Let’s Play – Who’s the Monkey?
In each question below, I’ve written 2-statements, try to answer which statement was made by a “Player” and which was made by a “Monkey”.
In case you’ve forgotten, a Monkey is a golfer that’s never as consistent as they want to be, they’re always looking for the next hottest tip to try on the golf course and they’ve been taught to play golf using someone else’s strategy and swing, instead of their own. Thus, causing the Monkey to become frustrated by their inconsistency on the golf course because among other things, they always feel rushed because they feel they’re holding up the other golfers in their group.
A “Player” plays better more often and their scores will back that up. They do less tinkering with their golf swing and are thus more consistent. Which leads to becoming less frustrated on the golf course because they take everything in stride and seem to always be enjoying themselves on the golf course. They never look like they’re rushing.
You’re standing on the tee of a 163-yard, Par 3. The flag is 10-yards from the right-side of the green. There is a 20-yard wide sand bunker in front of the green that starts 5-yards right of the right-side of the green and ends 5-yards to the left of the flag.
A – I’m going to try to start the ball to the right side of the green and hit a right to left shot and draw the ball back to the flag to get it close to the hole.
B – I’m going to start the ball to the left side of the flag and if it draws a little or fades a little, or ends up short of the green, I’ll be in good shape.
You’re standing on the tee of a 500-yard, Par 5. There’s a bunker 240-yards down the left side of the the fairway and a bunker 350-yards down the right of the fairway. There really isn’t much more trouble on this hole except for the trees bordering the fairway and water on the right-side next to the green. For some odd reason you pop-up your drive and it only goes 150-yards, barely making the fairway.
A – This is a long hole, I gotta take my 3-wood and get the ball as far down the fairway as I can so that I have a short iron to the green so that I can 1-putt for birdie.
B – I have 350-yards to the hole and about 330-yards to the front of the green. If I hit my 5-iron 165-yards down the left side of the fairway, I take the sand on the right-side of the fairway out of play. Then I’ll have 185-yards to the flag and 165-yards to the front of the green. I’ll hit my 5-iron again down the left side to take the water that’s next to the right-side of the green out of play and I’ll be just on the green or only a couple yards short.
OK, quiz over. How’d you do? Could you determine – Who was the Monkey and Who was the Player?
Many people are probably saying – “Marc, the answer to both those questions is obviously the 2nd answer each time.” To which I reply – “Hmmm, if so it’s so obvious, then why do we see golfers come see us week after week after week, playing like the first answer?”
I’m not going to stand here like a Dictator and tell you that I‘m right and your wrong and expect you to play my way. That isn’t what we do. We base everything on Results as opposed to Theories and Assumptions. So with that said, lets go over it together to see the inner workings of the Wisdom of a Player.
In the first question – which of the 2-golfers would hit the green more often – the one that was playing to the small right-side of the green trying to curve the ball into the flag or the golfer that aims to the larger left side of the green. The answer is obvious – the golfer aiming for the bigger target will hit it more often.
The golfer playing to the big side of the green will hit more greens and make more pars. Who’s the Monkey? The Monkey is the golfer that argues – “Yeah, but if I hit the ball to the left and it goes a little left, I’ll have a long first putt.”
This Monkey is also the golfer that ends up missing the green a minimum of 6 out of 10 times and ends up hitting into the bunker a minimum of 3 out of the 10 times. And hitting into bunker causes the 95-golfer to:
Occasionally get a par after a fantastic bunker shot and a great putt.
Often leading to a bogie after a good bunker shot and a 2-putt.
Sometimes leading to a double-bogie after a bunker-shot that doesn’t get out of the sand, another bunker shot that gets on the green and a 2-putt.
And occasionally, but more often then we’d like to admit leading to a bunker shot that doesn’t get out, another bunker shot that goes flying over the green, a chip shot that gets on the green and a 2-putt for triple bogie or a 3-putt (out of frustration) for quadruple bogie.
And this leads to your scores ranging from a par to a quadruple bogie. You know what I call it when your scores can range from a 3 to a 7? Inconsistent golf. Do you know anyone that plays inconsistent golf? A lot of Monkeys do!
Who’s the Monkey?
Now the Player aims for the large left side. If they hit the green, they’ll make either a birdie, par or bogie (if they have a super long putt). If they miss the green, they’ll miss it short, where they’ll have an easy shot to the hole because you aimed properly and gave yourself a great angle to the hole, where the bunker doesn’t even come into play. So you hit your next shot on and 1-putt for par or 2-putt for bogie.
And this leads to your scores ranging from a birdie to a bogey. You know what I call it when your score ranges from a 2 to a 4? Consistent golf that allows you to break 90-consistently. Consistent golf that allows you to enjoy yourself on the golf course without fear of holding up the rest of the group. This is how the Player does it!
Who’s the Monkey?
A Player has a PLAN to play consistent and to play to their strengths. A Monkey looks at the flag and hits towards it.
The second question about the Par 5 is critical to the golfer wanting to become more consistent. See, in our studies we have found that 84% of golfers that don’t break 90 have more trouble on Par 5’s than any other hole. These golfers score more over Par on Par 5’s than on Par 4’s or Par 3’s. On the other hand – Players score closer to Par on Par 5’s than any other hole.
How’s this possible? Well the first answer from the Monkey is always – “They probably hit the ball farther and that makes it easier to get Par.” While there is some truth to that, it’s only a small factor.
The true answer is that they play smarter. The 95-golfer averages 6.6 shots on every Par 5. The 85-golfer averages 5.3 shots on every Par 5. That is over a 1-shot difference on every Par 5, 5-shots difference every 18 holes. Which brings the 95-golfer down to a 90-golfer without even considering improvements in your swing yet. Or even take into account your improvement on the Par 3’s that we spoke about on the first question because of the PLAN you developed!
Now going back to the question of Who’s the Monkey on the Par 5. The Monkey takes out their 3-wood “to make-up for lost distance”. When you do this, there are one of 4-things that will happen when you hit that 3-wood:
You hit a fantastic shot 220-yards down the middle, leaving you with a 130-yard shot to the green.
You hit a great 200-yard shot down the fairway that bounces into the fairway bunker, which leaves you with a 150-yard fairway bunker shot to the green.
You hit a 150-yard shot that slices into the trees to the right and you have to waste a shot chipping out.
Or you try to get too much distance and “flub” a shot 90-yards into the fairway bunker on the left.
Has any of that ever happened to you?
See, we know the Monkey can make Par on a Par 5, but we also know you can make an 8. Where as the Player, because they have a PLAN, will be on the green in 3-shots or at worst 4-shots even after popping up their Drive. So the range of scores the Monkey will make varies from a 4 to a 9. The range of scores the Player will make will range from a 4 to a 6. That’s why the Player averages 1-stroke less on Par 5’s than the Monkey does.
Who’s the Monkey?
Do you want to be the golfer that holds up your group every week on the golf course because of inconsistent golf that makes you feel as though you have to rush every shot?
Who’s the Player?
Do you want to feel confident that you’re in control of your swing and where you hit the golf ball, along with making correct, smart decisions on the golf course?
Using the 2-Questions at the beginning: Right now, who are you closer to? – the Monkey or the Player?
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