Notable quotes in golf and your interpretation of it?

There is not right or wrong way of how we interpret the quotes from those who set foot prints ahead of us in this game of golf.
I had come across some quotes from the past golfers and teaching professionals.
I’ll start with what catches my attention first, there be more if this interests and encourages participation from the members.
Now, please express your thoughts and analysis of the quotes. Again, there is no right or wrong answers here. Treat it as the 19th at the round table.
First notable quote from the famous golf teaching professional.
-Harvey Penick who was a keen observer of the golfer’s movements in handling a golf club and had given countless lessons to the professional and the amateurs alike.
"The good players are almost always the ones who ask me to watch them on the putting green. The high-handicappers, who need it the most, would rather do anything than have a putting lesson".
This and more following quotes from the greats will be for conversation, not meant for a golf lesson

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One that pops into mind…

From what I hear a lot of teaching pros say a lot of us actually do misinterpret Sam Snead’s advice about gripping the club: “…like holding a bird in your hands”…

…with the impression to us meaning “gently”…

…but apparently he meant more like “a hawk trying to escape”…!


The better golfers had already learned the basic of advancing the golf balls. They know how to use the tools.
The putting is more like refining and finishing the rough mode made.

So while the beginners are still molding the shape, the more advanced are seeking how to perfect the details.

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On chipping and pitching.

-Roger Maltbie
" distance, distance, distance. I cannot stress it enough. Know what a 40-yard shot is. Know a 20-yard shot. a 60 yard shot. Get that done. Not every golfer can hit the ball as far as Tiger woods or as relentlessly straight as Ben Hogan did. But any golfer can hit the ball 40 yards. Learn how to use that wedge.

What is your thought on this?



I hear soooo many golfers say, “oh I’m in trouble from 60 yards and in” … and some of those are pretty good golfers … but what do you see getting worked on at the range…???

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Because they probably never practiced that 20-40-60 yards pitch shot.
I can guess why. The driving range is not cheap, so perhaps many of us feel wasting the range ball by practicing the pitch and half shots.

If one has the chance to get to the next stage. to use the same club for different distance. A fine practice. I’d call the reverse learning.
I like to use a single club to practice pitching.
Start with the regular pitching wedge. When getting familiar with the PW, then go to the 9 iron, then 8 iron.
I had never passed the 7 iron for pitching under 100. I supposed that I could have done it with the low lofted iron, but it’ll take a lot more practice and I just don’t have the time.
If one has unlimited use for driving range or has a large property which they could practice more of these “useful” golf shots.
Long ago, I had witness a high school kid ( looked like teens ) at a local public golf course hitting 60-70 yards to a roughed out space with a pin for his pitch shots. This was a space between the holes with trees shielding from both sides.
Years later, I believe that I had run into the same golfer preparing for the tryout for U.S. Amateur. Pretty certain it was the same person.

Yes, the short pitch shots is seldom practiced by high handicappers. Maybe that is part of the reason they hang where their index stayed.

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Average golfers might think the putting and pitching are boring.
So I’ll leap frog ahead a few spots to post the elements in golf swing.

**-Tommy Armour-, (Who’s that?) **
A great many players turn their shoulders and think that their hip action is correct. What they don’t realize is that you can turn the shoulders while keep the hips fixed, but when you turn the hips, the shoulders go along.

The silver scot.

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Yep have heard of him and have two of his short but really excellent books :+1:

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There’s several quotes that come to mind…the 3 that really stick out in my mind are:

“Golf is a game that cannot be won—only played”----Baggar Vance

“I have a tip that can take five strokes off anyone’s golf game: It’s called an eraser.” — Arnold Palmer

"They call it ‘golf’ because all the other four letter words were taken.” — Ray Floyd


From one of the great lady golfer.
-Mickey Wright
You can’t take a car from a dead start and put it immediately up to 70 miles per hour. No matter how powerful your engine. You must have a gradual acceleration of speed. So it is in a golf swing.

It’s been a long way since then, and we certainly have improved the lapse of accelerating for the auto mobile and for the golf swing.

However, there is also significant accelerated injury in the sport of golf.
Not just among the professionals but also within the amateurs who tried to imitate the move to maximize the acceleration to generate power for more distance.
There is an increase in the need for golf related injury rehabilitation.

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-Jack Nicklaus
**There are only two ways of increasing your distance. **
You can learn to swing the clubhead faster.
Or you can learn to deliver it to the ball more accurately.

