Ramblings of a new(returning) golfer

Thread starter #1
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
4
Hi, new to the forum and returning to golf after a long break. I have a few questions so apologies for rambling but just want to check and see if I'm setting off on the right path.

I played to an 18 handicap when I was 15yrs old.....haven't played since as life/money/uni got in the way and am now 33. Played a round in May and thought 'bloody hell this is brilliant I remember why I love it' even though I shot 104 and since then have been hooked, looking to play regularly and get better.

Bag
- Playing with Wilson Deep Red 5-SW irons and these are the only clubs I can hit consistently right now (and an Odyssey Stroke Lab putter). They're 'about' 1/4 longer than standard as I am 6'4
- I'm also carrying round hybrid 3 & 4 irons (also Wilson Deep Reds) a Callaway Hyper X driver and a Vantage 64 degree wedge but they go everywhere, thin, fat, left, right....you name it hence I dont actually use them on a round.

Course
- I'm signed up on a flexi-membership at Pyrford Lakes (Surrey, nr Woking)
- I lose about 5 balls per round, mostly in the pretty heavy rough as opposed to the several water hazards!

Other
- I'm signed up with the pro to have 4 - 6 lessons to get me back on the right path. We're running through the basics and gradually getting me back on the straight and narrow starting with my grip and now moving onto my takeaway and getting more arc into my swing (currently too steep)

Questions:
- I've invested in lessons rather than new clubs at this point, particularly whilst I get my swing sorted. Would people agree this is the right call and I should focus on being able to hit the clubs I have? Or even ignoring the clubs I can't hit right now would I see a benefit from getting a new set of irons, getting them custom fitted etc?
- If/when I get new clubs, whether that be next week or in a few years' time, any recommendations for good club fitters in the area (Woking, Surrey)
- I'm enjoying Pyrford but I only moved to the area 6 months ago and didn't fully appreciate just how many clubs there are on my doorstep! Are there 'better' options for me to play/join particularly as a beginner? I am walking distance to West Byfleet and New Zealand but no idea if WB is the kind of club I can rock up and join? Assumption is New Zealand is a non-starter. What about any of the 3 W's in terms of playing/joining or are they also a bit of a non-starter right now? Also for WB and the 3 W's I've no real feel for whether they are £2k or £20k joining fee/yearly subs, if there are waiting lists, etc. Can anyone help?
- Is anyone else a member of either Pyrford and/or other clubs and open to playing a round or two when I get a little better? As I said I'm new to the area and it would be great to meet some mates in the area.

Thanks in advance!
 

bobmac

Major Champion
Joined
Feb 2, 2009
Messages
23,939
Location
Lincolnshire
At 6'4'', you can do what you want. ;)
Seriously, new clubs can wait.
I'd say you're doing the right thing with lessons first, however you might ask the pro if the clubs are suitable for someone of your altitude height.
Welcome along.
 

slicer79

Challenge Tour Pro
Joined
Jan 7, 2012
Messages
776
Location
Ireland
I'd ask a lot of questions of the pro who will get to view you and can make a call

The first thought in my head would be that you've likely grown since 15 and the clubs probably could do with a bit of adjustment for your height
 

FELL75

Active member
Joined
Sep 20, 2020
Messages
197
I'm near to Woking, lots of nice courses (3Ws, West byfleet, NZ) but very difficult to get on. Try Hoebridge, chobham or Sutton Green as they are more accessible.
 

Tashyboy

Money List Winner
Joined
Dec 12, 2013
Messages
13,231
At 6'4'', you can do what you want. ;)
Seriously, new clubs can wait.
I'd say you're doing the right thing with lessons first, however you might ask the pro if the clubs are suitable for someone of your altitude height.
Welcome along.
Bob what’s your thoughts on a beginner/ returning player having a 64 deg wedge in there bag.

welcome to the fruitcake shop SG 👍
 

jim8flog

Journeyman Pro
Joined
May 20, 2017
Messages
9,793
Location
Yeovil
In the main the clubs you have should surely suit until you gat back to playing reasonably well although as per some others I would question a 64 degree wedge being there.

Long time since I lived in Woking so no comment about clubs except that most of the big ones are and always have been very expensive and hard to join.

Several forum members have recommended Silvermere as a good place for club fitting and from a distant memory a nice play to play.

If you are losing that many balls buy cheap preused or lake balls.
 

BobbyP

New member
Joined
Jul 14, 2021
Messages
10
Location
Surrey
Hi, new to the forum and returning to golf after a long break. I have a few questions so apologies for rambling but just want to check and see if I'm setting off on the right path.

I played to an 18 handicap when I was 15yrs old.....haven't played since as life/money/uni got in the way and am now 33. Played a round in May and thought 'bloody hell this is brilliant I remember why I love it' even though I shot 104 and since then have been hooked, looking to play regularly and get better.

