As the New Year gets underway, now is the perfect time to set your golf goals for 2018. Fortunately, Hilton Head Island is one of the best places on earth to develop your skills on the green.
Here are a few golf goals to set for yourself in the year ahead:
1. Learn what makes other golfers better. Golfers love to read about golf and watch golf on TV, but they aren’t necessarily able to execute the shot. Find an instructor with a hands-on approach and learn the feeling of a golf shot that exceeds all your expectations. Learning golf is similar to dancing with my wife, Trish, who is an excellent dancer. She makes me look like an excellent dancer too, if I let her lead.
2. Take a free golf lesson. Screen shot of print out page 54 of Island Events to the golf exhibition and class at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Course driving range at Palmetto Dunes, held every Monday from 4-4:50 p.m. You will be entered into a drawing. Five lucky winners will be given a 1:1 lesson during that 4-4:50 p.m. time period. This offer is valid and valuable only in January and February 2018.
3. Discover why people love golf. Many people love golf because, when played correctly, it involves all parts of the brain. Golf ignites both the creative and the analytical lobes and requires that they are integrated together, resulting in artistry. Golf blends speed and power with finesse, strength and self-control. When a golf shot is executed correctly, the experience is exhilarating, effortless and graceful.
4. Play golf pain-free. Every day, older golfers and previously injured golfers tell me their medical history, seemingly justifying their future failure or asking me not to push too hard. My job is so satisfying when I see them swinging to play with a graceful, flowing swing that does not inflame old injuries.
5. Experience the exhilaration of golf. Golf is similar to snow skiing in that it gives strength and vitality as you allow physics to do most of the work. Golf is similar to chess because you see your moves ahead of time and must patiently wait to see them fulfilled. When the sequence unfolds, it’s invigorating.
6. Learn to make golf more sociable. Bring a friend with you to share the burden and double the pleasure. Confidence in your competence frees you to be sociable. Confidence in your skill allows you to interact with your playing partners. This, in turn, leads to more activities off the course.
7. Learn to be a teachable student. A high percentage of golfers are underachievers because they are not teachable. Teachable students allow a golf professional to coach them to their fullest potential and make the joy of the game a daily part of their routine.
8. Understand that good golf is not expensive (but bad golf is expensive). When the game is played well, the golfer leaves refreshed and energized. The game of golf is an excellent investment into your psychological and physical well-being. “If you think education is expensive, try estimating the cost of ignorance.” Which do you choose—losing golf balls, developing blisters and straining muscles OR taking a golf lesson and entering into the personal satisfaction of a game well-played?
9. Discover why golf is such a big part of the Hilton Head Island culture. Hilton Head Island has 22 courses, so you are never more than one mile away from a possible golf shot. A fun golf game leads to dinner with old and new friends. A golf game can support local charities. Imagine being a golf mentor who helps our youth learn character and etiquette while developing the skills to play golf for a lifetime.
10. Volunteer or attend the RBC Heritage Golf Tournament. Presented by Boeing, the 50th annual event will take place on April 9-15. Enjoy the social event of the year and make memories watching the PGA Tour players while supporting our local charities. Many volunteers interact with the players and get front-row views while they work. Call (843) 671-2448 for the Heritage Foundation office.
Enjoy your time on the course this season. I’ll see you out on the green!
A former PGA Tour pro, 2017 Carolinas PGA Teacher of the Year and member of the local Golf Hall of Fame Doug Weaver is the Director of Instruction at the Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy. He conducts “Where Does the Power Come From?,” a free clinic and demonstration, every Monday at 4 p.m. (843) 785-1138, (800) 827-3006 or palmettodunes.com.