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Use your data and keep your momentum

The power of your golfing data should not be underestimated ! At the recent 2021 Arnold Palmer invitational Bryson DeChambeau shocked everybody when he attempted to drive a par 5 and got within 60 yards. Talking to the Flightscope team after he went on to win the event , this was not a spur of the moment thing. Bryson had been on the Flightscope X3 launch monitor, using the Environmental Optimiser (EO) , and carefully calculated what the wind conditions needed to be before he hit that shot.


For amatuers this data has not been previously available and this level of planning was not a reality. BUT things have changed, the tech is now available to support amatuers in making better decisions. Take a scenario that I ran into the last few weeks. The 3rd hole at my golf course is the stroke index 1. Its 400 yards uphill with trees on the right hand side of the fairway and a bunker on the left that is a 230 yards carry , probably playing 245 yards with slope. Its a long way for amateurs and my instinct has always been to hit driver.



Whilst reviewing my Arccos (Club Sensors) data on my performance on this hole including where I was landing my tee shot (Position and distance), where my second shot was landing and what my average score was it was obvious that this was the hole that I was scoring most double and often treble bogey’s on. This was the hole that was killing my momentum, changing my mood and taking several holes to recover from.


Was my driver the problem ?


After several weeks of making the doubles I decided to switch out the driver for a 3 wood and play strategically for the short left of the bunker BUT the doubles kept coming. 3 Wood would sometimes reach the bunker and sometimes still put me up behind the trees on the right.


What was I missing here ?


When I looked at my Arccos data and reviewed my notes it was obvious that I was hitting it too far off the tee (Yes too far !) and getting too close to the tree’s on the right hand side of the fairway leaving me little or no chance of getting the ball over the trees with a long enough club to reach the elevated 2 tier green.


The Solution ?


The solution was to hit a 19 degree hybrid off the tee. Looking at my Flightscope Mevo + data I new that I could not reach the bunker with that uphill slope with the 19 degree off the tee. It removed the bunker out of the equation (And my mind when I was stood over the tee shot) AND if I missed it right then I knew that I was far enough back from the tree’s to get my 22 degree hybrid the 185 yards left to the front edge of the green. It worked .... I hit the ball right (The shortest route) and hit a 22 degree over the tree’s onto the apron and got up and down For a 4.


In my traditional way of thinking the hybrid approach was crazy. this is the stroke index 1 and was 400 yards up-hill. But looking at the data, reviewing my previous mistakes, reviewing my “fears” when I stood over that tee shot the solution was obvious.


Keeping Momentum


The hidden beauty to fixing these momentum killers is that you keep momentum. I went on to shoot 74 because I had conquered the stroke index 1 (Which lifted my mood) and wasn’t pushing the rest of the round to try and make birdies to recover from the usual double or treble. In fact I didn’t make a birdie all the way around. The round seemed easy.


Summary


Start gathering your data , review it on your mobile when you have a few minutes and look for trends. Identify issues and then make a plan to fix them and ask yourself good questions .... Is the ground soft (In X3 we can simulate soft fairways that do not run out), Is your carry distance in these conditions (60% of all amateurs approach shots are short of the green), how quickly is the ball stopping on the greens etc. Arccos our partners believe you will save 5 shots a round if you make this part of your routine.



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