Bag
- Playing with Wilson Deep Red 5-SW irons and these are the only clubs I can hit consistently right now (and an Odyssey Stroke Lab putter). They're 'about' 1/4 longer than standard as I am 6'4
- I'm also carrying round hybrid 3 & 4 irons (also Wilson Deep Reds) a Callaway Hyper X driver and a Vantage 64 degree wedge but they go everywhere, thin, fat, left, right....you name it hence I dont actually use them on a round.

Course
- I'm signed up on a flexi-membership at Pyrford Lakes (Surrey, nr Woking)
- I lose about 5 balls per round, mostly in the pretty heavy rough as opposed to the several water hazards!

Other
- I'm signed up with the pro to have 4 - 6 lessons to get me back on the right path. We're running through the basics and gradually getting me back on the straight and narrow starting with my grip and now moving onto my takeaway and getting more arc into my swing (currently too steep)

Questions:
- I've invested in lessons rather than new clubs at this point, particularly whilst I get my swing sorted. Would people agree this is the right call and I should focus on being able to hit the clubs I have? Or even ignoring the clubs I can't hit right now would I see a benefit from getting a new set of irons, getting them custom fitted etc?
- If/when I get new clubs, whether that be next week or in a few years' time, any recommendations for good club fitters in the area (Woking, Surrey)
- I'm enjoying Pyrford but I only moved to the area 6 months ago and didn't fully appreciate just how many clubs there are on my doorstep! Are there 'better' options for me to play/join particularly as a beginner? I am walking distance to West Byfleet and New Zealand but no idea if WB is the kind of club I can rock up and join? Assumption is New Zealand is a non-starter. What about any of the 3 W's in terms of playing/joining or are they also a bit of a non-starter right now? Also for WB and the 3 W's I've no real feel for whether they are £2k or £20k joining fee/yearly subs, if there are waiting lists, etc. Can anyone help?
- Is anyone else a member of either Pyrford and/or other clubs and open to playing a round or two when I get a little better? As I said I'm new to the area and it would be great to meet some mates in the area.

Thanks in advance!
Hey, I have a very similar story, just got back into golf this summer after a 20 year break having played as a teenager. Like you, i was a mid-handicapper but currently averaging high 20s while I try to get my game back.

Sounds like we are in a similar area, I've mostly been playing at Hoebridge on the 9 hole course which is ideal for beginners / improvers as none of the holes are particularly long. The 18 is also pretty good, a bit more of a challenge but fairly wide fairways and probably more forgiving than Pyrford (though I've not played there yet).

I understand West Byfleet has a waiting list for membership and NZ is invitation only so probably not realistic options in the short term. I've not ventured further afield yet, but as you say, there are tons of courses around, from the cheaper pay-and-play to the more prestigious 3 Ws.

I'd definitely be up for playing a round some time - feel free to send me a message on here and we can try + set something up.
 

TheDiablo

Challenge Tour Pro
Joined
Jan 23, 2015
Messages
1,354
Location
Surrey
I’m at West Byfleet

Last I heard we had about 90 on the waiting list, no idea how long that will take to clear but years rather than months. No movement expected until April, but I imagine a good chunk of those are on multiple lists so you never know.

I think joining fee about £2.5k and subs around 1800

3Ws - probably only West Hill with any potential to join, I think it’s around 5/6k and just over 2k subs

If anyone wants a game one evening in a few weeks just drop a message I’m happy to host
 
Thread starter #10
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
4
Thanks all, really appreciate the comments.

@TheDiablo and @BobbyP I will for sure take you up on your offers when I get a little better....I'm currently ~105 shots a round which wouldnt be fun for you guys to witness!

Might look to get on the WB waiting list regardless
 
Thread starter #11
Joined
Jul 21, 2021
Messages
4
Progress update as I continue. Have stuck with same clubs and am having a lesson each fortnight and trying to practice a couple of times a week. Transferring it from the range to the course is a different matter though! A few observations:

- Lessons have focused on grip, alignment and backswing. Feels like (and scores reflect) that I am taking a step back to hopefully take a couple of steps forward in due course. I am really enjoying playing but it feels like I’m swimming against the tide at the minute.

- Everything goes to pot when I know people are watching (e.g a queue of people on the 1st waiting to tee off, or when I’m playing through people). How do other people deal with this?
 
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
14,907
Location
Watford
Progress update as I continue. Have stuck with same clubs and am having a lesson each fortnight and trying to practice a couple of times a week. Transferring it from the range to the course is a different matter though! A few observations:

- Lessons have focused on grip, alignment and backswing. Feels like (and scores reflect) that I am taking a step back to hopefully take a couple of steps forward in due course. I am really enjoying playing but it feels like I’m swimming against the tide at the minute.

- Everything goes to pot when I know people are watching (e.g a queue of people on the 1st waiting to tee off, or when I’m playing through people). How do other people deal with this?
There's no magic formula. You just have to remember that everyone duffs a tee shot sometimes unless they're a tour pro, and even then they manage it on the odd occasion. If anyone laughs they're laughing with you, not at you, because we've all been there at one time or another. You just have to tell yourself you don't care until you stop caring for real.
 
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