Naomi's Post of the Month - MASSGOLF

Naomi’s POST OF THE MONTH

Naomi is here to help you navigate the crazy golf world with topics ranging from goal setting, expectations, the female golf experience, growth of the game, to so much more. Keep reading to hear what is on the pro’s mind this month and how it can help you or a friend!

 

NOTES FOR BETTER STROKES: APRIL 7, 2021

It was two or three weeks ago I was thinking about April’s blog and what it would be about. I remember being really excited about the topic I chose and thought out the entire blog in my head from start to finish. Unfortunately I didn’t write it down and guess what?

Yup, I totally forgot the topic and everything I was going to write when I was thinking about it last week. Has this ever happened to you? Well it’s happened on more than one occasion for me and it stinks. You come up with a really good idea, song, recipe, and then it’s gone like the wind.

Well, guess what I did last week? I typed the word ‘FORGOT’ in my phone. Just one word, as a quick reference for when I would work on my blog next. A new blog topic about forgetting swing lessons, techniques, terminology, rules, etc I thought would be a good topic to bring up.

I looked at my phone in the notes section a few days later and saw the word ‘FORGOT’. Just by writing one word it brought up my blog idea and I was able to start typing this blog.

So what I’m getting at with this month’s blog is to provide you with a helpful tip to help you to remember the important items that would help your game. Let’s work on providing little reminders to ourselves telling us how we are progressing. Just write down a note to yourself, it’s as simple as that.

Here are some examples:

  1. If you love to go to the practice range, take a little note pad with you and write down your takeaways from each practice session. What did you figure out today? What worked and what didn’t?

  2. Do you have a goal with putting? Do a putting test for yourself at the end of each practice and keep notes on your progress.

  3. Are you working with a pro? Take notes down right after the lesson with only a few key words that stuck out to you that you can look at later and remember the topic.

  4. Are you working on correcting your alignment? Try out different approaches, like aiming with your feet, then hips, then shoulders and when you find which works better just write down that area. Like for me it’s feet.

  5. Are you working on tempo? Play a bunch of songs when you are practicing and when one clicks and works perfectly with your swing, write the name of the song down. I remember in high school getting the Justin Bieber song ‘Baby’ stuck in my head for weeks, so make sure to choose some songs that won’t make you too crazy listening to on repeat.

  6. Are you working on distances with your mid irons? Keep notes when you are on the course on how long you hit your ball for each of those clubs and you’ll have a good idea of your distance ranges. Like this: 7 iron – 130, 140, 138, 134, 135 = Range 130-140

For those who love check lists like me, this will be motivating and fun. For those that wing it when they swing it, this will be a little harder to do. To make it easier to try, whenever you are going to practice or play, put a small pad of paper or your phone in your back pocket. It’ll be within reach when you have your takeaways after each practice or playing session. It doesn’t have to be a novel, just a few words will do the trick. Try making it more often, like after 15 minutes of practicing or after each hole, making a note. Like ‘driver 3/4 swing’ or ‘follow through to cup’ or ‘loosen arms’, whatever worked!

The next time you go out to practice or play, read your notes back to yourself and remember what you had worked on. It’s a great place to start for that next practice or playing session. Try writing down notes for a month (I know, I know, that’s a long time, but give it a shot!) and then take a look back through each day’s notes to see how you’ve progressed. You might be surprised how much you’ve progressed in a short amount of time just by keeping notes.

 

ABOUT NAOMI

Finding a PGA Golf Professional that is female is a lot like hitting an eagle on the course, they are out there but you wish there were more. With over 20 years focused in the golf industry Naomi Nesenoff, PGA has explored and excelled in many areas of the golf industry. Before Mass Golf, Naomi worked her way up throughout the years to become the Director of Golf at multiple facilities. Running massive golf events for facilities, charities and organizations, being mentored by a PGA Master Teaching Professional, winning local and national awards for her merchandising skills, and implementing numerous out of the box programs throughout the world that we don’t have enough space on here to fill, Naomi is dedicated and passionate about the golf industry. With such a diverse background, Naomi brings vast experience, a unique perspective and a passion to share golf with everyone!

 

HOW TO RESPOND TO UNWANTED ADVICE: MARCH 10, 2021

I used to run a clinic series for new golfers and returning golfers I called *No Embarrassment Clinics*. In my first clinic of the series I always explained that when they will be practicing and playing golf in the future that random men WILL come up to them and try to give them advice. These groups were made up of mostly women and I mentioned this WILL happen to them and that it won’t likely happen to the men in the clinic. It’s a crazy and unfortunate phenomenon.

Personally, I have had too many experiences to count where I am practicing at a range and someone that I don’t know or sometimes someone I do know comes up to me and without hesitation starts telling me what I NEED to be doing. I have never met a female golfer this has not happened to. That is crazy right?!

So after explaining this to the group and taking questions, I would provide some options for them to be ready to respond to that person.

  1. The polite approach – Thank you, but I am working with a PGA Professional on my game and am focusing on that.

  2. The confused approach – Do I know you? or I don’t know you, why are you telling me this? or please don’t confuse me, I’m working with a PGA Professional and really need to focus on that.

