Just Golf


Improving Your Golf Game
So you want to find the "magic club" that will enable you to be a great golfer. Sounds great! But you need to know what the facts are.

Exercise for Older Golfers
I am not an expert on exercise by any means. But I have been diligent about maintaining my own body (now 73 years old) since I was about 40. Here are the things I learned by doing and reading, that have served me well. Note: drafts of this article were reviewed by people who are professional exercise experts, and I have tried to incorporate their suggestions, both into the article and into my exercises.

The Nine Ball Flights
There is a common diagram in many golf books that purports to show the nine basic ball flights. Unfortunately, that diagram is somewhere between useless and incorrect. Here is a version (actually two versions) of the diagram that correspond to physical reality.

US Open Report - 2002
I had an opportunity to attend the Sunday round of the 2002 US Open. Think Bethpage Black. Think Tiger, Phil, and Sergio.

Visit to Ping Headquarters
In late June of 2013, I was in Phoenix and took the occasion to accept Olly Eades' invitation for a tour of Ping Golf's headquarters. The factory tour (available to the public) was definitely worthwhile, and Olly's guided tour of the R&D facilities was really exciting. We got to watch PingMan (their test robot) hit balls, and even visited the gold putter vault.

Road Trip!!! PGA Show 2011
I finally got to go to the annual PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando FL. I was there to help staff the Pro-Head Golf booth, but had enough time to see lots of the show. Here's what I saw.

Road Trip!!! Reynolds Plantation 2010
We play regularly as a Wednesday foursome on the Monmouth County courses. But one of our members, Warren Furie, built his dream home at Reynolds Plantation in Georgia, a truly prime golf community. Warren invited us down for a week, and we thoroughly enjoyed it. This writeup doesn't follow the look and feel of the rest of the site, but enjoy it anyway. Lotsa' pictures and not too many words.

Road Trip!!! Golf 'Down the Shore' 2013-present
We recently made a few late Fall golf trips to my friend Warren's house at Reynolds Plantation in Georgia. By 2013, Warren had sold the house and that was no longer feasible. But fortunately, Warren also has a summer home on Long Beach Island -- "down the shore" as a New Jerseyan would say. For our Fall golf, we now make the house our HQ for three days, and play a few courses in southern New Jersey.

Road Trip!!! San Diego '98
Most of my family has gravitated to San Diego over the years, so I get there fairly often. My trip in the summer of 1998 had several interesting golf-related events. I got to play Torrey Pines. I visited the Callaway and Taylor Made factories, as well as their R&D facilities. And I got some really interesting "face time" with Dick Helmstetter (the R&D directory of Callaway -- he's the grandfather-looking guy in some of the Callaway commercials), Dick Rugge (then R&D director of Taylor Made, now the technical director of the USGA), and Alastair Cochran (his book is my absolute favorite on how golf really works).

Can the Wind Blow a Golf Ball Into the Cup?
On January 6, 2009, I got a phone call from Tommy Craggs, a fact-checker for ESPN The Magazine. He was following up on a "tall tale from sports", where a mis-struck putt was blown by the wind into the hole. It turns out the calculations are interesting, in that almost everything it requires is stuff a college freshman would have to know to pass Physics 101.

Even Tiger Thinks So
Now Tiger says that clubs that fit is the most important thing, even for a beginner.

The Great Square Groove Controversy
In the late 1980s and early '90s, it was widely -- and incorrectly -- believed that square grooves were illegal. Here's how that rumor came about, and what really happened.

You Da Man!
I posted this one as part of the discussion of the 1995 British Open on rec.sport.golf.

Constraints and Sports Technology
In every game the rules serve as a set of constraints that, in surprisingly large measure, define the nature of the game. This is an editorial, a strongly-felt argument that the USGA is caving in to the golf equipment manufacturers and, by so doing, giving the lie to their boast that they "protect the game". It isn't just about protecting existing courses from being obsoleted by technology; it's about keeping the competition based on skill and not the depth of your pocketbook.