Golf column: Summertime fun on the links

As July has brought us some nice weather, fireworks celebrations, family gatherings, grilling food and drinking beer, as well as many other fun outdoor activities, your golf game may have taken a back seat to summer.

Joshua Breen, PGA Professional at The Links at Northfork
Joshua Breen, PGA Professional at The Links at Northfork

But can we keep the good times rolling with a little bit of golf included?

I know I have friends and family that I haven’t seen in a while that are golfers. Wouldn’t it be fun to set up a small tournament among your golfing friends and family?

It doesn’t have to been anything elaborate; maybe a team match play for bragging rights, nine-hole or scrambles for people who haven’t touched a club all year. There are several options and the Internet has several great ideas.

Whatever event you choose, set it up in advance so people can prepare properly and you can get a good turnout.

Most courses will take a longer advance reservation for groups of 20 or more; if you don’t have 20 ask the course if they have a tournament or anything going on the day you’re looking at.

Most golf courses either have online specials or certain times where it is cheaper so it doesn’t have to cost a lot.

Who knows maybe it will turn into an annual or even a monthly get together with some good summertime fun to be had by all.

Here’s a tip to try this week:

When striking the ball, make sure you are hitting the center of the club face.

I would suggest working up from a small chip, turning it into a longer pitch-and-run, then a half swing and finally a full swing.

When you start consistently missing the center of the club face stop and think about it.

The previous spot you were able to make good contact on the center of the club – why, when I went to the next shot, couldn’t I make good contact.

What is the difference?

I would then go back to the previous shot where I did make good contact and hit a few making good contact and then slowly start to make the swing a little bit bigger, inch by inch until you find the exact spot where the error occurs.

If you want to fix the error determine what the error is and then try to fix it from there.

If you are unable to fix the problem, maybe you should be swinging with less of a back swing to keep the contact more consistent on the club face or you should get a lesson from your local PGA professional.

Joshua Breen is the PGA head golf professional at The Links at Northfork in Ramsey.