of these thoughts my help you might not, I am just writing them down on this blog so I can remember it and go back to it if I start losing it.  But it may help you greatly, try them.

Never be afraid to try new moves.  If they don’t work, just fall back on your old moves.

I tried some new swing theories I had today and they didn’t work, so I simply fell back to my swing thoughts from the day before.

Why 99% of Pro Golfers FAIL to Make it to the PGA Tour!

Thursday, November 12th, 2009

During my year-long stint as a mini-tour golfer, I’ve came to realize many things including the reason why 99% of pro golfers out there FAIL to make it to the PGA Tour.

Here’s the top reasons:

1. They run out of money.

2. They don’t have financial back-up to go for a long time.

3. They simply don’t have the talent.

Well, my top 2 reasons are probably the #1 reason why not all of the Top 10 college golf players never even see a day playing at the PGA Tour.  Of course, the lucky ones will have all the money in the world but simply lack the talent to make it to the PGA Tour.  (For example, they try out the PGA Qualifying school and fail 10 years straight.)

For those who have tried and failed, my advice is to move on with better things in life.  As great as life of a pro golfer looks on TV, what you see is only a share of world’s best talent in my opinion.  I have seen many great golfers including amateurs and pros that never make it simply they get caught up with life, that of making a living.

To make a living as a mini-tour golfer, you must practically finish somewhere the Top 30, it doesn’t matter which mini tour you play including Canadian Tour, Hooters Tour, Nationwide Tour, and etc…etc…

So, where do these 99% of others go?  They simply lose desire to play pro golf or get caught up making a living.

If you have kids who want to grow up to be pros on the PGA or LPGA tour, they better have good financial backup.

On average, you probably need at least $50,000 a year just in expenses for golf equipment, practice/playing fees, and competition entry fees.

Pro competition fees can be pretty hefty and unless you make hundred grand from your day job, I don’t think there’s a way for you to play pro golf competitively.

So what?

Just realize that if you are going to play pro golf, you should have a smart financial plan so you can keep going even if your scores don’t make you money.

It’s a whole different ball game than being an amateur because your life is basically on the line.  How well you play determines whether you will eat bread the next day or not.

As for me, I broke my finger and also ran out of money only a year into my mini-tour stint.  I didn’t realize how much money I needed until I started making money with pro golf.

Luckily, after 6 years of jumbling my life and starting my own online blogging business, I am glad I can slowly start back at my dreams again, that of playing competitively with the top pros in the world.

Don’t get me wrong, the pros on the PGA Tour are probably the best of the crop but playing on the PGA Tour is a lot easier if you can keep trying and you have some sponsors to back you up. (and also time to practice/play everyday)

And don’t forget, some even make it to the PGA Tour, win a couple tournaments, then fall into thin air.

That’s simply golf, it’s not so predictable, even if you are the best in the world.

I just wonder, whatever happened to some of those golfers I used to know who were so good? Well, they’ve moved on.  I am not.  Ricky Barnes is one of those who made it btw and I hope Joel Kribel does well soon too, they both got a ton of talent.

Golf Tip – How To Eat Right While Playing Golf!

Thursday, July 30th, 2009

This is sorta important what, “what you eat, what you become.”

It’s true.  In golf, you need to eat right while playing golf because it’s going to seriously affect how well you play, especially when under the gun such as tournament pressure or even skins game.

First of all, do NOT eat a full meal right before you tee off.   That will most likely cause you to be a little bloated and will certainly take couple holes before your stomach digests all the food.  By then, you probably have lost couple strokes you could have saved by not eating so much.

On the bright side, you can eat a lot of healthy snacks while playing golf such as banana or any type of “fruits” that contain natural sugar.  Try to stay away from coffee or anything with too much sugar as you can get “high” off the caffeine and sugar.

Watch the best pro golfers play on TV, rarely do you see them eating a snickers bar but they will be eating a lot of bananas.

I’ve probably read 10 golf books already on tournament golf nutrition and they all pretty much say the same things, eat lots of fruit that will keep your mental state level.

Now these are advices for people who want to score better on the golf course, if you do not care about playing your best,  you can ignore my advice.

What about the meal the night before a big tournament?

I have gone through many of these myself, I try to stick with high-carb meals as they can help you the next day.

My favorite meal is actually spaghetti, eating a lot of spaghetti the night before can surely help you the next day to keep going longer.

Lastly, don’t forget to drink LOTS of water while playing golf, especially if it’s a sunny day.

I have personally experienced “cramps” during a the high school state tournament before, that was simply due to not drinking enough water and eating bananas.  Bananas can help prevent cramps on a hot day because they contain potassium.  Take my advice and make sure to pack your golf bag with enough water and bananas for your next important golf tournament.

