My wife and I spent 3 days at the Butch Harmon School of Golf with Butch Harmon and Staff. It was a priceless learning event and an opportunity to learn from the great Butch Harmon himself.
For the first day, we started warming up with each of the coaches critiquing our swings. After a couple hours, I went to the video bay and got further critiques. My swing path and posture was critiqued by Butch and Vic. Butch said that the ball needed to be more in the middle of my stance and critiqued my body posture and made my legs more parallel and square to my swing path. Also, Vic had me focus on changing my swing path so that it would more likely hook than slice. I started off the day with a lot of difficulty getting this right, but I started to get better and got praise from Butch and the coaches over the improvements I was making throughout the day. After more practice on the range, we had lunch at the Rio Secco Clubhouse and I sat across from a pro player. It was a lot of fun. Then, I went back to the School and practiced more on the range and then did a bunch of putting exercises followed by more time on the video bay critiquing my swing. As a final session, we all went to the sand traps and practiced doing small pitching with our sand-wedges onto the greens directly in front followed by practice using my 7-iron to do long shots from the sand.
On the second day, we met at the gorgeous Cascata Golf Club and had breakfast before hitting the driving range and putting greens to warm up for an hour before our day of 18 holes. Amber and I got matched up with Dale aka Don Callaway and we played a round of scrimmage, whereby the person who had the best shot would have its shot counted and we would take the best of our shots to create a best score. Halfway through the course, Butch Harmon himself joined us and started critiquing our shots and sharing stories and jokes. It was a lot of fun. I did have a couple shots that led the scrimmage, including 1 in front of Butch that I got compliments on so that made me happy. Also, I made several puts for the team. Overall, our team did a round with a score of 4 under-par for 18 holes, including 2-under par on both the front 9 and back 9.
During day 3, we met at the Butch Harmon School to warm up and Dongki met up as well to help critique my swing with Nick, Butch, Dale, Vic, Greg, and Shawn (all the coaches of the Butch Harmon School). I practiced with the driver, 7-iron, and 3-wood. Then, we went to chipping and pitching exercises, whereby we not only tried to do the typical sand-wedge swings, we also received instructions on how to put with an 8-iron and 3-wood. There was also lessons on how to flatten the club and hit under it to get spin back with the sand-wedge vs doing a chopping motion in thick grass to get a high pop. After this, we did more practice on the range, putting green, and video bay with critiques of our swing compared to Tiger Woods when he was on the top of his game. Following this, we had a group trip back to the Rio Secco Clubhouse for a quick lunch (I got an Asian chicken salad) and then I did another scrimmage on the front 9 holes with the same team. We played well and got 1-under on the front 9-holes. Once again, I helped the team by making multiple puts. I learned how to turn my driver into play as a 1-iron and also improved my putting with a 3-wood. It was a lot of fun and I really got more comfortable with driving and all my clubs. I need a lot more work pitching, but my putting is looking better. I look forward to returning next month for the 2-day school and learning more.
Random stat: I attempted to drive over hole 3 at Rio Secco because I was told to aim 160 yards to cross a chasm and I surprised myself and hit the ball 200 yards due to increasing my distance so much and over-hit, which means I need to adjust my distances for my clubs since I am going further than ever.