The following post is an excerpt from Raising Athletic Royalty NOW available through most online retailers!
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LESSON: You Get What You Pay For
Dr. Chang Lee practices medicine in Los Angeles. His son Ken enjoys the game of golf and is on the local high school golf team. Ken is a junior and again missed the cut for varsity; he was sent back to the JV squad for another year. Ken wants to play golf for a major university and is seeing his dreams slip away.
Dr. Lee and Ken made the drive down to Laguna to do our three-hour Customized Evaluation Session. After the cordial chatting, we get into the details of Raising Athletic Royalty. Within 15 minutes a reoccurring theme starts to appear. Dr. Lee has Ken in a golf clinic two days a week at his country club. The one-hour clinics consist of 18 junior golfers ranging from the age of 9-17.
The clinic is marketed to be taught by the club’s golf director, an X-PGA player, but it is really run by his two assistant pros. In reality, Ken gets access to the range and a 9-1 ratio of player to pro for two hours a week.
I explained that range hitting isn’t “practicing in the manner in which your expected to perform.” It’s simply block learning being applied in a game that requires very different flexible skill sets. The type of grass, length of grass, the slope of the lie and the weather are just a few variables that must be addressed in the game of golf. Managing performance pressure, club selection, focus control and reading the course all play a part in Ken’s ability to shoot a low score. Besides, I added, even if Ken was only focusing on a fundamentally correct swing, a 9-1 ratio clinic for two hours a week isn’t going to maximize potential at the quickest rate.
Once I got Dr. Lee’s attention, we ran through Ken’s evaluation package. It turns out that even though Dr. Lee is very educated and successful; his raising athletic royalty skills were below par (no pun intended).
Dr. Lee thought that by placing his son, Ken, into the golf director’s group clinic at their country club, that Ken would get the proper training for a collegiate golf career. However, the clinic was not providing Ken with the essential components needed to attain elite athletic stature. Such components would include: organizing a personalized developmental plan, assisting with stroke mechanics, arranging practice rounds, strength training sessions, scheduling tournaments, helping with equipment preparation etc. Ironically, the golf director didn’t even know Ken’s name.
Towards the end of our session Ken said, “Dad, it makes sense now, if putting is the worst part of my game, hitting drives and irons off the mats for two hours a week isn’t even addressing my biggest flaw! We have been wasting so much time.”
We customized a developmental plan and shed light on the essential components that needed to be developed in Ken’s game. A goal without a plan is just a dream.
FYI: Parents, if your child is only attending a few private lessons or group clinics each week, please don’t assume that a world-class developmental plan is in the works. Also, please don’t expect high-level results.
“Achieving Goals Requires Flexibility And Compromise.”
“Goals Should Be Beyond Your Current Reach Yet Realistic and Under A Timeline.”