  3. The direct approach – Saying NO and Please Stop. I am working with a PGA Professional.

Many of the students in these clinics returned with stories of this occurrence and most felt comfortable using the first approach. One of my students Olivia provided an EPIC response that I have shared with my students since and would like to share here…

Olivia always wanted to learn the game of golf. She recently started working at a golf course and wanted to understand golf for herself and her new position. She was nervous and excited to learn, signed up for the No Embarrassment Clinic series and had a blast during the first clinic! After the first clinic Olivia was practicing her golf grip in her backyard and her uncle came outside and started saying to her you know what you need to do with your grip…. Olivia immediately put up her hand and said proudly STOP, I’m working with a PGA Golf Professional Naomi. Olivia told me that her uncle’s attitude did a 180 from telling her what to do to him being very impressed. Olivia was so proud to share her experience with the group the following week. She said that she wouldn’t have known what to do and was so happy to have an answer. The whole group was incredibly happy for Olivia, admired her direct approach and saw that it worked!

If you are introducing a female friend or family member to the game, please let them know that this WILL happen to them and then provide them with Naomi’s 3 Tips to be ready like Olivia!

Can you use these if you aren’t working with a golf pro? Of course! No problem! You can say I am your PGA Pro and that you come to me monthly, which is the truth because my blog is monthly! 😊

IF GOLF WERE A TEST, LET’s ACE IT!: FEBRUARY 2, 2021

This month we are talking about Mental Rehearsal and Preparedness.

When you are getting ready for a test in school you typically study, take practice exams and you mentally prepare for the testing environment right? By doing these steps you feel more ready and confident with this type of mental rehearsal in comparison to not preparing at all.

Let’s get you feeling more ready for the golf course with mental preparedness before your round of golf. In this situation the round of golf is the ‘test’.

  1. Study – Similar to how you would prepare for a test, you would practice on the range before your round as your ‘study’ time. Instead of ‘cramming for the test’, try coming out multiple times before your round to practice. Work on trouble areas of your game to improve and remember to spend time not just at the range but at the short game area as well. We want to be a well rounded student!

  2. Practice Test – To take your practice ‘test’, practice an entire hole at the range and putting green. The key is to play exactly like you would on the course, just like a practice ‘test’. Pick a hole or a spot on the practice range and imagine that is the first hole you will be playing that day. If you know the first hole you are playing that day that’s great! Pick that as the distance. If not, check out the scorecard to give you an idea of the hole’s layout. Then hit your appropriate club (no do overs!) and imagine how far you are from the hole then (*don’t actually walk out there*). Pick another hole or spot on the range that would be that new distance away and hit again. When you are near the green or on it head over to the short game area. Figure out approximately how far you would be away from the hole and hole out. Your practice ‘test’ is now over. Now to analyze. How many strokes did it take you to hole out? If you have time, retake the practice ‘test’ and see if you can beat your last score. If your last ‘practice exam’ didn’t go as well as you hoped, end your practice with a short putt that you sink to give you a good feeling to go to the next step.

  3. Prepare for the environment – Before you head to the tee or ‘test’ take a minute or two to mentally prepare. You can sit or stand, eyes open or closed, and do some deep breathing. Realize if you feel any extra tension in your body and do a few last minute stretches to prepare your body and mind. Imagine the first hole and how you played it on the range. Since you have practiced it moments ago it will feel fresh in your mind and it will help prepare you for implementation. Then head over to the tee area for the start of your round.

  4. Test Time – As you are walking up to the tee try taking a deep breath and relax your body. We ALL get nervous on the first tee and that is ok. If you practice mental preparedness with the steps above, it can help you with those first tee jitters, help you become more confident and comfortable on the first tee and help to implement what your body and mind have been practicing on the course.

Please feel free to reach out and let me know if you tried this and how it went! 🙂 nnesenoff@massgolf.org

 

 

ARE YOU A TRUE GOLFER?: January 13, 2020

Hello golfers,

Yes that means you!!!

If you have read any of my past newsletter posts, I start off the same way, HELLO GOLFERS. Let us talk today about when and what determines you to be a golfer.

I saw a commercial the other day where a couple was driving in a car and the husband said ‘I got invited by my boss to play golf next weekend. The wife responds, ‘Are you sure? I know you have that old set of clubs, but you’ve only played golf once.’ The husband responded ‘I have a set of clubs, so I AM A GOLFER’ with lots of confidence.

I actually laughed out loud! I have seen this type of situation repeatedly through the years where many men feel comfortable saying they are a golfer way before many women feel comfortable. I enjoyed how blatantly they showed this in on tv. Why did the husband feel so confident? Why didn’t the wife?

Let’s go back to when you started golfing. Was it just recently or a long time ago? When did you finally say you were a golfer? After you had played for a few months, a year, two years, more? I know I didn’t call myself a golfer until I took a series of lessons over a few months and then played golfer numerous times by myself until I felt comfortable being on the golf course with others to finally start calling myself a golfer. I thought I could not call myself a golfer until I could go out and hit all my golf shots and understand EVERYTHING. Guess what? I will never be fully confident nor know everything about golf, but continuing to learn and improve is one of the great joys of golf!

Now I believe anyone interested in golf that enjoys it is a golfer. Just like bowling, working out, and baking, if you enjoy it, you associate yourself with it! So why not golf? Are you new to golf or have a friend who is interested? Let us start the trend and build the confidence in our fellow female golfers. If you or your friend just started golfing or have an interest in it, think of yourself as a golfer and call each other a golfer. Say it over and over again and soon you will believe it. Don’t wait until what we think we need to reach to become a true golfer, start calling all of your girlfriends interested in golf a golfer today! This can help grow confidence in oneself, which is also a big aspect of improving one’s golf game. So let’s grow each other’s confidence!

This ‘think it say it’ philosophy is closely related to mental rehearsal, which we will talk about in next month’s blog. Until then, I wish all of you golfers out there a happy and healthy 2021!