No it’s not Chubbs, although watching Happy Gilmore recently made me appreciate my golfing coach more! As you know lately I started taking up golfing and one of the first things I did was to sign up for golfing lessons. Now granted there are many golfing lessons being offered today by scores of golf teachers. So happen I signed up for one – rather unknowingly too as I got his contact through a golf rep at a pro sports shop some time back – So with no reference and recommendations (apart from the golf rep himself), I signed up with the golf instructor.
And I have to say, I feel really blessed to have a coach like him. Lets get something straight, my coach is not some big hotshot pro-in-your-face type of a golfer. He’s a simple 50 year old man who has a real passion for golf. When I asked him who his clienteles were, he told me “mostly kids, but I do coach adults too…” I knew that instant he was a good coach. You see, to coach young kids means one thing – you gotta have lots and lots of patience and a forgiving attitude, which for me were key if I wanted to be a good golfer. The last thing you need is someone shouting at your face and ridiculing you in the effort to motivate you. Despite being a former pro golfer some years back, and still being registered with the PGAM, he’s quite a humble fellow.
I have to admit though at times he may be bait hard to understand. He isn’t as eloquent or articulate which kinda reminded me of Mr. Miyagi. But one thing I love about him is that he focuses on fundamentals. Rather than encouraging or pressuring me to immediately buy a new set of clubs or throw money in buying clubs, he told me upfront itself not to buy anything – except for a glove and even that too he told me the price range for a glove I should be seeking so that I don’t overspend. To me that’s a sign of someone who genuinely wants you to learn the game first before throwing money around and later giving up on the game while he pockets from you.
Coming back to fundamentals, I realise the way he teaches is very methodical and orthodox. While some of my friends have coaches who use high-tech equipment to teach, my coach would only bring 2 irons to the driving range and we would practice. And he focused on methodology and basic fundamentals first rather than just telling me to go swing and swing. From holding the club, to taking my back swing everything is methodical and guided. And because I would tend to move my head unknowingly when I used to take my swings when I was first starting out in January, he would hold my head and let me swing, just so that I would feel the difference.
Besides just fundamentals, as mentioned before his patient and encouraging demeanour really works well for me. No matter how crappy of a shot I make, he would always tell me “never mind, try again!”. There were times I remember I just wanna give up after hitting 2-3 bad balls consecutively and he would just say, never mind, try and focus and give me a few pointers of what I am doing wrong – or just hold my head again as I attempt another swing. I just love his sense of patience and just taking the time to work with me. So much so when I actually do manage to hit a proper ball I would beam at him and he would say “good, now focus and do it again!” and with my grin I would happily line up my shot once again, hoping to replicate it.
Sometimes its all about the basics and the fundamentals that is the key, especially when learning Golf. And having a good coach who drills fundamentals into your head and encourages you to practice more during off lessons and advices you not to simply spend on new clubs is a rare commodity to find these days – it just goes to show to me that he’s not so much about the money than he is about the game and passing on that passion for the game to his students. His calm and encouraging demeanour also helps build confidence as a player. No wonder kids enjoy being coached by him and it shows as he’s been doing this for the last 20 years!
If you wish to have the contact details of my coach, please drop me a message using the Contact tab above on the horizontal menu bar.