As we talk with golfers in Sullivan County and area tournaments and at various golf courses in North and South Carolina we hear more and more that the Single Plane Golf Swing continues to grow within the golf community. Much of that growth has come from golfers who have been taught by the Graves Golf Academy.
Todd Graves and his brother Tim manage this Academy and Todd reminded us recently that Moe Norman was "their mentor and friend who was a genius when it came to playing the game of golf and we were fortunate to experience Moe's genius and be a part of learning and knowing much of what made him so great."
Todd talks sincerely about the inventor of the Single Plane Golf Swing, the late Moe Norman, who many indicate that his golf swing was called weird, unorthodox and different but that his genius for striking a golf ball can never be denied.
Todd talks about how he teaches an effortless and repeatable golf swing and that the conventional address position "has you holding the club with your arms below the shoulders," and "automatically this position creates a dual plane."
"This means the club has to travel over two planes from the start of the swing to the point of impact," and "this kind of swing guarantees you won't be able to repeat the swing mortion unless you were born with amazing hand/eye coordination, super-stud athletic ability and perfect muscle memory and timing," Graves said.
In his comments about Moe Norman, Todd added that Moe was born in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada and that Moe developed his golf from childhood at the Rockway municipal course in that city.
He refined his skills as he grew out of his teens and won back-to-back Canadian Amateur Championships in 1955 and 1956 then turned professional in 1957.
Moe played briefly on the PGA Tour, but due to shyness and bullying he encountered from certain pros, he preferred to stay in Canada.
Norman's play, along with his way of dressing, were both described as unconventional.
He devised what is known as "The Norman Swing".....rigid arms extended from his body, a very wide stance and minimal knee bend, shorter-than-usual backswing and extended follow-through with minimal hand action which produced amazingly accurate ball placement.
He played extremely fast, sometimes not slowing to line up his putts.
All of his odd-looking swing resulted in him being inducted into the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame in 1995 and earned him 55 career Canadian Tour championships, setting 33 course records and recording 17 holes-in-one....not bad for being self-taught and never talking a golf lesson.
Norman's skills as a ball striker are legendary. In January of 2005 Tiger Woods told Golf Digest "that only two golfers in history have owned their swings...they were Moe Norman and Ben Hogan."
Sam Snead described Norman as the greatest striker of the ball and a Canadian legend revered by golf professionals all over the world for his uncanny ability to hit a golf ball straight every time.
There probably has never been a more colorful character in golf than Moe Norman and the Single Plane Swing.
We don't make any endorsement of any golf equipment or teaching methods but if you desire to look further into this Single Plane Golf Swing style of golf you can simply go online at GravesGolfAcademy.com
Our most difficult golf holes series took us this week to the Town of Fallsburg's Lochmor Golf Course in Loch Sheldrake where we met up with Assistant Head Pro Michael Decker and talked about what hole on this 6,550 yard layout was the most difficult to play.
We had previously talked with PGA Pro Glenn Sonnenschein via email to get his take on what he thought was Lochmor's most difficult hole and both Glenn and Michael agreed that in their opinion the 423-yard par 4 (17 th) hole was the most difficult to play.
The 17th hole presents an open fairway that slopes left to right and a green that is protected on the left and right side with sands traps.
It takes a long straight tee shot to the right center portion of the fairway to give golfers a better angle to the green that also slopes left to right so it's better to shoot your second shot on the upper left portion of the green which should give you a right roll to the cup.
Our foursome had two golfers that hit long drives and they put their second shots on the green...no birdies were scored but pars were recorded.
Golfers who do not hit long shots probably will have difficulties getting a par.
We also found that the 580-yard par 5 (12th) hole also presented difficulties.
Off the tee long ball hitters had to be aware of a small stream that runs across the entire fairway some 300 yards off the tee.
This stream for shorter hitters can also gobble up your ball tacking on a penalty stroke if your ball finds the water.
This hole also presents a dogleg to the left and a fairway that runs uphill after you cross over this stream.
Again longer ball hitters appear to have a better chance to get their pars on this hole.
Found the front nine shorter (3190) compared to the back nine (3360).
Lochmor information and tee time reservations can be made at 845-434-1257.
Ed Townsend is a PR Consultant to the sport of golf. Ed writes and compiles the information for this column. If you have league or tournament information, shoot a hole-in-one or even shoot your age, let Ed know at 845-439-8177, email at email@example.com or fax at 845-205-4474. View this column and all of Ed's photos at http://bght.blogspot.com. We are also on Facebook and Twitter.
The Golf Tip
By Robert Menges
Preparing our mind for a better game.
We all have different ways of doing things on the golf course, which is why one technique or strategy might work for one person and not another.
For example, some of us will visualize the shot we want to hit in out mind, because it helps us execute the shot. For others, they have to experience the shot.
With that said, (or written, in this case) it never hurts to try something new. So here are several "pep talks" you can create to help build your confidence for the next round.
After each round of golf, take 60 seconds to sit quietly and replay your three best shots of the round. Visualize them in slow motion and lock every detail into your memory. They'll come back to cheer you in the future.
Tell someone about your best shot of the day, but never talk about your worst shots
Professionals can usually remember every shot during a tournament, but there is one shot they "just don't recall"--its their worst shot. Let the bad shots go, and never, ever talk about them.
After every shot, remember to say "great shot" and mean it when you say it.....the results may not be exactly what you wanted, but the ball went where you hit it. So go and do it again.
Breathe before every shot or putt, remember to breathe deeply and softly. This will relax your whole body and allow you to focus on the task at hand.
Make it a part of your pre-shot routine to consciously expect a great shot. As you pull the club from your bag, smile. As you look down the fairway or line up your putt, smile. As you stand over the ball, smile. Expect the best.
Finally, but perhaps most importantly, have fun out there. Golf is a game. Yes, it can be challenging and frustrating at times, but is is intended to be a form of enjoyment. Enjoy the day, the weather and the time with friends. Chances are, you'll enjoy the wonderful game of golf as well.
Robert Menges is the head golf professional at the Swan Lake Golf & Country Club, Mt. Hope Road, Swan Lake. He is available for private lessons and if you have a question or subject you would like covered, he can be reached by phone at 845-292-0323 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Joe Bermel Jr.
Strategy of the Putt
The golfer must us strategy A for all putts within your skill level to reasonably hole, and strategy B for all other putts.....thinking.....get them NEAREST THE HOLE to get your "no stress 2 putt."
3 putting is NOT an option.....Get in your mind, 2 putting is HOT, 3 putting is NOT.
Joe Bermel Jr. is available for private lessons, group, corporate, organization and golf shows/tournaments. His special edition DVD "How To Putt Well" is available by calling 631-589-1384, at his Web site www.ThePuttingDoctor.com or his email at email@example.com
The 17th green at the Lochmor Golf Course slopes from left to right and is guarded by a traps right and left. This hole is designated the toughest hole at Lochmor.