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William K. WolfrumThis Week at Oct. 19, 2006

Tips and instruction for the infrequent golfer

As related earlier, I golf about as often as Mike Tyson gets his face tattooed. And when it happens it's painful. Such was the way things went my latest round at Wolf Run Golf Club in Reno, Nev.

On a chilly morning I battered the front nine at Wolf Run for an ugly 53. At 17, golfing multiple times a week, I was making solid runs at breaking 90. At 39, golfing a couple times a decade, I'm happy getting off the course without injury.

Over the years, my golf game and the muscle memory I developed as a teen have atrophied. I can't drive, hit a long iron, hit an approach shot, chip or putt. I struggle driving the cart. Taking the flag out of the hole confuses me. It's horrific.

But on the back nine at Wolf Run, desperately seeking help, I realized I had some help buried inside of me. Hell, I'm the editor or That means that I have edited and read stories from some top-notch golf instructors.

So, starting on hole 10, I started remembering things written by Chuck Evans.

"If someone has a lot of body motion, twisting and turning in their stroke it is extremely difficult to not have any un-golflike motions," Evans wrote in "By doing less with your golf swing, you will get better."

Heeding that advice, I decided to remove all excess motion from my swing off the tees and just concentrate on putting club to ball. There were no miracles but I slowly started getting more distance, and started hitting fairways.

Then I thought about Marc Solomon's blog, "5 Reasons You're Not Playing As Well As You Want To."

"You swing your driver different than your pitching wedge. You swing your 3 iron different than your 7 iron. ... Annika has said it. Tiger has said it. Vijay has said it. What have they said - 'All clubs should be swung the same way.' You have enough swing thoughts without thinking about how you need to swing your 5 iron differently than your 8 iron," Solomon wrote.

Taking that advice, I lined up the same, swung the same and kept movement to a minimum. Again, no miracle cures but I started finding a few putts for birdie and par.

I thought about other advice on the pages of and Did I start stringing together birdies? No. But I came in with a 47 - a step nearer my goal of getting to at least under 100.

And while I know I need to stop being a golfer who doesn't golf in order to really improve, having expert instructors in my corner (and in my head) is an advantage in its own right.

As always, welcomes your comments.

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Golf practiceTips for practicing your golf game
will have you ready for your round

A majority of players think practice is beating golf balls. Wrong! That is just hitting balls. There must be a purpose for improvement. In reality if you're working on something in your swing then ... "you must work on this correctly even if you miss the ball, until you don't miss it anymore! There is no acceptable alternative," as Homer Kelly said. Here Chuck Evans gives some ideas for you to think about the next time you go out to mechanical practice.

Also: Selling or buying? Post free golf course real estate listings


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The California School of English is offering a new 'English with Golf' program designed for golfers who need to improve their English-language skills. The school has partnered with the Temecula Valley Golf School to combine language lessons with pro golf instruction and many hours of practice. The school is located in Temecula, in the beautiful wine country of southern California, within easy driving distance of Los Angeles and San Diego.

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