The Middlesex Ladies completed the last 3 of 8 sessions of their Spring coaching programme over the last two weeks.
Charlie organised a group session on the 9 hole course at Northwick Park and set up the course covering all 9 of the short game topics of our earlier sessions (pitch, lob & bunker shots, variety of chips and a long lag putt etc). As you can see from the photos the challenges were quite challenging, especially from the long green side grass and lack of sand in the bunkers. We played a mini Solheim Cup competition as a team building exercise and as you can see from last photo, win or lose we were all still smiling at the end.
This was followed on the Sunday with a putting session, truly learning about one’s own technique using mirrors and templates and improving ball trajectory using various tools such as graduated little loops to pass the ball through – exceedingly difficult I must add – and experimenting with the amount of swing when putting to the high or low side of holes with the use of a gadget.
Our final session last Monday was called “gamification”. Charlie set the ladies chipping and putting challenges, each of which had to be completed before one could move on to the next task thus simulating a pressurised situation and at times a frustrating one.
The first challenge was chipping to an elevated green at three different lengths with tricky landing spots and taking it in turns, we had to get three balls within the cones before moving on. Next was a putting challenge progressing through a series of different length lag putts uphill and downhill to within a zone around the hole once one had achieved success at each length. Then back to another green with different putting lengths but this time the aim was to hole out in two and if you missed, the penalty was that you had to start all over again. One player used the word “brutal” having 3 putted at the final hole. The session’s objective was very much one of self-awareness and self-learning eg graduating from relatively easy to harder tasks; often requiring the ability to refocus after waiting whilst others took their shots together with learning through failure. Again the session demonstrated the importance of practising in different ways to make it not only interesting but to challenge oneself by creating pressure and replicating situations as real as possible to life on the course.