Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Ian Poulter - A Winner Indeed!

Our good friend, Tony Clark, Managing Director/Owner - PlaneSWING®, wrote this insightful article on Ian Poulter. I am re-posting it for all of our followers because it is a great example of how any individual with a vision and the belief that it can be accomplished, can make it happen. Remember these two quotes: "We become what we think about" and "If you think you can or you think you can' are right".  Believe in your game and your ability to improve and you will.  Thanks Tony!

I've met Ian Poulter, albeit briefly, as a result of being a member at Woburn where he is the playing professional and ambassador.
The aura of confidence and single-mindedness he displays means Ian might not appeal to everyone but I like him.

That opinion is shaped by my limited knowledge of his background, the work I know he does for junior golf and charities and conversations I've had with people that know him far better than me.

By contrast, I've also endured BS about Ian from people who display nothing but envy. You know who you are!

Ian is 36-years-old. He turned professional 20 years ago when his handicap was four and he was a good club golfer but, arguably, nothing special.

But Ian had a dream: to make a success of his life and prove his teachers wrong.

"All my life I've been told I'd never amount to anything," he recalls. "That was always the message from my teachers at school. I wanted to be a footballer but that didn't work out either. But, yeah, I just love proving people wrong. It gives me the motivation to succeed."

Teachers take note - you make or break our leaders of tomorrow.

With no amateur career to speak of Ian pursued his dream of being a successful tour pro. He was an assistant professional at Chesfield Downs, a modest club where, it seems, he received little encouragement.

I'm sure Ian's self-belief wasn't unshakable - we all have bad days. But it was undoubtedly stronger than most - as he has proved so spectacularly.

Now, when kids and adults alike look at Ian Poulter, what do they see?

That's for them to answer. What I see is a self-made man in the truest sense of the word.

Not only has Poulter worked his butt off to get his game to a level where he competes with the best in one of the most competitive sports in the world, he's done so with a metaphorical foot on his head trying to keep him down.

His persona is not an accident in my view. He's made some excellent strategic marketing decisions that ensure he remains at the forefront of golfing news.

People ridiculed the remark he made about his ability (there's that collective metaphorical foot again) when he told Golf World (UK) in March 2008: "Don't get me wrong, I really respect every professional golfer, but I know I haven't played to my full potential and when that happens, it will be just me and Tiger."

Was it hype or did he mean it? I hope it was both!

So after 12 years we've seen Ian Poulter the golfer, marketer and, through his junior golf and charitable works, the philanthropist.Always a snappy and trendy dresser, Ian created IJP Design several years ago and launched a clothing range every bit as controversial, and to a great extent retro, as he is. Enter Ian Poulter the entrepreneur.

All of which makes him appear a magical blend of Doug Sanders, Richard Branson, Donald Trump and Paul Getty.

Add to this the fact that Ian actually has a wonderful family, spending as much time as he can with Katie and their FOUR children. Enter Ian Poulter the family man.

Undoubtedly Ian has a great team around him. No one person could manage everything that goes on in his life. So we can now add 'time management' and 'delegation' to his skill set. Stand up Ian Poulter the CEO!

Furthermore, while Ian was one of Europe's 12 sporting heroes in the Ryder Cup at Medinah, he was acknowledged by his teammates as the Leader - someone who thrives on pressure; the aggressive home supporters unwittingly his driving force. Someone should have warned them not to put a metaphorical foot on his head!

Tony Clark,
Managing Director/Owner - PlaneSWING®

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Stronger Legs - More Power - Longer Drives

We all know that our legs are pretty important in the game of golf and to our overall golf fitness. They are important for many reasons. Two main reasons are stability and balance. You can also add power.

If I just got off the tourist rocket from Mars and watched a game of golf...first I would scratch my space helmet and ask the tour guide what the green stuff was, then I would probably make the observation that the club is swung with only the arms and hands...which, unfortunately for some, is definitely the case.

But seriously, strong legs keep us stable, help our balance immensely, and can help us add more power to our golf swings. Strong legs will also help us get through life a little easier while climbing up and down stairs, getting in and out of chairs, and walking 18 holes, to name a few.

Many PGA and LPGA Tour professionals are now doing Olympic type lifting of weights to develop a stronger lower body and more powerful legs...especially deadlifts and squats.

Watch our friend George "The Animal" Slupski with his winning drive in the 2010 RE/Max World Long Drive Championships.  He set the world record that year with a drive of 406 yards. Just watch his leg action.

You may not make it to the Wold Long Drive Championships, but you will play better with stronger legs. Here are some simple squat exercises you can perform at home that can help develop more leg strength. They require a balance ball, a wall and your commitment.

