Don't Let Nostalgia Hold You Back

I’ve got a new post on the site that explores how nostalgia in golf can be a limiting factor in your quest to improve. Here’s the link.

Feel free to discuss on this thread!


Awesome thoughts Jon. I love the example of tips being passed on and getting lost in delivery. I’ve learned to just listen and nod when my dad gives me the latest swing fix he heard (he’s a 22)…:slight_smile: and just consider it a conversation between two people passionate about golf…while totally ignoring the advice.
Every time he hits a bad shot and tells me he lifted his head I just smile.


I like it! I also think the golfer needs to figure out what works for them. I make my pro work for it since I usually don’t respond to his initial advice lol.

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I loved the article, That’s wonderful advice if you can pipe it 290 down the middle and flip a wedge. In my mind, I’m processing way more than that. I’ll give you a for instance, On 18, Players…this year, 465…The Bryson Rule instituted this year to rule out the smart play which is for the BOMBERS, pipe it down 9 take all the trouble outta play and have a great angle coming in. What won it? A 5metal striped down the left. Not too many people hit the Big Dog there! I totally agree, that no trouble…BOMB IT, but you have to process what is going to give you the best chance and BOMBING IT is not always the answer. Here’s my opinion, if you dare think for one second, that Hogan, Snead, Palmer, Nicklaus, Player, Jones, Vardon, whomever in their prime played a game that sadly passed them by…you got another thing coming. IMO, those men would be even more dangerous today. My home course has 4 90* dog legs that require accuracy with whatever club you choose, off the tee. The more you try and cut off, the more dangerous the tee shot becomes because of OB and 100 year old trees…very tall. So cutting off distance to leave me you a flip 54* or taking on a little less leaving a flip 50*…I don’t see the advantage because flipping the 50* or even the 46* takes OB out of the equation unless you top it, skull it, yank it, or pop it…but you can do one of those anytime.

I had a feeling some people would respond this way, and of course, you are entitled to your opinion.

So you bomb it every hole? WoW! Even the tour players don’t do that. I just feel you should process everything, if Bombing it takes out all the trouble do so. (Bryson did this 18 at the Players "Instead, he hit 4-iron (258 yards) into the proper fairway, followed by an 8-iron to 42 feet for a two-putt par. As for the Tour’s decision to remove the option of going down the ninth fairway off the 18 th tee, DeChambeau said he learned his lesson. “I understand it.Mar 11, 2021)…just sayin, and he could have taken it really close down 18 with the Driver even without hitting it down 9 which for him or any Bomber is the right play…str8 down 9! So I don’t know if it’s just my opinion, I think Bryson is the future, but more than that, even by his standards you gotta process what any hole gives you…

Where in the article does it say I bomb it on every hole? I’m afraid, you’re putting words in my mouth. That was just one example I gave where I believed hitting driver was a no-brainer for me (or pretty much any other golfer who plays that hole no matter how far they hit it).

On our opening hole, which is a similar length, I always hit hybrid because the driver brings certain parts of the layout into play that could cause more trouble than it’s worth.

I also am not sure why you keep bringing up the 18th at Sawgrass, I wasn’t discussing that hole, or my opinion on what club a golfer should hit.

I don’t expect you to read every article on my site, but if you had seen some other articles I’ve written about tee shot strategy, I do a very in-depth analysis of holes before I play them. You say I have to process everything - believe me, I do! My decisions are made before I even get on the course (with help from people like Scott Fawcett and Mark Broadie’s extensive research). My goal is to hit driver wherever I can, BUT, if it brings certain trouble into play then I will hit a shorter club. I often spend upwards of an hour analyzing a course before I play it in competition.

As I said before, you are free to disagree with me, but I feel as though you are extrapolating things that aren’t there in my article. Perhaps I didn’t do a good enough job communicating my thoughts.


So we don’t disagree! I say Bomb it if it makes sense, if it doesnt because of trouble dont. Maybe I’m the one not communicating effectively. In other posts on the site, I have even brought up my own mistake 32 years ago now, where my normal play on our 17th was to bomb it down 16 FW and hit 8 or 9 iron in over top of some maple trees. In the club championship, I made a poor decision, to hit 3 iron down the 17th FW, bad decision, I did that because I was trying to be traditional and promptly yanked it into a hazard and proceeded to take a 9 (as I lost a 4 shot lead on that hole) and lost a playoff. I was taught process everything, I never considered myself a good player even though I’ve been a single digit HDCP for 35 years. I know, for a fact, that because of “Best Practice” thinking and course management, I rarely lose to a player that is in my same Division which is now a B. I will lose to an A player because they are that much longer than me now, but my management puts me in a position where I can compete with them. I play the course, I play the shot, somewhere around 74 to 83 different shots, pitches and putts every round for 35 years and discounting the “gimmes” no shot has ever been the same ever. That’s the beauty of the game…you against yourself against the architect.

