May 2014 Posts

Why You Should Start Playing Golf

If I was just starting out, or thinking about picking up golf, I would be in the same boat as you: scared, not sure where to start and intimidated.  Yes, it can be expensive.  Yes, it is difficult to learn. Yes, it is time consuming.  But, if you put forth the effort and time, you will be forever grateful.  In this post, I am going to try and convince you why you should pick up the sport I love so dearly.  I will also give you tips on cutting costs, ways to make the game more fun and lessons you can learn along the way.  Buckle up, here we go.

There will always be reasons not to do something, but here are the reasons why you should start playing golf, now.

Values.  The game is built on the foundations of honesty, integrity, competition and relationships. Golf is the only game in which you are your own referee, where you hold yourself accountable for choosing between right and wrong. It takes a special type of person to call a penalty on themself, even if it means losing the match.

Memories.  Some of my most memorable and heart-warming memories revolve around golf. I have never been more nervous in my life than standing on the 18th tee with a two shot lead, out of bounds markers lining both sides of the fairway, then needing to sink a slippery downhill left-to-right five-foot putt for my first and only AJGA victory.  Or spending my entire summer at the golf course- teeing off when there is still dew on the ground and finishing up 36 holes when the sun is going down.  However, I will never ever forget making my first hole in one on Mother’s Day while playing with my mom.  What a special moment that was.

People.  Golfers are some of the nicest / most well rounded people in the world.  Golfers are humbled by the difficulty of the game, willing to take on challenges, and used overcoming difficult situations.

Business.  There are more deals closed on the golf course than anywhere else.  As the old saying goes, “A bad day on the golf course beats a great day at the office.”

Leisure.  There are very few things more relaxing than spending part of your day on the golf course.  When I need to clear my head or spend time by myself, I go to the golf course.  It seems like everything slips my mind and the course becomes my therapist.  There are no deadlines or meetings on the course, just you and golf Gods.

Competition.  Doesn’t matter whether you are 5 or 85 years old, there is always a way to make golf competitive.  Competition will sharpen you game, introduce you to other people and teach you sportsmanship.

 Complaint #1:  It’s too expensive. 

I hear this all the time.  Someone goes out and spends $1,000 on a brand new set of clubs, then buys shoes, balls, tees, gloves, hats, shirts, divot repair tools, towels, socks, and the list goes on…  You don’t need that stuff.  There are many online outlets like and, or golf stores where you can buy used clubs and balls. Then, you can use GolfMatch to find courses in your area at prices you can afford J

 Complaint #2: Golf is too hard to learn.

Again, something that is always said to be a negative, but it doesn’t have to be. Golf is a tough sport, everyone knows that, but who cares? You shouldn’t view the steep learning curve as daunting, but rather just find other individuals who are at the same point in the learning curve as you. Feeling comfortable with the other golfers in your group is key.

Golf has changed my life and made me a better person, no harm in seeing if it will do the same thing for you!

TaylorMade SLDR & Jetspeed Driver Review

TaylorMade SLDR and JetSpeed Driver Review:

As one of the brand ambassador at the GolfMatch, I will be writing reviews about the

newest golf clubs once a week. Since I work at PGA Tour Superstore in NJ, I have the ability

to test out, and learn about, all the newest products in golf. For my first blog, I reviewed

the TaylorMade SLDR driver and the TaylorMade JetSpeed driver, so here we go!


TaylorMade SLDR Driver (10.5 Loft, Stiff, Fujikura Speeder 57 Graphite Shaft):


New Features:

1. The Most Notable Feature: They added is the 20-gram adjustable sliding weight on the

bottom clubface. You can slide this weight to either a draw or fade to help straighten out your

ball flight.


2. The Most Important Feature: TaylorMade moved the center of gravity in the club

closer to the clubface rather than the middle of the club. Since the center of gravity is

moved lower and more forward that means there is a bigger sweet spot on the face. Also,

this now helps generate less spin of the tee (more roll) which will increase distance.



The TaylorMade SLDR is a solid choice if your in the market for a new tour level

driver. It is very consistent with distance and feels real good with on center hits. Off center

hits sound and feel a little bit weird but you will still get a decent shot off do to the CG being

moved more forward.


TaylorMade JetSpeed Driver (10.5 Loft, Stiff, Matrix Velox T Graphite Shaft):


New Features:

1. The Most Notable and Important Feature: The speed pocket on the bottom of the club

head is designed to increase ball speed and decrease backspin on low shots. Which means they

are trying to make a bigger sweet spot so you can hit it longer and straighter more consistently.



The TaylorMade JetSpeed is pretty much just a newer version of Rocketballz Stage 2

driver. For me it, the spin rate was way to high causing a loss in distance and accuracy compared

to the SLDR. Also, since it is a game improvement driver is has less workability than the

SLDR. This club is a good choice for a player looking for a higher ball flight and more club head

speed due to the 46”, light weight shaft TaylorMade put in.



The SLDR driver lives up to all the hype that the marketing powerhouse TaylorMade

says it is. It feels and looks great as the ball flies off the clubface. It is a great choice for someone

who has a good swing speed, while looking to add distance and consistency off the tee. The

JetSpeed driver is a perfect driver for someone who needs to hit the ball higher. It will help

increase your club head speed and ball speed because of the longer shaft.

My 3 Goals for the 2014 Golf Season


Let me preface this post by saying you have never met a bigger head-case on the golf course than myself.  Sunny days are the worst because my shadow distracts me, I hate birdied because I always hit a poor next tee shot, and having a great round just means I’m going to have a bad last hole. That being said, I’m a 1.4 handicap at the moment, and looking to get back to scratch, so how will I do that?


It may sound hard to believe, but I actually slice my putts.  The biggest thing I focus on when putting is getting the ball to roll end over end, because sidespin is a killer on anything outside 3 feet. Getting the ball positioned properly in my stance is important, as is keeping my body still and making sure I create a pendulum with my shoulders, rather than rotate them.  I have changed putters more times than I can count, but we all know that is just an excuse for dealing with a poor stroke. Drive for show, putt for dough!

Distance Control

Every time I watch the Pros it seems as if these guys and girls are knocking it to 15 feet on every approach shot, probably because they are.  So why is this the case? Well, that is there job, but also because their distance control is insane! They don’t always hit the ball dead straight, but their misses to the left or right are usually pin high, which makes that birdie putt all the more makeable every time. Over the years my distance control has definitely improved, but being able to take a little off the ball, or give it the ole steroid jerk, is necessary when you’re in between clubs, which happens all the time.

The Mental Game

So I touched on this in the beginning, but it is worth noting, that the mental side of golf is so incredibly important.  It comes into play on every shot, good and bad, long or short.  Each year you see the Pros falter on Sunday in the Majors, or hit a bad shot on the first tee.  Sure pressure affects you physically as well, but the swing is the swing, if we are able to keep our composure and stay mentally focused, then we are at least helping our consistency.

All in all, I am so pumped for the 2014 season, just like I was in 2013, 2012, 2011, yada yada yada.  I want to take strides to becoming more consistent, which will not only take practice, but the right type of practice.  Anyone can go to the range all summer and learn to hit the driver straight, but the game is so much more complex than that. Maybe that’s why it’s so frustrating!