By Mary Ann Souter
(TUCSON, AZ) They are three of the most highly skilled players among the ranks of professional women golfers and hold the added title of Solheim Cup Team Captain. Who couldn’t use a few tips from some golf greats? The following tips are ones these Champions believe can make a difference in your game!
BEFORE THE GAME:
Betsy King won 34 LPGA Tour titles and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1995. Betsy played on the Solheim Cup team five times and was Captain in 2007 when the U.S. beat Europe in Sweden. She regards a regular warm-up routine as key to her success.
Warm-Up for a Round of Golf: Begin by putting – hitting 3 and 4 footers, then mid range. Finish with longer putts to get a feel for the speed of the greens. Spend 15 minutes on putting, 15 on chipping and sand play and 30 on the range, starting with shorter irons (usually pw, 8, 6, and 4), then fairway woods and finishing with the driver. If time is an issue, shorten the time spent on each part of your game equally.
AT THE TEE:
Kathy Whitworth was the U.S. Team Captain at the Inaugural Solheim Cup Match in 1990 and again in 1992. She was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1975 and to this day holds the record for the most LPGA tour wins at 88. Her recommendation is short but powerful.
Take Dead Aim: Always check your clubface to be sure it is square to your line of target. This will be of substantial help in aiming. And always “take dead aim”!!!
ON THE FAIRWAY:
Rosie Jones is the U.S. Team Captain for the 2011 Solheim Cup to be played in September in Ireland. Rosie is a seven-time Solheim Cup player and winner of 13 LPGA tournaments. She retired in 2006 and currently plays on the Legends Tour.
Bump and Run: Club selection is Key: If you have less fringe to carry and several yards to the hole, choose a 9, 8 or 7 iron. If you have more fringe and less green, select a pitching, sand or lob wedge. The position of your hands at address will remain the same throughout the entire motion. Create a pendulum action with your shoulders and arms with no wrist break. Use a short rhythmic swing to bump the ball onto the green and let the ball roll to the hole.
Marvol Barnard, LPGA/PGA Teaching Professional at The Haven in Green Valley (520- 625-4281), and 2011 LPGA Teaching and Club Professionals Central Section President, added that their insights are vital to improving your game. “These women are golf greats and they know the game. Their tips are a peek at the skills and processes they to help them become such outstanding players on the LPGA Tour.” Marvol is one of our exceptional LPGA teaching pros in southern Arizona and works with the AWGA to promote women’s golf. Go to www.awga.org and click on “Related Links,” choose LPGA and locate a Teaching Pro in your area.