Try these and let me know how you do.  Make it fun!

Thanks for reading!
The GolfGym Team.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Once In A Lifetime Experience

Ten days ago, Vicki and I had the incredible opportunity to share breakfast with, be on the golf course (no ropes) with, have a late lunch with, and watch the Super Bowl with...many of the greatest golfers of all time.

The event was the exclusive Hall of Fame Pro Am for "Devo Strong" at the Floridian Golf Club in Palm City, Florida. The event was to raise money for the recovery and care of Devon Quigley, son of Champions Tour standout Dana Quigley.  Devon suffered severe head and brain injuries in a car accident 14 months ago.  He cannot yet walk or talk but he continues to fight a courageous fight that some doctors thought he'd lose a long time ago.

Read more:

The most wonderful aspect of the entire day was the way the game of golf brought that special "Family/Community" of golfers together to support one of their own.

An incredible day was had by all and we were among a lucky few who got to share in it.  Thank you to Hollis Cavner and our friend Arlen Bento, Jr. for the invitation.

Here are some of our memorable images from that day.
The Four Greatest Hall Of Fame Golfers of All Time
No caption necessary!
Ken & Vicki and Bernhard Langer
Dave Stockton giving a Putting Lesson
The King Teeing Off
Ken & Vicki and Ben Crenshaw
Us with Nick Price
All of the Pros who played that day!
This is the helicopter that took Mr. Palmer to the Stuart Airport so he could board his jet back to Orlando.  What an incredible experience I had there. I stood about 25 yards from the helicopter as it started the engine. I could feel a little breeze as the pilot got ready to take off.  Then, when the rotors angled to lift off, I was almost knocked over from the wind. That was one of the coolest experiences I have ever felt...especially knowing the Mr. Arnold Palmer was inside.

I's kind of sappy, but it was a day that Vicki nor I will ever forget.

Ken & Vicki

Friday, February 01, 2013

Your Posture - Getting Worse Every Day?

Back in September of 2012 I wrote a post titled "How Is Your Posture" (it's the second one on the archived page).  In it I talked about what I have seen as I observed people at the gym.  I gave examples of bad posture and told that I need to keep checking my posture throughout the day.

Well, I am sad to say that yesterday while working many hours on the computer at my desk...I noticed that my posture was horrible. I found myself unconsciously leaning into the monitor with my back rounded and my head leaning down looking at the keyboard (I'm pretty fast, but I have to look at the keys...gotta stop that).

While walking around at the PGA Show last week I also noticed that I look down quite a bit while walking.  I don't know if I am looking for loose change that someone dropped or I am just being lazy about my posture. I really got upset with myself.  Here I am blogging about good posture and I am allowing my own to deteriorate. As soon as I would notice my head down, I would snap into a military type stance with my ears aligned over my shoulders.

Computers, smart phones, iPads and all the other things that require us to look down, are having a big affect on our posture and I think we are not conscious of it...and it's getting worse. On the street, walking at the PGA Show, in the supermarket, nearly everywhere.

If you are not conscious of your posture throughout the day doing normal daily activities, how much do you think you will be aware of it on the golf course. And as we know, poor posture in the golf swing will show up as a "less than your best" performance on the golf course.

Our good friend Roger Fredericks, who is one of the Gurus of Flexibility and Proper Posture for golf, wrote the following on his website:
"In looking at the world today, you've probably noticed that there's an epidemic going on regarding musculeo-skeletal problems. Whether it's back surgeries, hip and knee replacements, upper back and neck problems, etc., the list grows on. Despite the billions of dollars that is spent on these health and fitness problems, the truth is, that the ever growing number of ailments continues to rise. I believe that the root cause of these musculeo-skeletal problems lies in our sedentary culture. In other words, we sit down too much, or over use certain muscles in our bodies. When this happens, our bodies tend to get out of balance, which then gets us out of proper posture. Once the body's structural design is violated, the muscles will often get over (or under) used, and as a result, will get undue stress and friction placed upon them. Hence - Injuries.

Seldom is the "site"of pain - the "source" of the pain. "Just" by working on the injured area isn't always going to get the muscle back to function. Much like a car that's out of alignment causes a tire to go flat, only when the chassis is aligned will the wheel have a chance of rotating properly. The body works just like that."

The bottom line is that we must be conscious of our posture daily in order to ward off neck and back pain and injury, and more importantly, to get the most out of our golf game.
Now stand up straight and "ATTENTION"!!!

Thanks for reading!
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