The Most Incredible Stymie Hole-In-One by Leif Olson!

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

This is probably the most incredible “stymie” hole-in-one by Leif Olson at the Canadian Open last week.  This is as close as you get to a “bank shot” in golf.

WOW, that’s all I can say.

Click Here to View in Full Screen Mode

How to Get Your Kids Ready for Pro Golf!

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

Last time, I did a short post on how getting your baby/toddler/kids started early in golf has a lot to do with their success when they grow up to be an adult.

Well, that is true, you want to get your kids started in golf ASAP, even if your kids don’t end up playing golf the rest  of their lives, having the learned golf early in life will help them to enjoy and play golf as well as possible.

The other day, I hit a milestone in my life, I realized that I have actually got myself “ready” for the PGA Tour.

How?

Well, I found a way to make residual income from my blogging business.  Which is great since I can pretty much control my own time, meaning I will be hitting up the links any time I want.

Now, a lot of my pro golfer colleagues who decided to keep playing mini-tours have gone dry.  Basically, they didn’t win enough to pay for their expenses and living costs and ran out of money.

That’s right, I will tell you right now that the best insurance against failing in pro golf is money.  Of course, great players who at least win 1 PGA Tour tournament is going to have enough money to keep trying until they win their next one.  There’s a lot of those folks too except those players probably only make up a small fraction  of all the pro golfers in the world.

So what really happens to those pro golfers who run out of money?

Nothing, absolutely nothing.  Nothing happens to them because they run out of money and can’t play in tournaments anymore.  Maybe they will keep trying but most of them will end up starting life all over again with a job.

The most profound advice I can give your 12 year old or even 18 year old kid is that you need to learn to make money too with something other than golf.

Think of it as a side job or insurance  you can depend on.

I am not talking about a college degree here, that’s easy but I am actually talking about bringing in hard, cold cash without the use of golf clubs.

In the best possible scenario, your kid can get a golf scholarship to college, finish Top 10 in NCAA, and go straight to the PGA Tour with sponsorship from Nike.

LMAO, that certainly doesn’t happen unless you are handful of players in the world.  If your kids on this route and he/she’s that good, you can stop reading this post right now.

But if you are seriously passionate about your kid becoming a professional golfer, then read on.

Becoming a professional golfer on the PGA or LPGA Tour isn’t hard if you have the next 30 years to keep trying and trying.  The hard part is that most pro golfers run out of money while trying whether that be 1 year or 10 years.

Now, if your kid had enough money to keep going until he/she turns 50, I am 100% positive your kid will make it to the Tour, unless he/she simply sucks at golf and never improves. (or lazy)

That being said, a lot of great college golfers never end up on the PGA/LPGA Tour, simply because they get a job, get caught up with life, have kids, and their dream changes.

Don’t let that happen to your kids, let them learn other ways to fund their dreams.

I am not saying here that you should set up a trust fund for your kids so that they can keep trying out for the Tour until they reach 50.

What I am saying here is to teach your kids to catch fish.

Feed your kids fish and they will keep waiting for you to give them fish.

Teach your kids how to fish and they will probably find a way to the Tour.

I’ve seen hundreds of talented young golfers on the mini-tour.  Most of them will never make it mainly because they don’t have enough money to keep trying.

For example, if you are a real estate millionaire, you should teach your kids how to make millions of dollars on the side with real estate.  Even if your kids don’t make it to the Tour, at least they can take couple years off and make millions on real estate.

The greatest beauty of golf is that most pro golfers peak at mid 30s or even 40s.  One of the greatest golfers in history of golf, if not the greatest, Ben Hogan, didn’t start winning majors until he was past 30.

There’s always plenty time to play professional golf in one’s life, you simply need to have enough time and money to do it.

With that said, I am finally announcing my come-back in life to play pro golf again or at least keep trying every year for the PGA Tour.

If I didn’t keep trying to start my own business, this day would not have come.

While most of my colleagues are busy finding jobs after failing to make the PGA Tour in the last 2-5 years, I have finally got myself together to keep trying again.

My advice to you on raising the next PGA star, “Teach your kids how to make residual income whether that’s blogging, real-estate, or whatever.  Once your kids can learn to feed themselves without working at a corporate job 9 to 5, that’s when your kids will be able to keeping hitting those golf balls rest of their life and make it to the PGA/LPGA Tour some day”.

I’ve seen a handful of talent that go wasted, don’t let that happen to your kids.

Don’t take a chance that your kids will be the lucky ones that receive sponsorships out of college.

