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The Source of McIlroy’s Magic?

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Stan Sutherland
Stan Sutherland
Rory Mcllroy. Pic: nsaplayer

Rory McIlroy is interviewed by the Telegraph’s Jim White and comes up with some interesting insights.

Ever since I realised golf is also a mind game starting with Tim Gallwey’s Inner Game of Golf I’ve been intrigued by stories like Jacklin’s feeling like he was in a cocoon when playing well.

This from Kris Wilder:

“British golfer Tony Jacklin describes the "cocoon of concentration" he sometimes finds himself in: "When I'm in this state, this cocoon of concentration…”

Then came the idea of being in the zone.

White writes of McIlroy, “I [McIlroy] relax by playing golf. I’ve always enjoyed my own company. I’d come up here from about the age of eight, just playing on my own, just you and the ball against the course. I wouldn’t be the best team player. I enjoy individualism, practising on my own, solving my own problems. I like nothing better than sticking my iPod on and spending a couple of hours just putting. It’s a meditation thing, if you like.”

Looks like I’ll have to buy myself an iPod.

Kinda interesting this meditation thing.

Not sure if Hogan actually said it but quite a few people suggested that when Ben was ‘digging it out of the dirt” on the practice ground it was like he was in a state of meditation.

“Dug it out of the dirt” was Hogan’s answer to why he was such a great striker of the ball.

Now if only the young Irishman would show more respect for the Ryder Cup I might get to like the wee guy even more.

Here’s an interesting article about amateur swing speeds from golfblogger.

“My friends at the Golf Instruction Courses have done some research on amateur swing speeds and tempo times at a local (Michigan) best ball golf outing. There’s a lot of data in the post and I found it very interesting reading.”

Swing speed range for men was 79 mph to 122 mph with the average being 105.

Swing speed range for women was 71 mph to 94 mph with the average being 79 mph (Note: only 7 ladies participated in the measurement survey).

Tempo time range for men was 0.78 sec to 1.40 sec with the average being 1.03

Tempo time range for women was 0.88 sec to 1.47 sec with the average being 1.28 sec.

The longest drive for men, approximately 270 yards, came from a swing speed of 109 mph with a tempo time of 1.14 seconds.

The longest drive for women, approximately 215 yards, came from a swing speed of 94 mph with a tempo time of 0.88.

The swing speed for the man with the longest drive was only 109mph. OK it’s still quite fast but not the fastest. Can we assume that tempo has a lot to do with length?

AP’s Doug Fergusson as featured in provides a fascinating insight into Tiger’s golfing relationship with his father.

“Even when he was just learning to play golf, Tiger Woods never had any trouble breaking par. He owes that to his father making sure the bar was never set too high.

Woods recalled those days during his news conference Tuesday, especially when his father lowered par.

“Say it was a par 4 and it took me four to get there; the first time I got there in three, par automatically went down,” Woods said. “Sometimes, he didn’t know that I would lay up a couple times, not get the ball to the green, so I wouldn’t have to drop par. And then he started catching on and he’d drop par anyway. It was his way of being creative enough where it taught me never to be afraid to go low.”

Geez am I ever feeling homesick and I’ve just got back.

The guy playing the top 100 golf courses in the world has just done Loch Lomond which as you are no doubt aware will play host to the Scottish Open prior to THE Open.

Apologies for shouting but what is it with these allegedly erudite American golf writers who continue to call it the British Open? And I won’t buy into the explanation it’s a requirement because their American readers are less up with the play in golfing matters. Methinks maybe there’s a Freudian explanation for their screw-ups.

Anyway, back to bonnie Loch Lomond. I’d like to say it’s my preference for links-style courses which has meant I haven’t played the course but the truth is I don’t have friends in high golfing places or the money to fork out for a round. But I must add if you’ll look at the photograph “Loch Lomond looking up toward Ben Lomond from the 17th green” and if you cast your eye bottom left and imagine a wee boat anchored in the loch. I’ve lunched on that wee boat and saying to myself as I munched on a haggis sandwich (only joking, never had a haggis sandwich but have eaten lunch on a wee boat moored off the 17th) “one day maybe.”

This thought for your golf this weekend from Dave Pelz, golf’s short game guru.

“Study the two factors of a solidly struck putt and you'll discover that face angle determines 83 percent of the starting line while putter path direction determines 17 percent. In other words, a square face angle is Five Times (my emphasis) more important to starting putts on line than putter path.”

Also keep in mind Yogi Berra’s classic remark, “Ninety percent of putts that are short don’t go in.”

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