Confessions of a (Very) Mediocre Golfer – The Summer of Making it Happen
I can’t be the only one who is desperately trying to find a summer hobby in an effort to convince myself that the warmer months really are just as fun as the winter months. I know what you’re thinking… “Ugh… Another winter stan. We get it… You work at the mountain.” And winter stan I am. But serene moments running on the back dirt roads of the Mad River Valley have a way of making me feel silly for not at least trying to embrace the changing of seasons. Summer is truly a gorgeous season here.
Like most others, I have to be in the mood to run. Or bike. Or do any form of outdoor cardio really. So, I set out on a mission to find something that I could do here at the mountain, that got me outside and enjoying my surroundings, but wasn’t as exerting as running. And with that, my golf career (that word seems strong) was born. About five years ago at this point, I was gifted my first set of clubs from my now husband who wanted me to get out onto the course with him. In hindsight, nothing truly tests a relationship like a partner with an inconsistent drive (me) and poor eyesight (him), but at least we’re driving around in circles together!
Since I got my clubs, my interest has honestly come and gone. There were some weeks I was gung-ho about trying to get better, and others that the driving range or round went so terribly I couldn’t even look at my clubs. Relatable? It seems the more I talk to golfers the more I’ve realized that this never changes, even with the best of players.
After a wishy-washy few years of attempting to improve my game, I’ve declared this my summer of making it happen. I’m going to play consistently, get the help I need, and practice, practice, practice. I started off with an opening day driving range session and gradually felt the familiarity sink back into my swing. Consistent isn’t the proper word, but I was making contact and back to feeling semi-okay.
Then to the next step. The first nine holes of the season. My husband and I met up for a short round after work one day to test out how things were going. The short answer, way better than expected, but I quickly started to notice that no amount of self-help and spouse coaching was helping change the way I was hitting the ball. Playing by myself and with Alex is my comfort zone, but I was realizing that if I ever wanted to improve, make educated shots, and finally achieve consistency, I was going to have to step out of said zone.
That’s when I decided to call in the pro himself – Roger King. In fact, I was out on the course by myself, ran into a nice couple that asked me to hop on with them, and when I hit my drive one of them said, “You have a nice swing. Roger King could help you perfect it!” Sure enough, my lesson with him was that afternoon.
It feels vulnerable to have someone observe what you’re doing and tell you how to fix it. I was hoping I’d chat with Roger and have him tell me, “Wow. You are the greatest golfer of all time. All you need are new clubs and you’re next up for the PGA Tour!” But obviously, that was not going to happen. Roger has a way of making you feel completely at ease, no matter your skill level. It only took a swing or two for me to relax and even get excited about how he’d help me improve.
I’m not going to spoil the tips he gave me, but I can say that he has helped me refocus. I’ve hit the course a few times since then and I find myself going back to that lesson and paying attention to his feedback and exercises, which is way more beneficial than getting frustrated. I’m not quite sure where this golf journey will take me, but I’m feeling good and motivated. Who knows, maybe this blog will be a series that’ll help keep me accountable. In the meantime, get out there, try it out and make sure to hone your skills… And no matter how good you are, Roger King is a great resource to lean into.