Unless you are blessed with gifted physical ability from birth. There is no substitute of working harder.
Ben Hogan was relatively a smaller guy , reported at 5’9" but in all reality 5’ 7-8". He can drive the golf balls out there as long as anyone. I believe he was one of the longer golf ball driver in his era.
Jack Nicklaus was reported at 5’ 10" tall, before his double hip surgery. He was one of the longest hitter on tour in his era.
They must hit the sweet spot more often than the rest of the field.

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It’s essential. The point of that club is to get down in no more than 3. Really, 2, but it’s tough to play a wedge into realistic one-putt range. Just don’t make it 4.

Doing that, requires knowing your distances for those intermediate shots, both carry and roll.

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On physical size and golf, see Rory McElroy… Guy’s what, 5’9"? Maybe? And he’s one of the longest, most accurate drivers on Tour. You don’t need to be some windmill-resembling 6’6" behemoth to hit it really far.

Proper sequencing, explosive strength with a long acceleration path, and finding the sweet spot every time, go a really long way towards getting the most speed out of your swing.

Since this is a quote section, I’ll share the quote some Scot gave Greg Norman (allegedly) in Norman’s book. Norman described how he’d driven the green at some tournament, maybe Saint Andrew’s in an Open, and the Scot said to him, “Aye, ye’ve discovered the secret of Golf.”

“Oh, what’s that?”

“Eliminating the second shot…”


Approximate distance in the air can be learnt through practice.
Release and rollout comes with experience on the turf condition and terrain, can be interpreted similar to reading a putt.

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Of course, this will come as utilizing more of what one has. near perfect contact is another key.
Smaller guys can hit the golf balls as long as the larger guys by generating similar club head speed. But, what a price must be paid.

To perform at the same level as a larger athlete, the smaller frame will be taxed heavily. Most will not enjoy a healthy twilight years.

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- Bob Rotella
There is no such thing as golfer playing over his head. A hot streak is simply a glimpse of a golfer’s true potential.

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-Bobby Jones
"Nobody ever swing a club too slowly basic factor in all good golf"

-Tommy Armour
"The basic factor in all good golf is the grip. Get it right, and all other progress follows"

Often seen beginners not swinging with their potential. Mostly the female gender. I asked why? The common answer was ( if they were honest), was that they were afraid of hurting their hands and wrists. Which is understandable. Have to ensure them that taking a shallow divot will never hurt their hands and wrists if done properly.
As well as we have seen the martial artists breaking pine boards or even construction bricks with their bare hands. The rules of physics tells us, there be minimum rebound force if the force could move through the barrier.
A good proper golf grip will allow one to exert maximum force to the golf swing without excessive maneuvering one’s body. No one believed me when I told them a good golf grip will allow everything to happen naturally.
Those were high cap holders and they’re still hanging around their index after decades of golf.

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- Davis Love, Jr.
Doubt is the number one cause of missed shots.

Davis Love Jr. was a student under the coaching of Harvey Penick while he was playing for the U.T. Austin golf team. This thought is closely related to the quote from
-Harvey Penick
Take dead aim.

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- Ernest Jones
Understand that golf is neither a right-handed nor a left-handed game. But a two handed one.

I once had a debate with one of the boys in the group of whether the golf swing should be dominated by one side of the body.
He argued that Ben Hogan said " I wish I have three right hands" as the right side should be more dominating in the golf swing.
I thought both sides of the body takes different roles during a golf swing, where the left side should be more dominating leading, keeping in track while the right side stays quiet until the accelerating, all the way through the golf ball. It should be a team work.
Finding the harmony of the transition, harvest the power from all parts of one’s body to help applying the maximum power to the golf ball. That will only come after learning the right setup and practice.

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- Jack Nicklaus
If by nature you do things quickly, or slowly, you are going to swing the golf club basically the same way. Forcing yourself to the opposite extreme is rarely going to work because it’s too contrary to your basic instincts or impulses - especially when you are under competitive pressure.

I know a guy in particular, he does everything half a pace slower than most the guys. He walks slower, eats slower, talks slower… not slower by much, just in a manner of not hurrying ( Fred Couples comes to mind ). His golf swing is a reflection of his personality. Smooth and like pouring molasses out of a jar. His acceleration through the golf ball is good so not losing distance comparing to his peer; but man, no one could copy his tempo.
Unfortunately, aging and recent events had stopped him from going back to the links. He still meet up for his month club tournament, basically to see his friends but not taking to the golf courses every week like he used to.

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