The First actual (try to hit something) lesson.
My trusty trainers have come with me today. I’m not overly sure what to expect, so I turn up and have some photo fun with pro shop assistant Helen and some unhelpful manikins sporting some of our new clothing lines, golfing like a lot of other sports now produce clothing that is no longer exclusive to the sport and can be worn on a day in day out basis.
The Golf Buggy
Chris then whisks me off in my own golfing chariot, I have also never been in a golf buggy before and I think my excitement gave it away. These were not tarmacked roads that we spun across, this was a proper wilderness exploration through the heathland gorse, I think buggies are door-less so that nature can be a very real part of your journey, which was great as I spend a lot of time talking about how lucky Thorpeness is being so rich in nature and now I was experiencing some of the nature first hand.
The Practice Green
Off the buggy and on to the practice green. Which has the House in the Clouds and Windmill to my right and forever expanding lush grass to the left of me, so I can’t complain about the view. In front of me are red flags waving proudly in the wind as if challenging me.
Beginner Golf Tools
Chris is armed with a tone of balls, two white rods and a 6 iron (apparently in the middle of the spectrum of golfing clubs, perfect for a beginner).
Making friends with your golf club
Chris begins her session acquainting me with the club, making my hands do contortionist tricks and ‘shake hands’ with the club. So now I have introduced myself properly the club Chris moves on to my stance, ball between legs that are shoulder width apart, weight to the front of your toes, pivot your hips on the swing. All sounds fairly simple until I try to do all these actions in the right order at the right time.
The Back Swing
Chris broke the back swing into a sequence for me: left arm straight relax your right arm, rotate to 90 degrees from your hips (like a door opening) with the face of the club straight, bend your arms to a waitressing position (balancing the tray above one’s head), pull down with your left arm whilst letting your right arm follow rather than lead. Do all of this essentially by instinct as your eyes need to remain focused on the ball, Easy! Or at least that’s what I had hoped, the end part of this sequence was my sticking point my right arm would take over or I would swing to fast, it is amazing how much more accuracy I had when I slowed the last part of my wing down. This process was repeated for 30 minutes, I created divots, I successfully made contact with most of the balls and Chris seemed genuinely happy with my progress.