Great read Jon. I’m fortunate in the group I play with that we don’t have too many old ideas. Sometimes I hear one and I just let it go, or gently try to correct. All of what I try to do while I play now is based on what you have taught or what Scott Fawcett teaches. I’m talking about course management obviously, not swing tips.

I think the word “bomb it” is a bit misleading for a lot of golfers because it implies aggressiveness. Being able to hit your driver well enough to keep it in play (even if you don’t hit it in prodigious lengths) is one of the keys to lowering your handicap.

I don’t want players hitting driver on every hole, but they should aspire to hit it well and use it as much as they can IMO. When we see what Bryson is doing is kind of changes the framework of things, but at the recreational level, most golfers don’t have great length, which means they need all the help they can get off the tee advancing the ball as far as possible, even if that’s 220 - 240 yards.

But as you said, one of the great things about golf is matching up your decisions to the architecture of the hole. Thanks for reading!

I go back and watch @ScottFawcettDECADE ncaa driving video about once per month

I am taking pretty detailed notes and stats on my home course which are fun to review

Inevitably I end up BACK on google earth measuring carries, start lines and wondering “is that a .5 stroke penalty or 1 stroke penalty if i hit it THERE

Truly fun part of the game is the there are really close EV decisions out there that can drive you crazy.

I love the circular process of trying to figure out golf strategy and shoot lower scores

Nice article :+1:


I hoped I didn’t come across as some kind of “know it all” in the article, and I wanted it to be clear that I am just as guilty as others as perpetuating some ideas that turned out to be either completely false, or at worse, misleading. Thanks for reading!

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I’ll never forget when I first saw the video in my college coaches office a few years ago (he’s now at Columbia and works a lot with Broadie) - I was like, “THAT’S IT!!!”


It’s just math! Send it!!! :wink:


Lots of tight driving holes with dense hill country trees on both sides (50/50 lost ball)

Just like firewheel baby

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Jon, you are expressing a very educated lesson. After you get through swing development, your own distance knowledge, what are the strengths and weaknesses of your game, which for many can take a bit of time to understand. You get a small percentage of player that wants to improve. Like me, who had to pretty much lay-off for 2 years. start playing again during the pandemic with no access to monitors etc, and going to myself that I had altered everything about my swing because of change in RoM and PAIN…then I’m going to myself where’d my distance go, why am I fanning so many shots etc? Then I came across this/your website and I got this pocket monitor, that’s pretty accurate and very inexpensive, I started video-taping my movements and I’m like WTF, I can see what I’m doing and I can rebuild it really quickly because I kinda know what I’m doing, I enjoy beating balls ALOT even more than playing and very quickly went from 210 bunts to 240-250 going closer to where I am aiming. I did not want to be just another old guy poor player. 4 years ago, I was 260-270 off the tee and having hit my goal of 240-250 inside of 2 months, I think I can get even more now, without it being painful. AND THIS IS CREDIT TO YOU reviewing that pocket monitor. Now, the guys in my group play golf and never understand why they can’t consistently break 85 and I’m back to breaking 80 very easily and they think it’s just my added length, It’s not, When I use the word BOMB IT, it’s in context, it’s not a wild pass at the ball, I make calculated decisions as to what club off a tee is going take penalties out of play and still put a scoring club in my hand. My guys fire at pins, still to this day and wonder why the slight mishit puts them in a bunker or rolling off the edge for a no room chipper and I fire where I’m going to have the best chance for a 2 putt or get lucky with a one putt…We’re really good friends with our asst. super and even he says, when they plot pins he does 6 EZ, 6 meh and 6 suckers…and then my group wonders why they don’t score.

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All wonderful to hear! I appreciate the dialogue, and job well done on your progress!

You didn’t. I actually found myself wishing you had stopped what you were doing and explained why driver was the right play. :wink:

Depends on how far you can send though correct?..Until this year, if I wanted to SEND IT…I would have had to use FED-EX! :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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