My last words?

I am that very kid who kept playing competitively until one day I ran out of money.  Of course, I had to learn all this advice through trial and error but eventually, I found a way to earn residual income and control my life.  The earlier you can do this, the longer you can play professional golf.

If your kid’s as passionate about golf as I am, he/she’s going to need this advice.  Think of it as “insurance” for your kids.  No matter what, your kids will be a fun life, playing more golf than the rest of the population.

Well, just something to think about.

Most start-ups these days don’t make it because they run out of money to keep going, not because their ideas suck.  Likewise, your pro-aspiring kids can make it to the Tour eventually, they simply need a way to finance their dreams for the next 30-40 years, not just 2-5 years.

Okay, I will stop here but now you know your job as a parent and how to get your kids to keep trying until they make it.

P.S. I know about a dozen great pro golfers who would have won dozen PGA Tour tournaments if they had money to keep going.  Money is the only thing holding them back.  If you have enough money to bet on every spot in roulette, you’d win at least once.  Likewise, if you have enough money to keep trying for the PGA Tour for the next 30 years, you will make it. :)

Next time, I will do a blog post on how to market your pro-golf career with a blog I think.  Something I didn’t do but could possibly build your fan base and enough money to keep your pro-golfing career going.

AT&T National Winner – Tiger Woods!

Friday, June 5th, 2009

Last year, Anthony Kim showed on exceptional performance at the AT&T National, winning with ease.

This year, Anthony Kim comes really close, playing with Tiger Woods in the final group of the final round.

Notables include Hunter Mahan, who shot an incredible 62 today to finish before the final groups at 12 under.

As I did predicted during the 3rd round of the AT&T National, this tournament really came down to Tiger Woods and Anthony Kim.  And I did say Tiger probably will have an edge over the last finishing holes, where he did make birdies to gain lead in the tournament.

My prediction for AT&T National earlier today also became true, as Tiger had an edge over the last couple holes of “pressure” golf.  I think Anthony Kim has come a long ways, especially during the 9-month period that Tiger was going through his knee surgery but I think he still has a long ways to go before beating Tiger head-to-head.

Of course, don’t forget Hunter Mahan, he’s been shooting awfully low scores at many tournaments.  I think every time I turn on my TV, Hunter Mahan is shooting a 62 or 63.  I am sure he will win many tournaments.

One thing is for sure, Tiger Woods is certainly back after winning 3 tournaments already this year.  It will be harder to beat him as Tiger plays more tournaments and I think he’s still not 100%, something seriously to worry about for other PGA Tour players.

I am sure Anthony Kim will beat Tiger Woods in stroke play one day though.  When that day comes, Tiger will have a good challenger to compete with.

Overall, I think everyone did a great job here, there’s a lot of veterans who are at the AT&T National this week, something I haven’t seen before.  Interesting to note that people were applauding for a war hero who was on his wheelchair as the final group walked up the 18th hole.

Congrats to Tiger Woods on his comeback 2009 and winning the 2009 AT&T National!

tiger-woods

AT&T National Winner Sunday!

Friday, June 5th, 2009

Wow, what a fun Sunday this is as Tiger Woods and Anthony Kim are TIED for the lead at 10 under par each for the tournament as of 12:36PM PST right now.  AND Hunter Mahan just birdies to get to 10 under, making three people tied for the lead.

It’s interesting my 2 predictions from yesterday came out to be true with Tiger and Anthony in the final group.

Who will be the winner today?

It’s hard to tell as Anthony Kim is the defending champion, except he won last year when Tiger was going through knee surgery.

If Anthony Kim wins this year, he can prove that it was not fluke last year, that he can win even if Tiger is playing.

This is a crucial moment for Anthony Kim as if he can out-duel Tiger today, he will be able to keep doing it again in the future.

Of course, I think Anthony Kim can actually play  good under pressure as he can, the young 24 year old has won numerous tournaments and I have been a fan ever since he’s win last year.  It was exciting to watch a young pro golfer get better and better, winning tournaments and entertaining people like me while Tiger was gone.

My final prediction?

Well, it’s hard to make a final prediction but I think Tiger might have an edge possibly over the last couple holes when the pressure is the hardest.

We will have to see but my final prediction is Tiger -14 and Anthony -13 .

Tiger Shoots 1 Under Today, 3 Under Total!

Friday, March 27th, 2009

Well, looks like Tiger finished early today, shooting a 1-under par for 3-under total.

He’s in good shape so he should have a GOOD chance of making a come-back this weekend.

Yes, I am rooting for Tiger since he hasn’t won in a long time.

Lol…